Saturday, December 11, 2010

a day in the life (7)

The day in the life series continues, albeit interrupted. This post is personal but I share it because it's true for many moms of special needs kids. Especially when things happen that aren't from a genetic cause. Have a wonderful Saturday--I'm off to pour my kiddos some Frosted Flakes. Thanks for reading. ~Kara

Sometimes the visits catch me off guard. Just when I think I've said good-bye to it, it comes back.

It came again last week in the middle of the night. I woke up disoriented with my heart racing in my chest. The moonlight made its way through the mesh curtain and gave a muted glow to Calvin's silhouette. My hand found its way to his chest and I waited for it to rise and fall. His little body moved quietly, breathing in and out, in and out.

The familiar screen-roll began to play, uninvited and impossible to stop. That's when I know the visitor is back.

Guilt.

The rewind of my pregnancy started, pausing at each possible thing I could have done wrong. Something drastic enough that could rob a little boy of his life. Something drastic enough to fill our lives with the words a parent never wants to hear: microcephaly, brain damage, spasticity, developmental delay, brain differences. The weight of responsibility overwhelms and the grief overpowers.

My eyes closed and searched for sleep, for relief, but all I could see was a woman, pregnant. And she looked an awful lot like me.

The rewind slowed and I could see myself taking care of Evie, all covered in a rash. That's it, I should have stayed away. I should have washed my hands better. I should have...

I saw myself running up and down the steep stairs a hundred times a day. I did too much. I should have taken it easy. And I want to tell her, "Walk up the stairs. Stop running!" But time gone by doesn't listen and the woman I see keeps running up and down the stairs.

Darryl stirred beside me in bed and I remembered his words, "Don't go down that road, Kara. It's a road full of lies and leads to nowhere."

But the rewind continued even though I wanted so badly to turn it off. It started to swirl more quickly and the accusations came faster,  "Medication. Surely it was medication you took."  "Cambodia? Pregnant in Cambodia? How irresponsible!" I find myself beaten down by this visitor, Guilt, he's no friend.

The doctor's questions accused me, "Did you take drugs during this pregnancy?" He looked at me over his glasses waiting for my reply. And I wanted to weep. Nothing could have been further from the truth.

The screenplay jumped ahead and I found myself in the neurologist's office with a six-month old boy in my arms. "It's not your fault," she said. She sighed feeling the heaviness in the room, "This is so rare, the chances of it happening are..." and she paused, "I don't even want to tell you the chances because you'll feel singled out, one in a million."

Darryl woke up and saw me, and he knew. He knew the visitor was here. "It's not your fault," he whispered. And again, "It's not your fault."

The screenplay halted. My eyes watched our little boy sleeping peacefully and I rubbed my hand through his soft hair. "I'm sorry, Calvin. So sorry." And all the while in my heart I cried, "Take this Lord, it's too heavy for me."

Somehow sleep found me again, wrapped in my husband's warm arms with eyes closed. All of us lying in the muted moonlight and filling the air with quiet breaths, in and out. In and out.

8 comments:

Duane and Mary said...

I love you, Kara! Thanks again for sharing your heart.
Love Mary

Christiana said...

I hope that the visitor set sail, never to make the return voyage. Thanks for sharing your heart. We pray for you guys constantly--much love from Cambodia.

jeanzipagan said...

Just wanted to drop by and tell you that your family is constantly in my prayers. Thanks, Mrs. Dedert, for sharing and keeping us all posted.

"For [His] grace is sufficient for you, for [His] power is made perfect in weakness."

Greetings from Philadelphia :)
Jean Zipagan

Christy said...

I've been sitting here for 30 minutes catching up from weeks I didn't realize I'd missed, just crying my eyes out. What weeks you've had! I'm so desperately sorry. I ache for all your pain and suffering and worry. I'm also so, so happy that the last update on Calvin was much better and hopeful. I didn't realize before that your darling boy was in such pain - what agony for you both! I will be praying for that stomach wrap, that it will stay put. And for you and Daryll and your other precious ones. I hope the apartment is fabulous and that God will banish forever that demon of guilt. I like what Daryll said. Sounds like a pretty great guy. (that picture of him kissing Calvin in the hospital almost did me in)

Becky said...

Kara,
Reading your posts is like reading poetry. I love what and how you write, the breathtaking honesty of it all. Please keep sharing. You inspire me and bless me so much, you'll probably never know how much.
With much love to you,
Becky

Kate said...

I'm so glad you and Darryl have each other to lean on through these difficult days. Blessings to you both - have a wonderful, peaceful Christmas with your beautiful children.

Anonymous said...

oh Kara, I totally relate to this post, I fight this demon also. I love how your neurologist spoke truth to you and helped combat the insensitiveness of the other doctor. We are praying for you and miss you guys. We have a friend of Tim's here for the CHristmas break who is from Grand Rapids. His dad works at Cornerstone COllege. His last name is Ostrander. Do you know them? ANyway, have a great new year!

Anonymous said...

oh Kara, I totally relate to this post, I fight this demon also. I love how your neurologist spoke truth to you and helped combat the insensitiveness of the other doctor. We are praying for you and miss you guys. We have a friend of Tim's here for the CHristmas break who is from Grand Rapids. His dad works at Cornerstone COllege. His last name is Ostrander. Do you know them? ANyway, have a great new year! Sheryl