Wednesday, August 17, 2005

so i am turning over a big decision.........

It is ultimately in God's hands, though I sure could use some dedicated prayer on the matter.
Some of you may remember my post back in like Feb or so about being so TIRED. Just tired. It has been hardcore for us since January 04. I have been preparing and delivering and billing, etc. 115-120 meals a week, driving almost 3000 miles every 5-6 weeks, learning as much as I can about what is up with my girls, getting schooled on how to parent them, dealing with my grief, dh's grief (which until about 5 weeks ago looked a whole lot like anger/meanness which I took personally (of course! It's all about me right?), anyway, you get my drift. Yes, we have been blessed beyond measure and we are grateful beyond measure too. But brothers and sisters, I am TIRED and I simply cannot keep up the pace any longer. I started losing steam around the holidays, Abby's release from BI, their birthdays. Making a decision about what to do for Beans was very hard. Well the decision wasn't that bad, but realizing that one needed to be made was. I struggled through Jimmy's departure post Christmas to Aspen, but prevailed. But when he left again for V-day, upon his return I just broke down. I have never regained my momentum since. I cannot manage to get the most basic tasks accomplished. Things that require little more than my signature and a stamp or to be faxed, go undone. I can't remember anything, ANYTHING! And I am weary. I wake up every morning and immediately know I am already two hours behind for all that needs to get done. I can't get up any earlier. I can't stay up any later. A girl, even me, needs at least 3-4 hours of shut-eye a night. I long to spend time with my girls, but can't ever devote my full attention. My marriage needs to be nurtured. My spiritual life needs to be tended. I need to be tended.
I went to lunch with my friend yesterday, that in itself a novel concept, and we got to talking and it turns out that we are in the same place, with near identical struggles. Only the circumstances surrounding our woes are different. Well we had a great conversation. It was deep and very clarifying for me. I had been talking about what we hoped to achieve for the girls (a crash social skills course for kindergarten '06), a possible job change for Jimmy (please!), sell the house, move to the 'burbs, etc. . She asked me, "What do you, SUSAN, want in the next year?"
Without skipping a beat I said, "I want to stop with all the food. I want to take care of my family. I want to go a whole day without driving anywhere. I want to fold towels and read stories and snuggle. I want to eat at the table as a family. I want to be a wife. I want to be a mom." The tears were rolling down my face by the end. Not noisy sobby stuff, just my heart crying and the tears spilling over, KWIM?
But, I reasoned. It just wasn't possible. Financially, we need my income if we are to keep the girls in speech and have them at the preschool. So, I told her (and myself) it is just one more year. I just need to hold on until kindergarten...then, I'd get a break. We'd make it.
After lunch I picked Beans up and we headed over to the house where Abby was spending the day. The little boy is also on the spectrum (VERY mild) and his SLP/ABA therapist was at the house and she was working with him and Abby. Emma Jean asked to join and she was cool with that. She knows my girls, but had not seen them in months. She was blown away by their progress, language wise. She told me a lot of interesting things with a different perspective. I just kind of filed it away to chew on later. And we headed home.
Day turns into night, then night into day.
Jimmy and I had a long conversation this morning and I confessed my real exhaustion. I also confessed that my back had kept me from my clients for a week and it was the best week I've had in so long. It was such a pleasure to spend time with the girls, to keep up with my house, the bills. To wake up unoppressed by my "to do" list. As we talked, and agreed to pray on what needed to happen next, thoughts started coming together for me. And now here is what I need the prayer about:
When Emma Jean is released from ABA (hopefully by the New Year), if we did not enroll the girls in school, I could quit cooking. On Jimmy's current wage we could afford speech and a physical activity for each girl. I think I have the tools to design a little curriculum to keep us busy. I am pretty confident I can network with enough families who would be willing to set up weekly, purposeful playdates for social skills enrichment. We could even still afford a few social skills classes for the girls between now and fall '06. And that would be that. It has been such a relief to even consider that there is an alternative! There really wasn't before. We had to do what we've done. But I had resigned myself to more of the same and I was feeling pretty beaten down. What if this would work?
I have calls in and emails out to all the various professionals who work with the girls. If they do not think that the girls would lose ground or their future be compromised by us opting out of preschool, at least for now, then the desire of my heart is to opt out and "home school," of sorts.
I am looking forward to talking to Jimmy about this tonight and hearing back from the "calvary" (all the professionals we have in our minions...). I have already begun to put it before the Lord, but in a haphazard way. I will be on my knees tonight for sure. Would ya'll please help? I am asking for clear direction and for my faith to be enough to trust that He has the girls' well in his hands, and me. And our whole family.
Thanks ya'll.


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