Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The call to live in a hut!

I'm watching a show on Netflix about a family who visited El Salvador, the poorest parts, helping families in true poverty.

I am reminded of 3 major things.

1.) Even though we [my family and I] struggle, we are still extremely blessed.  Our struggles are no where near their struggles.  One El Salvadorian family on there had 14 children, but 4 have died.  One was 3 weeks old from malnutrition.  

2.) I am reminded of my own mission trip with my home church in Ohio to Honduras roughly 13 years ago.  We saw, encountered and felt so many of the same things as this family did while visiting.  It seems like only yesterday that I was there.


3.)  No matter how hard I have denied it these past 13 years, no matter how much I push it to the back of my mind, no matter how much I don't want to acknowledge the deep connection I felt in Honduras and how I did not want to board the plane to come back to "reality", no matter how hard I try, I can not escape the fact that I have felt and always feel called to live in that hut, to help these very people who have nothing.  And so many days I don't even know where to start now.

I realize how extremely blessed I am every.single.day when I sit down to a feast at my table.  Yet these people and many like them who have lost loved ones because of lack of food for weeks, still go without.  Sometimes I want to scream "stop the world!  Seriously, how CAN life go on for us when people, when 3 week babies, are dying because they have NOTHING and we have an overflow of food?

What can I do to help?  Where do I start?  I know Eric doesn't have the same calling in this sense, but I can not escape this growing yearning and uneasiness in me that I need to be doing something.

Something!  My heart is actually heavy tonight thinking these things, looking back at memories and old photos.  Something!

Monday, February 7, 2011

I want an answer!

Call me a geek but there are times that certain movie or TV lines can resonate what I feel, think or believe on a something.  The X-Files, when it was on TV, was one of my all time favorite shows.  I remember one episode where Mulder was frustrated after his many attempts, and many dead ends.  He demanded:  "I want an answer!"  To which the reply was from some obscure character, "There are no answers for you."

I hate that!  I hate not having answers to something that I have to assign a reason too.  Especially when it involves my children.  I go over this all the time, talk about a lot, and no matter how many times I do, or how many times someone says "It's not your fault" or "It's the past anyway, no matter what", I still have to re-visit it.  I want an answer!

I had a short conversation with the principal of David's school and my place of employement.  David has been having a rough time with the fire drills and just did not want to eat lunch without me, or scarce wanted to leave my site.  Sharon was wonderful at showing compassion to myself and to David and ate lunch with him one day.  Sharon shared with me that she was amazed at the development of his language skills and felt that he will be fine and with help work through all of this.  I love that she took the time to eat lunch with him and to reassure him and make him feel safe.

The part I hate?  The part that I want answers too, is why?  Why did and why does David have to face challenges.  I am so thankful that the challenges may not be so severe as others, but never the less, they are his struggles.  And those struggles do break my heart.

I want to know exactly what I did wrong, in my pregnancy, in his early days, months and even years.  And yes, I have "theories".  There are a select few things that I could have been more educated on with David that I chose to ignore at the time.  Thankfully I learned better and did better with Aaron.  What's that Maya Angelou quote?  I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better." 

The part that makes it even worse is that I knew in my gut when David was 6 months old, things had changed almost over night after a trigger.  He wasn't "on target" and something was going on.  I felt it so strongly.  And though people reassured me over the next TWO years that he would do this, and he would do that in his own time, he never really did.  I knew it was time to reach out.  Of course with the languge and cognitive skills he did grow and learn, but with help.  It wasn't a "normal development".  I am thankful for that help though.  And then with his Sensory Processing Disorder, I KNEW something was amiss in him.  And it wasn't until I really began seeking, searching and asking questions that I began to understand and with a wonder OT named Geni at his school, found out about the SPD.

And lately I have that same "in the pit of my stomach, nagging, sick feeling" that something is still going on.  And with that the questions come over again.  Why?  What did I do?  What could I have done differently?  I WANT ANSWERS!   So goes another path.  On the quest to begin getting answers.  Sometimes it's hard though when you're not sure where to start!

What's the other quote?  The journey of a thousand miles begins with....one....step.   One step, one at a time, on this journey together.

I write about my children a lot.  And often it is in seriousness.  It's just a part of our lives.  But there are fantastic times too, many fantastic times.  Another blessing I am thankful for! 

I'll write about the fantastic times too, but more than one blog post a night might be a bit annoying ;) 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I do what I feel led to do.

It's been a long, stressful 3 days for us.  One of those times where you are so tired and so drained that you just want to fall into bed, into oblivion for hours and hours and hours.  Not because work has tired us out, or life has been busy.  Instead I am emotionally drained as I watch David cope with his anxiety and try to pinpoint what else could be going on with him.

Thank God I have people at my work, whom I would consider close enough friends to cry in front of [like I did today, and have in the past] to share my concerns, fears and frustrations.  And to know they may not always agree, but they understand a mother's heart.

I completely understand the side of the coin where people think it is better to help children learn to face their fears, even if it means some days/weeks/months of "uncomfortability".  I really DO understand that.

On the flip side, I am not that parent.  Instead I am the parent who follows my child's cues as another good friend pointed out [Thank you Shari!].  When I KNOW in my heart that either of my children are not ready to face a fear, and when facing that fear means deepening an anxiety rather than helping to heal it....I WILL pull them away from the fear until such a time that they are ready to hear/understand/begin to rationalize and know that the fear can be controlled.

I myself have some deep fears and let me say, that if someone forced me to face those fears [on in particular that I am thinking of], it would only worsen and and in addition create a resentment towards those pushing it.  I don't expect anything out of my children that I do not expect or do myself.

I can not watch my children suffer and not cry, not reach out to them, not comfort them.  It is not in my nature to do that.  I am not wired that way, I do not parent that way, I will not parent that way.

'Tis true the old saying "to each their own" and such is the case now.  People can tell me I spoil them, I baby them too much, they need better discipline and they surely have the right to believe that.

But I will continue to follow my heart and my children's cues and travel this road right along with them, hand in hand.  Not in front as if I'm "training" them, nor behind them were they can get too far out of my "sight" for me to feel anything.  But beside them as my child, as a fellow human being in need of the same love and comfort that I desire.  

It works for us :)