Holiday preparation offers chance to reflect

Baby Makes Three Hallmark ornament, penguins.We’ve made a good dent in holiday shopping and we’re preparing to visit family during the holiday. As we rush to get everything finished and make our trip, I’m reminded of my son’s first Christmas.

I had sent Blue Sunshine back to the rental company and stowed the walker in the closet. I was graduated from physical therapy and the master of my own destiny, ready for the new phase of our life as a family. I remember sitting on a pillow on the floor, my husband’s family all around, as every Christmas Eve since I became part of their incredible family. I remember being excited to be moving on my own. I remember thinking about how the pictures would offer no evidence of the ordeal that had consumed so much of the year before. I remember feeling a joy that I hadn’t felt in a long time because there was just so much happiness all around and I didn’t have a reason not to feel like it was for me, too. That’s a great memory that brings a smile to my face now. And I remember that we had to wake up my son when it was time to open gifts and he wasn’t into it at all. Instead, he kept walking back to the play room to bring out the toys from Grandma’s house that he already was familiar with. It was hilarious.

Someday I want to be able to share good memories like that one, and other funny stories from that time, and why they are so special to me with my son. But I wonder how that will work. How will I be able to make him understand that what happened wasn’t his fault? Like me, he is a sensitive and empathetic person. I hope I will just know when his capability for logic and understanding can appreciate what happened. Sometimes, like when he kicks his feet and accidently taps my pubic bone, we have to talk about my injury. (More about this in a post coming soon.) But that only requires us to talk about how “mommy has an owie,” not how the owie happened. We’ve joked about what we won’t say if he ever says he wants a brother or a sister. But at some point, he’ll have to know. Just like someday he’ll eat a chicken nugget or a cheeseburger, despite that we are raising him as a vegan.

Funny how the mind is a rabbit hole. A good memory causes me to think ahead and wonder how I will help my son understand what happened. What do your children know about your DSP? Any advice in this area?

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