I always thought of blogs as being narcissistic, business related, or as my sister's, a way of keeping in touch or memorializing.

But, by necessity, I am learning a lot about myself. I find I need to get my thoughts out, and it helps me to know that someone else will read them. So I have created this little space for myself, to express the things I have trouble saying (be it emotional or physical trouble), to share what I'm going through, and what I'm learning through it.

I absolutely welcome comments. It's nice to know how people relate to what I'm saying.
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Friday, 24 August 2012

Backyard Camping

Three in a row - this must be a personal record. But there's so much I'm processing right now, and it is so helpful to blog about it.

Yesterday was tough. Physically, and emotionally, which comes back to the physical toll. My son took the news much much better than I could have imagined. Which means (I'm taking credit, yes, owning my strengths!) that I laid it out for him in a way that made sense to him, and gave him the time to process it. His initial reaction was "well, it's cancelled for you, but I can still go, right?" I was so super proud, because I had honestly been expecting a totally different reaction.

Because I was already so tired out, I really leaned on the other adults in my village to help me help him decide whether or not going on his own was a really good idea, and as it has turned out, he is now in the tent, in the backyard, sleeping with my Mom.

So tonight's post is all about gratitude, because that is what I need to express right now.

I offer thanks to my parents for helping me in such a hands-on yet respectful way through these rough couple of days - with the driving, the feeding, the decision making, and the coddling. I want to thank you especially for allowing us, and in fact helping us to build a mini-bonfire in your back yard, and for embracing the half-cooked hot dogs and smores with such gusto. I am really happy that my sister dropped in (her family is away) to share in that super special moment too. I don't think I can express how much it meant to me to have you all go so much out of your way and drop everything else just so my son and I could have a magical night of compensating for what we thought we would miss.

I am not so grateful for the mosquitoes that bit me, however, especially because the inflammation and discomfort that followed was so out of the norm for me, that it is more empirical proof that my immune system is none too happy at the moment.

I am grateful for my camping friends, who I know were disappointed we could not join them. They took the news with grace, offered to take my son anyway, and did try to change my mind, but did not push, and did encourage me to take care of myself. Can't think of a better example of true friendship.

I am grateful for my online friends, Michelle who is going through something very similar right now, with her own family and illness, and Debby, both of whom happened to be online yesterday when I really needed a good pep talk. They give good pep. Christie, for the encouragement, even if you couldn't get online, and Mike for the validation via e-mail (haven't answered yet, but did read). Also for Maggie, for your words of support, even if you're a real-life friend ;)

I am grateful for my son's Dad and Stepmom, who helped me, along with my parents, to think things through once my brain conked out, and who jumped in with absolute willingness to have my son stay with them while I heal. This weekend will be a little bit of each house for him.

I am grateful for my "little" cousin, and the fact that she is still on vacation, and was able to pick my son up from camp today, and then bring us both to my Mom's house so we could set up the tent (ok, he set up the tent, I quite literally lay down and gave him directions - except for holding up one of the poles at one point).

I am grateful for my therapist, who saw that there was something I was not wanting to see, and for helping me see it in such a compassionate way.

I am grateful for my aunt who texted me just to check in and see that I was ok.

I am grateful for my facebook spoonies for your support and understanding.

And mostly, I'm grateful for whoever came up with the idea of melting marshmallows onto a graham cracker with chocolate, because that has to be the best pick me up ever invented.

Today has been very up and down, in every possible way, but I can see more clearly than I could yesterday, and I know that this was the right thing to do. It's like that Buddhist saying I love so much: "The wound is the place where the light enters you." This decision was painful, and there is light that surrounds it, and by allowing myself to deal with the pain of the wound, I can also choose to allow the light to fill it. I choose light, even if that means moments of pain.

Yes, this illness sucks, yes it is super sucky to make decisions like this, yes I have dealt with an awful lot of losses, and yes, I have to miss out on things I really want to experience. Yes, I am learning to balance my wants and my needs, yes I am learning to be rather than do, and yes, I am growing with every decision I make, and enjoying every experience I can have all the more. My family helped me come back to that tonight, so once again, thank-you!

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