Dear Children, I know you may never read this and that is okay. I just know today, these thoughts were going around in my mind and I wanted to write them down.
Seems like yesterday I was just hoping to someday have kids. And it seems like yesterday that you all started arriving. Three boys and a girl. I remember how it felt to be a mom for the first time. I wasn’t overwhelmed with the responsibility at all, I relished it. I loved taking care of babies….and when you got older, toddlers. I loved it all.
I remember this picture. And all of you at this age…I am not sure how it went from this to now so fast. I miss the cuddliness of little ones, the hand holding. The times when mom could do no wrong. Yeah, those times are long gone!
I wanted nothing but for you all to have a calm and normal life after my childhood was anything but that. But the legacy continued with you guys. Maybe that is why you all turned into such caring, empathetic, kind, amazing adults.
I know that life was different with a sibling with a disability. But you guys rocked it! You were always respectful to him no matter what. You didn’t treat him any different…you got mad at him just like the others and loved him even so. You learned tolerance and respect of ALL people. I am proud of that you know! I know because of the situation we missed out on a lot of ‘normal’ family things. But as one of you reminded me….normal is just a setting on a dryer. One thing that will never ever happen in our life is all of us together in one room, in one picture, doing that family stuff that many others might take for granted.
You never had a grandfather and by the time the youngest was 16, not a grandmother either. It hurt that you never got to experience much of what that was like. I will never ever forget what it was like to see the youngest of you sobbing at your grandmother’s funeral and saying to me, “I am 16 and I have no grandparents.” It broke my heart. No grandparents at graduation and there will no grandparents when any of you get married. That makes me sad for you.
This kind of brings me to the one moment in our parent/child life that I will never forget. I can remember every minute of it. The moment when I had to tell you all I had cancer. Just writing this brings butterflies to my stomach and makes me swallow those tears again. How as a parent, as the person who is supposed to protect you, the one to keep your world as calm as can be, how can you destroy your safe world in just a few words? I had to sit you down. I had to tell you. I had to destroy that world…and it broke me to do that. My heart shattered in so many ways. What do you say when your 10 year old daughter asks you if you are going to die????
I think back at all the years like I am sure many of us do. I think there probably is many things to apologize for. I know we try to do our best. I know how hard it is. There were many many many lean years. A lot of times I had to say no to things. As a child, did you understand it? At the time I was diagnosed we had to stop piano lessons and I felt so bad, so selfish. It didn’t seem fair. It was like you had to suffer even more for what was happening to me.
There were too many fights between mom and dad that should have been behind closed doors. Two very strong personalities sometime clash, but that is no excuse. I am sorry for that. But I am glad you saw how we always worked it out and we have been through so much and we are still together and still love each other!
Even now mom and kids have had words and tough times. I don’t have to remind you, I am sure. Even though we didn’t agree and things you have to know, I always love you, and that is what makes those times so hard!
Now, I sometimes miss you being here always.Just being a family, doing the family thing. I wonder if you miss that too. I wonder if you are proud of me like I am of you? Do I embarrass you? Why sometimes do we sit in silence and can’t find something to talk about? I want you to be able to tell me about your life. I want to know. What do you fear? Love?
I still like when you call me, I sometimes wish it was more. I still like the hugs. I love to laugh with you and I like to marvel at how well you turned out even after all the ‘stuff’ we have gone through!
As a parent, I will always think about you. I will always worry about you. And I will always always love you. I feel blessed being picked as your mother. I can’t imagine my life any other way. Thank you all for being there for me in the dark time we went through. And thank you for letting me be crazy sometimes and laughing with me.
May you always be safe, healthy and loved!
I love you with all my heart…