I am in the parking lot
digging for keys
a pediatric dental visit

I am fumbling in my purse
among folded stacks of pre-op papework
forms I need to fill out
for the son that
refuses to open his mouth
requires a hospital stay
(they better give him an extra turn at the treasure chest for that)

She pulls her black suv into the parking spot next to mine
another suburban mom
another appointment
I hear her waking her sleeping beauty
small arms stirring in the carseat
a flash of brunette curls through the open passenger door

I stuff my boys into the back of the Volvo
absorbed in Deductibles
20% co-pays,
the potential risks of General Anesthesia

Why. Does. Everything. Have. To. Be. So. Hard?!

I turn to find
a tiny fairy princess
drenched in pink
her mama bending over her
making sure the straps aren’t too tight
on her custom built

My self-pity
p  u  d  d  l  e  s
at my feet

I do not compare our pain
it doesn’t make sense
to silently compete

we are both mothers, after all

I just quietly realize
that this world is filled with women
like me
loving their babies
fearful of the future
really freakin tired at the end of the day

I bet
if we went out for coffee
we could finish each other’s sentences
the facts slightly fluctuating
but the bottom line,
our desire to protect, nurture, provide for our little ones without losing our minds
the same

and with this thought
I feel my strength renewed
despite knowing we will see plenty of
simple things

in this silent communion
with this mother I do not know
I feel
a sense

and on the short drive home
I wonder
if that
sturdy metal wheelchair
will manage to keep up
with her


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7 Replies to “Parking Lots Can Be Prolific”

  1. You can always make tears drip down my face with no muscular effort. They are tears of understanding.

  2. Reminded me of the day at Sea World I watched an autistic boy of about 10 on a leash break away for a brief minute and, when caught, fall on the ground and scream for about 10 minutes. I learned that day to thank God everyday that Nick can go everywhere with me and the most he does is break out in uncontrollable laughter and a song. That just makes everyone smile. Thank you God and by the way, please bless that family and give them strength.

  3. I can't tell you enough how much I love reading your blog. While we don't compare our children to others with special needs to be cruel, it does help to know that things could be much worse, but God only gives us what we can handle. Thank you for putting my thoughts and feelings into words so perfectly.
    Hugs from a fellow mom you don't know.

  4. This is absolutely beautiful. I hope it doesn't bother you that a stranger stumbled across your blog and just can't.read.enough. I do not have my own special child…I am a teacher who has many. Not a "special ed" teacher, a "regular" teacher that has found a passion for working with Autistic children who happens to have a best friend with a daughter that has CP. As I read this, I couldn't help but think of my friend, and the mothers of the kids I choose to work with. Thank you for tears this morning. I hope we won't be strangers for long.

  5. so amazing! I take my daughter to a Children's Hospital twice a week for speech and o/t and I feel like I'm always pitying myself on the way in, and so humbled on the way out. Your blog post sums it up so well.
    Thanks 🙂

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