Monday, May 10, 2010

"You Are My Sunshine"

"You Are My Sunshine" is the state song of Louisiana. I think I was really supposed to be born there. I absolutely love it (except for the fact that there is all that DAMN humidity. I think I'd go north - or way west to Hawai'i for the summer). And my dad lived there until after the 9th grade.

"You Are My Sunshine" is a song my mother couldn't listen to when I was a child because of the connotations and the fact that I have cystic fibrosis.

Today I am in a very dark place. I've been in this dark place for awhile now, and I'm doing my best to fight my way out. But there are days I want to give up fighting and trying to live my life and I just want to go to sleep until it's all over. It won't be over until I fight my way through, but try using logic with CRAZY. It doesn't work.

Last week I had to check myself in somewhere where I could get more help. I thought about a psych ward, but that's expensive and I wanted to reach my "ONE YEAR WITHOUT BEING IN THE HOSPITAL!" goal. In a couple days it will be one year, and I hope I will be as happy as I should be, but I probably won't. Anyways, instead of a psych ward, I went to my parents' house, because Crazy lives there and my dad is a psychiatrist.

It's so hard for me to talk about my dark place. I was at my parents' for a week, and it helped to be there (except for the night we had a tornado warning, and my dad thought a good thing to distract me would be to turn on his toy trains. I have lived through a tornado. Anyone wanna tell me what a tornado sounds like? Toy trains + already so panicked I'm sobbing = BAAAAD Idea. I had a panic attack for two days straight). It helps not to be alone.

Now I am back at my house and working and trying to socialize, etc. And it's not working. I'm panicked. Not so panicked that I think I'm going to die, but panicked. I saw my psychiatrist last week and he put me on a new medication: Abilify. I have now joined a new group of people: THOSE WHO NEED ANTI-PSYCHOTICS. And I am a proud card-carrying member of this group, especially if the drug helps. I'd cut off my left foot if it would help. Yes, the left one. I'm particularly fond of the right and my left big toe is cracked in two places and we've been super gluing it, and I just don't really want to wait for it to grow out. So I'd gladly give up the left foot to feel better.

Panic. Panic Panic. Panic Panic Panic Panic PANIC PANIC PANIC! PAAAAAAANNNNNIIIIICCCCC!!!!!!!! Just like that, all day long. And honestly, I'm so far gone I'm confused. And right now I can't tell ya if my PTSD is bothering me or not. Am I having flashbacks? I don't know - but I'm going to panic about them anyways!!!

I'm in the dark panicky place and nothing helps. NOTHING. N-to-the-O-to-the-THING. Nothing. Except there is one thing that makes the world a little sunnier, if only slightly, and if only for a little while because it has a bedtime.

My nephew, Luca, makes my world a little sunnier. The Sunday before Mothers' Day we went to breakfast, the zoo, and lunch. I love his parents to death - they are amazing people, but adults just can't help with my anxiety. But this little kiddo can. All he has to do is say, "More please," "'s Broken," or "I DID IT!" and my heart melts and the panic goes away.

Tonight I had the privilege of babysitting him. At 18 months this kiddo can put his books away, and knows how to put away the bath toys. And don't get me started on the potty talk. He tells you when he has to poop (and sometimes, I think he just thinks it's a fun word to say. Can you blame him? POOP!), and pees on the potty when the timing is right. Tonight, he peed on the potty for me!!! I was so happy to empty that little potty with the pee in it, and swish it out with toilet water before putting it back! I never thought someone else's bodily functions could make me so happy!

But before we went potty, we called my mom and dad. And he said, "Hi Bruce and Hi Alice" - except he's a toddler, so it's way more cute than that. And, I accidentally taught him "Poker Face" by Lady Gaga. I had it in my head after a conversation with his mother, so I was singing it. And now, when I sing it he points to his face. And you can ask him where his poker face is and he'll point to his face and say, "Poker Face." My dad was asking him all sorts of questions and he answered, "yeah..." to each one. Just like that, with the ellipse after it, like he had more to say but couldn't find the words because he was stoned out of his mind. (Not that he WAS stoned... but the way that stoners say things, that's the way he said it.)

I gave him his bath and we went through his bedtime routine - with no-fuss. Auntie Carla even knows how to dry Baby Luca's hair with the towel without making him cry. Because I'm the shit. And then, because I promised we tried calling my brother again; he didn't answer the first time we tried. He answered this time, and I just had to show off the Lady Gaga impersonation. Because only the cool babies know "Poker Face."

And then it was time for bed. We read "Goodnight Moon," and then I rocked him. I cried a little because I didn't want to put him to bed because either he distracts me enough that the panic can't get through, or he's a magical baby with super powers of protection against panic. I think it's the 2nd one. And I realized this kiddo is my sunshine. Right now, from my dark, dark place, he is a reason - if not the ONLY reason - I keep fighting. There are other reasons, I suppose, but it's rare if I remember them. I needed to let my kiddo know how special he is, so I sang him a song that goes like this:

"You are my Sunshine,
My only Sunshine,
You make me happy,
When skies are gray.
You'll never know Dear,
How much I Love You.
Please don't take
My Sunshine Away."

I love you Luca-Bean. I know it will be years before you ever understand, but thanks for being My Sunshine in this dark, dark time.

1 comment:

Chris S. said...

I'm so happy Luca can bring you such joy and peace, even if temporary. Carla, you can come over and spend time with him (and us) anytime you need or want. If the day seems overwhelming and you just need a bit o' Luca, feel free to stop by. We love you!

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