Life, Parenting

Fall with Me

Well, it’s a Monday morning, the coffee is plentiful and the weather is gorgeous. My mood needs to catch up on it a bit, though. Even the idea of Pumpkin EVERYTHING isn’t really helping at this point.

pumpkin spice

We just got home from the dentist where Mady stubbornly refused to open her mouth and after four attempts we had to just call it quits so the dentist could move on.
Sammy handled her appointment like a champ, whimpering a little here and there but all in all, doing very well. The appointment was wrapped up with us discussing extractions to help Sammy with overcrowding since that will, no doubt, be an issue. But he promised that we could hold off on that for a while. Thank God for small favors.
Mady had one of her epic meltdowns in the parking lot due to not being able to pick out a prize. But, she was warned continually by myself and the dental assistant that if she didn’t open her mouth and get her tooth fixed, she wouldn’t be able to pick her prize out. I knew it was coming and rushed her out of the office before it could happen with that many witnesses. And it lasted…all the way home. That’s a 35 minute drive complete with screaming, feet kicking my seat and crying.

If anyone is thinking “that’s not normal behavior”…trust me. I know.

The Hubs and I will be having our second appointment with a Sanford Psychologist in September to discuss Mady’s behaviors which have been diagnosed as anxiety. That was a hard one to chew when it came up. I knew something was off. There were red flags all over the place and having gone to college and studied special needs, I know red flags when I see them. Her tantrums were becoming violent and I was often on the receiving end of that violence – getting clawed, punched, slapped. As a care provider for other children, I seem to have no problem recognizing when a child is struggling, stepping in to assess the situation and bring it back down to a calm place. When it comes to my own child…I have no clue what the hell I’m doing. So I called in the big guns.

Generalized anxiety disorder. My three year old is dealing with anxiety. And the more I started talking about it, the more I started realizing there had been indicators all over the place – her need to go through a step by step process when I’m leaving the house (kiss, kiss, big hug, wave, love you mom, love you too peanut, her need to control situations and the fact that when she can’t control them is usually when those tantrums pop up, her questioning everything repeatedly and on a daily basis like asking if our dog is a boy…ten times in a row…and getting answers every time that are the same but still asking over and over again.

The weekend after she was diagnosed and we scheduled our first appointment to start PCIT (Parent Child Interaction Therapy) we went to see Travis and Molly and spend the weekend. Both Travis and Molly are educators and when I talked to Molly about it, she started pointing things out too. For some reason, having her point things out and talk to me about it made me feel more calm about the entire thing.

Mady had taken a nap the second afternoon we were there and when she woke up, Travis, the Hubs and I were out fishing. She went to Molly and asked where everyone was. One by one. She asked where mommy was, where daddy was, where Travis was, where each of their boys were, where the dogs were. Everyone individually.

So now that I understand it better, it’s made it a little easier to notice triggers and either avoid them or head them off before they become a problem. It’s the tantrums though…once she’s in them, there’s no calming her down. Well, that’s not entirely true. There is one small window of opportunity and it has to be hit just right or the tantrum only gets worse. When her tone switched even the slightest bit, that’s when I open my arms, she walks into them, and we work towards calming her down. No talking…just rocking and rubbing her back until she’s in a better place to discuss what she’s so mad about.

To be very honest….this doesn’t always happen. Like on a day when we’re on tantrum numbers six and I’m officially at the point of having zero patience for any more. We haven’t had a day like that in a LONG time. Or today when she was screaming in the car and instead of ignoring it, I acknowledged it and pointed out that she had been told multiple times that if she didn’t cooperate and get her cavity taken care of, she wouldn’t get her prize. That…didn’t help matters at all.
She did eventually calm down and we talked about it but man…if I could avoid those tantrums at all costs…I’d love to know a way to do so because they’re exhausting for everyone involved.

Another thing weighing me down is the house. We talked to a realtor who went through the house and gave us a list price which was 5k above where we put it. But when touring the house all the work we’ve put into the basement is already nearly a total loss. There’s a lot of moisture in the basement and lately there has been a lot of rain. So all of the newly hung sheet rock and the three sheets of it we had sitting against the wall have spores on them. We’ll have to start over, get a dehumidifier down there and I have no idea how that’s going to happen. The Hubs was off work due to material being delivered wrong and no jobs lined up. As nice as it was to have him home and as much as he accomplished in the two and a half weeks he wasn’t working…that’s still two and a half weeks so there goes a paycheck which really puts us in between a rock and a hard place when it comes to fixing everything that needs to be fixed to get our house sold and get out from under it. 
I looked at my statistics for my job hunting the other day. I have sent my resume to 70 different companies…72 including the two I applied to last night. In the wake of these 70 resumes being sent, I’ve had four interviews, six rejection letters and four letters stating that my resume was received. Everyone’s looking for employees and yet I can’t seem to get hired. Obviously, its not for lack of trying.
This would be one of those times I’m finding it extremely difficult to find optimism. But I heard something the other day that made me realize that I don’t always have to be optimistic. Especially when faced with all of this and just trying everyday to get by on what we have. It was the sermon at church yesterday. We had gone to see our new nephew get baptised and the pastor talked about situations like this in his sermon.

I’ve heard a lot of Give it up to God, Jesus take the wheel, Let go, Let God. But yesterday I heard a different take on it…and I liked it. I never have an easy time just letting go of my problems and asking someone to help me or take care of them because it’s become too much. They still haunt me, I still agonize over them daily and struggle with.

This pastor said when your life is crumbling, when finances are overwhelming, when relationships are tested, and things just aren’t working out…ask Jesus to fall with you. It struck a chord with me. And being that I was trying to deal with a three year old climbing all over me and yammering away the entire service…I think it was a sign that I was supposed to hear it if that’s the ONE thing I was able to pick out of the entire sermon while serving one of my many motherly duties…being a human jungle gym.

So I did that. I sent up a prayer and said “Just hang out with me while I fall through all of this because I don’t know if or when it will end. So if you could just…be here with me while I fall and help me hold onto my faith while I do so….that would be awesome.”

That’s my takeaway from this whole rambling blog post. You can see that there are some daily struggles….that life isn’t really working out the way I may have imagined it when I was younger and filled with all of these grandiose ideas.
Never hurts to recognize when you’re falling though, and just ask someone to be there with you.

3 thoughts on “Fall with Me”

  1. Mama, you are amazeballs, always. You’re going to make it. I know you are. I’m so glad and proud and happy and just overwhelmed that you’ve been able to get answers for what Mady’s going through, and hopefully help her before it becomes damaging the way it did for Arek. Your family is going to be just fine, because they have you, and you’re not the giving up kind. Even if you fall, you’re going to land on your feet.
    (((hugs)))

  2. I cannot believe I stumbled onto your blog. Yesterday I had just wrote about falling, with my daughter. She is recovering from an illness and the devotional I was reading yesterday had Ecclesiastes 4:9-10
    9 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!

    I’m guessing that was the same scripture the sermon was about. God bless your daughter. I am a nurse and when my daughter came down with her Illness, I had to have the doctors tell me in “normal people terms” instead of using medical terminology everything that was happening. I was thinking today that if it would have been my patient, and not my daughter, maybe I would be able to understand it better.

    Jesus has your world in his hands and He is the best one to fall with you because he will always be there to help you up. Praying for your family!

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