A little white hat made me sob today. During presents. It wasn’t just any hat though. Grandma Krissie found it at a store here at the beach in SC made by a mother who’s child has Treacher Collins. This little ole’ store in their hometown just happened to carry this brand. The mother’s story is on the back of the tag. Her heartache. Her triumph in championing and celebrating her child. Her story. My story. I still haven’t even finished reading the tag. I had to leave the room…. to sob on Christmas. Even though there was guilt for crying… I couldn’t help it. Her story is mine. I have only lived three and a half months of it but I know it.
And then there’s Landon. This sweet, loving, curl-up-under-the-neck snuggly baby who I love SO much. It is her first Christmas and although she has no idea what today is, it’s so much more special now because of her. I honestly, no seriously, didn’t want anything or need anything. I just wanted to hold her today. This is cheesy but….. she’s my gift.
Back to the hat. After reading this mother’s story, I realized a few things. This sadness or pain isn’t going to just go away b/c I want it to. It’s going to live in my heart maybe forever. It’s not as easy to trigger anymore which is progress. There is real meaning behind why I cry now. Another thing is to acknowledge my intense, recent anxiety. I wake up about 5 when the baby is sound asleep. I sit and stare at the ceiling and stress about working and being without her. I have my mother-in-law and then a wonderful nanny lined up, but she is still just SO SMALL. There are developmental things that she isn’t doing yet and it’s worrying me. The questions- is it b/c she’s so small, b/c she can’t hear perfectly, or is something else very wrong? OR is baby center designed to drive me insane? How do I stop it? Seriously, reply or email me with suggestions. So far only sleep aids help or working out intensely (when there’s time of course) so that I’m exhausted.
But… she is so loved and so happy.. it’s very easy to forget all this during the day. I uploaded an obnoxious amount of photos of her this week to Facebook. Pictures of her feel like part of my therapy. They make me so happy. This is the confusing part… the happiness and sadness are interwoven. Some nights I honestly go from laughing at her overzealous open-mouth gummy smile to tears streaming down my face in a matter or moments.
I realize it’s Christmas and this isn’t the traditional uplifting post. I know I am SO blessed. I think it’s just also time to remember to be alright with my healing process. I do not have to always be okay. And the white hat reminds me that I am not alone. There aren’t a lot of us, but us TCS mothers have a story that I am just starting to learn how to tell.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!