This weekend I woke up to my son staring at me.
For most people their children peering over them as daybreaks is just one of those moments of parenthood you learn to live with. Either you send them off to play video games and grab their own bowl of cereal, or you begrudgingly get out of bed and trudge down the stairs to make breakfast and turn on cartoons while you doze and in and out of consciousness on the couch.
Not in our house.
Opening my eyes to find my son looking at me in horror has my mind turning as quickly as possible to find the right words to calm him. TO remind him of what every doctor has said, of the little things I can do now…of how much better things are.
Instead I fumbled for words as his nine-year old mind processed what it had seen: 10 straight minutes of me writhing in pain as I worked hard to get out of bed. The pain overwhelming me, as it does every single morning, and my usual battle to get on my side and then from my side to my feet on the floor. It’s a process that is no fun and I dread every morning. A process I never wanted either of the kids to see.
So of course I had to explain to him I was not sick, I really was ok. And that I really am better. Morning was just hard for Mom and it’s just hard until I get my first pills in me. Then I had to suck it all up and pretend like it didn’t hurt so bad that I could barely breathe and I jumped out of bed in front of him so he could see I was fine.
Gritting my teeth I walked downstairs and got him breakfast, got my pills, got him milk, and finally, sat down. The relief was unreal.
Today I woke up before everyone else in the house. Something I plan to try to do daily forever. I don’t ever want to see the look on his face again as he stared at me in pain. The fear. The confusion. Never. Again.