Every parent's worst nightmare
Sarah Bachelder experienced every parent’s worst nightmare. At only two-and-a-half years old, her son, Liam, fell extremely ill. Soon, a heartbreaking diagnosis was delivered. Liam had a form of pediatric cancer, acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
With the world spinning around her, Sarah faced her son’s cancer diagnosis head-on. First, countless appointments, procedures, and sleepless nights filled the next two-and-a-half years of their lives. Then, in addition to the pain and fear, Sarah was also caring for her second child who was a newborn. Eventually, her son’s leukemia entered into a maintenance period, and their lives started to take some form of normalcy.
A new set of problems
As life went back to “normal,” Sarah found anxiety and anger surfacing in ways she didn’t anticipate or welcome. Due to her son’s illness, Sarah spent most of her time indoors and away from other people. quickly, the seclusion took a toll on her emotional and mental well-being.
Suddenly, she started noticing feelings of resentment bubbling to the surface. Believing she needed to “manage” these emotions on her own, Sarah sat with her loneliness. Unfortunately, she learned that loneliness and bottling her emotions was not a good combination!
TRUE RELIEF CAME FOR SARAH WHEN SHE MADE THE DECISION TO GIVE HERSELF GRACE.
She realized the importance of accepting herself as the mother she is – not the mother she always thought she’d be. After all, reality changes everything!
With practice, Sarah allowed herself to feel true, raw emotions. This self-awareness saved her. Additionally, the connection she found with other families in similar situations taught her the value of empathy. She learned to improve her communication skills and seize the opportunity to connect.
WHILE HER SON’S CANCER BATTLE WAS TERRIFYING AND TRAUMATIC, THE EXPERIENCE TRULY CHANGED SARAH FOR THE BETTER.
Follow Sarah and her beautiful writing about “Daring Motherhood” on Instagram.
The work and words of Brené Brown were an important element in Sarah's journey towards grace. She was especially moved by Daring Greatly. All of us at The Brave Files Podcast also encourage you to read everything by Brené Brown. Her work is incredible.