So I legitimately had a doctor’s appointment when the school called to say my son was “exhibiting a high temperature.”
But I didn’t have to get off a station early and make three stops on my way home to get the car. Or take the time to delete 97 emails from my phone and make myself a snack.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m sure Deane was “exhibiting a high temperature” – whatever that means. He has had a (declining) fever all week. His teacher said they had him lying down with a fan on him.
My problem was I really couldn’t face another day of watching the same videos (which I’ve already seen thousands of times) unable to leave the house or Deane’s general vicinity for any length of time.
When my daughter is sick, she sits in her bed with my laptop and watches movies. I barely notice she’s here. The difference with Deane is that I need to be around to change DVDs, move him out of his chair to the couch, make sure he doesn’t fall off the couch and spend hours trying to get him to eat.
This frustration is not a new feeling. Sometimes I just feel trapped. I can’t hang out with the other mothers in the schoolyard. The challenge of finding appropriate care limits our social life.
But on the other hand, Deane’s disability means I have met some of the most caring people who have been Deane’s caregivers, teachers and his friends’ parents. He has changed my character from someone happy in silence to a better verbal communicator, from serious to (more) playful and from (relatively) driven to happily patient.
Well, patient most of the time.
Often I just have to acknowledge this negative feeling to make it evaporate. That and a Reese Peanut Butter Cup.