Mike recently informed several of our kids that he was “raising crust eaters; not a bunch of sissies.”
We have ONE branch of fall leaves in our backyard. Just one. The rest of the tree is still totally green. (Shrug.)
I think I might have officially decided October is my favorite month. I could never quite admit it because, you know, December has Christmas music; but October . . . has leaves, and crisp air, and pumpkins, and a more pleasant and simple amount of holiday decorating required, . . . and the ANTICIPATION of Christmas music just around the corner!
The truths that there are much more difficult problems to face, and that we are incredibly blessed to live when we do – with access to what we have access to – make us grateful, but don’t necessarily delete the reality of the problem. I worry a great deal about his struggles to breathe normally; his swollen eyes and nasal passages; his scratched raw, and bleeding skin. I worry about my suitability as a mother to him – knowing other mothers might be much better at trying alternative treatments, implementing rigid diets, or eliminating allergens than I seem to have to wherewithal to be.
Though, perhaps I can take some small credit for encouraging confidence in himself and his abilities to cope. Only a little of course. It’s mostly in himself, but I loved this recent conversation (held after one of two allergist appointments and between rounds of nebulizer treatments).
“Mom,” Jesse asked me. “Why am I allergic to so many things?”
“I don’t know, bud,” I sighed – feeling a bit discouraged myself. “It’s just one of your hard things in this life.”
“Yah,” he agreed; then added, solemnly and with conviction, “but I can handle it.”
I hope, in later years, and through different struggles, he’ll find encouragement in the words and certainty of his little five-year-old self.
But if a time ever comes when he doesn’t? I think we’ve all got his back (as evidenced by this conversation):
Jesse: “Mom, I’m a little bit scared because I think the doctor said something about . . . cutting . . . something.”
Me: “About cutting something? I don’t think so Jesse. There’s no reason they’d need to cut you.”
Penny (interrupting – loudly, protectively and indignantly): “Besides Jesse, I would rather have them cut me than you!”
Also . . . the little boys desperately need haircuts. And who knows, maybe we’ll give them to them someday.
And . . . now I am rethinking my bold “October is my favorite month” statement from a moment ago. It just feels a bit disloyal . . . like I’ve hurt December’s feelings after all it’s given me of twinkly lights, and magic childhood memories, and Christmas trees. . . . So . . . I don’t know. I’m still not saying a favorite. I envy Mike the ease and confidence with which he can claim Thanksgiving to be his favorite holiday. He doesn’t seem to feel the slightest ounce of betrayal to the other holidays.