Comassion, Children and Chronic Illness | Jenngem
I knew that I was told that when I was pregnant that children have a special way of sensing when things are wrong with you. But I never truly understood that until the other day.

See, we all likely suffer from mommy guilt, you know, feeling like you're not doing enough, or that you could be doing more, or something is missing. I have that feeling, too. However, on top of that scoop of mommy guilt, I also have a triple-dipped scoop of chronic illness guilt, too. I constantly feel like that I am never good enough, that I will never be good enough for my son, because of my illnesses.

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Not just my mental illnesses, either, but my physical ailments as well. I do my very best to get up every single day and take care of him, play with him, sit with him while he does his homework, sometimes we bake or cook together, and when it is decent outside, I do my damndest to be out there with him, and even try to run around, even though it may hurt me in the long run. I don't want to miss out on these moments with him.

It's funny, I never really wanted him to have to "understand" my illnesses, any of them. But I realize now, that there will never be a way around that. One day, he is going to learn about my mental illnesses, which is fine, I am not ashamed of them, and I will explain that to him. But my physical illnesses, I never wanted him to see me in the conditions I can get into when the pain gets bad.

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But I realized, that he already sees it. He already understands it. And instead of yelling at me to get up and get out of bed, he calmly comes over to me, where I am laying down, and sits next to me. I try apologizing to him, saying that I was sorry that I couldn't play with him today, that mommy was hurting so very badly. And these words of wisdom came out of my six year-old's mouth,
"Mom, you don't ever have to be sorry that you're in pain. I understand. Please don't be sorry."

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Needless to say I almost teared up, but I held it back because I wouldn't have wanted him to think that he made me upset by saying such a sweet thing. But it is truly amazing at the intuition and the compassion that kids hold for others.

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