Benji and I had a busy day. He went to meeting with me and a job site for photo scouting in the morning. We took our sweet pup to the groomer, then packed a picnic lunch and went to a local park for more Pokemon Go fun. During a rainy afternoon, we worked puzzles and Benji made brownies all by himself.
Spending summer days with this boy brings me such joy. He is filled with fun and humor and wonder and excitement and creativity. I’m also learning that I’m especially sensitive when he has moments of unkindness. I’m becoming aware of patterns we can get into that aren’t so healthy; thankfully they’re rare. I am awaiting a therapy referral (for myself) from the Children’s Cancer Center. I’m committed to parenting him through this recovery year in a way that lets him know what’s acceptable and what is not, and that through all of it, that he is loved fiercely and unconditionally.
After all, he is still processing the events of last year and finding his way through a more normal parent child relationship. Tonight before bed, out of nowhere, he asked, “Why did I have to have my port accessed when I was in the bathtub at the hospital?” The conversation that followed told me that he was thinking of the Methotrexate toxicity admission, but his details were fuzzy. He also recently told me he didn’t remember us having read a book we read during the beginning of that hospital stay. He clearly has blocked out quite a bit of that time of his life, and understandably so. As parents Michael and I can’t know what behaviors to attribute to the events of last year, and what would have been normal rites of passage for Benji the eight year old. We will parent the same way, regardless. With consistency and love.
We learned today that another little girl who shares Benji’s diagnosis at All Children’s has achieved remission. Her mother and I chat frequently. During their long wait for results I shared with her the visualization technique that helped me so much, and today, before announcing her news to the world, she shared with me the sweetest word: zero. I couldn’t help the tears. All the feelings I felt when we heard that word rushed back to me in an instant.
I was treated with a photograph of Banyan on the Camp Highlands photo gallery today. His face was sparkling. Both of our boys have such bright lights inside. It’s an honor to help them shine.