Sunday mornings were a special time for me. I was always awake hours before anyone else in the house. I relished the calm and quiet. I’d make coffee and sit at the kitchen table doing a crossword puzzle. I especially loved days when the morning sun warmed the house, as it rose over the lake. Life was good living the American dream, complete with two dogs and 2.7 cars.
Sunday mornings are now nothing special. Just because it’s the weekend doesn’t mean jack to me (or Ryan, for that matter). This time is replaced by dressing my son, transferring him from his bed, and stimulating his bowels. Coffee is a necessity to make it through the
morning day. Crossword puzzles give way to endless therapy.
Last weekend, when Sue told me how she was “awed” by my fortitude and wondered how I did it, I said something in reply that continues to nag at me. It was so matter-of-fact and without a second thought that it startled me. I guess hearing myself say it aloud made it real.
I said, “Don’t be impressed, it just comes off the end of my life… exponentially”. A classic case of “tit-for-tat”, I thought to myself (and smirked). Those who know me will have no doubt I’m a huge fan of the former, but in this situation I’ll gladly take the tat. Anyhow, Sue said nothing and I didn’t look up from dressing Ryan to see her reaction. Hell, I didn’t mean to say it. It just came out without thinking. It felt like I had just vomited my thoughts.
It hit me hard for one simply reason. There are people depending on me being around and I’m not sure I can sustain myself for the distance. This scares me.
For me, having my card punched from this life would — in many ways — be welcomed. No, I’m not suicidal… not even close. I’m just depressed and tired. So, I’m sure this is the point where some are ready to tell me I must take care of myself, for Ryan’s sake. Believe me, I would… if I felt I could.
In reality, we are being tossed around in a sea of desperation and there is only one life vest. Sue and I chose to give it to Ryan and we’ll tread the water. All the while, I’ll keep Sue’s head above water as best I can.
I’m not foolish nor ungrateful. I know we never would be at this point without all the help from you. You surround us, nourish us, and give comfort and strength. Life rafts. Ready to pull us from the wreckage, but knowing we will never get out of the water until Ryan is able to swim on his own. You do this despite the rocks being lobbed from the shore by the attackers and their families.
We are sincerely thankful to those who have not abandoned us. Oh, how I hope we can come up for a breath long enough to truly let you know.
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