A Newfound Appreciation For My Entourage

My family and I often make light of the roles my chronic conditions have required them to take on. Since I need my husband to drive me most days, we refer to him as my chauffeur. Because my daughter assists me with shopping and household tasks, she has been dubbed my personal assistant. It is rare for me to leave home without one or both of them, yet that is exactly what I did for three days in March 2017.

A solo act

I have acknowledged a number of ways my family assists me for years, but it wasn’t until this solo trip that I fully recognized all that they do. While on my own I had to get myself from point A to point B without crashing into a wall or people or I had to ask a stranger for assistance. If I wanted something to eat or needed ice from the vending machine I had to push through the pain and get it myself. There was no one to turn off the light, to fetch my morning coffee, or open doors for me. Simple things, like having someone to pick up the pen I dropped keeps the muscles in my back and around my ribcage from experiencing spasms.

In perfect harmony

A few days after returning home from my trip we spent a day at Disneyland. While there I attempted to reach for something when my daughter stopped me and said, “Let me get that for you mom.” Tears welled up in my eyes as I reminded her of how much I appreciate all the little and not so little things she does for me. She and her father both make my life so much easier than if I had to do everything myself. They rarely grumble when I ask for assistance and often anticipate my needs. While I am pleased to know that I can survive a trip by myself, I would rather have them with me as much as possible. Not just because of how they assist me, but because of the memories made while we are together.

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