Logic and motherhood, in my experience, rarely collide.
That could not be more true for me lately. With how consuming my own health saga has been, I have a hard time not relating everything in life to it right now. I thought I was the only one with this obsessive focus, and it made sense to me because what else do I have to do other than think about what I can't do or focus on the little, yet monumental task I can do -- grow a person.
But I am not the only one who has taken this whole journey to heart.
Recently the Beans has become obsessed with drawing. He carries around a "handy dandy notebook" and seeks Blue's Clues all the live long day, and I may be prejudiced but for three he is pretty good. Like I can recognize what he draws, usually with ease.
So when the other day he proudly told me that he drew his best friend, ME, I nearly choked up on maternal hormonal overload. Then he showed me his precious drawing ... and it was like all his others, I could easily identify what was in the picture ...
Me. With an IV and subcutaneous infusion pump.
Oh and bangs, I have messy hair and bangs.
Pretty accurate picture of me as of late. In fact, it could pass for a photo except that my arms are entirely absent in this rendering.
Truth is I kept it and always will. It is a precious representation of what he can do ... it also brought some other feelings to the surface too.
HG is pretty crummy all things considered. In the interest of full disclosure I wrote three other words in place of crummy first and deleted and slowly stepped up the censorship each time. My life, as I knew it, has stopped. Nothing is the same. I do not do anything the same way I did 5 months ago, I do not think in the terms I did five months ago and I certainly do not look like I did five months ago and that ain't just cuz I have the prego gut going on. Some of those changes will never leave me, some have a definitive time stamp, and while I hate giving HG credit for anything good I do suspect that I will be a far better person for having survived this.
All that said, I feel like the biggest failure as a mom, wife, person right now and that picture both was a positive affirmation and a damning bit of devastation ... didn't mean to rhyme there but lets run with it.
My child has not missed the pump, the IV. I have actually been rolling my eyes a little at how similarly Beans seems to see me. He still demands stuff of me, still has the same three-year-old standards even when I cannot meet them. I joked the other day when he suggested that I clean up his toys that the IV pole was completely invisible to him.
Its not like I actually thought it was, but the fact that he drew a picture of me and didn't include clothes OR arms but did include the pump and IV ... its a part of me. He sees it as a part of me.
That ... stings.
I was feeling a little awful about it. I was dwelling a bit on how I haven't made dinner in an eternity, how exhausted my husband is, how independent my children have been forced to become, the fact that Meatball asks me about my ketones in the morning, how I have done jack doodle with kid's school, how messy the house is ... I can't even just be pregnant right, I have to be debilitatingly, freakishly, starving to death while vomiting bile and dependent upon modern medicine to even have a freaking baby. Um, fail.
Feeling totally worthless and trying to pull myself out of the dark slump that seems to always be looming in the background I took a deep breath and thought about finding the humor in this. Its what I do, it is what I blog about 99% of the time. HG is like having the Nothing from Never Ending Story follow you everywhere, it is easy to feel isolated and depressed in the middle of your body failing you so miserably and at a time that should be filled with joy. If I don't actively fight that dark pull, it will get icky up in here fast.
And I looked at that picture again ...
I have a huge grin on my face. He may have included medical contraptions and completely ignored my arms ... but he drew me with a huge grin.
So while my illness is not invisible to him, my attempt to remain positive IS visible.
I believe it is okay for our children to see us falter or have weakness. I think it is important actually, for them to see we are human and I think it is even more important that occasionally they know moms and dads have to struggle and fight for something. It lets them know that it is normal and valuable to do so, enableing and empowering them to do the same some day too.
Beans and Meatball see my struggle. They know this is hard, and they know that we will get through it. They know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and that is a precious gift indeed. They also know that I smile and fight. That is also important.
This may totally suck right now, but like I just said, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. When we get there I won't have an IV or pump, but I will probably still have messy hair and bad bangs ... and a smile ... and three kids instead of just two.
And that is the greatest gift of them all.