I’m not really a very angry person. I’m pretty equable. If I’m feeling angry, 75% of the time it is directed toward yours truly. And, the remaining 25% of it is directed at Dear Husband because he’s married to me for all eternity and has to deal with my bitch fests. It’s part of the deal. Really it is. Also, ask my sisters. They get in cat fights, and I watch from the sidelines, amused. I just don’t get riled that easily.
But lately, I’ve been feeling so FREAKING PISSED. And by lately, I mean more in the past 24 hours or so. And do you want to know what is bringing on this anger? It’s helplessness. I’m feeling so damn helpless, it’s making me angry.
I remember that when I was pregnant with Cade, I couldn’t wait to just have him. To give birth and to love him and feed him and kiss him and get my body back so I didn’t waddle around, feeling like I was squeezing a cantaloupe between my legs. But now that he’s here, and he’s out of me; his own person, I can’t protect him like I could when he was inside me. I just wish I could shove him back up my vag and tell him that I’ll keep him safe from harm. But I can't. I'm just learning this.
Caden has a kidney disease. Hydronephrosis. And lately I’ve had to watch my baby boy be in pain. To be scared. To be traumatized. And the pain he I see in his eyes I sometimes am convinced is mirrored ten times that in my own.
I know what it’s like to be in the hospital; to be surrounded by doctors and not know what the hell is going on and why I am sick and scared and I just want my mom please I want to just go home. At five years old I was preparing to die. I didn’t really know what dying entailed, but I did know that it would mean I would miss my mom and my twin brother and my dog and I would go to Heaven to be with Jesus. I was very scared. At five I learned that the world wasn’t safe; it was volatile and mean as hell and this wasn’t just a boo-boo that my mom could kiss better and put a band-aid on.
And Cade is learning this, too. And I’m so ANGRY he has to learn this like I did; way too young. It makes me feel helpless. He had to get a test done yesterday afternoon at the hospital, a test we were told would be painful and scary but would most likely be the last test in a very long time. It was supposed to take ten minutes. After thirty minutes, they still couldn’t get what they needed. Know why? Because my baby was too scared. He was too tense. Brandon and I were up near his head, and Brandon was pinning down his arms because I couldn’t bear to pin them myself knowing how scary that feels. And I was stroking his hair and murmuring to him that I loved him and that he was being very brave. And he was bright red, and sweating, and screaming. And looking at his mother with his big blue eyes and asking me to help him, to make it stop hurting. I stayed strong, initially. I didn’t cry. I was being brave like him.
But then I had to leave the room for a moment because they were doing x-rays, and being pregnant, I could not be exposed to them. So I watched my baby boy from a little window. And as the x-ray machine hovered over him, he screamed and screamed and begged his daddy to move it because it was going to smash him. And that’s when I lost it. I completely lost it. I started to sob. And the doctor came to talk to me and told me that after all this; they didn’t get “what we need.” She gently suggested I reschedule this procedure, but to do so under sedation. I agreed. I just needed to get my baby off of that table and into my arms.
So Brandon rescheduled as I pretended to look at a bulletin board and get my sobs under control. We learned they didn’t have any openings for THREE WEEKS. That is three more weeks of dragging this out. Three more weeks of my baby being in pain. Three weeks where I will have to wait, and worry. And I started to cry harder. Because I was angry. And I was helpless.
As we were walking out of the hospital, Cade was in Brandon’s arms. I was still crying silently, because I couldn’t get myself under control. And Cade looked at me, and put his hand on my cheek. And he said, “Mama, its okay. I love you. You are so pretty.” And I smiled at him, and then cried harder. Because just then, for a fleeting moment, my son could give me what I can’t give him: hope. And reassurance.
But now, once again, I feel so futile, so helpless, and so angry.
And I can’t get those feelings to go away. I can’t get that hope, and that reassurance that everything will be okay. I can’t find it.