As I called the dentist last week, I had a knot in my stomach.
I haven’t been in two years.
I looked in the mirror at my hair and I honestly could not remember the last time I ran a brush through it, let alone remember when my last haircut was.
None of these things should be that hard.
Yet, there it is.
There is never enough time to think about me.
Most parents experience guilt in raising their children.
We parents never feel like we are enough.
We are plagued by our inadequacies and frequently torment ourselves regarding our shortcomings.
Our children come first, always.
Their schedule, their needs, and their desires drive our every move, every day.
Danny just has so many needs.
He has a home physical therapy program, extensive feeding needs and a blenderized diet, vision therapy, center based therapies, doctor appointments, school, and personal care needs.
If I choose to vacuum or pick up a prescription, it ends up taking time away from something else.
I feel guilty for folding laundry with him because then I know we won’t have time to work with the light box before we go to hippotherapy.
This is simply not okay.
There are no awards for mothering martyrdom and I know that it will eventually catch up with me.
Everything that you read about parenting children with disabilities says that you must take care of you.
It is vital for caregivers to meet their own needs in order to have anything left to give to their children.
I couldn’t agree with that more.
Does that mean we don’t take that neurology appointment because I already had a haircut scheduled that day?
Do I cancel hippotherapy because it conflicts with a yoga class?
Does Danny miss his vision therapy because I want to have lunch with a friend?
These are the choices that I continually face, and when in doubt, I choose Danny.
However, I do need to resolve to ask for help.
We have a tremendous support system, and I know how lucky we are to have our circle of family and friends.
I need to evaluate how much of this Danny needs me to do, and how much I can help other people help Danny.
There is nothing more difficult for me - no one knows him like I do.
They never do it quite right.
However, that is on me.
When would they ever have the opportunity to learn if I never allow them to try?
I must learn to let go.
In order to continue to do that job well, I need to become a bit more “Laura” again.
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