Today I was lucky enough to see Tamara Taggart speak at Leading Moms. The entire event was wonderfully inspirational and interesting but I was particularly interested in hearing Tamara speak about issues surrounding her health and motherhood.
I really enjoyed Tamara's talk, especially when she spoke of enjoying the present and not waiting for happiness, and deglamorizing "busy". I didn't have the guts to ask my question after her talk (and I didn't trust myself to get through it without sobbing) so I want to ask it here: how do you mother after trauma?
Tamara started her talk by saying that she's a worrier, something I relate to wholeheartedly. Having a little tornado of love / joy / feeeelings has certainly helped me to be more present and get out of my own head (it's damn near impossible to get caught up in my own worry spiral around Grady because I'm too busy trying to keep him from painting the dog or dropping Lego down the heating vent.) But I struggle with being able to mother him without piling all of my fear / anxiety / baggage on him. (I say this knowing that a certain amount of worry is normal. I don't expect to be responsible for a small human without a certain degree of concern. I'm talking about the deep and twisty place I go when I start to think about Grady having half of my genes and my cancer being somewhat genetic. The place I go when I'm emailing my sister the night before my surgery to ask her to talk to Grady about me because he was too young when I had my surgeries to have any memory of me.)
Grady was too young when I was diagnosed to have any memory of life before cancer. There is only life after cancer. When I leave him with a sitter, he asks if I'm going to the doctor because when I leave him with a sitter I'm always going to the doctor. I took him with me to get my eyebrows waxed and when he saw the treatment table he asked if I was getting a blood test. Grady is three. I don't want him to see me as his sick mom. I want to be tickle fights and adventure walks and superheroes. I don't want to be doctor's appointments and blood tests.
I'm curious to know how you move forward so maybe I can learn how to too. How do you mother your child after trauma, whether it be medical or emotional or financial or whatever? How do you mother without overwhelming worry?