Carry On

I’m going to be really honest.

It may sound a little angry, although I truly do not intend it that way.

If it makes you uncomfortable, I’m sorry. Now is your chance to back away slowly. Go ahead and close this window and carry on, darlings.

We have been in turmoil for the last month, scraping along every day with wild and destructive behaviors ruling the house and everyone’s lives. We’ve been in survival mode, even more than we typically are.

Last weekend, things hit a new low when Jack attacked me and his siblings, threw my iPad across the room (shattered it), and bashed his head repeatedly on the floor every time he went to time out.

It really isn’t sustainable to have your ten-year-old hurting people.

It’s possibly the most painful, helpless feeling to watch your son slam his head on the wood floor of his room. I don’t recommend it.

So we suffered through yet another holiday when the blessed structure of school was absent and nobody at the psychiatrist’s office was working.

You guys, holidays really kill the autism family.

There is no holiday from developmental disabilities. School breaks for a family like mine do not equal beach vacations or ski trips. They just suck everything out of moms and dads who have to hold it all together.

You can still back away slowly. That option absolutely remains. No judgment here.

Anyway, I hit a new low yesterday, when hope dried up and I wanted to get in my bed and never get out. I told Dutch that all the advice that one hears about taking control and making positive changes in one’s life does not apply when you have a kid with serious mental and behavioral issues.

Decide what you want to happen in your life. Set small, realistic goals which will ensure that you achieve it.

Sorry, but this total crap when my dream is simply to have Jack stable enough to ride in a car again without hurting people and causing car accidents. I can set all the goals I want, but they won’t change Jack’s disability, his sensory issues, his non-verbal state.

Step back from people in your life who are negative, toxic, or overly demanding. Learn to say ‘no’ more frequently.”

*buries head in hands and sighs*

It doesn’t work like that when the person having destructive periods of psychosis is ten and you are his mom.

Visualize your goals. Picture yourself accomplishing them.

Okay, stop it now. Please. When I envision a home free from violent outbursts and broken electronics, Code Browns and pee-soaked bedding being tossed by Jack from his window into the backyard, I feel sad, not empowered. It emphasizes the discrepancy between us and the families who ski and go to movies and drive in the car without someone trying to scratch their eyes out. Visualization is powerful, but it has it’s limitations.

I spoke to the psychiatrist this morning and we have a new plan that has rekindled my hope. Jack was happy when he woke up and he went to school eagerly and without drama. I’m not despairing.

And yet ultimately, I can’t magically make Jack better.

I am staying thankful and hopeful, but I’m highly attuned to the true fact that some things simply are.

Some things are what they are, and no amount of positive thinking or gratitude journaling will fix them. It’s just life. Welcome to mortality.

Breathe deeply and carry on.





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