We have had a huge amount of family drama lately. Not that we need anymore drama in our house...lol. It's kind of like an off-Broadway, Vaudeville mix on a daily basis.
But as I was sitting here and thinking about things, I have decided that I need to stop worrying so much about certain people. They make their choices whether or not they want to be in our lives. We cannot force them. Who knows, maybe they are uncomfortable with our type of special needs and all the unknown and fog that we walk through daily. Maybe they just don't know what to say or how to act when around us. Maybe they are co-dependent and think we have to be in constant contact.
I love our little family. I try to keep smiles up constantly, but my true friends and hubby know how worn down daily life makes me. It affects my health. Many families with special needs children have parents that have stress induced illnesses. So I know many of you out there understand the daily struggle to get through the day, even when you are not feeling good at all and plain don't want to get out of bed. Life still has to go on. Kids need fed, appointments must be kept and tantrums/meltdowns are had.
I say I wouldn't change anything, but let's be honest. If I could change some of the struggles that all of our children face on a daily basis....I would. Any parent would so their children would not have any pain either physically or mentally.
But yet I wouldn't want to change Joey's 'Class Clown' personality. He just wants people around him to be happy. Even after he struggles through a manic episode or impulse issue, he still wants to make sure someone around him is happy. He is always willing to help.
I would wish Brayden would stop obsessing over so much processed foods, but hey he is opening up more to natural foods. He eats baked chicken (as long as it has bones), certain veggies (both canned and cooked fresh--such as carrots). He too tries to help so much. He tries to help so much that Joe could drown in the amount of canned soda he keeps bringing Daddy to make sure he doesn't get thirsty. He has so much love, and doesn't know how to express it. He gives hugs, and his beautiful hazel eyes and those huge eyelashes that he has just melts your heart.
Lydia is so headstrong. She wants to be a teenager, and yet still a little princess girl. She can make me so frustrated that I scream into pillows at the top of my lungs. And then she tries to help do something so little that I forget why I am truly upset with her. And for someone who wants to be a teenager sooooo bad and move to Canada to meet Justin Bieber, she sure likes to cuddle up on the couch and read American Girl Books and watch Shirley Temple movies.
Caty is following along as a 'mini-Joey'. She has this little pucker she does when I am leaving. She licks her lips before she kisses me goodbye, because "Dry kisses are not as nice!" she says. I don't know where she got that...but it's so cute!
My hubby Joe puts up with the kids and me both. Some days the stress just about kills me and I rant at him, and he reminds me...hey you are not mad at me take some breaths. And then he says "You look like you could use a hug." He lets me rant to get it out of my system. He doesn't rant, not much. I don't know how he keeps it all inside. But he always checks how I am feeling, even though he knows what the answer will be. I sometimes forget to take the time to do that with him. To be honest, I can see why so many marriages fail when there are kids with autism. But we work together and that is the key....we have to work together.
It's time to sit back and regroup...focus on just our family, their needs and how we can support each other. What does each one of our family members need, and that includes Joe and myself. Because we have to remain a team to make it through each day. Two are strong together, but having God on our side makes us even stronger.
I think that will be the goal this weekend. Time gets away and goes by so fast.
It's so frustrating on most days to see the struggles Joey faces, even though he doesn't even understand that he is struggling. Same for Brayden. Lydia is so headstrong and bold, you can barely see her frustrations and her inability to understand all that goes on around her. And some days she tries to be such the big girl and "help" us out. Not realizing how much "help" she still needs. And then poor Caty, coming up at the end of the train. Wanting to be a big girl, but gets overwhelmed at leaving "babyhood" behind. (definitely sensory issues).
Joe and I sit back and try to understand and make sense of the madness that we call our life. 14 years we have been tag teaming and some days we get so worn down. But we have to keep a mindset of a rubber ball. Someone may punch us down and try to let the air out...but as long as we have each other we can bounce back up high....and we'll always be full of hot air ;)
So let people or family say what they may about us. We know who truly love us, and we know who are true family members are. They are always there to support us. Because that is what family does, whether you are related by blood or not. That is what we try to instill in our kids, and will continue instilling in them.
Please everyone, take a few moments and remember those around you who love you and care about you. Show them that you appreciate it and how much they mean to you.