As Mason and I were getting ready to go to the library today, I was going through the usual pre-library lecture:
- We aren't loud in libraries.
- You can get books, but you have to pick them one at a time.
- If you come to the library, you can't get bored immediately after you have all you books. You have to wait until I have my books too.
- And if you get tired again, I am not holding you. You're too heavy to carry around the entire libra--
That's where I stopped. That's where the past five months of library visits clicked, and I realized my mistake.
Mason wouldn't be tired this time. He would be able to walk from the car to the front doors without asking me to hold him. He may even make it all the way down the stairs without begging and pleading for me to pick him up and carry him everywhere.
Because his tumor is no longer holding all his major nerves captive, or putting constant pressure against his brain.
After this summer, I hated taking Mason to the library. I dreaded it. Avoided it whenever possible. He would beg to come with me, and then get tired after five minutes of being there. He would pick ten of the heaviest children's books they carry, hand them to me, and beg and plead for me to carry him and his books around. Because he was tired. Because he was bored. Because he had a headache.
After a few times, I wouldn't hold him anymore.
Next, I told him he couldn't come to the library if he couldn't walk like a big boy.
And eventually, I wouldn't even take him with me.
And all that time, his little body was struggling to win a fight against cancer, with no help, no medicines; no one to tell him it was okay to be tired all the time.
What a terrible mother I've been.
I know I can't change the past, but I wish there was nothing for me to want to change. I wish I had been more understanding, and then this lecture I had been giving him wouldn't seem so terrible. The words themselves fell like a poison I've been telling him for the past five months.
I feel so bad for this poor boy.
We're on our way to the library right now. And if he wants to be loud, or to leave, or even to be held the whole time...well, I've learned my lesson once. That's all it takes.