Over the past couple of years, my daughter and grand-baby have been living with me. They are mostly a joy to have around, but there have been times that haven’t been so joyous. Another reason that our kids should be out on their own :).
My granddaughter has a condition that requires regular surgeries on her larynx (every few weeks). As a result of that, she hasn’t been able to go to pre-school, and my daughter hasn’t been able to find gainful employment that would be sympathetic to the situation. It’s been tough, to say the least. My daughter’s contribution to the household expenses has been to supply food for the house. My granddaughter’s contribution? To be adorable and sweet, which she upholds quite nicely 😀
She has a condition called (by acronym) RRP…Recurrent Respiratory Papillomatosis. It’s caused by the Human HPV virus. Only 4 out of 20,000 children are born with the condition. My grandbaby drew the short straw. There is controversy as to how she contracted the disease, as there is evidence of sexual abuse. Long story. Longer bitterness and stress surrounding some relationships in the family. Be that as it may, my sweet buttercup has to live with this condition. She is beautiful and strong. This is all she knows, so she doesn’t know to be upset or bitter about having to endure the surgeries. Without the surgeries, the growths in her larynx would cause her to suffocate. Symptoms include hoarseness of her voice and difficulty breathing. For the last couple of years, she hasn’t had much of a voice. She didn’t have enough control of her voice, to even squeal. For a while we were finding ourselves in Pediatric ICU every couple of weeks, as the ENT physicians and surgeons couldn’t keep up with the growths enough to allow her to enjoy much of a normal life.
All at once, out of the blue, something changed. I read up on the condition and found that sometimes the disease can go into a type of remission. She went from emergency surgeries every 2 weeks, to remarkably slower growth of the papillomas. She has been able to slow the surgeries from every 2 weeks to every 2 months! I don’t care what the cause, she is able to live some-what of a normal life right now! I’m one very happy Grandma!
She has a little girl voice, now, without sounding like “Froggy” from the ‘Little Rascals’. She has discovered (at 4 years old) that she can squeal, yell, talk back to her momma, and TALK…TALK…TALK….!!! She talks for several hours at a time. I am relishing in the little conversations that she makes up. The stories and her attempts at jokes. What a beautiful sound!
The past few weeks have brought some changes. My grand-daughter has been approved for SSI/disability benefits and I have finally saved enough to move from this slime-pit. The transition is just weeks away (I pray that it’ll only be days, but only God will know). This means that my daughter, granddaughter and myself, will soon be parting ways.
I have a mixture of elation and sadness, these days. I have the ability to move from this home (I use that term lightly). This home that is surrounded by crime, drugs, alcoholics, and one lone Psychopath working right next door.
I believe that this move will be a turning point. I believe I will finally be able to resist the urge to constantly look over my shoulder. Maybe this will be a mile-stone in my healing process?? I sure hope so. Some day, I would love to look at my experience as another speed-bump in my life, rather than the overwhelming road-block that it’s proven to be.
Today, I turned in an application for a new rental. It’s adorable, with lots of gardening potential. A 2 bedroom, where I would be allowed to be myself. I can’t begin to tell you how much I crave that! I only pray that the landlord/owner will like me enough to take a chance. I haven’t had the best of luck over the past few years. I intend to change a lot of things. I believe the “luck” portion will follow in my foot-steps. After turning in the rental application, I decided to go grocery shopping. I paid the bill this time, so my daughter would better be able to provide for herself and my granddaughter when it is time for them to move. I was shopping alone for the first time in 2 years…and LOVED the solitude!
I went to a local grocery store, which I used to frequent a few years ago. On the billboard, they advertised some meat specials which, sure enough, reeled me in! I had forgotten the once familiar “moooo”, as you walk through the meat and dairy departments…. I had a child-hood flash-back at the first moooo. I remembered my grandfather’s steer, which he raised every couple of years. He always named them the same…”Bessy” and “Beulah”. Yes, I said STEER! I didn’t catch on until my teen-aged years… My aunt, his sister, was named “Bessy”, though I don’t remember anyone named “Beulah”… Sick, but funny! The steer would run to him when he called their names! I’m glad I didn’t know this, growing up! lol!!
My great grandpa was born in 1899. Very much old-school in raising and butchering cattle for his family. His style mimicked those of a sociopath/psychopath…though I loved my Grandpa. He was a wonderful man, who just learned how to make his “job” easier, over the years . He definitely DID have a twisted sense of humor! One that I find great joy in remembering, now. He gained the trust of each steer, brushing and curry-combing each one. He would wash and scrub them, pet them, and enlisted my assistance whenever he could. I love animals of every type…yes, even snakes! I loved helping him with “Bessy” and “Beulah”. They would come to me when I called them…drool that green goop all over my shoes, and lick my hand (with that same goop). I never questioned where they went, when I would go to my Grandparent‘s house and find them gone. I just accepted it, and moved along until the next calves came.
I continued meandering through the grocery store, remembering that time. Soon I had to take our groceries and check out with the cashier. Real life came crashing back in, though I loved the “memory” break. Yes, I cried. Yes, I found peace during that time.
It really is the small things, isn’t it?