Reincarnated As A Mother

Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Shadow Sisters?

Cute picture alert!
Reese took this one of Kean and was puffing up her chest and all proud of herself.
That's the good news.
The bad news is her photography days are over.
She dropped Greer's brand new camera (Christmas present) and bent the lens.
I don't know who was more heartbroken... Reese for breaking the camera or Greer for losing it.
Poor girls.
As for the picture, look closely and you can see Fuzzball's fuzzy hair really starting to kick in.
 Grandpa Bodily came up this afternoon to hang out at the house while Kean took his nap
and Byron and I headed over to the school.
The entire first grade (four classes) put on the classic and highly acclaimed musical:
The Little Red Hen.
That's Reese in the front, center (deep red dress).  She played one of the hens
and stood out as the shortest kiddo in the entire grade.
She's also one of the cutest.
 And with all those teeth missing, it is a wonder she could even sing.
(Her talking at this stage is highly entertaining).
 Finally, we had a tender experience tonight.
But first, I have to give you the background.
On Sunday, I read an article titled Hey, What About Me!
It focused on the siblings of children with Cancer.
Frankly, I shouldn't have read it.
There was the mom who sent her daughter to live with relatives
out of state for a year and a half because she knew she couldn't give her the attention she deserved
while dealing with her son's treatment.
There were other parents who literally asked different friends to "adopt" each of their children
for the next few years to make sure they didn't get lost in the cracks.
Then there was the little girl who waved goodbye to her parents as they took her brother in to the hospital
and then they didn't come back for 30 days (sound familiar?).
Years have passed and that same little girl checks on her family every night after they are in bed
 to make sure they haven't disappeared.
All their examples and experts struck too many chords
and honestly, freaked me a out a bit.
They called these siblings "shadow children"
and I kept thinking of the three girls as the "shadow sisters".
That very day I caught myself holding a sad Reese and an emotional Greer
and yet when Kean started wailing, I immediately pushed them aside and went to comfort him.
They have sacrificed so much already and we still have two and a half years to go.
They've had to cut back on activities, forgo having most of their friends over,
deal with their mom and brother being gone for long stretches at a time
and then put up with exhausted, stressed out parents who don't have much left to give.
Honestly, I was starting to feel down when I got a phone call from a friend (more like
a call from an angel).
Peppi McIntosh called up saying she and her daughter, Natalia
were picking the girls up Thursday night and taking them to see the
ballet, Swan Lake.
It was a sweet slap in the face.
A reminder of all the love, giving and filling in we've had from
friends and family.
Yes, there will be some fall out.  There has to be after the trauma
we are going through.  But, and this is a big but... for the most part,
I think the girls are doing quite well.  My parents have done so much
and many others have stepped up and filled in the gaps over and over again where we've fallen short.
You know who you are!!!
Perhaps I'll write a book someday -- the go to guide and example ridden book about the art of serving
others.  Of course, I'll be writing it from the not giving but getting perspective.
Yes... we will survive.