Like all mothers out there, I love all my children the same, but differently. The amount of love I have for each of them is immeasurable, but the things I love about them and the experiences I have with each of them are quite different.
I love my first born in a special way, because he is just that … my first born. Together we have experienced so many firsts that have been indelibley etched in my brain and on my heart. God willing, we will have many more before my journey is through. I have watched him grow from this “special” child that was diagnosed with dyspraxia and didn’t speak a word until he was 3 1/2 years old (and then spoke in full sentences) to this emotionally charged, academically gifted, (and might I say handsome) young man who never stops talking!
I was sure my second would be a breeze to raise, as how difficult could it be to raise another boy only 26 months later? After all, the same two parents came together to have and raise them both. They will be more alike than different … It should be cake, I thought. Although the boys are only 2 years apart, there were 2 miscarriages between them and my heart was full and ready to have this little guy in my life. I will always love him in a different way than the others for who he is and how we struggled to have him. He has his own issues with Asperger’s and life isn’t and won’t be easy for him. He is though, without a doubt, the sweetest, most generous and most empathetic kid I know. It is just a real struggle for him to express that. I adore him for his gentleness and his intelligence. He is much smarter than I am, but unlike with his big brother, I don’t worry about the day he realizes that. I am sure he is the one that will choose the nicest nursing home for us! I keep telling him ~ make sure they serve oatmeal and not grits and I will be happy!
My baby was the surprise to the family. That iwas no small feat when Mom was an infertility patient! I struggled to get pregnant and stay pregnant for years. Then came our happy surprise. After the horror and loss of living in NY during September 11th, the thought of another life entering the world was bittersweet. We hadn’t planned on another child and most surely didn’t expect a GIRL! Yet, she was here and we adored her … all 4 of us. We love her now with a special ferocity reserved for the most extreme of divas, as she has so far beaten cancer twice in her seven years. She is my hero for the way she has handled all of the nastiness that chemo and radiation bring, though in reality, she knows nothing else. Her early childhood will be remembered for the way she fought nausea and smiled through pain and fever rather than for her first bike ride or early teeth. She has changed my life in a way no other person ever has or ever could. I have spent most of today thinking about my love for her.
Wednesday morning she will go in for her monthly bloodwork to ascertain if she is still in remission. My hearthurts when I think of the options. Last June we were feeling blessed that she was simply able to make it to her kindergarten graduation as she had been on a ventilator a week before. We knew last year we were so fortunate to still have her with us since we were told she had an equal chance of living or dying. I feel my heart clench when I even think about that time or relive it in this writing. I simply cannot even go to a place in my imagination where there is not a family with 3 children in my live.
As I watched her today in the back seat of the Suburban joking with her brothers, watched her dance in the living room to the Jonas Brothers and watched her chasing a little boy in the pool with her older brother singing ” ….sitting in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. First comes love …” I wanted to just run to her and squeeze her tight and beg God to never take her away from us. Plese let her have a normal summer. Let her enjoy what is left of her childhood and let her go waltzing into her young womanhood. Let her continue to develop into the personal, dramatic, loving and dynamic person she is already well on her way to becoming.
I love them all … all three of my children. This week though, she is the one I am loving just a smidge more and hoping you will all think of and pray for as we enter into the uncertainty and anxiety of testing. I hate these times as it is unspoken but very well understood that the whole reason we go for this blood work and other testing is to see that the cancer remains gone. … leaving the obvious alternative … what if it’s not? Please hold my family and those families we know and love that are going through heart wrenching agony with their children in your heart.
Thank you as always for listening, supporting and checking in on us. Love you all.