-Invention is borne of necessity
I am Lynette Scavo on Desperate Housewives. Well, mostly Lynnette. She has the rowdy boys. She had Hodgkin’s. She’s thrown up in public places by forcing her body to do things it shouldn’t for her children.
I think each and every one of us has a little Brie, Gabbie, Lynette and Susan, even Eddie (Ssshh, we can save that for our close friends).
The show is talking about how the “playdate” was borne to give moms a break.
Lynette, on this daytime rerun episode, has been ousted from the mother’s play date club.
I’ve been ousted. Mom’s don’t want their children exposed to X’s anger and preoccupation with death.
They all “understand” what a hard situation this is and how his “behavioral issues” have come about. They’re just not able to help and “risk exposing” their kids.
My son has been labeled.
You all may be able to guess what I am thinking, these mom’s are “assholes,” as well as ignorant.
And yes, some are reading this.
Unfortunately, their fear will significantly contribute to the future problems I am trying to avoid. Very few mothers have actually “manned up” and told me their fears.
Upfront, I’m told they’ll do “anything they can” or “our house is yours,” or “you can visit anytime.”
Those words are easy to say, but if you’re the one my son or I chooses, you better be coming through.
Then, after a while, dodging begins, the play dates get fewer and farther between. Moms stop making eye contact with me while talking. Their tones change. They’re always busy. They always have “plans.” They’ll “think about” what we’re going to do and “call me tomorrow,” and then only call my home phone or cell phone depending on where I am.
They are punking out.
They are “just not that into us” friend style.
I can tell you the exact day and time this occurred with a pair of friends. It was the day after my PET scan in January, and I was alarmed by the results and all the nonspoken, sensory information I was receiving.
The kids were playing in the livingroom and we were speaking in the kitchen of an open concept home. I was crying. I hadn’t confided my feelings in anyone else before.
After we spoke, and it was time to leave, X had a problem going. He yelled, he screamed, he hit, he hollered. He called me horrible names, told me hated me, that he wished I would die and just go away.
The father physically carried him to the car.
Learn from me, NEVER EVER think a child doesn’t hear, or sense the tension, when they are in the proximity of a discussion of this magnitude.
IF mom is crying about the possibility that her SECOND transplant fails and that she has NO OTHER traditional, safe, options. The kid will get the vibe.
That’s when the dodging started.
I get it.
Don’t judge, don’t riot, don’t threaten the people. It’s easy to say what you would do when you are on the outside looking in.
However, what is happening is they are in effect “abandoning” my child and taking his friends along with them. He already has attachment issues. This will certainly send the broad message that not even your best friends and people who openly say they are reliable ARE NOT.
Then, eventually, they tell me, usually weeks after I’ve read the writing on the wall, after many phone calls where I give them the opportunity to come clean, that they just “can’t do it.”
For all future people wanting to join my life and influence my child’s, you are either in it or not.
It is not okay to run in like a knight with shining armor telling people how you’re helping and how great it is only to quietly ease up and back out.
You are not a part of the solution, you are part of the problem.
Worse is the labeling of my child. This is a potent issue in small communities. A label can follow you for years. Do not underestimate the capacity of children to feel your emotions towards them.
Yes, he is five, but the other children lean these things from somewhere. My guess is, since their new to school, it’s in the home.
You don’t see that my son comes home and cries because he’s been left out or so and so was mean to him, and did I know that “other mom’s aren’t bald?” He also asks why “I can’t come to class” or “drive him to school” or “live at the hospital.” He wants to know why I’m always “leaving” or “moving.”
I can certainly show you how he cries hysterically at night, like many of you have about my situation.
There is a theory of “self fulfilling prophecy,” if you label a child, they will become that child. They will live up to expectations, even if that expectation is that they are rowdy, angry, and preoccupied with death.
This also lends to a common problem I have encountered time and time again with friends, acquaintances, strangers, and all other people from all walks of life.
They have a very adolescent tolerance for illness. It’s cool diving in and understanding the lifestyle and dynamics, but the reality and stress gets old very quickly.
Dedication is not a three month, in and out style, helping, that is part of the problem.
Dedication is staying by our side through the roller coaster of diagnosis, treatment, remission, relapse, more treatment, etc.,etc.,etc. and not backing down. Dedication is not judging by talking to all your other friends who do not know us, giving your side of what a “problem” this is, then saying how you “understand.” That is gossip. It could turn my family and child into a social leper.
I haven’t backed down, but you would be amazed how many people cannot even tolerate being close on the outside looking in.
Baldies' Blog began originally in the UK by a 26 year old journalist with a blood cancer on a mission to inform the world about bone marrow donation.
He has since died, and I took on the cause of making cancer care more transparent for everybody.
Cancer is a disease that will touch everybody through diagnosis or affiliation: 1 in 2 men will be diagnosed and 1 in 3 woman will hear those words, "You Have Cancer."
I invite you to read how I feel along my journey and
how I am continuing to live a full life alongside my Hodgkin's lymphoma, with me controlling my cancer, not my cancer controlling me.
I hope that "Baldies' Blog" will prepare you to handle whatever life sends you, but especially if it's the message, "You Have Cancer."