Christmas Eve. Approximately 10:30 pm. That’s when I heard the words that no parent ever wants to hear. “Mom, I need to go to the hospital.” My beautiful, hilarious, outrageous…sad, angry, scared, anxious…15 year old daughter had swallowed a bottle of pills.
It’s a fear I’ve carried with me for a very long time. She’s had more grief in her 15 years than I ever wanted for her. The very battles that I fought for her not to have to fight…I failed.
That’s the majority of what I keep thinking. I failed. I failed my daughter. She, even momentarily, thought that death was the only way to stop the pain.
Everyone keeps telling me I haven’t failed her. They tell me I’m this great mom…that I have done and continue to do what is best for her. But I couldn’t stop this. I couldn’t make it all ok.
I’m lucky. Luckier than some. She came to me within 10 minutes because I CAN say that the kid tells me everything. She was out of the ER within 14 hours. She’s been in another hospital since then, though. She’s where she needs to be. She’s getting the help she needs. She’ll be home soon.
All of the things that I keep telling myself. She’s medically stable. She’s getting help. She’ll be ok. She’ll be home soon.
And none of that takes away the fear I will continue to have until my child is back home where she’s supposed to be. None of that takes away the panic of trying to do everything in my power so it never happens again. None of it takes away the fact that I can’t hug my daughter. I can’t listen to her yell at me for being annoying. I can’t roll my eyes as she barges into my room unannounced.
None of it takes away the fear that next time she won’t come to me.
None of it takes away the fact that her childhood ended the moment she felt so low that death seemed to be the only way out. And I can never give her that childhood back again.