Sometimes, I feel like that Shebunkin...swimming in a pond for every one to see. Just like the pond, there are few places for me to retreat...to just be alone in our home. We have one central living space..the rest of the house is a whole lot of small bedrooms. There are just some days or more realistically, some moments, that I want to retreat, do nothing. relax. I want to have a conversation on the phone or with my husband that isn't for someone else to hear. I just want to be home without an audience. And some days, the lack of privacy is just too much.
Today was one of those days. I know that we are so blessed to have nurses and a personal care attendant to help us care for the extraordinary needs of our children. I worry about families who don't have the option of having the quality of caregivers that we enjoy in our home. But, today, I just wanted to disappear in my own home. If I could be here and just be invisible...to the staff. If they couldn't see what I make for dinner, or how I handle every parenting decision....if we could just live a "normal" life for a day.
I am learning that the home life that I wish to have created is not what happens on a day to day basis. I was reminded of that today by a nurse who was apparently shocked that I could make french toast. And, as she pointed out, she should know because she is at our house three days a week and rarely sees me cook. I remember as a PCA before we ever had children, I thought too, that I understood how the family I worked for functioned. I thought I had things figured out as I looked into what I thought was from on the inside. After all, I worked in the home. I was so wrong. I didn't know a thing about this family...except that they were just trying to do the best they could under difficult circumstances. If things weren't difficult for them, I wouldn't have been there.
And that is what I am learning today. Humbled by the comments of one of our nurses, I must accept that my life is not how I wish it to be. But, what I was reminded of is that if we didn't have extraordinary needs, we would not need a nurse, or any other caregiver in our home. Nurses or PCA's no matter how good they are, still go home at the end of the day...most likely to a home where the only other people there are the family that knows all of there faults and quirks. Many of them actually go home to a quiet house...imagine that! Or maybe they go home to their own struggles that no one else knows about. I don't have that luxury...but maybe that is a blessing.
Yes, my life is like that special goldfish. There is no hiding...no pretending. And that is a gift in disguise. Lord, help me to embrace that gift.