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I'm a Disabled Mom, but I've Realized 'I Am Enough' for My Kids


My New Year’s resolution was quite simple, but very meaningful this time around — I realized I am enough for my children.

I am a mother of four beautiful kids and I am severely disabled. As a result, I often feel guilty I am not the mother I used to be. I always have the thought, “my children deserve better than me,” in the back of my head. A lot of mothers have this thought, but I think it’s especially hard on those of us who are in daily pain.

I used to be the mom who held massive playdates where we did fun activities like carving pumpkins while eating huge amounts of homemade cookies and food fresh from the oven. We went to the park regularly, did volunteer work and had pretty good lives. I cling onto pictures where I was happy and smiling, surrounded in pumpkin guts and sugar ridden kids and I cry. A lot. I miss that mother so much and I’m sure my kids miss her too.

My realization that I am good enough for my children happened when my oldest came to me with big news. He came to me and announced he was transgender. Without skipping a beat I helped him find a new name. I never faltered. I was the mom he needed in that very moment.

Then, a friend of my middle children passed away. So we went to the store, got a big bag of gummy bears and a movie. We spent the evening binging on candy and talking about their friend. Talking was healing for them, they were able to remember the person with funny anecdotes and mischievous tales…all while cuddling the cats and watching a great movie.

I do not do things like huge playdates, frequent trips to the park or throwing snowballs anymore. I can’t even do a lot of the work my youngest needs, he has Krabbe disease, because I can’t lift him. What I can do though is a movie marathon, spend forever reading to my sick child and petting his hair, which is his favorite thing in the world. Most importantly, I am always here for my kids. Even when the pain is raging, I’m not seeing straight and I can’t keep liquids down, my kids can always come to me.

So, it suddenly sprang on me that I am enough of a mother for my babies. I am exactly who they need me to be.

A version of this story was originally published on facebook.com/odinbowie.

Photo credit: diego_cervo/Getty Images