What My Child Needs to Know About His Mother With Chronic Pain

I know some days it seems like my pain comes before you. There are days when it overtakes my body and my mind and I just cannot keep going.

But on these days – when you wonder if my pain is more important than you – I want you to know it is not. My love for you is stronger than anything my body can do to me. On the days it may seem like my pain is keeping me from being a good mom to you, I am actually trying to take care of my body so I can be a good mom to you. So please remember:

1. You are my world. When my illnesses try to make my life revolve around them, I do everything I can to keep my focus on you.

2. I worry often. Did I pass my problems on to you? Will my health get worse? Will your friends tease you because of me? Will I be able to keep up as you grow up and have more and more activities? The worries are endless, but I try to always remember that we are all doing the best we can with what we have been given, and as long as we love and support each other, we will come out OK.

3. I feel guilt when I cannot care for you myself. Dropping you off at daycare or calling your grandparents because I just can’t get past my pain that day is heartbreaking. I want to spend every moment with you but sometimes my body just cannot comply.

4. I don’t want you to see me cry. I want to be strong for you. When I cry, please know it is nothing you have done. Sometimes I become overwhelmed and while I don’t like it when you see me cry, I hope that when you do it helps you learn compassion for others.

5. I love to play with you, but sometimes I just can’t. It isn’t because I don’t want to. It is because my body won’t allow me to get down on the floor and race cars or run around outside chasing a ball. So someday I hope you realize that by reading books, watching a good movie or doing an easy craft with you, I was trying my hardest at making sure you and I could spend quality time together.

6. You keep me going. The amazing unconditional love you have for me allows me to keep going. I am so proud to be your mom and will do everything I can to make sure you are happy and healthy.

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