I have been told that I need to find a way to be okay even if my children are not. I am too enmeshed, whatever that is. How separate should I be? Should I stand here? Move back this far? How about here?
Yeah, it's true. If Jude is having a good day, I am having a good day. If Jude is screaming, coming undone, shattered, so am I. If Eden has a bleed, if Sage is in pain, my thoughts and conversations revolve around ice packs and synovial damage.
My kids are relatively healthy and happy today, so I am too. I have been told repeatedly that I need to find a way to be okay when they are not. I am sure I can shut down that part of me that grieves anew every time Eden is limping because his ankle is destroying itself a little at a time, but do I want to? Even if I could, I am not sure that should be a goal.
I have a hard time believing that it is healthy for me to be cheerful and pleasant and talk about shopping or Oprah or whatever when my child is suffering. My gut tells me I need to feel it. Don't wanna pretend it's okay. Because, sorry, after all these years, it still. isn't. okay. that my child. hurts. I spent years is a drug/achohol/simple carbohydrate haze, not feeling anything if I could avoid it. I feel strong enough to take it, like a man. On the chin. I get knocked on my ass, but I get back up, lower my center of gravity, and take a deep breath. Ready. Go.
This life is short. Pain and anguish are a part of it. I will laugh my head off today, cry, yell at someone, shake my fist at the heavens and get down on my knees and pray. Sorry if my pain is hard for you to watch. Would it be easier if we were separated by a tv screen and there were commercial breaks? Then you could turn it off when it got too much. What sort of message do I send to my children when I insist that things are fine when they are not? It is a message of faith, really, that if I fall apart, come undone, someone waits with loving hands to hold me and put me back together.
The reality is, life is painful. Life is also beautiful, and terrifying, ugly and sweet. I can beat my chest and scream at the heavens and know that God is listening and that He has blessed me beyond belief and I have no right to question Him. He gets me, and can stand to see me in pain. There is no shadow or shifting, no pretending, and He will not turn away. Ever.
So I am here, warts, angst, hairy legs and all. Hold the fabric softener, the ativan, the cosmetic surgery and the twinkies. I plan to stand firm, experience it all, and take it right on the chin. And when I fall over, and can't get up, well, that is okay, too. I have back up. I'm good.