Having a sick child is hard…even if it’s just a cold or the flu…working to get your little one better can be exhausting and do a number on your nerves.
And as a parent, that’s how it’s supposed to be. You worry and hope and pray and give medicine at 2 in the morning until they are better because it’s what’s in your heart.
My friends have often remarked about my good composure as a mother. When I have admitted in conversation that there were certain moments when Jackson was ill (or first diagnosed with autism) where I felt like everything was falling apart and that I had no strength left to go on, they tell me that is surprising to them because all they could see was how strong I was through the hard times.
And perhaps I look strong on the outside. I try hard to keep it all together for him…he is so joyful most of the time and he can instantly sense when I am hurting.
Monday morning when we went into the hospital so Jackson could have a special procedure was no different. The procedure required sedation and I was already edgy about that.. because the last time Jackson had sedation was to have his ear tubes put in and when he woke up he was LIVID and frantic… for almost an hour.
I was prepared for the same reaction this time and was trying to keep calm for both our sakes. Jackson was super happy even as the nurse took his vitals and so I became a bit relaxed and was happy that this time was already going so much better.
Finally it was time to walk back to the OR and Jackson held my hand as we walked there. I set him up on the table and the nurse asked me to give him a bear hug while they gave him the gas to make him sleepy.
At first J was still totally calm, even after they put the mask over his face. But when they turned the gas on and it was stinky he got mad and began to cry and kick. I just hugged him tighter and whispered in his ear “It’s ok, Mommy is here. Everything is ok, my love.”
He finally drifted off to sleep after a few deep cries and then the nurse said “Good job Mom, you did awesome.”
At that time I let go of my little boy so the Dr. and nurses could begin the procedure. I had to leave the room now but as I was walking out I turned around to see Jackson one more time.
It was in that moment that I lost all my composure and strength and felt a rush of emotion come over me.
My sweet little boy was just laying there helpless and he had fallen asleep angry that I was holding him still.
Why did it have to be this way?!
Why did he even have to be sick and needing this procedure in the first place?!
Hot tears rolled down my cheeks as I walked to the waiting room. My heart was pounding hard in my chest. I took a deep breath and sat down.
In that moment I was ok with being weak.
I had left my heart with Jackson in that room and it stayed with him and made him strong until the procedure was finished.
When Jackson woke up he saw me and smiled….and I felt my strength return to me.
Oh motherhood…oh my heart.