Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Little Treasures

 These two girls plus their older sister are possibly the best gift God has given to me.  If you'd asked me when I was younger, I would have said, the best gift was my singing.  But time marched on, TMJ took over and that meant some adjustments to what I found important.

Twelve years ago, I was sick as a dog, hugely pregnant and sleeping until time to go to the hospital to be induced with Elizabeth.  It had been a rocky pregnancy, lots of Emergency Room visits, including one to make sure she was still alive and doing well.   I was tired, I was sick and food was pretty much the last thing I wanted to think about or anything to help me stay hydrated.   Each pregnancy is different, but this pregnancy was filled with a lot of nausea, pain and by the time I went in to be induced, I just wanted to no longer be pregnant.   But my gall bladder came out, I figured out the workings of breast feeding and we found our rhythm, and something wonderful happened.  I bonded with my baby, I instinctively knew when she wanted to eat, when she needed a change, we even sighed in unison.  God knew I needed and Elizabeth needed that bond, it's what helped me know what she needed during those first few years when she wasn't very verbal.  But it also meant I was too close to her to see what others could see - something was different.   She made eye contact with Chris and I, but not with our friends or my mom, I was so thrilled to be a mom that it didn't occur to me that not all children talk in jargon or echo EVERYTHING.   Then the time came when we realized something wasn't quite right and after some time to wrap our heads around it and grieve, we started fighting. 

The little girl who could barely speak to others went to school, received speech therapy and suddenly became a talking machine.  And this Summer I actually said something I never thought I would say to Elizabeth. 
"Lizzie, Mommy needs you to play the quiet game.  No talking for ten minutes." 
And suddenly I was delighted. 

Tomorrow Elizabeth turns twelve years old and tomorrow she enters her last year of childhood before entering adolescence.  I'm not sure what God has in store for her or our family but I know that no matter what he has a plan for Lizzie and I can't wait to see his plans.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

No Worries






Worried. . . that was me until today.  I was actually very worried.  Last Fall I fell into a deep depression.  I was homesick, I missed a good ole fashioned Kansas Fall and I missed my mom who I hadn't seen in a year.  I was so worried, I prayed this Spring and asked God to either change my heart towards Washington or lay it on our hearts that He didn't intend for us to stay permanently in Washington (I'm still waiting on that answer by the way).  My biggest fear was that I would fall into a huge funk or worse end up sick again like last Winter.  We spent from October until March fighting one thing after the other. 

Today though I had a breakthrough and I'm not so worried about Fall anymore.  I realized I tend to be rock in crisis situations.  I've always just be a get in there and get the job done, deal with the stuff that needs to be dealt with and worry about the other emotional stuff later  kind of girl.  Well last Fall later finally caught up with me.  After three years of one crisis after another or one stressful situation after the other (both usually combined I might add), I finally had enough down time that it all caught up with me at once and suddenly that was it, I was D-O-N-E.

Chris realizing I needed to get away purposely planned so I could go visit my mom, but that wasn't possible, because she and Bud were out of town when I was going to go visit, so I went to Massachusetts instead and had a good time visiting with a friend of mine who had gone through Chris' second deployment with me (her ex husband had gone too, so we became battle buddies). 

Somehow for me, it has always helped if I can put the pieces together.  Unfortunately, life isn't always that simple, but this time, it all fell into place.  Duh?!  How had I not seen it before?  It also explained why I was so sick last Winter.  I wasn't in constant panic, or keep it together for everyone else mode and BAM!  Parasympathetic overshoot, big time and I was sick as a dog.  It impacted our homeschooling, it impacted my asthma, my emotional health, but it also gave me some down time.  So well I fell and dislocated my knee cap and sprained my left knee badly, it was just one more reason to take some down time and rest. 

Worried?  Not as much as I was before.  I still have plans to visit Leavenworth, WA to see their gorgeous fall foliage which was on MSN's top ten places to see for Fall foliage, but somehow I'm not dreading Fall as badly this year.  It could be the vacation we have planned which includes Mom and Bud meeting us or it could be the excitement of visiting Leavenworth, but honestly, I don't care why, I'm just thrilled to not be in a funk or feel hopeless this coming Fall. 

I hope you all have a great week.
In Christ,
Maureen

Monday, August 5, 2013

Unplugged


I had been feeling tired, burned out and emotionally exhausted for a while.  I love working on the prayer group I started a while back, I love that Facebook allows me to interact with others who I would normally never get to see again.  I do not love the drama that goes with Facebook.

So I decided I would spend all of July unplugged from Social Media.  No Facebook, MyAutismTeam, or Twitter.  My husband laughed and didn't think I could do it.  So I logged out of Facebook on the desktop, my Kindle, and my phone and started July 1st.  What I found is I like being unplugged.  I prefer to have quieter evenings.  I even cut out a lot of our TV watching, those who know me, know that is huge.  TV was cheap entertainment when I was growing up and we just didn't have the money to go out and do things like other families, but we could pop popcorn, put on jammies, cuddle up and watch a movie at home. 

I enjoyed a quiet house.  AND I was able to focus more on my walk with Christ.  He had some things he laid on my heart and some things to say to me.  I also had the joy of playing Uno with Chris and the girls which included many giggles and guffaws.  We attended the Everett 4th of July parade, we took road trips, we went to the library and I discovered OverDrive which allows me to download books I borrow from the Everett Library and I can read some or borrow audio books.  It has been fun and restful. 

In taking a hiatus, I discovered I don't miss Social Media.  I will still keep my accounts open, but I know I won't be as active as I used to be.  The prayer group will still go on, I will still continue to lead in prayer as the Lord leads, but I also know I need to spend more time focusing on the girls. 
Beka is a smart little cookie.  I discovered she is at a third grade reading level and knows her Dolch Sight Words to that point.  I also got to listen to Lizzie read for me some more, she has come far from the little girl who I was contemplating holding back from 4th grade until she learned to read.  But I also discovered we need to be more challenging. 

My house is cleaner, my girls are happier and so is Chris and honestly, I am more at rest than I've been for a while.  It's lovely. 

Have a good week.
In Christ,
Maureen