She goes home in 5 days. The next time she comes it will be to stay. I am looking forward to taking her back and dreading the separation all the same. Today was a bit more sanity-grasping. I’m still tired, but I feel like there’s still some functionality I can squeeze out.
5. Sometimes God allows you to see someone else’s reality check and allows you to be blessed by the observation.
Grammy came to visit. Bless her heart. She came with a photo album and high expectations of being grandma. I so wish she could’ve had the experience she dreamed about.
Instead, Grammy got a serious reality check. Hope avoided her like the plague. She was impulsive during the visit. She ignored her at various stages, she was a little obnoxious. She chattered nearly the entire time. She was as polite as my scared little biting hila monster could be, under the circumstances.
After the last week and a half, I deemed the visit actually successful because I know what could’ve happened. I was happy and proud that my girl kept it together a bit—not one meltdown. Given where we are and how we’re doing, there wasn’t even a single meltdown. Really it was an act of God.
Grammy was stunned that Hope’s behavior could be deemed a success. After she left she was like, “You guys (my sisters and me) weren’t like that. I don’t think I could stand for that behavior.”
Ah, welcome to my world. I’ve been trying to tell her what it’s like. She wasn’t buying it. She told me what I needed to work on with Hope, in her opinion. I told her which things were mountains and which things were parking lots on her list—which was mostly parking lots. I’m trying really hard not to die in a parking lot; dying trudging up mountains is good; parking lots are a waste of time. I’ve recently died in several parking lots—it is not worth it.
I think she gets it now; or at least she gets some of it. I got some validation that yeah, I’ve got a lot going on in Casa ABM. It ain’t easy.
I needed that validation, and I really needed it from Grammy whom I adore, but if you read this blog regularly, you know that Grammy can get on my nerves something terrible. Hearing her acknowledge that things aren’t as she thought they would be or that I’m good mom trying to do right meant the world to me.
4. Bedtime is a mountain I am willing to die on.
The exhaustion, now more from walking on eggshells all day, is so absurd that I am insistent about the 10pm shutdown. Anything later will render me nearly incapacitated and will only guarantee that we will have blowups because the battery is just too low for me to have any patience control. The latest power struggle was adhering to bedtime. I repeatedly told her I loved her every time I told her she had to go to bed NOW.
I felt like Dr. Suess: You can go to bed in your clothes, you can go to bed without meds, you can go to bed with socks, you can go to bed on the couch, on the floor, at the jamb of the door. Oh, but please believe these lights are out now!!! Now dammit, now.
I filled her humidifier. Clicked out the lights and strolled to my bedroom, while she sat on the couch in the dark. Took homegirl about 3 minutes to realize that she wasn’t about that couch surfing life and got ready for bed. Got her water, refilled the water carafe, took her meds and cutoff her own light. I went in to kiss her goodnight afterward.
This was such a major win today. We won—both of us.
3. She’s terrified, and I wish there was a magic thing I could say or do to make it better.
But there isn’t a magic thing. We will go through this cycle for a good long while. I have no idea how I’m going to get this dissertation written. It’ll get done, but I really don’t know how.
Last night Hope confided a lot of her fears about moving. At one point she said she didn’t want to live the rest of her life here, but she was afraid if she didn’t move here she wouldn’t have a family. She wondered if giving this chance up and remaining in the system was a worthwhile choice/risk for her. It was heartbreaking. I honestly can’t imagine what it all must feel like for her.
I love her so much, even when she is being a first class hellion. I’m moving into that space where I can try to take a moment to just breathe and remember how she got to this moment. That’s got to be what brings me back to how best to handle things.
2. I have a wonderful primary care doc who managed to help both of us today.
As I was going in for some “please scrape me off of the ceiling” medication this morning, Hope became afflicted with one of her now infamous maladies—the trusty sudden ear infection that also prevents swallowing. She informed me and everyone who would listen that she hadn’t swallowed at all during the 7 mile drive to the doc’s office.
Blessed be, doc had a medical student in the office today for shadowing. Hope got the full service treatment by the med student while I begged like my life depended on it for anti-anxiety/anti-depression/anti-keep-me-from-losing-my-mind drugs. Then she got a second once over by doc, who diagnosed her ear infection free, though she does have TMJ and some repetitive stress in her wrist from gaming. Round the clock ibuprofen…awesome.
I knew she was doing it for attention. She was busted but the TMJ diagnosis gave her a little cover to save face on.
She had another sudden onset this evening, and after I put on my shoes and grabbed my coat to head to the ER to see about this chronic issue she slipped, again, into some kind of remission. I’m sure it will be back. I was just glad that my doc did and said all the things I needed him to say for me and for her. It was a good experience all around.
And yes, I got some short term drugs and we’ll reevaluate my pharma needs after her official placement in a few weeks. Blessed be.
1. This will power me through some tough days ahead.
She handed this to me at the end of lunch yesterday. I nearly cried. I have put it with my important papers and prized possessions. It is why I’ve popped my pills, put on my pjs and committed to doing it all over again tomorrow. I’m not sure what else I want or need to say about it.
February 4th, 2018 at 5:00 pm
I love the final point so, so much. How wonderful. I am truly in awe of you both and how quickly you and Hope formed a mother-daughter bond. It must have been so hard to have the #3 conversation but clearly she felt an incredible amount of safety with you, and clearly you gave her the space she needed to work through that.
You need to write a book.