He climbed into our bed and began to sob. He’s hardly been out of our bed in the last 5 days, only quick trips to snuggle Mira or to run to the bathroom.
“I have nothing for you for Mother’s Day. Your first Mother’s day and I have nothing for you,” he cried.
I wasn’t surprised or hurt by what he said. I was well aware he hadn’t left the house in days and has been so sick there was no time to think of anything else but being sick. His tears tore my heart in two and the chip I’ve been carrying on my shoulder started to soften.
I’ve been so passive aggressive as I’ve watched him sleeping in bed and I’ve been taking care of the baby all on my own. You can’t feel much lower than the moments you catch yourself rolling your eyes or throwing a jab towards your sick husband. The truth is, I’m not mad at him. I’m mad at what cancer is doing to him.
I’m mad that he had to run to the toilet while trying to change Mira into pajamas. I’m mad that he can’t sleep at night and paces the house but finally can sleep during the day. I’m mad I’m lonely when I’m home with him. I’m mad. I’m mad this is our life. I’m mad that he’s dying.
Mother’s day is another day full of ridiculous expectations set by all women everywhere. It’s much like Valentine’s day. which I’ve also started hating.
I don’t hate them because Joe is bad at it, I hate it now because he’s always been so good.
When we were first dating and I left him for a long weekend, he picked me up at the airport with a beautiful jewelry box. He’d spent the days I was away, shopping for the perfect necklace with a tiny key on it. I melted.
Joe cried last night as he said, “All I want to do is make you breakfast in bed and take Mira all day so you can sleep in, but I know I can’t.”
I know he can’t. He’s too sick. He finally falls asleep as the sun shines through our windows. He’s in so much pain, I find him curled in a ball in the middle of our bed.
Today has been a mixture of broken hearts and pity parties, until just a few hours ago.
I’m covered in spit-up and rocking Mira to sleep when Joe walked in her room and laid across her white furry rug. He listened to me read night time books and we said goodnight to all of her family. We said goodnight to her grandpa EJ in heaven and her great-grandpa Boompa who went to join him just last night.
We said, “Go Cubs Boompa”.
I thought I saw Joe smile and the room felt so full of peace.
My first Mother’s Day wasn’t the brunch I had planned. I didn’t wear my new blue dress. I didn’t get coffee in bed or a hand-made card. But I did get a moment.
A moment to realize that my job as a mom is much bigger than clean diapers and nap times. Moms hold the whole family together when everything is falling apart. A moms job is full of worry and heartache.
Moms love hard because in these moments of good night prayers, losing loved ones and story time…. all that love is returned, times one hundred.