Caveat: This blog is usually about Charlotte. I try to keep my emotional interventions to a minimum, saving my rants about our various situations for my journal. Of course, I do rave here, as you know. So I hope you’ll humor me this one time as I vent the words that have kept me awake since Philippe left an hour ago, in thunder and lightening, to go look for our beloved bear.
How we slept last night, the night we lost Bubba. Charlotte conked out at 7:30, peacefully hugging Bubba’s Baby Brother, Nemo, and Mama Kitty. Philippe and I tossed and turned, he devastated by the loss of a bear that has such symbolism for our family; and I was racked with guilt.
Here’s the thing*: Charlotte handed her most beloved possession to me, her mother. She entrusted me with her best friend. She gave me the one bear that I knew would need rescue in case of an emergency exit (from anywhere). I somehow managed to not secure him in the backpack. He fell out (or never made it in). This is squarely my fault.
Here’s the other thing: When is enough enough? Her heart, her feeding tube, her reflux and constant vomiting, her helmet, 3 years of physical and speech therapy, her eyes, her ears, the school’s recent concerns about potential development and socialization challenges. So many other daily struggles that we don’t share on the blog, our grown up struggles. All these we have born with whatever dignity, strength, and grace we could. I realize, and am grateful, daily that we have fewer troubles than many. That Charlotte’s relative health and her exuberant happiness are blessings and our daily reward. But, why did we have lose her Bubba? When is enough enough?
And now, I have images of a poor lost bear, tumbling along the rivulets caused by this morning’s thunderstorm, scared and alone. I see him being tossed into the lake by some callous person. I have waking nightmares about him getting run over by a car, having his eyes pulled out by a nesting bird, his stuffing flowing into the dirt.
Philippe left the house at 6:00 a.m. to go look for him again. In the violent thunderstorm.
Charlotte doesn’t blame me. Yet. I can only imagine how this plays out in adolescence. Philippe doesn’t blame me. But, I blame myself. And, Bubba, if we could find him, wouldn’t blame me. He’d look up with his crooked, smashed smile, streaked with washed out pink marker, give me a sniff, and then let me off the hook.
I wish it were so easy.
*With apologies and great admiration to Lisa Graff’s The Thing About Georgie.