Another friend asked me how I felt about all the "stuff" around our house - both the gear, and the usual baby things that we have adapted for Asher. Without skipping a beat I told her that truthfully I usually don't even see it - it's just a part of our home now - a part of our new normal.
On most days, we feel like we are just "living the new normal". Other days we do not, at least not by our old standards. We realize that in some ways, our life is isolating, sad, and difficult. We get angry and bitter. We long for the life we'd counted on - the one that's easier than the one we've been given.
Sometimes, on really bad days I think to myself "I didn't ask for this". Specifically:
- I didn't ask to lose my mom when I was a teenager.
- I didn't ask to lose a baby 5 months into pregnancy.
- I didn't ask to have barely viable premature twins.
- I didn't ask for one of those twins to have CP as a result of his traumatic birth.
- I didn't ask to have thyroid cancer.
I reeeeally feel sorry for myself when I make that mental list. So instead, I try to make another list - one that focuses on all the things I am NOT missing out on:
- I have food, clothing, shelter and security, along with many other luxuries.
- I am married to my own prince charming.
- I have three exceptionally strong, adorable kids.
- I am supported endlessly by friends and family.
- I am educated and involved and can advocate for my family's needs.
- I live in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
- I have the capabilities to do and see wonderful things, with the people I love.
Not a bad list, eh?! For as many difficult things as I can list, I can name just as many, or more, good ones.
Yes, indeed, LIFE IS HARD, but why is that so difficult to accept? Why do we count on better things around the corner, when in fact our pretty-darn-good-life is sitting right in front of us staring us in the face? What is that perfect, normal life we all think we need? Why don't we just LIVE the one we've got?
Trust me, I'm trying - it's a work in progress. Most days, I think the new normal is pretty good if given half a chance.