Driving in the car with Charlie with the sun roof open at night:
Charlie: Mama, Mama! The Moon! It's so big! It's following us!
Me: (Trying not to laugh) OK, Charlie. I see it.
Charlie: Don't worry, Mama. It won't come in the window. It can't get us.
I laugh at this exchange because I distinctly remember being very annoyed as a small child that the moon followed us everywhere. I mean, seriously MOON, don't you have anything better to do than to follow me like some kind of deranged psychopathic stalker? They make movies about people doing that kind of shit...what makes you so special that you can just get away with it and follow me and be all SHINY IN THE SKY?
I of course grew up and realized why the moon "follows you" (just last week...KIDDING!) and now can kind of chuckle at the sweet innocence of thinking that the satellite that orbits the earth had it out for me and was deliberately fucking with me by following me home. (Looking back, it shows that my derangement runs real deep if I was thinking like that before Kindergarden...) That was back before I grew up and realized that babies don't always get born; that people die or are killed, and not just strangers but people I know; that people get sick; that people aren't going to be what you hoped or imagined they would.
Before I had to explain to my children that a little boy that they have known all their lives got suddenly critically ill. That he is in the hospital. That he has cancer. Just typing those words out makes me want to shake.
No parent should have to go through what his are right now. No parent should have to tell their children that another child is ill, and critically so.
I feel helpless. I have avoided blogging for a while because I tend to write out some pretty raw things. Facing the idea that a child I have known since age 3 months, with the big grin and the deep belly laugh, who has questionable tastes in professional football teams but is spot on with college teams, that he has cancer...the ultimate betrayal of one's own body, IMHO...I couldn't do it. It is still hard. Writing out that he has a life-threatening illness...I don't want to admit it. If I feel this way, I can only imagine how his parents feel.
So I participate in fundraisers for them. Hell, I am helping to organize one. I re-post updates and wheedle donations. The community response has been fabulous. I do what I can sitting here.
But I still wish that I could go back to a time when the moon following me was upsetting. When I never knew what it was like to have to explain adult things to a child. When these kinds of things happened to someone else.
He is your child. Your neighbor. Your son. Your best friend. Just because he does not live with you, next to you, go to your school; it does not mean that he and his struggles impact you any less. This disease has an impact on you; just because it is not directly does not make it any less of an impact.
The same moon that stalks me is the same moon that shines down on him where he is getting treated for his lymphoma in a hospital room. The same moon that shines on you where ever you are right now.
Be cognizant of this. People matter. They all have their stories; their journeys. Perhaps if we weren't so quick to judge, the world would be better. After all, the moon is equally obsessed with each and every one of us.