Thursday, August 22, 2013

Friday Ramblings

As I write this, we are three and one-half days into the school year.

I'm pretty sure it's time for Thanksgiving Break.

Could I maybe talk about overwhelm for a little bit?
I think we can all relate in one form or another regarding this topic, and while I risk feeling whiney and like I'm complaining, it really helps to write it out.
So, I'm sorting and wrestling with myself. Not whining. 
Cause Lord knows we all have things we are facing down right now.

Sometimes I wonder if the truly exhausting part of our lives is the radical switching of gears. -Brene Brown

I read this in Brene's Blog this evening and it HIT HOME.
I wish I had read this about 15 years ago. But it's here now and I'm rejoicing that someone GETS IT!

I have always dreaded the beginning of school for normal reasons. I don't like having my summer, lazy, going to the beach and pool days taken hostage by get up, get out the door, do homework days.
When you add a child with special needs, it kinda ups the ante. It's funny, but it's gotten worse as Brenna has gotten older. I seem caught in a fifth dimension. Toward the end of summer, the days are hard because we navigate B's social activities. We navigate ALL her activities, because if we didn't, she would default to sitting all day in front of 
the t.v. for eight hours. I dread school because the activities are ramped up, the learning curve gets steeper and time seems even shorter during the day. 
Here comes the I'm not whining part, but really sorting and wrestling.

all photos courtesy of Brenna this week.

Brenna adores school. She especially adores it this year as she is a Senior and has full reign in the Senior Hallway. She is "manager" for the tennis team. She is taking speech, art, Bible and T.A's in the front office. Plus, there is a whole new group of exchange students from China for her to fall in love with.
So, SO cool.

The minute details to manage this are what get me waving the white flag and make me think I'm slowly loosing my mind. Because, if it's so stinking cool, why am I not writing this post like life is all sunshine and flowers? 

I have tossed two posts so far after this point. I have written out all the minute details of what is involved managing her school and extra curricular activities. I will also spare you the griping, caustic post about quizzes that need to be modified or just tossed out.

But here's the deal.
I can't do it alone. 
This is something I hit all the time. It's this big brick wall that leaves me with a huge knot on my head every stinking time, because I keep coming back to it and banging my head on it and seeing if it helps. 
(It doesn't.)
At least by now I'm coming to a little sooner and I don't hit my head quite so many times before I realize what I'm doing.

I have been a little more gentle with myself.
I changed my alarm clock.
I am adding nothing else to this week.
I played in my art room.
One day I ate lunch and watched an episode of Malcom In The Middle and laughed so hard I almost spit out what I was eating.
I've enjoyed these things and when it's time to get Brenna, I focus on that and how we can enjoy the rest of the day together.
I've spent more time remembering to pray throughout the day-"beggy prayers" as Anne Lamott calls them. The kind that are said in the bathroom stall.

It seriously is a daily, minute by minute process to let go of what I cannot do/control/manage/figure out. To turn myself to an "open-hand" mindset is very difficult. It is difficult to even write that sentence. It makes me somewhat nauseated to think I can't figure everything out regarding my child. I've been given this responsibility, so it stands to reason I need to know how to deal with it all.
(enter panic)

Oh, wait. 
Asking for help is good.
Remembering that I don't know everything is even better.
I'm not still in a family that keeps secrets.
I'm not less-than when I ask/let others in to help me.
Old habits die hard.

I can't say I have any great epiphany to leave with you this Friday.
Just the simple stuff.
You are loved.
You have done far more than you think you have.
Journaling helps and Beggy prayers go a long, long way.
And, thank you.
 For listening.


  1. You are not whiny, you are not sunshine and flowers, you are REAL. You are human and imperfectly beautiful and doing the best you know how to do. I am wife and caregiver to a handicapped husband and sometimes I wonder how I'll get thru another day. Oh but the Beggy prayers always help and are usually answered and I remember I was chosen. Be good to yourself and enjoy this school year. Your honesty is refreshing.

  2. I want to run over and hug you! You are one of the strongest people I know and I just wish you could see it for yourself. It is exhausting to be so strong in life. But your strength rubs off on us other moms just starting this journey. You help me keep going and fight the fight. Yep not every day is roses and sunshine...but when you have friends to text and lean on in those moments. Since you are spiritual, you have to know that God couldn't see one man doing it all alone, thus he gave him a friend and companion.
    It is hard to let go and have someone else step in. Especially when trust has been broken. We know our children best but sometimes it is others who get thru to them better than we ever could.
    I am all for letting it all out and not hiding our emotions, journaling is great but expressing and sharing it with others makes it real.
    Okay this is turning into a book, I will stop now. But know you are strong and if you need help scream, I will be there!!!.

  3. You had me from the quick change of gears part. I totally get that (Do I sound very California to you there?) I think she is spot on about the stress it causes to suddenly shift. That's where you are right now, and I can feel the jolt in your jalopy from the words in this post. I love the part about beggy prayers too.

    I know that as you head down the road of this school year, the bumps will be just a tiny bit less bumpy but still there nonetheless. Does it help at all for you to know that some invisible person in Georgia really and truly does think you rock as a mom?

    Because she really and truly DOES.