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31 Mar 2011
Life With PC - Jan's Corner "Getting Old"
A few weeks ago I sat in a high school auditorium with Dave and all my children except Sam, who was up on stage, singing in a choir. As I watched Sam perform and looked over at my children in the seats next to me, I felt a little freaked out. Yes, I’ll use the word “freak”. All of a sudden, my kids seemed to be growing up too quickly.
Sam really just has two more years of high school. Nate has four. For the first time, I really thought about the fact that my kids are going to leave home, maybe sooner than I want them to!
What made me especially thoughtful was watching Sam up there singing. He looked quite dashing in his tux. But I also know he was in pain, standing up there so long. I wondered what the future will hold for him, especially how it relates to his PC. Sam is just 16 and hasn’t shown much interest in dating. Is that because of his PC insecurities or is he just not interested?
I have four brothers who didn’t date much in high school – they just weren’t interested either. They didn’t have PC though and they all went on to marry nice women and have happy lives. So perhaps that’s the same for Sam. I do know that when I was in high school and even into college – where I dated a lot – I still wondered if anyone would want to marry me with my PC. I wonder if Sam ever thinks about that. Or Nate. I guess I’ll just ask them. (In one of those good talking moments I have with my kids, of course. Not just over breakfast.)
Nate is less than two years younger than Sam. Yesterday I watched him play in the Jazz Band. He’s a trumpeter and he stands in the back. If he wanted to he could use a high stool to sit on. But he doesn’t and he won’t. He’s too embarrassed for anyone to know he has PC or that he might need a special accommodation. I sometimes think it’s ridiculous. After all, it’s just a stool. But I’m also not in junior high either. So like Sam in the choir concert, I watched Nate shift around from foot to foot. I knew he was in pain. But he never says a word of complaint.
I wonder how long both boys will be able to get away with it – this standing and extra walking and not wanting others to know and so doing nothing to relieve the pain – even something as simple as sitting when everyone else is standing. They both had to come home after their respective concerts and pop blisters. That’s the thing about PC. You can say you’ll tough it out – and you probably can. But then you have to live with the trauma you cause to your feet. For me, I will blister within just a few hours of walking or standing too much. It also translates to lost sleep and lost production later on. So I’ll always have to weigh that in to my walking choices. My boys do too and as they grow older and have to walk even more, especially when they go to college, they will really have to make good walking choices.
I do know that PC influenced some of my decisions in the teen and young adult years. I wonder how much PC will influence my boys’ choices, especially as they are entering the ages where their choices will have an ever greater affect on their lives.
I have no doubt whatsoever that my boys can and will do fine in life. It’s just lately that I’ve realized their time as kids in my home is quickly closing. I know they have to go through their own set of challenges. As a mom, though, I also want life to be kind to them. I don’t want things to hurt too much. I know that’s not realistic because that’s not, well, life. But I can’t help but still want the very best for my boys – PC and all. In turn, it’s my hope that regardless of their PC, both boys will continue to be the good individuals they are and bless the lives of others.