My son has been home from the NICU for almost 2.5 years.  Since his discharge, our world has been a whirlwind of doctors’ appointments, different therapies, medications and procedures.  I have spent countless hours scheduling these appointments.  On most Thursdays, we spend four hours on the highway round trip because most of his specialists are located two hours away.

As a healthcare provider, I have spent the past two years providing care during a pandemic.  Work has been a lot harder and at times, overwhelming.   If work is hard and caring for a micro-preemie is hard, imagine doing both full time as a widowed mother while praying that you don’t bring the virus home to your child. I am often left exhausted at the end of each week. 

During this current season of my life, I am learning (or at least trying) that I can no longer be everything to everyone else while being nothing to myself.  I often have to remind myself that it is okay to rest and not to feel guilty when I do.  It’s okay to let Kolin have a little extra screen time if I need a moment to just breathe.  I must admit, resting does not come easy for me.  I often have this internal urge to get up and do something.  I often feel like the world is resting on my shoulders and there is just so much to do…..

 I have had a heavy load to carry over the past 6 years:  burying both a child and a husband and am caring for a medically complex kid.  After agonizing for months, I finally had to decrease my work hours to part-time. I tried to balance it all, but I just can’t do it anymore.  I come from a long line of women who constantly put others before themselves and where has it gotten them?  For most of them, pre-mature death. People often tell me that I am strong but who wants to be strong all the time?  I need to learn to care for myself so that I can be the mother that Kolin needs. 

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