But, then today happened which just seemed to compact everything negative that we have been dealing with.
I mean, don't get me wrong, I LOVE the holidays—Thankgiving and Christmas are amazing! I am so thankful for these special holidays, but I also want them to just happen on a weekend... always.
Can we unite as a band of parents of children with special needs and move all major holidays to a weekend?!
Of course that is not feasible, I know, but during Thanksgiving I thought that Sister was going to have a mental and emotional breakdown which also led to mine... almost...
You can take a girl out of the routine, but you can't take the routine out of the girl.
School must happen when it is school time and anything more than one day out of school can cause major anxiety and control issues for our kids, especially Sister.
The breakdown starts long before the actual holiday because she knows it is coming.
We all barely held ourselves together during her 2 school days off.
Brother's 16th birthday was just before Thanksgiving and Sister's antics made it tough to actually enjoy his birthday. I was thankful that, at least, he had a party with his classmates and peer tutors that I got permission to double as his birthday party.
I even went to take some pictures:
Along with all of Sister's melt-down, I was now also reminded of how our son was 16 years old, but would not be doing the things other 16-year-olds would be doing... Sister made sure to remind us often that now Brother could drive! We would try to explain without making it uncomfortable for Brother but, because she was already in melt-down mode and hates to be wrong she would fall apart and in turn make Brother fall apart and he would then remind us that he can't drive.
I tried to stay positive on what he could do at 16 and decided that making popcorn should be one of the big steps he could take at this age so I bought him a, seemingly harmless, hot air popper. I taught him how to use it and he was so excited that he wouldn't have to rely on my to make it in the pan or suffer through the microwave stuff. I guess we should have let him have a test drive before he was on his own because he ended up melting it... I didn't even know that was possible:
Thankfully it still works, we just have to make sure that he has learned to not wait for the very last kernel to fall out and just turn it off when it's basically done.
I breaks my heart. Turning 16 is supposed to be such an exciting time in a teenager's life, especially in the Mormon religion where we are admonished to wait to date until age 16... that isn't even something I really anticipate Brother to do.
So, in a way, this big day of turning 16 only meant some heartache for us as his parents... he couldn't even pop his own popcorn without supervision... sigh.
We made it through Thanksgiving with a great spread by Marc's mom and Sister made it through fairly OK.
|The turkey cheese ball Marc's mom made... yummy!|
|She had the table set up so nicely|
|And the turkey was worth a picture|
As soon as Thanksgiving break was over I clumsily assumed that Sister would be back to "normal" but she only went into high alert mode knowing that know Christmas break was coming up and that was 2 weeks... Heaven help me!
This last 3 weeks have been h-e-l-l (sorry, I tried to spell it out so as not to offend anyone, but there is just no way to explain what it is other than that). Sister is completely melted and lashing out (emotionally and physically) on us about all the things wrong with the world because she won't have school and her schedule will be knocked out of whack.
On top of this, two weeks ago, I finally made it into a specialist to look at my foot. You know, the one I hurt when I decided to jump a curb on my bike... ? Anyway, I found out I broke a bone in my foot and after 3 moths it is still broken. It's a bone that can take up to a year to heal... and today I went in for my two-week check-up and he told me I can't rock climb or ice climb and he gave me a boot to wear because the insert I am wearing in my shoe isn't quite cutting it.
I just got over my back issues and was so happy to start climbing and getting into awesome adventures!!! How could I possibly be injured again?!
NO!!! (I yell as I shake my fist to the heavens.)
On the bright side, I feel pretty tough for having done all those things the last 3 months on a broken foot, but I'm also mad because I just delayed my healing by 3 months...
Can I cry now?
That's where I was feeling at about 2:00 today.
It didn't seem to get any better when I took Brother to his choir concert practice today after school. He is so anxious about the whole thing, as he was in Junior High, but even more so because the high school experience is a whole new ballgame. In getting him there he yelled and screamed at me consistently and then ended with some pushing and hitting before he willingly walked in and joined the group. I knew I needed to have him attend the practice so he wouldn't be so scared for tonight because I wouldn't be there, I would be at my play, but I wanted to make it a bit easier on Marc, who would be taking him.
After I collected my emotions and kept myself from breaking down into a pool of tears, I sat and listened to them singing "Angels We Have Heard on High." It was beautiful and touched my heart, reminding me how grateful I am for my Savior. I know he can help me through these tough times, but I forget and try to do it all alone. It's nice to have reminders of His love for me and for my family. I watched Brother sing "gloria" with vigor and excitement and knew that, even though this was hard, he was in the right place.
During this rush of emotions and realization I received a text from my brother, Daniel and found out that he and his family are coming home for Christmas!
I wanted to scream out right in the auditorium!
This time because I was happy and excited!
Where the Lord closes a door he opens a window.
Now Sister will have her cousins to help keep her happy through her long break from school.
Brother was still singing his heart out while I was realizing all of this and I couldn't help but feel joy and gratefulness in my heart for the hard things, and the great things in Our Life.
"God bless us, every one!"
-Tiny Tim in A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
Day 351 of 365 Days of Up