Monday, June 29, 2009

Returning to the Scene of the Crime

I went running and played tennis today. Summer is in full swing. I am back at my in laws summer home where I bring my children each summer to enjoy summer camp and the feel of a small community. Imagine "Dirty Dancing" with a focus on sports and you can visualize this Shangri La for children. I have strong emotions about this place. It is wonderful for my children, yet it is here that I found the lump that started my cancer odyssey.

So it is with mixed feelings that I have returned to this summer haven for the past two years. I want my children to experience the freedom of riding their bike alone with their friends for hours at a time or to go to a friends house unescorted. I want them to get ice cream at the general store after a long day of fun at camp. It is hard on me though. I am the one who sacrifices my personal space and personal time for them to be there. Now, I feel like I have to be careful. My reserves aren't what they used to be. Limits, I have to remind myself, remember your personal limits.

I suffer from the "giving too much of yourself" syndrome that many mothers do. I want so much to make sure that everyone else is happy that I often put myself last. Way last, way too often. I am working on changing that. This year I went home to my own house and let my husband parent his children with his parents for a couple of days. I have to remind myself that this is in fact healthy for everyone. They will gain some independence and I will regain my strength. Each of us will benefit.

I am not sure why I am thinking a great deal about my cancer this summer while I am here in Mayberry. Maybe it is because I am finally feeling healthy again after almost two years, or maybe it is the fear in my subconscious that something bad will happen again just because I am here. Last year when we came, I had less than a half an inch of hair so I was still in what I will call "the other realm." That is the place where you almost feel like you are on the outside looking in. You see so much and yet you have this ability to instinctively discern the important from the unimportant. This year, I am much more in the real world. Maybe that is why I can't stop thinking about it.

So here I am, back at "the scene of the crime" and trying to remember that my health and happiness are paramount. My children need their mother to be strong. So I will remind myself to nap frequently, sleep in when I can and go home to my own bed when I need to.

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