Thursday, 6 December 2012

This Is How We Do It.


These days you don't fight to get out of the buggy, you don't mind me wrapping you like I do (above) to keep the cold from nipping your legs. 

There is one trait that I have that I hope you do/don't inherit and that is my ability to protect myself, or what's more commonly been referred to as my 'self defensiveness.' I hope you inherit this because while I like to jump to the defence of others (sometimes more than jumping to my own defence) I also like to defend the things that matter to me. I like to be understood, I like to clarify my point but I'm also learning; most people don't care and just enjoy judging you. Let it go and move on from their words.

These days I have imaginary conversations in my head or dream up scenarios where people in my life ask me questions about my day to day routine, about how I 'cope' with being ill and having a child - I assume no one is thinking this but I work through a variety of questions in my head should anyone wonder.

So, I thought you might like a record of this, so we can both look back and laugh in 20 years time or whatever ;). 

The one thing that sits heavily on my mind is the above. I don't talk about illness a lot because I'm scared of judgement; which is strange because whenever the judgement comes I just think 'that's a shame this person is so switched off to learning more about this illness' or 'you don't know what you're talking about and if you did, perhaps you wouldn't be so quick to judge this.' I worry that the mothers who have or had loads of children (to me that's 2+ children) judge me and think things like I can't 'cope' with my 'one child.' That I somehow must have things easy and I'm just being weak. I don't know if anyone thinks that but I'm sure someone has to, right? 

Then there are other sick people, people with M.E who try to talk to me, who I feel deserve to be understood and taken seriously yet I don't extend the same to myself. I panic that they think I'm 'not really ill' and this is another reason not to talk about illness. I do housework (minimal, but still, I'm doing it), I look after a child all day; cooking his food, cleaning his messes, trying my best to get him to use a potty, stay in bed, eat his greens and brush his teeth. All in all I feel like I 'do more' than the average M.E person but this 'doing more' often leads to not being able to attend church meetings and services, having absolutely no social life of my own, having zero friends, barely seeing family as well as taking the judgements that come with not attending church meetings and services - and the repercussions it has on my life even though both God and I know and see the good I'm doing in my own life and really, that's all that matters to me. 

In my heart and mind I'm just as worthy as anyone else who attends all their church services and meetings and is a worthy temple recommend holder, in a church sense I'm also at that point, just as worthy as anyone, doing all I can and going above and beyond when I can. Yet from time to time I feel judged because I am simply not at church, my body isn't there, my behind filling a seat, my voice not being heard in a room where a discussion on the gospel takes place yet in my home, in my mind, in my heart - and with God's approval - I am just like someone who is there for righteous reasons.  And deep down that's all the 'approval' or permission I need. No one is better than me because they are simply at church. I'm learning that it's inside your heart, what your deepest spiritual goals, desires and then acting on them and living what you believe (whether that's religion or non-religion) are the things that count in life.

This year has been all about: adjusting to being without so much help and it's been hard, but it's also been rewarding. Women are strong and so capable and I've felt that so much over the past few years of motherhood. My patience has new levels, my understanding has grown and I feel stretched to lengths I honestly didn't think possible. I'm working on myself now more than I ever have. We're doing well, but we're just exhausted and sick at this time of year. I'm doing well, I'm just exhausted and sick of judgement. I don't want my child to live in this world as it is now and I'm hoping to be the change I wish to see; one day a time I will judge people less and less.

A little side note:

I'm glad that I'm stretching myself, I'm glad this way of life works for me and I'm glad that I self-question myself so much; it gives me an opportunity to appreciate that motherhood is the making of me, that this is my best and I can finally see that and appreciate it for what it is. I finally know, really know, what I want from my life and that's my son, my faith, my relationship and my family.