I know you cried in the grocery store.
It was in the baking aisle, by the flour, with the big sale signs hanging on the shelves. You were standing there, looking at the flour, and then in your own cart. At the 16oz bag of almond flour that cost you $12 and the sweet rice flour. Then you saw the shelves loaded with heavy bags of white unbleached wheat flour.
And you started to cry.
Not a big sob, but the kind of cry that can’t be help.
It’s the cry that comes deep from within. Those tears of sadness filled your eyes as you glanced at the lady next to you freely loading her cart with five pound bags of flour. Gluten.
I know you were wondering if she saw you — you and your cart with baking goods — but clearly missing the white flour that was in all the carts around. You stared at her with your tear-filled eyes, wondering if she even thought about those bags of flour in her cart.
Did you ever think that last year was the last year, the last time baking with white flour? Did you appreciate that baking? Or, more than likely, you didn’t even realize what a gift it was not having to think about food and gluten every single day. Did you even really know what gluten was? Or that you would hunt it out to make sure it never entered your Samuel’s little body?
You’re a fighter.
But, you see, you need to cry.
Everyone knows you are strong, and that you’ll do whatever for your boy, and that you want to find joy. But sometimes, especially right now, as you near the anniversary of your little boy’s diagnosis, it is needed to mourn. Don’t start rationalizing that it’s not that bad, or it could be worse, or we’ll just get through.
You’ll never be able to put that white unbleached flour on sale for $2.49 in your cart for your Samuel.
And that’s why you cried. Not because you are selfish, or thinking only of yourself, or all that — you cried because you love your boy. Fiercely.
Crying doesn’t make you weak, or make you not appreciate where you are, or that you’re not grateful.
Crying makes you real.
Celiac Disease wasn’t welcomed in your home.
You didn’t choose that for your Samuel. You wanted him to be able to eat the cookies with the white flour at Christmas. To be normal. Sometimes you mourn, and that’s okay. But, you know, I’ve seen you fight as well. There’s a tension in life, a balance, and living in that place can bring joy. Don’t hide.
He’s worth those fighting tears.
You’ll make new traditions, new cookies, and you will find joy.
You hear me?
You will, and I promise, you will find normal.
Walking The Visual Journey
If you’re following the Brave Art of Motherhood Visual Journey . . . Getting to Tennessee was getting out. But taking my kids to beach was the start of a new day.