Today, I cried over a hospital. As I was walking though the narrow off white halls of Addenbrookes Hospital in Cambridge, lit only by the blinking fluorescent lights, I longed for Calgary… Now there is a phrase I never thought I would hear myself type, let alone, say.
I missed the familiar, bright halls of Alberta Children’s Hospital, the huge windows letting in the frequent Alberta sun, the silver grand piano in the cafeteria, the guys playing jazz standards at 9:30am and the warm hydrotherapy pool where, when you emerge, they wrap you in a warmed flannel sheet. And that is not the only thing I have missed about Calgary. I miss Ella’s early learning program at PREP, her fabulous therapy team at the DS Clinic and how you can get government funding for everything from education programs to mileage. If you are going to live anywhere with a child with Down Syndrome, Calgary is the place to be.
January signifies the start of our season of discontent. For many, it is because they experience the let down of Christmas, the slowness of pace forcing us to sit idle until Valentine’s day and we have something to celebrate or an excuse to eat as many cupcakes as we can. Friends and family have returned to their homes and the house seems empty without the trees and lights, the mantle naked without stockings, and the kitchen stale without the aromas of roasting turkey and apple pies.
For me, however, January is a season of discontent because it is beckons our season of transition. For five out of the seven years that Ben and I have been married, January, through to the beginning of Spring marks a time of waiting, decisions and general discontentment. It is agonizing. We are forced to once again sit down and think about where would be a suitable place for our family.
Where is best for Ella? Calgary. Where is best for Jakob? Anywhere as long as it is for more than a year. Where is best for Ben? Where there is opportunity. Where is best for me? Not Calgary, unless it has a winter like this year…every year.
Emotions run high and are constantly whiplashing between hope and despair. It is a time when my body copes with the stress in unpleasant and debilitating ways and my faith is challenged as I am forced to “TRUST”. This year, even though I feel revitalized from a slow romantic autumn, I know my heart is weak and I am wondering how I will come out on the other end. Last year….and every year, people said, “You will be stronger in the end.”
I wrote this yesterday. I knew I was in a bad place, not dwelling in beauty nor abiding in God so I chose not to finish and went to bed early.