This weekend we joined friends for a road trip to a brand new science centre open in Estonia. The museum was great - one of the best science centres we've ever been in. The kids loved it: curious, active, fearless - running through the exhibits, ready for anything, the first to jump into flight simulators, dark tunnels, mazes, elevators. I was surprised to see my own reaction to things though. A number of times throughout the day I found myself fighting mini panic-attacks as I failed the challenges that the kids seemed to thrive on. I couldn't overcome the feeling that I was going to cry and scream and vomit all at once when Tiss tried to lure me into the mirror maze. I clenched my eyes shut and prayed for the ground when Jem pulled us 2 flights high in the rope chair lift. I turned around and fled when Mikus invited me into the "Shanghai house" with a sloping floor, which made you feel instantly sea sick. I was surprised at my own amount of fear and dread at simple things that cause kids joy and wonder. My pulse racing and insides tingling, I sat down on the huge row of exercise-balls-come-exhibition couches and tried to gather myself together.
Maybe giving in to panic was just my reaction to my fear at real-life situations that have already come up early this year. Almost immediately after new year's we found ourselves in a crisis at home, with our sweet Mikus developing a debilitating health issue - which has us confused, searching for immediate answers to relieve the problem, and possibly facing years of management once things settle down. I have been finding this process difficult - because the sadness and fear that I have been feeling about this little person, my own flesh and blood. Overcoming fear has been the hardest part of this process - finding the courage to keep searching, to be active in engaging health professionals and being advocate for my own child. Things late this week started looking a little more positive, though not completely cured, and I have managed to regain some sense of balance.
So it looks like my theme for 2013 has been defined by outside influences. Turns out that my resolution of learning to make sushi has been usurped by something a little more challenging - finding courage, wherever and whenever I need it.