“So what’s going on Fi? You’re nowhere to be found on social media lately and I KNOW what that means with you. How are you really doin? What’s the go”?
Crap. I knew she had my number and I wasn’t going to get away with my standard ‘everything’s going great guns’ answer because she would’ve seen straight through it. I took a long sip of my coffee and considered my answer carefully before replying.
“Well, it’s like this. I see that I have two options: I either run away and start a new life somewhere else, or I stay and continue fighting the system until my boy gets the help that he so desperately needs.”
She nodded in understanding but the scepticism was written all over her face. So I continued:
“There simply are no other choices here, and my son deserves much more than a mother who flees because it’s all too difficult. He deserves a mother who will knock down different doors and follow different leads until she finds the one that eventually leads us to success.”
She looked at me and smiled before replying gently:
“That’s all very well Fi, but what about you? How are you going to continue fighting when you’re this exhausted and this beaten down? Who is going to take care of you when you hit rock bottom and can no longer function. You can’t be everything to him when there’s nothing holding you together”.
I laughed resignedly and said:
“This is not about me. This has never been about me. “
She nodded again and waited for me to continue.
“Right now, I don’t have the brain space to think about anything or anyone except my next move when it comes to helping Harley. I’ve had to let friendships slide and social engagements pass. And lately, I’ve not had the ability to plan anything past the next ten minutes. And to be completely honest – I really honestly don’t even care what people think of me right now. None of that stuff matters when your sole focus is on helping your boy to survive in a world that seems determined to ruin him”.
I looked my friend square in the eyes and I challenged her:
“You’re a mother too, you get this right? You get that this is consuming me and that I just can’t rest until I start to see some progress with the horrible and relentless demon that is his mental health? Surely you get that I can’t just walk away from this, I can’t give up on him because if I give up on him, he has no one. I just cannot and will not walk away”.
She nodded and sighed.
“This really sucks . Another wine?”
And then we both collapsed into a ridiculous fit of unrestrained laughter. I mean – what else could we do but laugh?
This afternoon I had a flashback. I was transported back into a hospital bed when I was handed the most wonderful little package 10 years, 11 months and 19 days ago to be exact. I remembered looking down into my arms after spending six hours in the worst pain imaginable. I recalled the moment that I realised that the pain was but a distant memory because in that moment – nothing else mattered.
I knew that I was deeply in love. I remembered looking down into the vivid blue eyes of my newborn son as time seemingly stood still. I remember the hope and the excitement that filled me as the dreams that I held for my son overwhelmed me and filled me with a compassion that I couldn’t explain or contain.
I made a promise that day. I promised my little boy that I wouldn’t allow anything to hurt him and that I would be his number one supporter no matter what.
Ten years on – I’m being held to that promise and I mean it as much today as I did back then.
I will not give up on him.
I will fight this until the bitter end.
Today I managed to secure an appointment with a new doctor for next week. I am trying a completely different tactic and have decided to go private and pay whatever it takes for the best help that I can possibly afford. So fingers crossed that this route turns out to be more successful than the nightmarish waste-of-time health professionals that have let us down time and time again in the past.
I would also like to thank those of you who have reached out to me recently via text, messaging and phone calls, I sincerely appreciate the support while I weather yet another storm in this mental health/autism/anxiety roller coaster ride and I apologise to those whom I have let down or not given enough attention too.
Please forgive me and know that I am doing the best that I can.
Love you all muchly. x