We lost our cat last night (technically this morning, when hubby took him to the vet). Kat was beside herself. Cooper, the cat, was her best friend. I struggled through the day, and Hubby ended up leaving work early so we could take Kat to pick out a new kitten. My mom and I had a text message conversation about it all earlier tonight, and I was really surprised at the turn of the conversation……
Me: Thanks. She asked a lot of questions, off and on all day, it was rough. I tried, it’s hard to find a balance of being honest and being age appropriate and helping her understand. Things like this…it’s hard. But I think it was okay, as good as it was going to be.
Mom: It’s never easy to lose a pet you love and Kat loved cooper usually at that age they will only ask what they can handle sadly death is part of life and this is a good learning thing off her your doing great I’m sure this is hard for you too
Me: It’s only really hard because of Kat and her sadness. I think we kinda knew Cooper wasn’t doing very well. I don’t know. It’s sad, but I’ve been so wrapped up in Kat’s experience and sitting with her through this that I haven’t even really felt my own feelings. I’m not sure if that makes a lot of sense, but that’s the best I can explain it.
Mom: Yeah I do get that! You always worry about how your kids are feeling and keep your own emotions in check no matter how old they get
Me: It’s part of being a mom, I guess. I think it’s okay to let kids see some emotions, but it’s hard to do, because you want to be dealing with their feelings.
Mom: Oh yeah it’s fine if she knows your sad I wish I’d known it’s good for kids to know mommy gets sad too but it’s ok or mommy and daddy have a fight but we still love each other emotions are part of life
Me: Yup. It’s all okay. It’s just in keeping it careful enough it doesn’t overwhelm Kat. Because with her there is that added bit of autism where emotions, other people’s feelings overwhelm her sometimes, and then she can also be too empathetic and wanting to fix everyone. So we have to be very careful. It’s a tightrope act around here sometimes!
Mom: I’m sure that’s really hard but everything your doing and have her in it’s amazing to me how awesome Kat is doing. Seeing her about once a month I can tell each time how she improves
Okay….did you see that? She wishes she had known? Who is this woman, and what has she done with my mother? I don’t know what is happening, or why so much is changing with her, but I like it. I love the realness of small moments in our conversations lately. It’s amazing.