Don’t Cry Over Spilled Milk

We’ve all heard the saying…..

Don’t Cry Over Spilled Milk….

Are you good at that?  

I mean, let’s be honest here. 

I provide unfiltered truth, after all. 

Will you provide yours also?  

So, following that vane of thinking, how do you react when there is spilled milk?

Fine, the saying is an analogy. Right?  Or, it’s intended to be. For me, today, the saying was what it really was. Spilled milk….

I was upstairs. Asked for a few minutes to myself. Could hear my son, my sick son, getting lunch ready for himself and his sister. And, they were laughing. Crazy, belly splitting, laughter. And, I smiled. This ear splitting smile. I felt my cares melt. Listening to them laugh. And, I felt blessed. I walked down the stairs, rounded the corner into the kitchen, and found a humongous trail of spilled milk, all over the kitchen floor. I wish I could tell you I joined in their laughter. That my own belly splitting laughter joined in with theirs. I wish I could tell you that the three of us fell to the floor together, laughing and finding it so funny. I wish I could go back in time, and, that I could tell you this is what happened. As, these things are not what occurred….

No, I got angry. Really angry. And, as a result, we all cried over that spilled milk. 

As I sit here, and I think about why I reacted the way I did I could use the excuse that I had just mopped the floor yesterday, on my hands and knees. This is the truth. I did just mop the floor yesterday, on my hands and knees. I could use the excuse that the milk in the bowl was to the very top, and this was after it spilled across the entire kitchen, so, how full must the bowl have been to begin with, and, they should have known better. That once the milk started to spill, the bowl should have been put back on the island, so as not to spill more. Yet, you know what?  They are 6 & 10!  They are ONLY 6 & 10!  And, while I was having my private moment, upstairs, they were being the responsible ones. They were getting their own lunches ready. AUGH!!  

Can I share more unfiltered honesty?  Sometimes I overreact. I think many of us do. I also think few of us are willing to admit that truth. I admit it, not because I’m proud, or I think it’s OK, or, because I want anyone to say, or think, “Wow, she’s admitting her mistakes….that’s really great”. Nor am I looking for judgment.  Although, I am sure some of you will judge me for my honesty. I admit it because I need to take ownership of it. I admit it because I’m embarrassed, and ashamed. And, I’m angry with myself. I admit it because perhaps putting it here will provide me with more accountability. I also admit it because, perhaps, someone reading this will relate. Perhaps your circumstance won’t involve actual spilled milk, however, I am guessing many other moms have overreacted, been a bad mom, yelled at their kids when they really shouldn’t have, and, you know what, it’s okay to admit to yourself, and others, that you made a mistake. After all, we are human. However, it is also important that you take responsibility, and, as you do, that you realize you are not alone. 

My overreaction, today, came as a result of stress. Coco, my son, he is still sick. Pretty sick. When he gets a respiratory cold I panic. I get extremely fearful. In 2012, when he was only 7 years old, he was hospitalized for his asthma. He was in the hospital for three days. His oxygen level, upon entering the hospital, fluctuated between 80-85. It should have been 95+. They kept him for observation, and, when his oxygen level wouldn’t come up, they admitted him. They put Coco on 10 liters of oxygen. While on the oxygen his oxygen level would not come up.  It stayed at 85. The Drs had already done X-rays on Coco. The Dr looked at me, at one point, and asked if it was possible that he had swallowed something.  That perhaps something was obstructing his airways, and that they were going to do another X-ray, this time of his throat. I explained to her that he didn’t swallow anything. He was having asthma problems. I asked the Dr if I should worry and she wouldn’t look me in the eyes! That was my first clue that things were worse than I had anticipated. 

I am a glass 3/4 full person. As I type this I realize that I may not always come across this way. At least not as often I would like. And yet I pride myself in seeing the best in circumstances. Not believing the worst can, and sometimes does, occur. I hadn’t allowed myself to believe that there was a possibility that Coco wouldn’t get better. Not till that very moment. The Dr did finally answer my question. She told me that Coco was not responding to treatment and she had done everything she could think of. She told me she didn’t know what else to do. She then said, “It is not time to worry, not yet, but I’ll tell you when to start, and it’s coming soon.”  I’ve never been so afraid in my whole life!

There came a point, during that hospital stay, where I didn’t think I would be bringing Coco home. I wouldn’t leave the hospital. Heck, I wouldn’t even leave his bed. I lie in his bed, with him, and made his Drs tend to his needs with me right there beside him. I cannot explain what it feels like to think you may very well lose your child….

Fortunately, shift change occurred, later that evening and, a new set of respiratory therapists and a new head Dr came in. They changed up Coco’s course of treatment, and, he responded.

When Coco gets sick, here at home, and doesn’t seem to respond to the treatment, I feel that fear grip my heart again. I’ll admit it, the fear makes me a little irrational. The fear makes me very irritable. The fear, it takes away my patience, my confidence, my glass 3/4 full attitude. With that fear comes a short temper, and anger, and panic. 

This is where I currently find myself. And, unfortunately, as a result, my children paid the price today. I am so busy worrying about one of them, that they both took the brunt of my inability to separate my emotions. I am really ashamed and disappointed in myself. 

I will say normally when my kids spill milk it is no big deal. We may not laugh about it. Not a gut splitting laugh, nor a tiny giggle. Yet, they certainly don’t get in trouble for it. I don’t lose my mind over it. We simply clean up the mess, pour some more, and move on with life. 

This is really what I want, right now, is to move on with life. And, in the process of doing so, for my Coco to have a speedy recovery. I hope and pray for that. 

I think my lesson here is some perspective. I cannot let the fear consume me. I cannot take my emotions out on my children. I cannot allow fear, over the potential to lose my son, to cause me to not be the loving and supportive mother I normally am. I hope I learn this lesson. Sooner, rather than, later. And, I hope, my children can bring themselves to forgive me….

Originally Written 25Jun15

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