Thursday, October 28, 2010

Maggie's World Touching Mine

Two Jewish women, facing each other in Tunisia

Though there are thousands of parents similarly situated, society really does not have a convenient slot for us. We are in between slots. Though the focus of our life is caregiving for our children, we do not really fall into the “stay at home mom” category. But we don't work outside the home so we are not professionals either. We are knowledgeable unlicensed medical providers and social workers.

We are often exhausted and stressed. This is the one category that people apply. Always. Any justifiable complaint or concern we raise is immediately attributed to the stress we are under. Yes, we are under stress, but sometimes - just sometimes – there might be something more. Having someone decide that the stress of my “situation” is the only driving factor in my life disrespects me as a person as well as the hard work I do every day. That disrespect is difficult (or impossible) to tolerate.

This is an except of an excellent, provocative post written by Sally, the mother of Maggie at Maggie's World. As I traipsed around the city today, doing the balancing act of normal and not, her words rang true, strengthening me. Go HERE to read more (and leave a shout-out for Miss Maggie who will be undergoing a procedure, one of countless hospitalizations that she's had to endure).


  1. I read, and I hear you.
    i wonder, people generally don't mean anything hurtful, truly.
    In everyone's situation, regardless of how it may appear as something you are dealing with without choice, there are still choices, no? so perhaps people feel they can offer advice in the same way people wonder why I would chose to have a fifth child in front of said child especially in light of the fact that she was conceived post vasectomy , and for a long time it was a very very hard situation. i think I was coming unglued at the time.

    I think the more conversation the better and then perhaps people will understand more and offer authentic and appropriate compassion.

    and an offer to listen. which is more powerful than talking sometimes I'd bet.

  2. Thanks Elizabeth for you kind words and for the shout out.

  3. I was thinking of you the other day as I was listening to this American Life. It's an episode called "Unconditional Love". Just about caring for children who have challenges. Thanks for writing, as always. And LOVE that photo.

  4. Mom's work, mom's love are entwined together for all children. To truly walk in your shoes I would need to be there from the beginning. For Maggie's mom too. The loving care you both do is amazing and without comparison to most typical moms.

    Thank goodness you share your story as I have learned much from you.

  5. I keep thinking about what I said and hope you didn't take it in the wrong way.
    my respect is shout it from the mountain top

  6. I think what you endure is unique ... to call it stress doesn't seem accurate. And I also know it (the so-called stress) is NOT your driving force. But the only reason I know that, E, is from hearing your voice right here on your blog. That is what I recognize you for. The woman who loves her children, suffers with her daughter and writes with such Voice.

  7. What brave, true and strong words. Thank you for sharing them - and your friend, and your self, your life, with us. I love her way of describing your unsung profession. You deserve to have it sung from the rooftops! But just a little garden-variety respect would be nice.

  8. P.S. That photograph makes me fee-associate as if I've had WAY too much caffeine. It's just begging for its own game-show category.

  9. Lovely sentiment from Sally and something for everyone to think about as we go through our days bumping in to people around us and thoughtlessly categorizing them.

    Thanks for the reminder.



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