The one where I’m “JUST” a mom

I have this terrible terrible habit. You see? I introduce myself as “JUST” a mom, ALL the time. A few months ago, I was on facebook when I saw something come across my newsfeed from Holland Bloorview. They were looking for family leaders. At that time, we had just become patients there. But, true Cheryl form, I decided I needed more information. And from that? A monster was born.

That monster would be me… I felt the need to give back to a hospital who had shown nothing but generosity and compassion to my whole family. NOT just Jillian. Sadly, I don’t have a large sum of money to donate, so I figured I could donate something else. My time.

I went to the initial information session, eager, nervous and excited. Fairly quickly, I became involved in a committee at the hospital. In fact, I met one of Jillian’s doctors there before I met her in clinic.

This is where my terrible habit happens. As I’m introducing myself (anywhere within the hospital really…) “Hi. I’m Cheryl. And I’m JUST a mom” I recently covered a CP symposium for the hospital. And every single time I’d introduce myself, I’d throw on my new “just” a mom title. I’ve realized that this has to stop.

I asked Jillian the other day if she was cute. She responded: “Nope! I’m JUST Jillian” As I struggle through this parenthood thing, I’m destined to make my girls be more self confident. I have had terrible self esteem since I can remember (this is of no fault of my parents.). I want better for my kids. I need to lose the “JUST”.

I need to remind myself that I may “JUST” be a mom, but this is the hardest, challenging, exhausting job I’ve ever had. And with a child with special needs? I AM the expert on HER. And our family. WE are the best advocates for our children. We’re the experts!

Do you find yourselves saying something like that? I used to be VERY proud to introduce myself. And now? I need to be JUST as proud to introduce myself as an equal within Jillian’s care.

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