First, I have to listen to the kis beg to stay up, just a little longer. Then I have to listen to the constant bickering while they're brushing their teeth. Then I have to try to get down two flights of stairs to go tuck them in. Then I have to ignore the drowsiness of my meds and read a book, without falling asleep, constantly faking a smile every single time they bump my leg. Then, I bounce from room to room, as kids get out of bed for a drink of water. I finally get to face the damn stairs again - I don't think anyone will truley understand how hard the stairs are. I loose any remaining diginity I might have each time I face the stairs. Sometimes, Dave is there, waiting to carry me up the damn stairs. It is supposed to be a nice gesture, and it is. But it is also a rude reminder of the fact that I CAN'T DO IT. I cannot climb the damn stairs. I hate these stairs. Somehow, I finally make my way up the damn stairs and I get ready for bed. I always half consider leaving my make-up on, so that I can look half decent for Dave. It's hard to pee now, another side effect of my meds. I pick out something semi-cute - again, to look cute for Dave. I roll into bed , and I plop my ointment covered leg up on a pillow. I snuggle into his arms where I wait to see if he will notice me and not my leg. Sometimes, he thinks I'm not hideous, and he will make love to me - always being careful of my leg. I hate that he cares for my leg in the heat of passion. My leg is always there. Others nights, he rejects me. It's becomming more and more common. I'm too hideous for him now. I'm just a diseased leg. We roll to our seperate sides of the bed, where I lay listening to him snoring. Sometimes, I'm glad he is asleep, so he can't hear me crying. I can remember when he couldn't go a single night without making love to me. Am I that bad now? I'm out of shape because I can't exercise, but am I that bad? So, I cry to the sound of his peaceful snores and I wait for sleep. Sometimes, one of the girls will come and wake me up, because they had a bad dream or they have a pain. This is when I wait and consider who will get up - me or Dave? I want to do it, but I weigh how difficult the stairs are. Sometimes Dave tucks them in. When I go I have to decide cane or crutches, or the oh-so-fun sit/scoots. Most of the time I do the sit/scoot and curse each step as I go. Before my leg got sick, this would be just an annoying inconvenience - now it is a test of how much frusteration I can handle in a drug-induced stupor. I give them kisses, making sure i don't bump my leg. All is well again - a power I used to love. Now, it is a small reminder of how much I can't do. And now I get to face the damn stairs again. I make my way into bed, where I get to quietly cry on the opposite side of the bed from him, wishing he would take me into his arms. But he doesn't - he has no way of knowing what is in my head. Sometime later, I find sleep. I wake up every time I move, every time the sheet brushes my leg, every time I try to roll over. Somehow, morning comes too quickly. I wake up to say my goodbyes to Dave, and to take my morning meds. I feel drugged always. But I swallow the pills anyway, because I'm scared of the pain. I will be in if I don't take them. He lovingly brings me my coffee, and asks how I slept. He doesn't really want the true answer, so I mumble an acceptable answer. I look horrible. I want to be pretty for him - so pretty that he can't control himself, but I'm not. Instead we chat over my leg - sticking out of the sheets, placed carefully on it's pillow. It's always there. He leaves for work and I struggle to stay awake. Mornings are always my worst struggle. I can't fight how tired I am, since my sleep is so broken. Every morning feels like the beginning of an uphill race. It stares me in the face, always challenging me to do things that once were easy. I don't want to face the day, ever. I want to surrender to the drugs, to let them win because I honestly don't care anymore. I don't want to attempt to do any of it, because it's too damn hard. I only do it for my girls. I fake my life for them. I fake it for everyone. People get to a point where they ask because they have to, not because they really want to know, because they don't. They almost get frusterated or angry when you answer honestly. So you lie, I lie. My life is a lie. I am not ok. I hate going through these motions, every day is the same. Every day - lie, struggle, fail. I hate the way I look but I can't do anything about it. I stuff my face with candy, because I crave it, and I regret every bite. I've even tried on many occasions to vomit the candy up - but I fail at that too. I have no gag reflex. I can stick my fingers all the way down my throat and nothing happens. I fail at that too. I am a fake failure. I am not ok. I don't want this life. I really wish it was over. I surrender. You win.
Dave is sick of it too. I see it in his eyes. He looks sad. We aren't what we used to be. We will never go on a bike ride, never go for a hike, or a swim, or a walk. We will never run a race together again. Who, what are we now? We are a disease. He can't touch me without worrying about hurting me. He was wishing out loud about a vacation this morning. I immediately wondered how I would be able to go. My wheelchair wouldn't be easy to manuever on a trip to China or my crutches would be a hastle on a trip to Ireland. But I don't say this out loud, of course. He doesn't really want to hear all my depressing thoughts. He is sad enough without me saying them out loud. I feel guilty - for having a disease, for feeling sad about it. I'm sorry, it's who I am now. I am diseased. And I will be, forever. I want this life to be over - my kids and Dave deserve so much better. I can't do so many things now. It's not fair to them. Because I used to do all the things I can't do now. They remember the me that could do it all. I can't remember that me anymore. I honestly can't remember how it felt to have a clear head, to sleep through the night, to walk down the stairs, to run, to drive, to walk to the park. That me is really gone. I wish I never got to do any of that - maybe I wouldn't miss it so much. I can't kill myself. I can't bear the thought of the kids living with Jason. They can't live with him! But, maybe even he would be better than me. I honestly can't bear the thought of causing Dave or the kids so much pain. I don't want to hurt them, but I am so tired of hurting. I hate the fact that I have to choose me or them. I have to decide who hurts more. But, they would get over me if I died. I would eventually be just a memory to them. If I stay, surving like this, I will be nothing but a burden. I will witness their eyes getting sader and darker. I want to die. I want to set them free. I want to be free. I'm so tired of hurting, of lying, of wishing for a life that used to be. I miss Dave, when he couldn't resist me, when his eyes lit up when he looked at me. I took for granted all the times I was able to walk to the park with my girls, when I could swim with them. They deserve better than this. I'm so tired of the guilt. It's almost worse than the pain.
I can't win. I feel pain every second of every day. I am dead inside, but my physical body refuses to die. I don't want to fight anymore. I just want it to end.