Monday, April 6, 2009

Loss of Innocence

Maybe you can tell, from my most recent posts, that I am struggling a bit with our situation. I'm not really sad about things, just thinking about things a lot. Yesterday I was thinking about how having Gavin in our lives has changed many things for us. The difference that I was focusing on, primarily, was our loss of innocence.

I watch people from 'afar' and wish that I could go back to the days when life wasn't so complicated. I realize that everyone's life is complicated in one way or another, but thinking back to our pre-Gavin life was definitely less complicated than it is now! If I could go back in time for one day, I would be able to realize just how uncomplicated our lives were! I know that I did not appreciate those days as being easy or carefree, but when I think about them now, I can see just how easy they actually were! I watch others and listen to them and sometimes wish for the struggles they are going through. I feel so lonely, in many ways, watching life go on all around me. People are making plans with each other, People are chasing their little ones around, People are laughing and acting as if they don't have a care in the world.....I am watching, and I am feeling very alone in this world.

I am not alone and I am blessed in so many ways, but still, I feel like I am so different than others. I have lost that innocent feeling that I used to have. I am not trying to sound pitiful, although I know that I do. I am not trying to complain, although I know that I am. I guess I am just venting as usual and sharing with others how it feels to have a child with special needs.

I wish that our family could do more together. I wish that we didn't have to plan so much, or think so much to be able to do what the average family is capable of just going and doing. Our boys feel this loss of innocence as well. They will say, "Mom, May we go here or do this?........Oh yeah, Gavin." They don't seem to feel badly about our situation, they are just matter of fact about it. There are just things that we can't do because of having Gavin.

I sometimes feel like I'm an alien in this world. I feel like others don't know what to say to me and that they are uncomfortable around me, because of the uncomfortableness of what to say to someone who has a child like Gavin. Our 'world' is very different than the average family, and I would probably struggle knowing how to act around someone like me as well. But, this doesn't feel good, although these feelings could just be in my head and not true at all. But, I AM a person with a lot of 'baggage.' I've been told that I am someone who others don't feel like they are able to complain to anymore. I guess because they realize that their problems are just not as big as mine. The truth is, they might not be, but it doesn't mean that I don't want to hear about another's frustrations. Life IS hard, for ALL of us! My struggles may never go away, but I know that everyone has struggles.

I am definitely more emotional than I used to be. Having Gavin has made me more compassionate and yet, more hardened in some ways. I am not the same person that I used to be. I just have to accept this and try to get used to 'the new me.' I have to learn to deal with the added emotions that I have. I have to learn to deal with the added responsibilities that I have. There are so many extremes in my life now. I feel so uncertain some days and then other days, I feel so great. I have never worried more than I have since having Gavin in my life, but I have also never been able to trust in God, more than after having Gavin here. I have never been more sad in my life, but I have never been so happy either! There are so many extremes! I think more. I pray more. I give more. I need more. I love more. I cry more. I take more. And, the list goes on.....

I would love to go back to those days of innocence.....or would I? If I did, I wouldn't know God like I do now. And, I wouldn't have the greatest blessing that has ever been given to me!

Life may be harder, but it sure is more full! Some days I'd like a day of respite from all of these emotions and responsibilities, but I REALLY wouldn't change a thing. Having Gavin has made me stronger, happier and sadder, but it has also made me who God hopefully wants me to be.

So.....I'll keep going, and praying, and hoping, that I can accept this life with open arms. Because life is hard for all of us, but with God, the best is yet to come!

"And, behold, I come quickly, and My reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. He which testifieth these things says, Surely I am coming quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!" Revelation 22:12-14&20


Anxious AF said...

My husband and I were having a conversation about this just last night. I get you, I get all this.

ANewKindOfPerfect said...

I think all of the emotions in this post are SO true for all of us. Nobody who isn't in similar shoes can truly understand our day to day. Even close friends don't really get it! They decide last minute to take their kids to a movie and wonder why we can't do the same. Let's go to the park - you know, the one with no baby swings and no shade structure. Oh yeah, we can't.

I can totally relate to no one wanting to complain to you. One of my closest friends will start in on something or complain when her daughter's sick, and then stop. "I can't complain, it's nothing serious like you guys deal with". On one hand, YES! You're RIGHT! So stop complaining! On the other hand, your problems are big to you, and you deserve to vent! It's a double edged sword for sure.

I just wanted you to know that you are not alone. I wish we all lived near each other and could be each other's real life friends. We would all get it!!!

Michelle said...

Dear Alicia, You've said all the things I don't feel that I can even alliterate. When we were little and Mom and I would say the same thing at the same time, she'd say "get outta my head" meant to be funny. Reading this post is like reading my thoughts exactly. Wishing I could be there to give you a big hug!!

Alicia said...

So true. I have tears in my eyes reading this because I feel the EXACT same way. You took the words right out of my mouth.

I hear you about the loss of innocence. I hear you about feeling like an alien. I hear you about the never being more sad or more happy. I hear you about the fact you can't just pick up and go do something, you have to plan.

I hear you.

(((Hugs))) to you sister. Thank you for writing this.


My name is Sarah said...

This is Joyce. I read with empathy and understanding. I just finished watching Oprah(which I rarely do, but we are home on spring break and it is snowing) and today's show was about mom's. Did you happen to see it? The basic theme was how hard life is as a mom. None of them that I saw had a child with extra needs, medical challenges or such and I found myself continually saying "Oh please," and found myself actually getting angry at some of their fluff statements.

Then it hit me, their life is really that shallow. They have yet to have a real connection to life and death situations, not being able to pick up at a moments notice and I find that sad for them. But it would be nice to just have one day to not have to be responsible wouldn't it.

And with that I just realized I forgot to pick up Sarah's medicine today. Yikes better go now.

The Myers said...

It is true when you are in a life different than anyone else they seem to not really understand where you are coming from even if they say they do. You wonder if they are just saying they do to shut you up or if they really do understand.
I am not in the say situation you are in but having two boys with ADHD with ODD and ADD life is a lot harder than you think it may be. Some days I wish I could go back in time too but then I look at it in a different way and realize I wouldn't have the two boys I have right now either.I never know what each day will bring but I try to do the best I can.
You have to realize God gave Gavin to you as God gave me Nathan and Mathew with these special needs for a reason and a purpose. We may not understand but I believe some day we will until then we do the best we can. I Love you all and if you need to talk you know where I am I have an ear to listen