Jack has had a hard couple of days. Or rather, the staff has had a hard time knowing what to do to help Jack. This is something I expected. He is pushing to see where the boundaries lie. He is also making his needs known. Jack needs constant input. This is one of the primary reasons we could not effectively care for him at home. Complacency with Jack will lead to no place good. One always must be at attention, preemptively heading off behaviors with a steady sensory diet and a basically exhausting daily schedule.
They asked me for ideas. I gave them a whole bunch. They said they will try all of them. God bless them.
Meanwhile at home, it’s the last full day of school. Summer is here. I feel no panic, as I have continuously felt all the previous summers. It feels a little like being released from some form of confinement. I do not mean to imply that life with Jack was a prison. It wasn’t, but it was highly regimented and, due to the nature of his disabilities, extremely limiting. And stressful.
Suddenly, summer is my oyster. We can do anything we want. The pressure that pushed at me from all sides for so long is gone. I can make a choice and then do that thing.
What does one do with this sort of freedom?
Also, what do I do with this feeling that because I’m not always in a heightened state of anxiety, I’m not doing enough?
The new normal isn’t normal yet.
One of my friends had a dream about my family a few days ago. I asked her if she would tell me about it because people who read my life’s saga know that I straight up believe that some dreams have a divine origin and a revelatory purpose. My own life and dreams have taught me this.
This is what she said:
It wasn’t a very long dream. I was walking with a lady. She was someone close to you and she knew the concerns of your heart. I knew that without her telling me that. We were communicating without talking. I don’t really know how to explain it all. Sometimes dreams are hard to put into words. We were walking on a raised wooden platform. This lady knew I had been thinking about you and she reassured me that everything was the way it should be and that there was no need to worry—it was a calm reassurance. It was almost like she was a “guide” assigned to you and she knew you as well as you know yourself. I’m not even sure why I dreamt that. I haven’t thought of you for a couple of days, the last time was when I read your blog. The first thing I thought of when I woke up was that dream. It was a simple dream but I felt a lot of peace and reassurance. The lady and I agreed that Jack was where he should be (not that any of that is my business, I know).
When I read her words, I felt like electrical impulses were running up and down my spine. I was awash in gratitude for this astonishing perspective from someone I know, but haven’t seen or talked to in quite some time, who is just good. Her goodness, I believe, let her be a messenger of peace for Jeff and me during this hard, emotional week.
While I struggle with my own sadness and with the loss I feel, I have never once felt that Jack is in the wrong place. When I think of his house in his new town, I feel a sense of complete rightness. My friend’s dream reassured us, as well as her.
I am also deeply touched thinking that I have a woman guide or guardian angel. I have sensed the presence, these last few weeks, of some of my female ancestors, simply being with me and lending strength. The thought of the women in my family who preceded me in their earthly sojourns, now being present and giving me support and encouragement is beautiful and miraculous. It makes me feel loved—stronger because of their love.