I have been mother to children in the hospital. I have walked the cold halls holding small hands into rooms that make you feel like a lab rat.
When those days are ours to endure, I bring candy in my pocket to suck when the doctor steps out; I sit and knit and say absurd things to make us laugh when fear of the unknown would devour us; I fix their frightened eyes with my smiling ones until the anaesthesia kicks in and they fall asleep; I stand as the glass doors close behind me and feel the helplessness of entrusting them to the mercy of a surgeon and his knife.
Have you been that mother? Have you felt that sinking aloneness?
Have you listened on while they tell you your son has a disease unheard of in his age and gender group; swallowed calmly while they say he may have something else, too, but they can’t imagine what?
Sitting at my kitchen table one day after everyone had gone to school, I began to understand my vocation. I realized, as I cried out my heavy heart, that as mothers we have no right to lose our heads. There is no room for drama in our world.
For we are anchors in theirs.
Sunday, we went AWOL. For once, nothing was broken. We were not the exception; the rare case no one could unravel. With an ice pack and a sling, we walked right out the front door in an odd state of ecstasy!