For the 11 years Mike was sick, we very often heard about friends and family taking trips, or even doing what seemed like mundane things to them, but would have been treats for us, that we were never able to do. We were always very happy for them. Just because we weren't able to do things, didn't mean that we begrudged others from doing fun things. In fact, we often lived vicariously through them. I can honestly say that I was always happy when people close to me, true friends and family, were able to have fun and enjoy themselves.
Unfortunately, we are finding that not everyone feels the same way for us. Since Mike passed, the kids and I have been able to do things we were unable to do for 11 years. I would like to know that those around us can be genuinely happy for us, but this is not always the case. For years Courtney would hear all about her friend's trips, cruises all over the world and she would be a true friend and be happy for them. Now every time we have the opprtunity to go somewhere or do something, they make comments or even just ignore her excitement.
I try to tell her not to worry about what others think or say, but sometimes I can't follow my own advise. A few weeks ago, Courtney put her name in to win/get tickets to the Live! with Kelly and Michael After Oscar Show in LA. Last Thursday she found out she was chosen. At first we thought it would be impossible to go. She needed to take 2 days off from school and work, I needed to take two days off from work - and then there was the cost. Courtney even tried to reach out to her friends to see whether any of them wanted to go with her. They all declined. Even after being asked, and had the opportunity to go with Courtney, they cannot stand the fact that Courtney will be in CA the day of the Oscars and attending a TV show that showcases Oscar winners. Instead of being good friends and being happy for her, they are jealous. Yes I understand this is a normal emotion, but when they KNOW that Courtney was always happy for them, despite years of her not being able to do so much - SHAME ON THEM.
I also often get the hesitated reactions when I share exciting news. Truthfully.... it hurts. I'm not sure they realize it when they react this way, but just once I would love for people to say , "Good for you. Enjoy yourselves" and have them really mean it. Normally what comes next is, "we haven't been away in years", "I wish I could do that" "maybe next year I'LL be able to go away".
Shame on anyone for begrudging my children the opportunity to do anything. More than most people, they deserve to be happy. Their future is unknown due to the genetics of Alzhiemer's Disease. They deserve happiness and those around us who love us and care about us should know that. We were always happy for you, please now be happy for us.