His hands were clammy and sweaty. He was also a little jittery.
Otherwise, CJ seemed just fine. After all, he was always a bit shaky so off to school he went.
Later in the day, the school nurse called with her concerns of CJ’s physical demeanor.
Could it be his blood sugar? His thyroid? Was it neurological?
According to the nurse, he’d been quite jittery for the past two weeks. “TWO WEEKS?? Really? How could I not have seen this? “
Because of the cerebral palsy, he’s always shaky but I had not noticed an uptick.
Fast forward to that evening and CJ is not eating, not drinking, not playing nor sleeping. I rushed him to the ER and by that evening he was seizing something fierce.
What Kind of Mother Am I?
Moms are expected to know what’s going on with their children at all times. So, why didn’t I (super mom or so I thought) pick up on CJ’s increased jitteriness?
At first I felt really guilty but experiences like these have taught me. Sometimes I miss things. Does that make me a bad mom? No. It makes me human.
The reason the nurse picked up on CJ’s increased shakiness is because she doesn’t see him every day. She’s able to notice the slightest change much easier. I can accept that and thank God, there are others in our limited circle that has the ability to notice when something’s just not right.
Give Yourself a Break
There will be times when circumstances will flow out of your control. Your child may experience a health crisis and you’re not there. You may not receive the response you desired from a medical professional or educational authority.
The obvious reaction is to feel guilt or fear. You may even question if you could have done more. Sometimes you could have and sometimes not. That’s not the point.
Either way, allowing a negative emotion like guilt to rest within you does nothing to help the situation. It also doesn’t help you to prepare for future trials and challenges. So, give yourself a break for simply being human.
Rest is Good
After CJ’s grand mal seizure (apparently the increased jitteriness was paving the way), he was exhausted and so was I. We both slept.
Taking time out to rest after a health crisis is extremely helpful – physically and mentally.
So, the moral of the story is just because you’re a caregiver, doesn’t mean you will always make the best choices for your child. You are human so release the guilt, forgive yourself and just…Rest.
About the Author: Michelle Howard Smith helps other caregivers to find ways to prevent and relieve stress through her blog, Stress Relief for Caregivers. She’s also created the Stress Less Recipe, a compilation of tips and advice to help caregivers keep it all together.
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