The word Mom by definition means “Wonder Woman” to me. Think about what a Mom does without getting paid and most of the time without any recognition or appreciation. How many times do we say to ourselves, “Well some day they will realize everything I have done for them and how much I truly love them.” Well today is Mother’s Day and I am going to say what no Mom dealing with Lyme disease or a Tick-Borne Illness will say…YOU ARE FREAKING AMAZING! I am not taking anything away from any other Mom by saying this either. These Moms just have super powers and some divine power looking out for them because only this can explain the level of love and sheer will power I have seen from these Moms over the last two decades. Years ago, I used to refer to these Moms as Rhinos because they buried all their pain, fear, loss, hurt and anger…. and just put their head down and moved forward for their kids. Nothing can stop a Mom from loving their kids and it is nowhere more evident to me than a Mom dealing with Lyme disease.
Some Moms are actually sick themselves and suffering every day silently just so their kids have no idea the pain they are in. They feel guilty for draining the family finances for treatment, not being able to do what other Moms do with their kids, and not wanting their children to see them as weak or sad. I personally used to hide in the closet and cry on a daily basis as I fought my battle with Lyme and all that comes with it. I did not want my kids to think I was weak or to be scared because I was not well. I had lost so much weight at one point from being so sick I could actually hide under the clothes and nobody could find me. Honestly it was kind of peaceful. There were also days where the noise sensitivity would put me over the edge. OMG I will never forget my youngest taking music class in school and coming home to practice the recorder! I thought my head was bleeding but I was smiling. She would say “Mom why are you crying” and I would say “Because it sounds so beautiful!” The reality of the situation is that it felt like an ice pick going through my brain.
Then you have the Mom that is not sick (thank Goodness) but she is trying to take care of a child with Lyme disease. Nothing makes sense to her and she feels overwhelmed and frustrated because she cannot make her child’s pain go away. She has to learn how to deal with the school system, a severely broken medical system, a family that is clueless and thinks her kid is just lazy, children that no longer want to be friends with her child because he/she is sick, and a relationship with her husband that is just strained on every level because she has no energy to even deal with him. Trust me it is horrific to watch your child lose years of their life to a disease that is not understood while you do everything humanly possible to get them well. It is not surprising that most of these Moms eventually get sick themselves from the exhaustion, stress and lack of support. Oh, and did I mention that most lose their jobs also. One of the parents has to stay home and take care of their child and it is usually the Mom.
Then you have the Mom that is sick with a child that is also sick. This was my personal situation for years. To be honest there are many things I do not even remember because I was just functioning on no energy or sleep. They probably experience the most loss unfortunately when the reality is they need the most help. They also will walk through fire to make sure their child gets medical care and is taken care of before they spend any time on themselves. I swear Angels helped me through several years of my life as a sick Mom with a sick child. I was lucky and at one point had my Aunt and Uncle that were 80 years old come to take care of us for 9 months. I do not think I would still be here if they did not sacrifice their own lives to help us.
Ultimately all of these Moms have one thing in common and that is an amazing capacity to love. These Moms can LOVE like no other people on Earth. I hope the Universe gives all the Love these Mom give all year back to them for one day! Like I said, you are “Wonder Women”! Happy Mothers Day! Sending you all my love!
Dr. Monica Bruenn