Sunday, August 17, 2008
Tonight I was talking to an "old" good friend of mine that I have been friends with since my middle and high school days. She went to our 10 year class reunion last night which I opted to skip and went out with two friends from high school. Anyways she was talking about a girl (we will call her M) whom I also use to hang out with a lot. M's sister (we will call her J) has a child about Tegan's age. I have heard about this baby's condition once before but have never heard how bad it really was until tonight. The baby is one and can not do anything (can't lift head, roll over, etc..) and they aren't sure if she can even see at all or if there are just neurological issues that make her have problems focusing and tracking. I'm getting to the point here...M was talking to my friend and telling her about how her sister has really disconnected to everyone and feels like that J has done this b/c she blames herself and knows that what happened to her child was her fault as does M. When my friend said this I had to pick myself up off the floor. I asked then why J or M would think this. My friend informs me that J asked to be induced at 37 weeks and after lots of complications in labor this is what she gets. Apparently her numbers were a little off and the baby was earlier than they thought but not by much, maybe a week off I think. I could be wrong but anyways I was shocked that her very own sister would be blaming her and not supporting her. I at first kept my mouth shut (who blames herself constantly) I was stewing inside. My friend then starts to say that she told M (has 0 kids) that she doesn't know what it is like to be 37 weeks pregnant and miserable. This too shocked me b/c my response would have been and was, ARE U KIDDING ME! How can you not support your sister! As a mother we blame ourselves for everything that goes wrong. If a baby comes to early we blame ourselves b/c our bodies couldn't handle it. In my case I blamed myself b/c at the exact time that Cohen's kidneys were forming, or not forming rather, I was stressing over other issues extremely. Did I cause this to happen to him? Then when I almost lost Tegan at 20 weeks I once again blamed myself b/c my body wasn't protecting him and b/c I had been waiting for 20 weeks for the other shoe to drop and when it did it dropped right on my head. Then when Tegan began to have developemental issues, was this too my fault b/c I opted to have him at 37 weeks instead of waiting one more week. Was I too selfish and this is why this happened to me...or him rather? The answer to that is no, nothing I did caused any of this (you can believe me or the 20 different times that multiple dr's have reassured me about all three things)but sometimes I forget that. I am already hard enough on myself, as all moms are, but what would it feel like to not have family and friends screaming in my ear telling me that it wasn't my fault. I mean what if we blammed ourselves and the look on everyone else's face around us blammed me too. How do you overcome that and do what you have to do for your child. My heart goes out to this girl as she is not only struggling with blaming herself and her family blamming her but now she has this baby to take care of who may never advance beyond where she is now which isn't very far. I am one of the lucky ones, my boy went from 0 to 60 in just a few short months. I am very thankful for that but I can't help but feel her pain as I heard all this. What if I hadn't been so lucky? My path would be very different and could I have handled it? Did my ability to let go of my "self-blame" help me help him better? Would my faith not be as strong or is it b/c of my strong faith and praises for healing before they even came that we are where we are now? Is attitude and positive thinking everything? I worked at a Cancer Center for a few years before having to quit when pregnant with Tegan and I always saw that the ones with the "I'm gonna beat this attitued" and the "God is with me" faith always did better and had better quality of life. Did they all heal and live....NO but for those who did pass away their time they had left here was much better for them! I'm getting off track, my point here is if there is a way that I can reach out to this person (J) and maybe be that support that she isn't getting anywhere else or will she have that "you have no idea what I am going through" attitude b/c my child did overcome his issues and continues to do so! Am I more qualified b/c I do have a part of my heart buried in a cemetary right up the road? Any advice my lurkers....I know you are all out there! Don't worry...I will moderate comments, if you want, only I will read them!