I try to be positive, to live in the moment, to not worry too much.
But it doesn’t always work. Sometimes it’s too much. I can’t shut my brain off. I can’t stop worrying. I can’t help but feel sad.
(*Disclaimer to my real-life friends of girls who are friends with Olivia—please don’t feel bad after reading this. It is what it is. It was coming. Don’t feel bad, promise? If you will, stop reading.)
Olivia had her first Girl Scout meeting of the year last week. We go strictly for the socialization; I could care less if she “gets” anything out of it but that. It was really fun for her last year and she really enjoyed it. But after that first meeting, I could tell that the girls are different now. They’re older. They’re interested in painting their nails, boys, shopping at Justice, talking about friends. Olivia’s interested in Disney movies and playing ring-around-the-rosie. This was going to happen sooner or later; I was just hoping for later. Don’t get me wrong, they love her. They say hello and give her hugs. They will watch over her and protect her, of that I’m confident. But they aren’t interested in her anymore. They’ve moved on. And I get it, I really do. I’m actually amazed it’s lasted this long. But at the same time, it’s devastating. I treasure my friendships so much and I just feel like she doesn’t have any friends. Maybe she doesn’t mind, maybe it’s not even on her radar. But it’s on mine. I feel like she should have at least one or two best buddies that she can count on. And I don’t think she has that anymore. At the same time, I am friends with their Moms and I don’t want them to MAKE their girls be friends with her or invite her to things. What could be worse than that? I really don’t want that either; that’s just going to make the girls resent Olivia. There’s no good solution. It is what it is. And I think that’s what makes me so sad.
I was in school today and read Olivia’s “About Me” poster. She wrote “When I grow up, I want to be a Mom.” It broke my heart into a million tiny pieces because she’ll never do that. It made me happy because I’m hoping it means she wants to be like me, but still saddened me. There’s nothing I can do about that though, can I?
She wears orthotics, she wears a scoliosis brace for 12 hours a day, she wears glass, she works so freaking hard every day of her life. I don’t want it to be so hard for her. Some days I feel sorry for me too. I want her to be a Mom. I want her to have a best friend. I want her to have and do so many things that she’s not able to. Not to mention when I’m lying awake at night worrying about what will happen to her when she’s an old woman and we’re gone, God willing we all make it that long. Who will take care of her? Who will make sure she has the stuffed animal that goes with the movie she’s watching and get her Oreos and not the generic kind? No one understands her, knows her and loves her like I do. What happens if I’m gone? The emotional toll of being her mother is sometimes so heavy I feel like I can’t breathe.
But I try. Every day I try to focus on today. Today she is happy. Today she had a friend to eat lunch with at school. Today she jumped for the first time. Today she has her stuffed Genie and Abu while she watches Aladdin. Today she has her Oreos. Today she has me. Today she is loved. Some days that just has to be enough.