Susan's Blog

Sunday, June 18, 2006

A Sliver Lining

I have hesitated posting because the last time I wrote, I had a pretty vicious Anonymous comment “not reading you anymore, you whine, you’re a terrible mother,” blah, blah, blah. Okay, so don’t read me. But for those of you who do, I am here today to write; can’t predict how I’ll feel tomorrow, but this weekend was a masterpiece and I felt stronger today. It feels like the black killing rains of spring are over. For three days there has been hot sun and air that clings to the skin like nighttime summer blankets. The colors of my garden blaze around me, with all my favorites: pink roses, blue delphiniums, scarlet poppies, purple campion, orange and yellow nasturtiaum, indigo sage. The breeze always bears the scent the marshmallow scent of honeysuckle.

But it is not the beauty that has made a difference in how I feel. It is that miraculous shift in consciousness that occurs slowly, back and forth, over months and then, suddenly, in a moment, it arrives. An easing, a lifting, and now my eyes see everything that is here; and my heart feels it as well. There is no substitute for true peace; it happens on its own timeline. It is excruciating waiting for it. But it always arrives. I forgot that, even though I wrote about it in that book of mine.

Nat feels it, too. Yesterday and today, he swam in the Special Olympics Summer Games like a champ. He even tried to stand on the bronze medalist’s platform, his own private joke. He grinned after he was told to step down. That grin grabbed my heart and yanked it open. There was no way to feel anything but joy as I watched him get his medals.

Tonight he was able to ask me to come outside and help Ned with the cookout. “Go get Mommy,” he said to me. Then, later, he was walking around even more swiftly than usual, cradling his finger. He looked at me, his eyes wide with alarm.
“What is it, Natty?” I asked. He started to groan and whimper. I took his hand, and saw his finger was red. “Oh, you’ve bumped it. Let’s get ice.”
“Noooo,” he moaned.
I looked again. I saw, lodged under the full length of his index fingernail, a brown splinter of wood. Oh, God, I thought. I felt a shudder of pain run through me; his pain. “Ned!” I shouted.

We all went upstairs to perform the delicate operation of plucking the thorn from my lion’s paw. I thought about Androcles, and the gratitude of the lion. I held onto Nat tightly, wishing his pain would bleed into me so he wouldn’t have to feel it. He never flinched, and he never hurt us, despite the fact that it must have been horrible to have us pluck at that sliver. I finally got it out, and it was nearly half an inch long. But it was out. A wash-off and a bandaid, and all was well. Life restored back to blissful normal. Absence of pain = happiness, for both Natty and me.

All this to say, “I’m back.” I am going to try not to let the weather, whether actual or emotional, get me as down again. Not when there’s so much to be happy about. But, as in all things, only time will tell.


Welcome back. Take your time. Take care.

— added by Patricia on Monday, June 19, 2006 at 1:24 pm

Glad you’re back.

— added by Mom on Monday, June 19, 2006 at 3:18 pm

Let me be the first to say…screw those people!!!

Your blog is great, just remember who its for – you.

— added by Robert P on Monday, June 19, 2006 at 10:31 pm

Yah! I’m a huge fan of your blog, I’m glad you decided to return.

— added by Doris on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 5:07 am

Glad your back. Your blog is great to follow for those of us living with an autistic child.

— added by Anonymous on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 7:19 am

I’m glad you’re back.

Thank you for everything so far.

— added by Julia on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 10:54 am

Welcome back!!!!

— added by Laura Cottington on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 1:32 pm

I’m glad your back. I know what you’re feeling. It doesn’t make you a horrible mother for feeling down. Your sadness does not reflect what type of mother you are. Recognizing it makes you a better mother. You have to be your best to give your best. You’re a giver who needs to recharge. Take care.

— added by Anonymous on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 9:16 pm

You can have 100 positive comments in a row, and it takes one jerk to ruin it.

Welcome back.

— added by Someone Said on Tuesday, June 20, 2006 at 9:31 pm

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