My Mom has Fibromyalgia. Actually, yes my mom does, too, but this isn’t about her. This is the story about a 10-year-old boy who saw someone struggling and stopped to ask the hard questions.
Sometime its the littlest ones in our life that take your breath away with their love, compassion, and forgiveness.
Tiffany Case follows my blog on Facebook, and she shared this story with me. Her sweet 10-year-old son had to write a paper for school about someone he knew that has to deal with daily struggles.
I want to thank this teacher for even thinking to have this assignment. I think it’s so important that children learn early on that we will face struggles in life, and that it’s how we face them that’s important. This assignment shows empathy on the part of the teacher, while teaching empathy to the child.
Dylan is obviously an amazing child. He looked around his world and he chose to write his paper on his mom, Tiffany, who suffers from Fibromyalgia. Tiffany said that this was the first time she’d really had anyone ask such imploring questions about her illness, and sadly she doubts she ever will again. As she said, “people don’t like to talk about things that make them uncomfortable”, but children haven’t quite learned that filter yet, and we could really learn a lot from them.
What do I tell my baby boy who I have disappointed numerous times from being sick or in pain. This is such a hard conversation to have with someone so young. Click To Tweet
For Tiffany this was no easy conversation. “What do I tell my baby boy who I have disappointed numerous times from being sick or in pain. That was such a hard conversation to have with someone so young. I had to choose the right words to try and make my 10 year old understand something that most adults, nor science, can even understand. I began telling my story of pain and loss over the last 13 years, through tears I didn’t want him to see.
I told him what my life will mostly always be like and of the hopes and dreams I have for my life. It took me nearly an hour to minimally explain to him the harsh reality that this invisible illness has dealt. He listened the entire time, asked questions, and proceeded to tell me I was the best Mama in the world. His easy forgiveness and compassion towards me and others is completely amazing. Oh how I love that boy!!!”
Here is Dylan’s paper. I so hope he got an A! He definitely deserves one as far as I’m concerned.
Struggles by Dylan Shaw
My struggles paper is going to be about my mom and how she deals with her Fibromyalgia, my mom calls it Fibro. My mom had is since she was 20 and [is] now 33.
“People think you are lazy and crazy. It takes a toll on my family and it causes pain in every part of my body to where it is so bad my hair and toenails hurt.”
The worst thing about Fibro is there is no cure for it. People with Fibro will live with it to the day they die. It took my mom’s dreams away from her and took her job she loved so much as a nurse. 9 out of 10 times my mom is not feeling good.
Other than pain, the other two things are the complete lack of energy and the misunderstanding of others. My mom does not get to spend time with her family and that really makes her sad. If she gets sick, it takes a while for her to get better. But, at the end of the day, I will always love my mom, and she has made it 13 years with Fibro.
Is it 100% accurate? Maybe not. Is it exactly how we might describe it ourselves? Probably not. But, does it show that children often understand way better than we give them credit? Definitely!
I know many of you struggle with being a parent despite dealing with fibromyalgia. I hope that Dylan’s letter gives you a glimpse into the heart of your own children, so that you can know that while you may not be able to do everything with and for them that you’d like, they will love you no matter what, and they understand far more than we give them credit for.
Thank you Tiffany for sharing your letter and your story.
- Handling the daily challenges of being a parent with chronic illness
- Parenting a Disabled Child When You Have Fibromyalgia
- The Struggles of Being a Mom with Chronic Pain
- Fibro Warrior Interview with Suzanne of FibroMomBlog