Changes

“Be the change that you wish to see in the world.” ― Mahatma Gandhi 

Sometimes I look at my life, my world, and I wonder how in the ever loving fawk I ended up where I am.

I love my family. I love them so much that it literally hurts at times because of the stress that I am under.

I had an ache deep in my chest most of yesterday. I spent most of the day crying, dealing with school and mental health for one of my children. I felt defeated all day. My child has a huge heart. My child means the world to me (all my children do). My child has broken my heart more times than I care to recount and has challenges that may never be solved.

Any parent of a high needs child can tell you that, as caregivers, it is often a thankless, stressful position to be in. You KNOW that they love you and you love them unconditionally, but their needs take precedence over so much of your life that other areas falter and fail. Burn out is common, exhaustion, stress born illnesses are common as well.

Changes are need – it’s hard. Oh gawd, I know it is hard. You HAVE to take time for YOU. No matter how infinitesimal, no matter what it is – you need to take that time and embrace it. No more guilt. Guilt is often a frequent emotion for parents.

I began knitting (again) as a form of ‘me’ time. I may not always get out of the house, but I can sit, watch Doctor Who, and knit and I feel at peace. It is my meditation, my time. It’s not a huge change, but change doesn’t always have to be! Baby steps.

Working towards a healthier me is also a step I have taken – eating healthier, going to bed earlier, getting more exercise. What seemed impossible just a few short months ago is so, so possible now! I’ve started to (FINALLY!) lose weigh after years of struggling, though I’ve had health challenges lately, in general that is improving too!

Make sure you have a support team – even if that is a team of one! You NEED someone. You can’t be the rock your child needs if you are crumbling to dust…Even mountains need a foundation to build on. I’m so fortunate that I have an amazing family network and friend network. There is ALWAYS someone I can talk to.

Let it out. Holding in that pain and hurt from your day will only make you feel worse and takes a toll on your health. It’s a hard lesson to learn, and I took the long way to learn it. I hold very little back anymore. It’s a change that I have learned with time.

Love yourself. This is one change that I am still struggling with. It is needed, and is probably one of the most difficult ones.

Let others help. Sometimes letting go is the most amazing thing you can do for your child. Allowing someone else to guide them is sometimes the most important thing that can happen. It sucks ass. As a parent, you want to be the ONE. That isn’t always possible.

I’m tired. I think that is all I have in me for today. If my advice helps even one parent of a special/high needs child than I am grateful and happy for it.

Peace all and remember to love yourself.

David Bowie – Changes

 

Regret

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

I’ve done many things in my life that have caused regret. I’ve been encumbered by my inability to act, by my inability to move past those days. I’ve been shackled by self-blame and self-hate.

It’s funny how a person can change as they age. Looking at myself as a 16 year old, I can see how carefree I was – unencumbered by life. I had issues, don’t get me wrong – but they were so minor compared to the rollercoaster of adulthood.

Regret can grip you tight and knot you up inside.

Regret.

I breathe in a great sigh.

I have wasted so much time on that one little six letter word…regret…

I am now 42 years old. I am enjoying knitting for the first time in my life (and getting creative with it). The pain and numbness of my hands does not stop me. I will not regret this. My daughter has the opportunity to go to Greece in her last year of high school…I will not regret that. My son shows more and more interest in computers and programing, I will no regret allowing him the screen-time to grow that interest. My youngest is slow to grow, but quick of mind – I will never regret nursing him as long as I have and I will never regret having him at my age.

I am learning to let go of regret. It’s a hard lesson, one that many do not heed, but it is a wonderful lesson. It is a lesson in self-love and self-acceptance.

I am learning to love myself…and that moves me past regret.

Ozzy Osbourne – Crazy Train