Love – It Means Everything (especially when caregiving)

Just when you think you can't handle this caregiving stuff...your kids show you the way.

Just when you think you can’t handle this caregiving stuff…your kids show you the way.

In this series of 31 Days of Unexpected Blessings from Caregiving, I’m reviewing our days, weeks, months and years of cancer caregiving and all it’s repercussions.  I’m looking for specifics, for blessings and things I never understood before.  In searching my journal I sometimes come across a moment so beautiful I wrote it down to treasure and I’m so thankful.  Here is a moment of unexpected blessing I treasure.  No moral of the story, no lecture – just pure love!

Both of my daughters were there when Andrew cried bloody tears, and both girls experienced the shock of a cancer diagnosis, when anemia or just about anything else was expected!  My girls were introduced to medical care for their brother at a young age.

My children don’t always get along and let’s face it, Andrew is “the little brother” and he can be obnoxious sometimes.  But it sort of evens out in the end, because Larissa can be a little bossy and Karina can be just a tad whiny!

But you know what?  Maybe my children are pretty cool, too.  Maybe they fight, but they also stick up for each other at times, and the girls’ ability to put up with this whole leukemia situation has been pretty amazing.

Three days after diagnosis, we were already pretty sick of the hospital and Andrew was thoroughly missing his sisters although he wasn’t quite ready to admit it.  Whenever I talked to them on the phone, though, he would struggle up and hold out his hand for the phone.

That evening I held the phone up to Andrew’s ear because both his hands and arms were sore from needles and/or filled with tubes. He told them all about his “pokes” and how it didn’t seem fair, but he was OK.  He described to them the “squeeze thing” (blood pressure cuff) that “really hurts, but doesn’t REALLY hurt.”  Suddenly I saw his face light up. He closed his eyes as though savoring the best ice cream in the whole world, sighed gently, smiled and said softly into the phone, “I love you, too.”

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