I have been dealing with hormones since Tobin was born 18 months ago. I don’t like to talk about it because I’ve noticed that hormonal people can be accidental liars.
Yesterday I spiraled into a panic because Shel has a rash on his face that will not leave. The doctor said it was eczema and we’ve treated it as such, but by yesterday afternoon I was convinced it was ringworm. Then he got a fever, and I added the fever with the rash and multiplied the head cold of Tobin and the crankiness of Quinten and my math turned out to prove I was a horrible mother.
I tried to remain calm and made a doctor appointment for Shel. I made plans to burn the dog’s bedding, and then I made plans to have my carpets cleaned and every article of clothing bleached. Then I was exhausted. I went to bed at 8 with a feverish 3 year old by my side. I listened to him suck his thumb and I reminded myself that things aren’t always what they seem.
It’s hard to feel one thing but believe another.
I spend a lot of time telling myself that my sense of failure isn’t real. Things seem darkest before the dawn right?
There is a scene in Lord of the Rings where all of the monsters have descended on the city of Gondor. They seem alone, Rohan has deserted them, there are dragons flying through the air and smashing buildings, and the orcs are catapulting heads over the city walls. They don’t realize that help is on the way, they only see the bad.
The king looks down on the evil army and tells everyone to abandon their posts and flee. I always get irritated with him. I think everyone does. I think that’s why it’s so satisfying when Gandalf the Wizard bonks him in the face with his staff and tells everyone to keep fighting.
You must keep fighting.
So I look at the little things, because the big picture is overwhelming. I look at the small square of land I have to defend, not at the giant army of evil that is attacking.
I listen to the sound of the three year old sucking his thumb, and I look at the wooden baby toys in the sunlight, and the way the clouds hit the eaves of my house. I look at the foam in my coffee and the way the bricks lay on the fireplace.
I repeat to myself “Hope is a thing with feathers” and I wait for the dawn. The truth isn’t what things look like, or how you feel, or what you think. The truth is a hope, a thing with feathers.