I Hope My Children See My Cape
My children are now old enough to verbalize they notice when mommy is “mean” or “grumpy.” It breaks my heart.
They know mommy wrote a book about how hard life can be sometimes. They know when mommy gets sick, she goes to a different hospital than most other people.
My children have been on the psych ward to visit their mom. They’ve witnessed breakdowns and mommy disappearing for days unexpectedly without telling them goodbye.
They know mommy gets sad sometimes and it means she sleeps a lot or doesn’t play with them as much.
But they also know when mommy feels OK, she snuggles and cuddles and sings them to sleep at night.
They know no matter what, mommy is there for every game, concert, conference and doctor appointment.
I hope they know how much I love them. I hope they learn mental illness is something to treat with respect like other illnesses. I hope they never struggle like their mom.
Most of all, I hope when they are old enough to look back on their childhood, they will see their mommy fought so hard to stay alive, to get treatment, to be present for them. I hope they love me and not resent me. I hope they know they mean more to me than they could ever fathom and every day I wake up, I put on my cape and fight like hell for them.
I’m not a superhero at all. But I wear a cape of determination just for them. I hope they see I did everything I could to be the best mom I could be.
I hope they see the real me.
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