Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Guilt trip?

So, my husband and I have the opportunity to go out of town for the weekend without our kids. When I say "go out of town", I mean I will accompany him on his reserve duty down in Savannah. No amusement parks, no villas, no spas. Just 2 evenings spent together as a couple without kids, because he will be working during the day. I'm getting a little flack for this. Not much and not enough to phase me in any shape, but enough to go - "really??".
The longest my husband and I have been away from our kids is 19 hrs. The farthest we've actually gone is one hour away. We've been "gone" twice. Once we left in the evening and returned before lunch for our 5 year wedding anniversary at our wedding night hotel. The other was a day in Chattanooga for my 30th birthday last year.
I honestly do NOT like being away from my kids. I'm kind of a control freak like that. :)Matthew has a very structured day and William is a homebody.
From October 09 til April 10, I didn't leave the house unless we went to the hospital. That was it. I couldn't risk getting sick and bringing it home to one of my kids. Couldn't risk missing transplant or "killing" the kidney with a simple cold virus that is NEVER simple in an immunosuppressed child. I have worried since February 18, 2008 when our lives changed forever. I can count on one hand how many times I have slept through the night since Matthew was born. And if I'm going to be honest - they were because I completely and totally drugged myself to sleep. The count is 4. Four nights in total of 733. Not because my kids aren't great sleepers - they really are! But because of the way my son eats...through a tube in his stomach. Milk products only last so long when exposed to room temperature you know. Gotta get up and change it out twice every night.
I put my kids first, before me, before my husband, before my house. Some don't agree with that and others do. I don't do that for anyone, but my kids and myself. I have my reasons. Whenever someone would tell me, make time for yourself or make time for you as a couple. I would honestly think - how selfish. If I go out it is after my kids have had dinner and are either getting ready for bed, or are already asleep. It just makes me feel like a bad mom to go out and "have fun" while they are awake and staying home. But now, I'm about to do just that.
And I don't feel guilty about it.
I might once I get ready to leave, or when I drop the boys off with their grandparents...but really - I need this. My husband and I both NEED this. Do you know how much strain comes onto a marriage when you have a sick child? When you spend weeks at a time at the hospital away from each other? When you have to find extra money to put aside to pay for medications when the state insurance program runs out? When dad has to choose between going to work to keep a job that pays the bills or going to the OR waiting room with me? Have you ever had to "catergorize" your son's surgeries into low grade and high grade to see if dad truly needs to be there in the event your son doesn't wake up? Have you gone to sleep with a pager in your hand? Do you have four different doctors, two nurses, two therapists and a transplant coordinator taped to your refrigerator, but know the numbers by heart?
I love my life, I love my sons, and I love my husband. I am doing this for all of us. I need to recharge my battery. Ian will be staying another week in Savannah when I get back. This is hard to do by yourself. All the meds, all the diapers, all the boluses, and the nighttime duties too. I've learned so much because of this wonderful and sometimes frightening journey. Now I'm learning to step back. To trust others and let it be known that it doesn't have to be on me 100% of the time. Matthew is at his healthiest he has ever been and I'm learning to trust that. I'm still used to the "old" days where he could spin out of control in a moment's notice due to his congestive heart failure, his 7.8 creatinine or his 160/110 blood pressure readings. But now his days consist of playtime and temper tantrums (could really do without those!) and things even seem (dare I say) normal! This is our chance before the surgeries start again. Upwards of 5 additional surgeries making a grand total of 25 in his little lifetime. Yes, I need a recharge, some down time.
I'm sending my supermom cape to the dry cleaners for the weekend. I'll pick it up and wear it with pride when I get back. It will be shiny and new and ready to face all the challenges and trials. It just needs a little TLC too.

1 comment:

Jamie H said...

Go! Get away and do NOT have guilt about it! We all need some hubby and me (alone) time every now and then!

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