The One Conversation I Long to Have

This morning I was trying to think of a new subject for a post.  After about an hour of trying to think of something, of having many subjects going around in my head, I thought about a post about the ‘What Ifs’ of life.  I may do that one some day, but as I was pondering just what those ‘what ifs’ would be, I thought about my second son, Jamie.  I wondered ‘what if’ he had been born differently.  ‘What if’ he didn’t have a disability. So many ‘what ifs’ when I think about him.

I try most of the time to NOT think about the ‘what ifs’ when it comes to him as it can be too painful. I absolutely love him as he is, of course, that is not at question.  BUT, as a parent, I can’t help but wonder…

What if he had not had to be revived when he was born. What if he had not had those moments when his heart stopped and he was without oxygen. What if they had just done a c-section instead of making me have this 10 pound baby naturally.

I wonder often what he would be doing. What college would he have gone to? Or IF he would have gone to college.  What would his major been?  He is very good with his computer. I know he can draw as well as his other artistic siblings. He loves to take pictures.  Would he do any of that?  Would there have been some other thing he would have done, would have excelled at?

What about girlfriends? Who would have they been? Would he be married? What about the children he will never have, the grandchildren I will never hold?  My heart aches when I think about it.

He doesn’t drive. He goes nowhere alone. He is always supervised. What is that like for him? How does that make him feel?

Jamie can talk. He can answer questions, mostly yes and no ones, some others.  BUT I have never had a ‘real’ conversation with my 25 year old son. Ever. In 25 years. Not one.  I want to ask him what he thinks, likes, feels.  Why does he cry? What makes him sad? What does HE want to do in the future? Where does he want to live? I want to know my son just like I know my other three children.  I want to sit and talk about the news, or the weather, or politics or what he thinks about or worries about.  What makes him happy? What makes him laugh? I want to argue with him like parents and children sometimes, do. I want to know his thoughts and feelings about everything! Or anything. Or talk about nothing in particular. This is the ONE conversation I long to have.

The one I can’t think about too much.

The one that will never happen.

Image

Picture Jamie took of himself.

10 comments

  1. 11 years ago my first grandson died at 6 years old…he was born breach and was without oxygen for a very long time….as a result the only brain function he had was in the brain stem – which controls the involuntary functions of the body. We asked a lot of “what if” questions too. I am not a regular church goer, but I do believe there is a reason for everything. The 6 years we had him with us, was the most grueling and tiresome I have ever been…it was heartbreaking to see the family dog drop a ball in his lap and watch it just roll off because he had absolutely no function what so ever. But now in the 11 years after he left us, I ask different “what if” questions. His special gift was that of perspective…we see abilities in children when most people see limitations, we see joy in extremely simple everyday things when most people take them for granted…like the return of a smile and we see our lives changed for having the opportunity to experience life in a different non conventional way.

    When our grandson smiled (due to gas I”m sure) in his sleep I used to tell my daughter he was dreaming of being a boy with no limitations. When he died, he was able to smile all the time.

    • Thank you so much for sharing that!

      Yes, so many wonderful things have happened because of Jamie and who he is! He has touched numerous lives that will never be the same because of him. He has taught many of us a eyes wide open view of the world. We have smiled at such simple things. We find joy in many ways! In so many things! I know ‘someday’ I will be able to have that conversation….

  2. I think that Jamie is so blessed to have you as his mom, And the rest of your kids as well. I love your blogs Joy! I am also grateful to have met with you a few times! Did you know that I will have two relatives going to ISU next year? I wll be up in northern Iowa the last week in July. God bless! Martha

  3. I think that Jamie is so blessed to have you as his mom, And the rest of your kids as well. I love your blogs Joy! I am also grateful to have met with you a few times! Did you know that I will have two relatives going to ISU next year? I wll be up in northern Iowa the last week in July. God bless! Martha

  4. Joy- I loved your post! You are a wonderful mother who has had more challenges than most! God bless you for your love and devotion to your family! As a teacher, I see all kinds of parenting styles and there are many kids I would just like to take home with me. 😥. Martha

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