Like many bloggers before me, I have been on a bit of a hiatus. I hate to do this “since the last time I wrote…” business, but seriously since the last time I wrote…
About a month after the passing of our beloved GG, my husband was in an accident at work. Without getting into too many details he had a serious fall that could have left him paralyzed or worse, but instead he amazingly landed on his feet and left hand after falling from over 17 feet. While the last three months have consisted of Physio Therapy and Doctor Appointments, I am very aware that things could have looked much differently and not a day goes by that I don’t know it. While having my partner home has been difficult at times, it has indeed made us stronger. He has healed up quite nicely and has recently returned to work. He would credit his cat like reflexes or skateboarding skills for landing on his feet, but we both know that things could have turned out much worse!
As the famous Dr. Seuss has written, “that is not all. Oh, no. That is not all…”
We took advantage of my husband’s time off over Christmas and drove out to visit my dad’s side of the family. It was great to see my grandmother, my aunt, uncles, many cousins, and cousin’s children! While out there, the kids caught some crazy super cold that was filled with puking and coughing. Since our youngest son’s bout with Pertussis (whooping cough) he has become a germ magnet and gets sick very easily. So while on our 14 hour journey home, his crazy super cold got much worse. By the time we got home, he had a really bad fever and was coughing up junk. We took him to the hospital and chest x-rays confirmed that he had developed pneumonia. Now the kicker in all this was that it was right over our oldest son’s 5th birthday. Thankfully he didn’t notice this fact until only a couple weeks ago, after he went to another child’s birthday party. Our youngest has since recovered (though he has another cold and an ear infection right now) and our oldest has been spoiled enough to make up for the lack of presents or party on his birthday.
Two weeks following our oldest son’s birthday, our youngest son turned 1! Lately we have kept all birthday’s low key and I have been able to let go of my guilt and replace it with appreciation for my family’s existence! Looking back at our youngest son’s life I amazed that while being sick with all the many illnesses he’s experienced, he has been able to hit all his milestones! He was walking (and I mean WALKING!) shortly prior to 8 months, he was climbing weeks later and has been a happy little boy that doesn’t let much interfere with his play time. I have been inspired by his resiliency and tried embracing it in my own life. This is the boy that I would wake with many, many times a night pounding on his back as he stopped breathing due to pertussis, this is the boy that would cough and choke on his own phlegm several times a night because of pneumonia; I remember holding my breath in until I would hear him take his first breath in. It is amazing that such a little person can have so much strength; his illnesses have made teething seem like a mosquito bite.
While we have had some of the less then helpful opinions on the causes of our challenges, we have also been very fortunate to have such awesome people in our lives that have helped make our year a good one. I believe that when you live in a supportive community, it becomes easier to be resilient; and our family has had to be resilient. I will abstain from listing all of our struggles of the year, because I’m set on moving forward. I love our family’s capacity to deal with challenges and our resiliency when it comes to struggles. We have not always been able to hold it all together, but we have definitely managed to stay and grow together; which is the best possible outcome in the face of adversity.
So, I will end with this,
To my family: I love you to the moon and back and I am proud of you and proud to be a mom, wife and daughter!
To my friends and community: I have so much appreciation for the way you have supported us in both simple and large ways.
P.S. It’s hard to make supper in the dark; So to make it easier, if you are able, turn on the lights.
The Price of Community
Anyone who knows me well, will attest to the fact that I’m a bit of a germaphobe. I’m the mom who makes sure her kids don’t touch anything in a public washroom except toilet paper, tap water and paper towel. I wipe down handles, light switches, railings and toys more than often. I switch my dish rags and hand towels regularly. I do not like paying for food with coin or touching the buttons of an interac machine and then eating without washing my hands. If one of us is sick my already vigilant hand washing regiment kicks into overdrive with continual reminders to cough or sneeze into your elbow.
However, despite all of my precautions, our family still gets sick; colds, flu’s, pink eye- you name it we get it. So why is my family so susceptible to illness. Well, despite the fact that we have wonderful cases of immune deficiencies such as asthma, allergies and anaphylaxis in our family, we are also a highly social family. School, neighbours and friends fill up so much of our time that we are bound to cross paths with some unwanted bugs along the way.
Right now I’m experiencing increased neuroticism towards contracting viruses as we have a fairly new baby in our household. We’ve already gone through two flu’s, one cold, and a single case of pneumonia since his introduction to the world, but we’ve survived. As much as I hate my family being sick, I know that many times it the price we pay for community. I can take my precautions, but I can’t stop our family from building relationships and interacting with those around us.
My hands may be raw from hand washing, but I refuse to let go of our community for the sake of reduced illnesses.
Everything has it’s price, lol.
P.S. Don’t forget to sneeze into your elbow.
In The Beginning
Parenthood has changed me. When I first envisioned being a mom, I had this picture in my head of what I would be like and how I would parent. I would share my love for creating things with my children in a light filled studio while listing to Nine Inch Nails or Johnny Cash. I would have the patience of a Kindergarten teacher and my children and I would have an amazing relationship free from discipline. HA! I neglected to take into account that once my first son was born I would loose myself in a sea of anxiety, worried every night that someone was breaking into our house to kidnap my son. I neglected to take into account that I would be the mom of a child who less than perfect, or factor in that I was less than perfect.
In the beginning, I was naive and idealistic, but life happened and I changed.
When most people become parents there is a natural adjustment to taking care of a little life, and as they become more independent we continue to adjust. For every milestone we celebrate, we pack five more into our mental archives until ages one, two and three become distant memories. I have begun this blog to chart some of our family’s moments, excitements, discoveries, struggles, and milestones that I feel are worth sharing. So here is where I begin.