May 3 2017
Parenting is a hard-enough obstacle for anyone, let alone someone facing an incurable chronic illness. The course is filled with roller-coaster highs and limbo lows. One second you think you have it all figured out, the next you are sitting against the bathroom door crying as little tiny hands reach underneath for you. I find it hard enough to take care of myself most days, so adding in two wily full-of-energy toddler boys makes for some interesting and stressful days.
Take the other night for instance, when the whole house was suffering from a horrible stomach flu. Jon was in the other room trying to sleep, it was way past the boys’ bedtime, I felt awful and just wanted to feed them some dinner. Jackson was being a typical boisterous toddler, and me…well I just sort of snapped. He was asking to go visit grandma, something he had been asking repeatedly since he came home from her house. I knew, even as the words were coming out of my mouth, that I shouldn’t say anything; knew that I should breathe deep and twist the sleeve of my shirt. But did I? No. Off I went. “There will be no visiting grandma, no Star Wars, no sunshine, no rainbows, no music, no laughter, no joy, no candy, just rain, rain, hard bread, and your crib.” My face fell, and the guilt immediately washed over me. Jackson on the other hand, just looked at me, and I kid you not, blew a raspberry. Yeah, that happened.
Between my pain-filled frustrations, the insane hours I clock at work (factoring in commute) and the non-organic powder-packet dinners, I will not be winning any parent-of-the-year awards. Ever. But hey, at least America is known for giving out participation awards!