So...yeah...I'm sure those of you brave enough to read this are cringing right now thinking I'm going to plunge headfirst into self-pity or some diatribe on how much Valentine's Day sucks for the recently dumped, but don't worry. Not that I couldn't pontificate on both those subjects, but once I pull myself out of my own head, I have to admit today was actually a good day. It's as though God decided that I needed a break, if only a small one. I am living almost every day in an emotional hell that even I am sick of, and I am frustrated as all hell that I can't seem to stop obsessing over this. My daughter is at a critical point in her treatment. We are literally living day by day, and it's pissing me off that I am wasting time mourning people who obviously don't give a shit if I live or die, and wasting time with my precious daughter in the process. I want to be over this already! I want to be done with this, he is! He's blissful and happy with his 20%, or at least he thinks he is, and after everything I've been through, I think I deserve just a little of the same, if not more. If I could just get to a place where I didn't give a shit anymore, I think I'd be happy with that.
So today, I decided to give myself a break and just decide to be happy. No matter what, just be happy. Anytime I started to think of him, or some memory would pop into my head, I would push it out and focus on the day ahead, which I planned to be busy on purpose. I scheduled an early counseling session for Sarah, and then OPI in the afternoon for labs and a visit. I have been dreading this day for weeks now, and up until this morning, I was sure it was going to be a terrible day. But then, this morning, I decided that I was going to be open to whatever blessing God would give me that day. I decided that I was going to just see how it went. If I was sad, then I was sad. If not, even better. I just decided he didn't get to have this power over me anymore. I can't make him love me, I can't make him be a decent and scrupulous human being, but my happiness belongs to me.
So, I decided to be happy. I can give you a thousand reasons why I have every right to be miserable, and I'm sure not one person would disagree with me. But I decided that I was going to find a reason to be happy today, no matter how small. I was going to find the good in today. I got up, showered, got the lunch and the bags ready, Sarah slept all the way up until it was time to leave, she got dressed without a fuss, took her meds, she was in a good mood. We actually managed to leave EARLY for what has to be the first time EVER. We met a line at McDonald's but we had time so it didn't matter. I ordered, and they actually didn't screw it up this time, although they did initially give me the wrong bag. We met NO traffic this morning, and got there a half hour early. Since we had time to kill and it was such a beautiful morning, I decided to park the car at the clinic parking lot and walk across the street to Sarah's counseling session. Not much for a work out, but the extra steps count for something, and the crisp morning air did us both some good, I think. I live for mornings like this one: sunshine, crisp air, beautiful. With the walk, we ended up getting to her session about five minutes early, so we started our breakfast in the waiting room, I gave her counselor a quick debriefing, then I was politely kicked out by both counselor and patient! :)
I remembered my coffee and breakfast this time, and I managed to get a little work done on one of two baby blankets I must have finished by August (did I mention I'm going to be a double auntie! My sister and sister-in-law are both pregnant at the same time. I'm super excited!), and then Sarah and I hung out in the car for the few hours in between that appointment and her clinic appointment. I must be doing something right, because most kids find waiting in the car boring, but Sarah loves it! She even asks to do it when we don't have to! We played Mini Lalaloopsies and had some snacks while we had a little music education in the car as she played this Motown CD she got from the treasure box awhile back.
Once her clinic appointment rolled around, Sarah got to play with some therapy dogs and have everyone fawn all over her Valentine's outfit: White, long-sleeve shirt with a lady bug on the front that says ":Love bug", red tutu skirt and red leggings, with red mary-jane shoes, and red headband with red ladybug ribbon sculpture, hand-made by Mommy. She made Buddy the Therapy Dog follow her to room, where he "played" (read: attempted to eat) Lalaloopsies and then promptly fell asleep.She handed out Valentine's cards and chocolates to her favorite nurses and the doctor. She put on a show with Dana, one of said favorite nurses. Her labs came back great, low white counts, (which is what we want) and she didn't need blood or platelets, but I do have to keep an eye over the four day weekend, and her chemo is temporarily suspended, which means, my baby is all natural this weekend! I had to comb her hair this morning! Other than my deep emotional pain, life is good.
Highlight of my day? Sarah was playing around in the den, and she said, "Look, Momma, I can jump!" Now, mind you, she says this often, and her idea of "jumping" is more of a skip, where she lifts first one foot and then the other off the floor. Sarah broke her hip at 20 months, which is how we found her cancer in the first place, and that plus neuropathy from chemo has delayed her physical development tremendously, so she never learned how to jump, or run properly. She can't skip, or balance for very long. She was in physical therapy for years, but when she relapsed for the third time and we started running out of options, I pulled her out for several reasons: a) she hated her therapist; b) I kinda hated her therapist, because it was kinda obvious that she wasn't as totally in love with my kid as everyone else is, and when I was asked to sit in on sessions like they do with the naughty kid at school, it raised an eyebrow with me. Then I sat in, and I realized that yes, Sarah was giving her attitude, but only because was receiving attitude. Which brings us to c) At this point in her treatment, we're running out of options and time. Some of these chemos were draining her. If we're limited on time, I'm not going to waste it arguing with her to do something she doesn't want to do, then reprimanding her for being rude to someone that I am having to restrain myself from being rude to. If she was short on time, I wanted her to spend it doing stuff she loves, not fighting with her to do stuff she has no desire to do. Who cares if she can jump?
But today, she actually did. When she said, "Look, Momma, I can jump!" I was expecting the same, sort-of jump that she always does, one foot at a time, and I was all ready to feign my praise and enthusiasm, like a good mother. So imagine my surprise when she actually did it! Total lift-off, both feet off the ground! Then, like mother, like daughter, she started over-thinking things and started doing the old standby hop-jump thing, but then she'd get excited and jump for real. Seems like such a small thing, but for us, it was huge. Most parents spend their time yelling at their kids for jumping. I was yelling from excitement. Not only is this a major milestone for her, but it was exactly what I needed to pull my focus away from this man and put it back where it belongs: on her.
When I leave him and my thoughts of him out of the equation, I can only thank God for all of the blessings that he gave me today, and feel proud of myself for allowing them in. I think that's half the problem with the world. It's not that God doesn't want to bless us, or even that he doesn't. It's that most of us are too stubborn and set in our ways to let them in. So, from now on, I am choosing to let in the light. It won't always be easy, and I know that my pain is far from over. Hell, the way he's going, he'll probably have her knocked up by our wedding anniversary, but all I have to do is let in the light. All I have to do is take my power back and choose to find the good in each day, and the rest will fall into place. It got me through today, and it will get me through tomorrow, too.