[Disclaimer: I wrote this post in the early morning quiet, before any of my children woke up. I nearly didn’t post it after a particular child came downstairs, complained bitterly about everything, threw herself around the kitchen doing a poor job on her chore, fussed about the available food for lunch, and basically soured the morning for everyone. Then I thought, “Well, at least I felt hopeful and happy for a little while this morning!” Sometimes we have to dig deep to find hope and happiness]
It is early Tuesday morning, Valentine’s Day. I came downstairs at 5:30 to finish making a blueberry coffee cake that I want to have ready when the older boys start rolling into the kitchen. The coffee is made. A small pot of chai tea is brewing. On the counter sits a basket filled with bags of little treats for the kids.
As I was oh-so-quietly working in the kitchen (so as not to wake any young children), I was struck by the thought that we are no longer just surviving. It feels as if we are really living again. For over four years, we simply survived. Our lives revolved around the constant struggles and striving toward healing. Here we are at four years and nine months since Dimples joined our family, and we are finding some balance.
That is not to say that life is easy. There are daily challenges, regular appointments, and the need for a team of people who care for Dimples and provide respite for us. Russ and I use therapeutic techniques we’ve learned and have nearly daily discussions about how we handled something – and what might have worked better. We work especially hard to “give voice” to our other children.
But, there is a little more room to breathe than there has been these past years. Perhaps because we are getting better at recognizing our limitations and accepting the need for the changes we’ve made. Dimples has also made great strides toward healing and self-regulation. How quickly we forget to be thankful for progress!
Even as I write this, I know that we have a four-day school break coming up and my stomach hurts when I think of it. Try as I might, I can’t always stay ahead of each and every day that I need to plan for Dimples. It could be a complete disaster, but hopefully there will be friends to play with, places to go, and the days will pass by without huge problems.
For those of you who are still in survival mode, hold on. It may take much longer than you want it to, but press on, pray, get professional help, recruit a team of friends to hold you up, get respite, and take care of yourself.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friends. I hope you have lots of love in your life today, and most of all, I hope you know the love of Jesus, who loves you with an everlasting love.
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This post may contain Amazon Affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.