Mothers are saying “I wasn’t aware I had a choice.”
Mothers are saying “I had no choice.”
“Because he’s my child.”
“Because she’s my little girl.”
And I want to climb onto my kinetic sand-covered and paint-splattered dining table and shout at the top of my lungs, “I had a choice.”
Because I did.
Every day I have a choice.
When I smile and nod and go with gluten-free banana pancakes and organic Gogurt for breakfast, that is a choice. I am choosing to give him food he likes to eat and what I believe is good for him to eat above what I want to eat. Which is always eggs Benedict.
When I jump off the toilet mid-pee because I hear silence and silence is dangerous, it is a choice. I am choosing to put his safety above my own biological needs.
When I sit on the floor and play Batman, which is really just scripting the action with no beginning, no plot and no ending, I have a choice. I am choosing his joy and his choices in entertainment over my own.
When I follow him into therapy and record his progress and make notes of new tests and referrals and note what I see and how he responds, I have a choice. I am choosing his progress over my time and a bit of my sanity.
When he cries in the night and I know they are night terrors and he won’t recall me comforting him and I get out of bed to go in and hold him anyway, it is a choice. I am choosing to try to comfort him even though he may never understand the sacrifice of sleep and the tears that only a sleep-deprived Momma can shed in the middle of the night holding a child who is neither awake or asleep.
When I put his needs before mine and I sacrifice so much that I feel like my soul has faded to gossamer and my body is worn and my face and eyes are tired and swollen until I look in the mirror and don’t see myself because the face in the mirror is his Momma and nobody else, it’s a choice. I am choosing my son over myself.
When I realize that he needs me, all of me, everyday and that there is no vacation or free time or break because this child that needs me needs every breath that I take until I think I can’t breathe anymore, I have a choice. I am choosing to be what he needs and wants and even the things that nobody thinks I should have to be because I know that the more that I am to him and the more that I do for him the better his life will become.
I will not be a victim of fate and though I did not choose the name of the road we are on I’ll be damned if I don’t choose which path I will take.
I will not let the fact there are things I can’t choose make me feel powerless when faced with the the things that I can.
It’s a choice.
You’re a choice.
Every day, every minute, every second.
And there are mothers who won’t and who don’t and the ones who can’t even if they want.
But I can and I will and I do.
Not because I had no choice or there was no other road.
But because when something matters more than anything else I could ever do, then that is the thing I will choose.
And yesterday, today, and every tomorrow until I’m not needed,
And probably longer than that,
I choose you.