Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Things Missed

I'm not sure exactly where this post is going to go. It starts with thinking about my big kids and just how big they are.  I am so very proud of the young men and women they are becoming and I have the typical thoughts of how I blinked and missed them growing up.

Only, it's more than that. This is one place having a child with special needs or chronic medical needs steals a piece of you.  I guess that sounds harsh and I don't mean it in an angry way toward Ayden Jane, but rather the frustration of one more thing Prader-Willi Syndrome has caused our family.

You see, I look at pictures of the big kids before Ayden Jane entered the scene. I remember so much. I remember endless basketball games in the driveway with Noah. I remember Kayla, Noah and the neighbor kids in and out of the house. I remember conversations and games they played. I remember Mckenna and her love of animals. I remember her having friends over and being invited places. I remember Gary and I having friends over and going places and hanging out with other families. It was all so simple.

After Ayden Jane was born it was as if I disappeared for a season. I blinked. I poured so much into Ayden Jane (and needed to) I feel a little cheated out of time with the big kids. I wish they could have just waited for me... but it doesn't work that way. They went on and grew up.

Now I don't want to make it sound like I never left the house or spoke to them... It was just that there was always a part of my mind that had to be on Ayden Jane so I was not able to fully enjoy them like I had. For example, watching Kayla's volleyball or Noah's soccer games was great, but there was no way to just focus on the game and enjoy.  You know the chatting with the other parents and cheering as if time outside of the event stopped. No, it was watching the best I could while working on stairs with Ayden Jane or navigating the concessions or just keeping her from falling. I enjoyed the games, but a piece of me was always distracted.

One thing I think Gary and I did right in all of this is that we made it priority for Gary to build/keep good relationships with our kids even though his time was more and more limited as the sole bread winner. Mostly this involved him taking them out to eat wings and watch games. Sometimes it was to see movies or just make a run to sonic for a drink. I won't really ever know how the conversations went, but it was a tradition that the big kids continued with each other even when he was not home. I also love that Noah and Kayla have extended this to Mckenna and will take her places and do things with her. I do know that there was always lots of laughter involved.

It would have been great to be more a part of their times together but I also know that for me to have been there would have made those times less carefree. I wish I had been the involved mom at the schools or sports teams. I wish I had been able to shake the worry or constant thought of how to tweak things for Ayden Jane and just enjoy the big kids.

PWS caused me to blink long and hard and frequently. In spite of that, I am blessed to have been a part of the lives of three awesome 'big kids'. I am thankful that God kept His eyes on them while I blinked.

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