Yes, my post title is a reference to The Cars. As my wise dad once said, “How can ANYONE not like this band? I mean, really.”
I wanted to set the record straight on a few things and it’s not because I was asked to. It’s because I want to.
In 5th grade, I really excelled in my English class. We had to keep journals full of stories – in those delicious black and white marbled books – and I did so with much gusto and zero abandon. I mean, I didn’t leave anything to the imagination. I filled those books cover to cover with just about anything in my head. For example, that was the year I started getting high on life and I detailed it in writing. For another example, I once wrote a story about the man in the moon and how he smiles at good people and literally…moons bad people. Like he pulls down his pants and lets certain undesirables see his butt crack. Yes, I wrote that. And yes, both my Homeroom teacher and my Math teacher heard about it in the teacher’s lounge and asked me if they could read it.
One day, my English teacher said to me, “Aha, I get it!” And I asked what she got. I can’t remember this verbatim but this is pretty close. She said, “I get you! Your writing is so sad. And that is why…you’re not.” And I thought about this when I went home, and for days, and months, and years and decades after. And yes, she hit the nail on the head. I’m not saying I can transfer 100% of my pain and anger onto this blog. What I can say is that you’re not getting the full story. My laugher and smiles are being transferred onto time with my family. Sadness – it goes here.
I was initially upset about the wound on my daughter’s face because she’s just really darn cute. Over time, I have realized two things:
1. She’s still darn cute and this is the worst time of it all, visually. Only way to go is up.
2. The wound will heal.
I think what really shook me up and I’ve said this to a few people today – even though we are given no reason to believe we have given birth to “Invincible SuperBaby,” well…I still thought I had. And of course all parents learn the truth the hard way, and I’m pretty surprised it took me about a year to figure it out. I wasn’t there to protect my baby from harm. And not only that, it was a harm I’ve been afraid of since before she was born. And there’s no reward for being right in this case. What I got was a crisis, a fear of dogs and probably a steep hospital bill or two.
However. We are healing, just not as fast as her cuts are healing. During the day and around her, she knows laughter, smiles and love. We play games. We listen to her speak new words day after day and we delight in her new knowledge. We still encourage her to play and attempt to walk and roll balls and play with her farm toy and ride on her baby bike. We may flinch more than we used to, but I don’t believe she catches those flinches. She only knows love.
It’s at night after she’s asleep that we grow more introspective and tired. We let the sadness wash over us. We can turn from positive to negative very fast. During the day, we know how positive the situation is. We know her youth and her happiness will heal her fast. We know she got great care. We know she’s strong. At night, it wavers. That’s when the dark visions and fears creep in. So we cope, not always the best we can but good enough. We rent movies or Cassidy makes me fried tofu and buys me a whipped cream coffee drink.
It’s only been a week. And yet, it’s been a whole week of hell.
I’m not out of the hole yet but at least I can see the light above me. And I can see what helps, and what doesn’t.
Here’s what helps:
– Telling me your own horror stories about bites, burns, falls, accidents…but the stories have to have happy endings
– Marc Cohn’s “Walking in Memphis”
– A spiritual point of view
– Advice about natural and/or homepathic treatments for wounds
– Comments on the magic, regeneration and resilience of baby skin
– Emails, phone calls and visits from loved ones. I may not respond swiftly to all of it, but know this: I have heard you. And it’s gone straight to my heart.
Here’s what doesn’t help:
– Asking me if I’m getting rid of my dog
And I guess that’s it. I’m pretty much ignoring any negative energy anyway. I don’t think those are rigid guidelines.
I think we’ll be alright.