Yesterday all three kids had their annual physical. We took the train into the city, where their pediatrician is. I'll have to say it was one of the toughest days I've had in a while.
Part of it was the talk I had with the pediatrician about Janey. I can't write about all of it right now---not to be evasive, but it's just too hard. It was about the future, near and far, and choices we'll have to make. It was a good talk, and I am so lucky to have a pediatrician who understands me and who I feel I have a mutually respectful relationship with. It means a lot to me.
Much of what made the day hard was just how tough Janey was. It made me realize how little I attempt to do with her lately. We used to go into the city a lot more, but I felt like a tourist yesterday. Even though we technically live within city limits, I felt in awe actually being downtown. For a few brief seconds when Janey was okay, I was thinking how I should go into the city more with the kids. But then Janey started freaking out. And continued, off and on, the whole time. She'd be okay for a while, but then just start screaming and struggling and trying to run away. During the examination, it took all my strength and the doctor's strength just to be able to look in her ears and mouth. She yelled, tried to bit, furiously lashed out. After the visit, I took the kids for burritos. It was one of those things I shouldn't have tried to do, but once in a long while, I just want to do a normal family thing. Midway through eating, Janey lost it, went hysterical, tried to run out. The place was packed, and I am not being paranoid when I say everyone in there was staring at us. It's hardest for the boys. No boy that age want to be the center of negative attention.
When we finally got home, of course I couldn't relax. Within literally one minute of walking in the door, Janey found a bottle of soda and poured it on my computer keyboard. She spent the rest of the afternoon and evening periodically tantrumming. Thankfully, she was fast asleep early.
What hit me yesterday is that it's not getting easier. I think what was keeping me going is the thought that as Janey grew up, it would get easier. It did with William, it does with many kids. But it's not with Janey. Lately, it's gotten much harder. I can't sugarcoat it. I am so tired, physically and mentally. It is even worse for Tony---he works all day and comes home to a broken me, and then works all night taking care of Janey. It's hard for the boys, not having a relaxed home ever. And of course I know it's hard for Janey. The world must overwhelm her so much. I think she acts out in a vain attempt somehow to gain control. I can no longer think of my life having a movie ending, where things get resolved and we all fade out to a happy scene. I don't think that is going to happen. This is real life. Real tough life.