April McGowan

Mamma Said

I’m sure there are a lot of blogs about Moms going up this weekend. And I’m no exception. But, I’ve got a bit of different take.

A year and a half ago I became a different kind of mom. I’m now a mom living with chronic illness. Up until then, I was a get-er-done mom. A homeschooling mom. A supportive mom. A writer mom. I kept a fairly clean house, I kept us organized and on track. But then, my CVID (Common Variable Immune Deficiency, or Hypogammaglobulinemia) went full-blown. And I went down. Hard.

I’ve had to change my idea of what a mom is and what a mom does and adjust my expectations. My kids have always been good kids. Thoughtful and considerate. But, things have changed with them during all this, too.

My kids notice when I don’t feel great. They tell me to go sit down. They take tools out of my hand and say, “That’s enough, Mom.” My daughter, in particular, will tell me to go lay down, sit down, stop. One particular day, I must have looked pretty done-in because after my daughter told me to go lay down, she proceeded to cook our dinner, get it all served and get her and her brother ready to go. I woke up to steak, potatoes and a salad. I have to admit, it tasted ten times as good as normal because she made it for me.

My kids are a huge blessing to me. I’ve often apologized for not being able to do more things, for not being able to keep up—but they just tell me, “It’s not your fault you’re sick. We love you.”

SO, this is a blog shout-out to my kids. I know it’s not easy living with a mom who gets worn out unexpectedly, who tells you to take a bath whenever we’ve been out in public (to protect us from germs I can’t fight), who won’t let you go certain places because you might get exposed to things—and most painful, who can’t hug you when you are sick. I know it’s a drag when I can’t run off to the park when it’s pretty out because my energy is already spent by noon. Or play games as often. Or, well, fill in your blank.

I hope you know how much I love and appreciate you both. How blessed I am to have you both in my life. I thank the Lord he gave you to me.

Psalm 173: 3-5 Children are a heritage from the Lord,offspring a reward from him.Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are children born in one’s youth. Blessed is the man (woman) whose quiver is full of them. (full text here)


  1. Shawna Lee
    Aug 16, 2012

    This post brought me to tears. I have suffered with chronic illness for many years, but this year has been the worst as I, too, have finally received my CVID diagnosis. Infusion weeks are particularly awful as I always have slight reactions, and my children always step up. We are blessed indeed!

    • akmcgowan
      Aug 16, 2012

      Hi Shawna,
      Sorry you are having reactions. I’m glad they aren’t serious ones, I’ve heard of some pretty tough stories. I do SubQ. Had my 30th infusion last night. I’ve weaned off Benedryl over the past month, and my body seems to be stepping up gradually. I keep waiting for the burst of energy that some have–hasn’t happened yet, but I’m 50% better today than I was last year at this time, so I’ll take it! I’m so glad you have your diagnosis! What a long time that takes–there’s that relief and then the fear and then the relief again as you form a plan. Take heart and don’t lose hope. I pray you continue to do better and better! Blessings, April

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