The Crying Game
Between you and me I feel waves of guilt resurface when I go to Max’s medical appointments. This is odd, and I really hope I’m the only mum that feels this, but I still kind of blame myself for everything that’s gone wrong for Max. After all, my only job was to grow a baby like everyone else, pretty much everybody else managed it just fine. But somehow I screwed it up and now Max has so many more challenges, challenges he shouldn’t have. Challenges that don’t feel fair.
I find myself thinking about horrid people, bad people, wondering why things don’t seem to happen to them. I read about mums shooting up, boozing it up while pregnant and it makes me crazy. Seriously, I even gave up coffee, did the folic acid stuff and took up Yoga (I hate yoga). I hate feeling like this. I know it doesn’t help to wallow about my pregnancy history with Max but I can’t help myself going back there…perhaps it was that crop sprayer when I went on a walk? Or fumes when I painted his nursery? Maybe it was all those microwave meals in the 80’s? Or the mechanically retrieved meat products, the only stuff I could afford at college? Maybe it was the oil-paint or the canvas primer I worked with day and night? Or maybe it was some genetic curdling and if I had married anyone else then Max would be OK?
And then I think about Max...
And this, dear friends, is why I telling you this. Max doesn’t think his life is unfair. Max is the happiest, coolest kid I know. He loves school, has incredible mates, a girlfriend, he’s talented, he knows what he wants to do, he’s tall, handsome and most importantly he’s happy in his own skin. Max likes himself and everyone else likes him too…so what makes me think I have any right whatsoever to feel anything other than proud?
It turns out that my job was never to grow some mythical perfect little man. It was to help whoever my little man turns out to be to have the most exciting and adventurous journey he can have. And yup, it’s a serious fight some days and that chocolate cake and ‘do not disturb’ sign still call but that’s not what it’s about. Doctor Bob, Head teacher Bob, TA Bob, my extraordinary family, my warrior friends…we’re Max’s team. It’s impossible to feel lost in a team.
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