"What do I stand for, what do I stand for,
most nights, I don't know, anymore...
~Some Nights by Fun
More than a DMom, AM I? Some days I don't know. Some days I feel like guilt and worry have taken over all of my being. They've consumed me. They have become my shadow.
After all, its not me that I will hurt if I screw this up. And even though I doubt he would ever place the blame on me, I would surly consume all of it.
I was 31 when Justin was dx'd. At the time I was the 1st VP(in charge of fundraising) for the PTA. I scrapbooked as a hobby and even made a little money doing it. I made all of my teachers gifts, I KNEW when teacher appreciation week was, I stayed on top of things(except maybe the laundry... I was never good at that), I had my shit together. I was lippy and spunky. I loved photography and always had my camera with me.
Today... I'm older than 31. I feel 41! I am still lippy, for sure, but I haven't touched a scrapbook in who knows how long. The only camera I carry is on my phone- in which I carry around by a death grip, ready to look up carb rates and communicate numbers. I have become really good at hiding emotions. I keep a straight face, even when my insides are screaming. I do this for Justin's sake. This burden is not for him to carry right now... he will have plenty of time for that later. I can see the toll this new life has taken on my face. I can see the worry in my eyes when I look in the mirror. I can assure you, as long as I live, that worry will be there whether I want it to be or not.
Sometimes, I don't think people consider all the extras that come along with diabetes. Dealing with schools, strains on marriages, other children and friendships. Very few of us can say we didn't loose a friend or two through all of this. I understand that friendships come and go naturally at times, but when you are hurting over something so significant, so life altering... the pierce of loosing a friend hurts a whole lot more.
Some say that you should just do what you have to and move on. They say that I need to put "me" first. If you have the ability to do that... great! I certainly commend you, but I don't think that's a one size fits all solution. Some of us, choose to dive in head first and submerse ourselves in knowledge. Some choose advocacy as a way to give back or even cope. Some of us feel that by taking the burden for as long as we can will somehow help our children not burn out. And some of us have children, so young, that we don't have much option but living our life around all that D demands. It sucks, at times, but we choose to be that involved. We do this because we think, hope or pray that it will make a difference for their future. I, for one, don't feel that there is anything wrong with that.
But back to the question... Am I? Am I more that what I have become since D came into our lives 4 1/2 years ago? There was a time when my answer would have been no. There was a time when I was all alone. Lost. Swimming in numbers and medical supplies. However, time and new friendships have healed the open wounds. They are now scars; and though they may still be visible and sore... They are healing.
For me, going back to work has been both a blessing and a curse. On one hand it is my escape from the 24-7 that diabetes requires. I was forced to hand over some of the work load, which gives me a break, however, along with with handing it over, comes more guilt and more worry. Because I am not there.
Working also hinders being able to advocate for Justin's needs at school. More guilt. This has proven to be my most difficult challenge. The school, UGH! That is all I will say about that.
For me, working is a necessary inconvenience. Though I am grateful for my job, and I even like it, I didn't choose to go back to work. I wish I could have prolonged the inevitable a while longer, but D, that rotten, stinkin, no good, D... choose my fate for me. D is not cheep. Just another "extra" that comes along with diabetes.
Still the question remains... Am I more than DMom? Sure! I am Justin's mom and Leighanna's mom. I am a work at home mom too. So I guess there is more mom to me than just D. It just seems that D is my most unruly of the bunch!
**This post is the brainchild of the uber awesome Hallie Addington, the “More than a D Mom” series. Posts will continue throughout this week and maybe even next week.
You can see Hallie's post from day one here.
And then be sure to check out the dangerously fabulous, Meri's post from day two here.
Up next, a DMom full of Candy Hearts, Wendy, will hosting the "More than A DMom" series. Be sure to pop on over tomorrow to read Wendy's take on things.