Perhaps a lot of you ladies out there know what I'm talking about when you say that a cosmic shift took place after your kids were born. It's not that you don't love your husbands as much (though some days you really might not....um, no, not talking about me... never....) but hot steamy sex simply isn't as much of a priority as a blow-out in your daughter's diaper.
As a recovering perfectionist, perhaps the most difficult aspect of parenting has been working through hurdles I never expected. Oh, sure, I wrote long journals to my unborn children, promising I'd accept them for whoever they turned out to be: Gay, poor, rich, straight... I didn't care. I just wanted them to be happy. Still, in all my list making, I don't remember writing, "And even if you get diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome, it won't bug me in the slightest."
Do I love my son less because he has this confusing disorder? Not at all. In fact, I probably love him more. I fight for him, cry over him, worry about him and love him with every aspect of my being. His tics are quite mild most days, though occasionally we have setbacks. This weekend, for example, I about lost my mind. Those moments always put a strain on my spouse. It's not that he doesn't care about how I feel, but he's very realistic about what we can and cannot do for Stink. Tourettes Syndrome is a collection of physical and vocal tics that so far have no cure. All we can do is our best.
I bring up my son's condition because, if I were not careful, I would obsess about it to the point of forgetting all the good things that I have in my life. I might forget, like so many women do, that a big man in the household needs me also. And here's the real kicker... Stink doesn't even need me that much. He is fine. He is social, joyous and happy. His tics don't bug him at all. So why should they bother me?
Deep inside, I am pretty angry. I am angry about the blinks and shoulder rolls that other kids don't have. (Do they have something else? Sure, but when I'm having a pity party, I don't see it.) I'm angry that I worry constantly about his symptoms getting worse. And I'm furious that my husband, who can build a car from scratch, can't keep a seven year old boy from clearing his throat three times a minute on an off-day.
My irritation is irrational. So I try to curb it. And yet, inside, it doesn't always go away. A friend of mine writes about her experiences raising a Tourettes son at Moxie Mama. Michelles has accepted Jacob's condtion far more than I've accepted Stink's, but I'm getting closer. Like a good marriage, the best thing we can do is be open, honest and share our human experiences.
I have a lot of more sex related topics to chat about next week, but I thought I'd go out on a limb and give you a little bit of my life on top of the covers also. After all, if it weren't for amazing sex, I wouldn't have these kids to teach me more than I could have ever dreamed of.
This post is dedicated to Michelle, Paula, Rebecca, Tami, Lyn, Karen, Pam, Jenna and all you hot mamas out there who knock your socks off for your family. But, cue stewardess voiceover, don't forget your seatbelts... err, your husbands. Don't let them become just ONE. MORE. THING. to take care of at the end of the day. It's work, but seven years into parenthood, I can promise you it's worth it. (And on days when it's not, I'll write about it!)
Posted by Andrea Frazer
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