Life with a Chronically Ill Child 

Honestly without sugar coating it, life with a chronically ill child, sucks! It’s a living hell! I know I probably sound like a whinny, selfish mom but those who know me know how incredibly dedicated I am to my son.  The love I feel for him is immeasurable… What I hate is his disease and the situations associated with the disease.  He is always achy and hurts.  The medications make him feel nauseated, give him headaches and nose bleeds.  He is always grouchy and anxious.  I write this as he looks out the window at the rain and says … “Remember when I use to play in the rain?  :::sigh::: Those were the good ole days momma” I really think my heart broke yet again.  I’m surprised I still have a heart… It breaks all the time because of what my son goes through.  Want to know why my son can’t play in the rain? Because the arthritis is so bad in his hips, knees and ankles that if he were to slip and fall in the rain it can cause a catistrophic injury … Popped out or broken hip, hyperextended knee, a dislocated ankle.  Just one simple fall can put him in a hospital or wheelchair.  Not to mention the pain he will feel even if he does not fall… If and when my son plays or moves more than usual … He hurts for days to come.  Then there is homeschooling … Actually school in general … ! I seriously don’t know how we do it sometimes … I am trying to relearn things so I can turn around and teach them to him.  Because of the drugs he’s on he has difficulty concentrating for extended periods of time … Teaching him how to simplify fractions took us 6 days! 6 days of tears, screaming (yes both him and I) … And we danced and rejoiced when he got it only to realize his class by then was on multiplying fractions …. We were about 4-6 lessons behind. Then the tears started again… And his self talk is horrible “maybe I’m just stupid”, ” i’m just dumb”, “everyone in class says its easy mom but i’m just to stupid to get it”, “I wish I could just die mom”.  Honestly the pain I feel in my soul when my son says those things is indescribable.  We are always behind, he has such a difficulty putting thought to paper.  This is a child who before he became sick had straight A’s, and was always on honor roll.  If you have had ever had the opportunity to speak to Jacob you would know how sweet, kind, and intelligent he is.  But school has become so difficult.  I don’t fully understand his rights having that he has a disability.  I am always on edge and trying to argue his disease and condition to faculty and staff with no help.  Jacob has no help. I have no help.  How do I fix this?  What the hell do I do and where do I start?

Because of money issues, I had to go back to work this week.  So now I have a sick child, a house to take care of, 2 other healthy children to tend to, 2 dogs, homeschooling, no social life, my own health issues, and now work.  Hard work that kills my body.  I come home and I can hardly get out of my car.  But I come home to dishes, laundry, floors and homeschool.  Making sure Jake gets his medication, give him his shots, do his daily physical therapy.  My husband can not work anymore than what he already does.  He is a fire captain so work does not mean he leaves at 7am and is home by 5-6pm… nope… it means that as of today I have not seen my husband in 8 days.  When he leaves he is usually gone for anywhere from 3 days to 20 some days. I don’t get a break … ever.  It makes me edgy and emotional.  I’m tired, sick, fat and feel horribly guilty for resenting my son sometimes.  I can’t go to the gym, see my friends or even take a quiet bath without needing to do something for him or someone else in this house.  My hair is falling out, my body aches and I just want to pack a bag and leave. Just drive until I can’t drive any more and then just sleeping.  Sleeping until my body has had enough.  I sound like a horrible mother huh?

Jacob’s insurance and medications went up this year.  I spend at least 10 hours a month on the phone dealing with appointments, pharmacies, insurance, etc.  Does not sound like much?  Hold the phone to your ear for 10 hours then come talk to me.  I wake up everytime I hear a noise and run to Jacob’s room because I wonder… did he have a seizure?  Did he fall?  Does he need water or does he need to use the bathroom and can’t walk?  So most nights I sleep in intervals.  I also stay up wondering how we are going to make it through the month?  Will we have enough money for food, gas?  How will I pay for my daughter to go to college next year?  She was supposed to go to Santa Barbara to play water polo, but we can no longer afford to send her.  So she will stay here and go to RCC and play there.  Don’t get me wrong its probably a better team and a better situation in general but do you know how difficult it was to tell her that?  I am crying just writing it. I have to run now… meeting at Jacob’s school so I can hear how bad he’s doing and how behind he is.  I will continue my rant later. Much love !  Please pray for Jacob.

4 thoughts on “Life with a Chronically Ill Child 

  1. Michelle Hammond

    I am so sorry for all your family’s suffering. You will be in my prayers. Thank you for sharing your story.

  2. Kyleah C.

    You don’t know me but I travel from Los Angeles to eat at EAT Marketplace whenever I get a chance. Long drive! When I stumbled across your instagram and found out you work there I was all “SWEET!” I love your recipes! Thank you so much for sharing them. Thank you also for sharing your journey and what you are going through. If you ever need someone to talk or vent to, I’m totally willing to lend you my ear. I can’t even imagine what it must be like to have a child with JRA. I’ve had to endure some health issues with my own children but nothing on your level. Because of my desperation dealing with my children’s issues, I’ve learned a lot about health and nutrition. I know this sounds too simple but have you looked to see if Jacob has any food allergies etc.? I’ve realized that 95% of illnesses come from diet. My 3 yr old had some pretty severe eczema all over his face & body and no doctor (I went to many!!!) could help me. Went to naturopathic , eastern & western doctors . It wasnt until I met an RN nurse who put my son on a protocol that complete healed him. If you’d like to know more just let me know. You can google the protocol yourself and see if it’s something you’re interested in. Not sure if my email shows up but just in case, hapahoneykb@gmail.com . Take care & keep your head up!

  3. Christine

    Hang in there. The expression I am sure that you have heard more than once and can’t stand yo hear anymore. It implies that the troubled times will end. Well… my children are healthy for the most part… and I have my health… but I have been dealing with the same crap with my hubby being stressed out and his body falling apart for the last 9 years. And money has been an issue for about 7 of those years. I fell in love and part of me thought I could help him… change him…. get him to take better care of himself. But while I have been able to educate him about making better decisions. He still continues to sabotage his health and then complain about it. I have been back at work for a year. I am working 6 days a week…. my kids have to after school care. And everyday… I come home exhausted and still have to take care of the household…. dirty dishes (old house with no dishwasher), piles of laundry that never seem to go away, and 5 dogs that don’t get enough exercise or training anymore. And on my one day off…. all I really want to do is sit down and do nothing…. but my house won’t clean itself. Not even my house… since we have been renting ever since we had to short sell our house. Life does suck sometimes…. but I think knowing that someone else somewhere has it worse… is the only thing that keeps me going… even when I really want to scream. You and Jacob are in my thoughts and prayers.

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