:: I have learned what it means to be a caregiver. For those of you that work in medicine, this is a word that holds much meaning. When a person needs help, we look to their caregivers. We ask them to be the help. We ask them to be the other. The non-medical person that will be there for the patient. In my case, I was always the one to teach the caregiver about how/what/when/where to do things. How to move the patient. How to help. How to be what they had never been asked to be before. Someday I might write the full import of what this week was for me. For now, I will say I have learned something from the other side of the fence.
What does it mean to be a caregiver? To take care of someone that you never quite expected to not be well. To see the one you know, in front of you, needing something you have never needed to give before. I am humbled by the experience. Saddened at times by my reaction, my need to not be that. Understanding much better than ever before what the true import of the word means. Happy to have come through this a little bit more aware of what it is exactly that I have asked of the people in my past work, what I just assumed they should be able to give.
:: I have reacquainted with my niece. She, of the 11 month old wadddling gait.
Of the pre-verbal, not always sure, brink of toddlerhood being. She of the baby girl thighs of squishy joy. She now knows and loves me again. It is never enough when part of your family lives 12 hours away. When your true sister-hood lives too far to find daily, but I will take it. The bonding of cousins, twin boys watching "baby" because their new vocal cords cannot quite say "Kayda"; watching, holding, helping, sharing. Mason asking for 'baby' when he wakes, the boys watching her nap on my brother's couch, fascinated by her sleeping. The perfect culmination to the bonding, Sunday night bath, Owen washing her hair, Mason warily but willingly sharing his bubbles. Moments they will remember in their future connections, laying foundations. They felt her fascination with them, had their own.
And I had time to strengthen my bond with a sister, now mothers, never enough but always just what we need.
:: Spring morning storm, blowing in cold and grey. Waking after a too sleepless night, not their fault, only my own. Out for the first time this week, together with the boys, an excellent dinner party. Then home and in the front yard for a minute, watching the clear blue post storm sky, feeling the cleaned breeze, whipping the leaves so fresh, hummingbirds screeching their territory, spring blooms bright after the wash,
seeing my seed flats pushing forward first sprouts. Feeling right for the first time in days, not afraid anymore.
:: Hiking, slowly and not far, but outside, greeting the day with dirt and smiles.
- First, my sister and I decided to write out our birth stories and send them to each other, do what we will with them. Frame them, write them longhand, paint them, but our gift for each other in this thing called Mamahood as she finishes her first and I, my second.
- A second go at a picture a day leading up to the boys' second birthday. A long standing tradition maybe, for me, for them. To be started on Thursday (I think).
- Finishing a dress for Easter. A big party to be at, Kayda's first birthday, their first Ester Egg hunt, my first dress. It will all work out, right?
Like I said, maybe someday I will figure out what to write about this week. It is a odd thing to find yourself on the side of then fence you never wanted to be on. Terrifying actually. But that always can make one stronger in the end.