I don't read a huge number of blogs regularly--about a dozen or so. Each is interesting to me, or speaks to me, in a different way.
Some of them are written by people like me, in whatever way. Some of them are written by people I know. And some of them are written by people to whom bad things have happened.
One of the worst things you can say to someone dealing with something terrible--a health crisis, a loss--is, "I don't know how you do it." It is a way of saying, I couldn't do it. I couldn't be you. I can't be you. What happened to you can't happen to me, and it won't.
I've thought for a long time that there are two categories of people in the world; people to whom nothing really bad has ever happened, and don't think it ever will; and people to whom it has. I'm in the former category. Once something bad has happened--something that changes your life in ways you never thought to expect--it changes the way you see everything, and it changes it forever.
I worry. Grandma E tells me that there is no use in borrowing trouble, and she's right. But I know that the bad things that people think you're silly to think will happen really do happen. To someone, somewhere, they happen. Maybe today it will be me.
I read, or have read, a few blogs that started out as ordinary blogs--about work, about family, about anything--that turned into Bad Things blogs. Someone is diagnosed with cancer. Someone has a terrible accident. Sometimes it is the blog writer. Sometimes a child.
Yesterday I watched Iyyar go up the stairs. He has trouble going up the stairs. I've noticed it for a while, but chalked it up to his big heavy boots. Yesterday he wasn't wearing boots, and I saw his legs tremble and give under him, unable to support him. He grabbed onto the railing, and went the rest of the way on all fours, unperturbed.
And suddenly I started thinking about all the little things I've seen him do in the last few months--things I haven't thought much of because of being busy dealing with the tummy issues, the tonsils, the sleep. The way he walks sometimes. The way he can't stand up by himself, without grabbing onto something. The way he can't lift his head off the floor and sit up if he's lying on his back--something none of my kids can do. The way people have mentioned to me that he seems uncoordinated, that he doesn't seem to have a lot of muscle strength, that he's cautious physically. Individually, not things that are a big deal. Maybe he needs some OT. Together, those things are on a list of signs of something so terrible I can't think about it too much.
So I called the doctor last night. I told him what I'd been seeing. I knew he wasn't going to say it was nothing, but I was hoping for a little reassurance. I told him the diagnosis I was worried about--the worst case thing. And he said, "That was my first thought too." It's very concerning, he said. He needs to see a neurologist. I should bring him in, right away, so we can get started on this.
It could be nothing. It's probably nothing.
But maybe it's not.