Another emotion I’ve been dealing with recently has been sadness.
Yes, transplant is exciting and we’re happy he has the opportunity and thrilled Tiff was a match.
But transplant is also sort of “final.” We’re giving up. Offically and completely giving up on his native kidneys.
Most of you probably think this is silly. After all, we left the NICU knowing his kidneys were never going to actually work. But I’ve learned that many parents of kidney kids are like me, and they hold on to this insane secret hope that, against all odds, at least one of their kid’s kidneys will get better.
The rational part of my mind KNOWS this is not realistic. But parenting – particularly parenting a medical-needs kid – is not always about using the rational part of your mind. Sometimes you rely on that irrational part of your mind as a survival mechanism. And it’s sad to let it go.
It’s sad to let go of a dream you had for your child, no matter how irrational the dream.
Last week’s ultrasound really just, again, gave me the kick in the pants I needed to really and truly admit to myself that not only are his kidneys not getting better… they’re definitely getting worse.
It still feels like giving up… but also it feels more like moving forward.
I hope I don’t come off as being super strange to those of you who’ve never had a kid who needs a kidney transplant. I know all the kidney mamas out there understand, but I worry about how all this soul-bearing appears to everyone else.
His transplant is a big transition – a big change – a big step. Big, as I’ve said. Big, big, big. It’s like getting married or having a baby. Moving across the country. Big life changes – even positive, happy ones – bring a lot of mixed emotions. Most people, before getting married, face that moment when they wonder if they’re making a huge mistake. This is a lot like that – the mixed emotions, the wondering if we’re making a huge mistake – except that there are much higher consequences.