Friday, January 8, 2010

Conversations with Kali


Kali has a bit of a cold and, as usual, couldn’t fall asleep last night.  I was really tired, so I decided I’d just take her to bed with me. 

We got to talking for a bit and then she started to cry.  She said “mama, I’m not having a bad thought, it’s a good one, but it’s making me cry.”  I asked her what she was thinking about.  She said “I know you told me that I made the world a better place……” (yes, I did.  Don’t all kids make the world better?)  Yes, Kali, you do make the world a better place.  And then she said “but mom, you are my world.”  OMG.  Stick a fork in me.  That girl just makes me happy down to my soul. 

The moment my last baby was born, the exact moment she was born, I felt the world had stopped turning on its axis.  Something was different.  Not a bad different, but just different.  I used to wake her up from her naps because I thought she had been sleeping too long.  Really, I did.  I often wondered why I felt such a connection to her.  Not that I don’t feel connected to Mary and Hannah, but there was just something different about Kali. 

Of course, I’ve since realized that there is something different about Kali.  I have no label for her, nor do I really want one.  Everyone has some sort of issue, right?  She is not whatever issues she might have, she’s just Kali.  In my opinion, she has an anxiety disorder of some sort, though I’m not totally convinced that she doesn’t have a mild form of aspergers, or maybe it’s both, or neither. 

I won’t go into detail about all her little quirks.  She’s 6, so it would take me wayyyy too long to write them all out.  However, about 2 weeks ago it seemed as though her anxiety went into overdrive.  She would wake up, look at us, and start crying.  (Oh wait, does that mean we look like hell in the morning?!?!)  She would cry about things that I thought made no sense.  She was horrified that she might offend someone and that would make her cry.  She was horrified that other people had offended someone and she’d cry over that, too.  Normal things that 6 year olds think about would send her over the edge.  She’d be nearly hyperventilating, and then she’d tell me that she was doing her best to “be a regular kid.”  She was always apologizing for crying and being upset.  I was besides myself, feeling horrible for the way she was feeling, and feeling totally unable to help her.  All I could do was sit and hold her and tell her how much I love her.

I don’t know what started it, but thankfully she seems to have calmed down now.  She told me last night that her thoughts haven’t upset her in a few days.  I thought that maybe she had eaten something with dye in it, but couldn’t figure out what it might have been.  She didn’t have any shampoo, conditioner, or soap with dyes in it.  Maybe the craziness of the holidays had something to do with it.  I don’t really know.  All I do know is that I am very thankful that she seems to be back to her usual self.  I can deal with the fact that she has the attention span of a gnat, that she is super sensitive, and that she has some sleep problems along with a few other issues.  What I cannot deal with is my poor baby crying uncontrollably telling me that she’s being tortured by her thoughts. 

I believe the reason I feel such a connection with her is so I can help her deal with, well, whatever she needs help dealing with. 

I don’t often talk about her issues.  They’re just part of who she is.  It would be like telling people that Hannah has big feet (hey, have you seen those things?!?!) or Mary moves at a snail’s pace (oh how true that is).  It’s just part of who they are.  But last night’s conversation……what a gift that was.   And how lucky I am to be her mom.

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