Everything at once

Written by Chic Country Life

Loving the rural life. Living close to nature with the family and my motorcycle on the Manitoba Prairie.

June 12, 2014

Everything at once

Photo credit: Belovodchenko Anton

How can the greatest achievement in my career so far happen the day before one of the scariest days of my life?

I have been slaving away with our team to create a new consumer publication to be distributed at our local airport.  I am the Editor-In-Chief and have thrown myself into this issue in order to get my mind off of the real things in my life that I need to worry about.

My son.

He occupies my every thought.  I am worried, irritated, angry, scared, stressed and  so very tired.  When your child is ill it is an effort to make it through each day.  My nerves are frayed, I am not myself and I’m not sure I like the person I can sometimes become.  I snap easily, some days it is just ridiculous how fast I can go from being happy to sad or just plain angry at the most minor of things.  Other times I am just tired, but I can’t sleep.  So, I stay up, get more tired and irritable.  Or, I become detached – I throw myself into work, a book, cleaning, sleeping, a blog (obviously not mine, as I haven’t blogged even a quarter of the things I have been meaning to) or whatever. Then I get angry with myself for not being a better parent, for not knowing how to deal with things in a better way.

We’re not really sure what is going on with my oldest son.  Actually, I should clarify – we know what is wrong, he suffers from increased intracranial pressure.  What we don’t know is why.  This has been going on for over two years (or more),  and I am beyond stressed.  His behaviour changes with the wind and until we knew why, it was really hard to deal with.  Okay, who am I kidding it is still hard to deal with.  The slightest comment can set him off for hours or he gets so angry or depressed, it’s scary.

The slightest comment can now also set me off. Physically my stress has caused my migraines to return, stomach upset, and heartburn.  I feel withdrawn.  A friend told me I was brave the other day.  I felt like laughing. I am getting by, coping, pretending, putting on a brave face, but I certainly don’t feel brave.  I feel scared.  My biggest problem is control,  ultimately I have none.  I have to deal with what comes, that is something I am not good at.

Last week he had a lumbar puncture and his CSF pressure was really high.  We started new medication as soon as it could be made for him.  I am praying that the not great answers we are waiting for are going to be the best possible scenario, that he responds to this medication which is making him sick every day, that the side effects go away, that I can be strong enough to support him through the continued tests and procedures he has ahead of him, and that I can always remember that his behaviour is most likely the cause of the pain he is feeling.

Parenting is hard, but parenting a sick child is a lot harder.  I’m not feeling sorry for myself, because I don’t – I feel sorry for my son for having to deal with this.  I just need to get it off my chest – to vent, because sometimes I feel like screaming.  What do you tell your kid when they ask “Why do I feel this way?”, “Why does this have to be my life?”, “I can’t help what I do sometimes, I don’t know why,” or tonight “Why should I bother telling my teachers (about his symptoms) when I always feel sick to my stomach, dizzy and have a headache?”

When I feel like I can’t take anymore I think about what other parents go through on a daily basis.  There are so many parents that have to deal with issues like extreme allergies, autism, learning disabilities, Down’s Syndrome, ADD, heart, lung or organ diseases, cancer or any number of other problems that affect their children and disrupt their “normal” family lifestyle.  And, more importantly the amazing kids, like mine, who have deal with their illnesses on a daily basis. Kudos to them.

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