I also want to clarify another thing about my last post. I do not want to speak for Sweetie regarding what she does or doesn't "get" about my disability. I really don't know how much she understands about me and whether or not she thinks of me as different than other moms in the world. She certainly gets that I need a fair amount of help from her. It's her job to take clean piles of laundry upstairs, saving me the trip. She knows that I'd really rather not come upstairs to check out every little cool thing she's created in her playroom. If no one else is around, I need her to hold my hand and "help" me up ramps/hills/various inclines out in the world (it's actually amazing how much help just holding her hand can be in such situations.) She knows I'd really rather not sit on the floor to play games with her - preferring the couch or kitchen table instead. She knows she has to accommodate me in all similar scenarios because of my weak legs. And she is a great help. Really. She is a good, good girl who will do what she's asked to do without complaint to make my life that much easier. I am, by and large, very impressed with her compassion and understanding when it comes to what I need from her to get through my days.
That being said - and again, I don't mean to be putting words in her mouth, only to surmise what I think may be going on in her mind - I very highly doubt that Sweetie spends much time at all thinking about my differences or difficulties. Maybe even less time (so far) worrying about how I specifically differ from her classmates' and friends' moms. It seems more to me like, whenever I do ask for her help or explain I can't climb the stairs again, my reasons why almost hit her like an "oh, yah" type of thing. And not an "oh, yeah" followed by any feeling of sadness or self pity. Just an "oh, yeah" and moving on.
Anyway, that's how I see it. So when I said what I said to Sweetie at the mall the other day, I feel I forced guilt or sadness or something upon Sweetie with the words I chose. I didn't think I was telling her anything she didn't already know, necessarily. I just was forcing her to think about how my experience differs from hers, and how she is more able than me (or Grammy, currently) to deal with even mildly physical tasks. Which I suppose is not a terrible thing to make her think about, when I think about it. So - s'alright.
Kind of on the same note - I don't really like when other people tell Sweetie that she needs to help me do something. I'm perfectly capable of asking for help if I need it. No, I try not to complain, but I do ask for help. But, really, most things I feel I can accomplish on my own. If I can do something myself - even if it takes me a little bit longer - I will do it myself. Especially if it's just Sweetie and me. She's a kid. Let her be a kid. Let her not think about "responsible" things too much. Let her get right in the house when we get home and up to her playroom. I'll bring in the things from the car. (Of course, I'll more than likely have her help me initially with such a task, bringing in whatever bags she's able to upon exiting the car. But she doesn't need to help me on return trips. Play! Enjoy! Have fun!)
And it's not only the "let her be a kid" factor. It's the "I really can do it on my own" factor. Like I said, I'll ask for help when I need it. Otherwise, I'm stubborn. Let me do my thing however I need - or choose - to do it on my own. I can do it.
Sweetie is as amazing as ever. Energetic, inventive, silly, curious, compassionate... and carefree. She's so caring and helpful, not only with me, but everyone else as well.
I just wish to keep her as carefree as possible for as long as possible. That's not such a bad thing for a mother to want, now, is it?