On three separate occasions today I found myself thinking, “it doesn’t phase me”. I wondered if that’s good, bad, indifferent? I wonder what others think by my obvious lack of reaction to things.
On my first occasion I was stopping by the pharmacy. I saw a couple I know with their sweet little boy. He had an ear infection. She so kindly asked how Charles was. I said without a flinch, “he’s got some stuff again, he’s on antibiotics like usual.” And I graciously nudged Charles forward as I said, “you don’t want to get him sick”, as he repeated “baby, baby” numerous times, in awe of someone similar in size. We walked to the counter where the bright eyed pharmacy technician greeted us, “Hey Charlie!” She grabbed out his medications, two large bags filled with breathing medications. We followed formalities and headed towards the door.
Charles’ eyes once again caught the baby, as he repeated numerous times, “baby, baby”. This time he was in my arms and a good distance away so I stopped to let him admire. I caught the eyes of the man I know, sitting there. I wondered what he was looking at as I talked with his wife. He’d briefly look up to Charlie and then back down. I was curious but didn’t think much of it. We wished the baby get well and we left.
Later in the car I realized exactly what he was staring at, as I loaded in my sweet boy, and then his diaper bag, and then, his two large bags of medications. They didn’t phase me. To me they have become a normal piece of life, a vital one. One that we use so regularly and pick up so often. The first few times they phased me, the last time we got an increase in medications they phased me a little. And today, I realized, they no longer do. Today they became “normal”.
On a second occasion today we had a delivery driver come to our door, I know him well, and we ask of each others children. He told me a story about his son, involving blood. While I’ve never been put off by blood, I can’t say I’ve ever been comfortably in a conversation about it. I mean, really, who speaks about blood on a regular basis? Well, turns out, I do. Quite frequently at that. I can speak of INR (international normalized ratio), hemoglobin, CBC (complete blood count), hemolysis, blood leaking, blood clotting, how to clot it, how to pressure dress it, and on and on and on. And what I realized today, that’s not normal. You know what else I learned? It is now “normal” for me.
And on a third occasion. Charles, as he often does, began to cough. This current spell of illness had not yet graced us with the presence of vomit, notice how I said ‘had’ and ‘yet’. I watched him as he coughed productively, and then began to gag, and proceeded to launch every bit of greek yogurt onto the carpet. I then chuckled as he in Charlie style, put his hands up and said, “why?” (So glad I taught him that.) I replied, “yes, why?” and he proceeded to cough and throw up again, back the other direction. I grabbed him and moved to the kitchen linoleum to remove his dirty (put on clean 5 minutes prior) jammies. I asked his Dad to get him new jammies so I could take care of the carpet, because get what? It doesn’t phase me, it does phase Dad. The entire situation, from the coughing, to the vomiting, to the cleaning up. It now is “normal”. I simply comment, “we’ll probably need to start prednisone soon”. What’s even more, is it doesn’t phase Charles. He went right on back to playing as though nothing had just come flying out of him.
I can’t say that I am no longer phased by anything, because believe me, this kid comes with some real humdingers. I can say that every time I realize how little it phases me, I feel that much more comfort. Comfort you ask? Yes, comfort. I am reassured that I know my child, that I can care for him, and I know the next steps. I don’t need to run to a doctor or call and ask questions every single time. Because I know him, I know him better then anyone.
Don’t get me wrong, there will be things I don’t know. Like tonight, when I heard this crazy loud, heart murmur clicking sound, I definitely thought I would have to call as it got louder and louder the closer I got to him. Until I found his toy remote under his four wheeler with the battery going dead. (Laugh, it’s funny.)
I would hope, that in many aspects of life we could all get to the “it doesn’t phase me” stage. For me that stage brings comfort, assurance, and success. I know that getting to that stage was extremely difficult, every climb to get there is challenging, but every time you get a little higher, it’s fulfilling. So no matter what your personal struggle may be, keep climbing, until it doesn’t phase you.