I’m sitting in my car waiting for the school to open so that I can fetch child one and two. I stare down at my knees and notice how hairy they are! I can’t really bath (radiation is a bitch), but as I’m back at work I really did put in some real effort this morning and shaved! Not sure how I missed my knees!! But man, look at these babies, so proud. They are almost as hairy as Kev’s chest (not really, nothing is as hairy as Kev’s chest). Still, smooth legs up to my knees and then these black hairs spreading all over like listeria…
My phone is dead so I have time to contemplate the space I’m in. I’m slowly reintegrating back into normal life. I have eyebrows! I don’t have that pale, sick and gaunt look anymore, now I just look overweight with a weird hairstyle. I’m happy though. I’m here to tell my story! As a family we’ve survived this ultra kak Zuma of a time. This morning I walked through the oncology centre, people greeting each other, smiling, happy, hopeful. I go downstairs to where radiation is (very thick walls and semi-removed from the rest of the chemo lounge). I only have two more days of radiation to go! It all went so fast and yet so slow. It might not make sense to most, but I am going to miss coming here on a daily basis, I’ve grown attached to the people who work here, the familiar faces of people who have chemo or radiation at the same time slots as me, the coffee (I like cheap instant coffee, suck it all you connoisseurs). I am going to miss this space!
Because it is a SPACE! I used to sit here and with one arm attached to an IV and the other hand free I would catch up on my friends’ lives, communicate with my loved ones, read and reflect on life. Sometimes friends stopped by for coffee, it was lovely. Why did it take a chemo lounge to make me realise how happy this makes me?! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always loved me-time (at varsity my favourite Friday night would be a good bottle of red, a good book and my cats on my lap – I had one retarded cat (no jokes) and he poo’d everywhere and was blind, poor thing), just to give you an indiction of how much I love my me time. I’m the type who loves going to the movies by myself on a Mon morning (no other loud popcorn chewers on Mondays). But since kids….MOM GUILT! It’s a thing! It’s as real as chemo brain and it’s bullshit.
As parents we need to make that space for ourselves. Without feeling guilty. I want my kids to see that I have my own life and my own identity, separate from being a mom. My first and most important job is being a mom, but a happy mom is a good mom and nobody can cope with being around their kids 24-7. It’s not the way it was ever intended to be I believe, we’ve just lost the village.
Other parents start to exit their cars to fetch their kids. I sigh about my hairy knees and wonder how I will conceal or hide them for the rest of the day during meetings etc. And then I remember that I really don’t care actually. Hairy knees and perfect nails and working at all hours – these things are not important. (note the bold AND underlined).
I get Bailey first and she tells me about her alien that she built this morning (Its a cereal box with one eye and laser beams, apparently), I silently contemplate how I can get rid of this thing without her seeing, it’s big and made all out of recycled shit. Then, together we get Kai. He had a bad day as Sarah beat him at Pokemon and besides, he was not really allowed to bring his cards to school. He cries all the way to the car. I remind myself that these “small” things are huge to them. Hairy knees. Being a mom is my first job. Being a teacher / facilitator / imparter of knowledge and connecter of people is my second passion and job.
Hairy knees guys, you can always hide them under the table. TIME, now that is something we cannot play with.
Strongs to all you parents out there and thanks for reading my blog!
I’m on my way to aerial yoga at house of calm, what are you doing for yourself tonight?
Ps. watch out for my new content pillar about parents with cancer where I’ll share my lessons and tips. I hope it will help some of your loved ones.