Yesterday I had a morning visit from my friend Shannon and spent the afternoon with Theo and the kids, and it was great. The kids scootered on the paths out back, we raced (I really thought my wheelchair was faster than it is), we ate from my giant bin of food in the fridge and just enjoyed the day. Everyone helped me do some of my physio homework and the kids got a kick out of how floppy I am (read: laughing hysterically). I wish home was closer and they could come more often, and not just for me. Their laughing, smiling faces bring happiness to others that are here. Children are therapeutic. My old neighbour in bed B says she will always remember the time she watched Oliver crawl right up into my bed and snuggle right in beside me, pure happiness.
Just before they left to get subs to eat in the car on the way home, Oliver said to me that I was lucky. "Oh, why is that?" His response, "You get to lay in bed all day." Which of course made me cry, and I feel awful about that. Awful. Because he was just being a nine year old boy. Then he wished I could trade places with him - which just made me feel sick because of course I imagined that it was him lying in this bed. To which I responded NO WAY. He doesn't get it - he's not there yet, and that is okay, because he is nine. In his mind, lying in bed all day would mean that he would be able to spend even more time memorizing his pokemon cards.
While we were racing, Ella asked me if being in an electric wheelchair was fun. And of course I can't just say yes to her. Instead I said, "if I didn't have to be in one, I probably would be." I don't know why I can't just think like a kid and not take everything so seriously. It's hard.
So "how are the kids" is a pretty common question these days. My response is that they are fine because I don't really know, and I think that they are. Ella understands, I think, but Oliver is not there yet. I am missing Ella's experimentation with make-up phase and Oliver's joy of having new back to school shoes. Things will be different when Mom comes home in a wheelchair, then we'll see how the kids are.