Wednesday, May 9, 2012

26 Months: I Should Really Be More Proud of Me

It is one of the things I am working on, being more proud of myself.

It is hard to figure out therefore explain the way I am feeling right now. I could say I miss Thomas. I could say I’m worried about Ariana’s transition to a new school now that she has officially been diagnosed with Dyslexia and ADHD. I could say I’m worried about getting her everything she needs. I could say I feel alone not having Ariana’s father to talk to about this. But I’m also not at all sure he’d buy into the diagnosis. It makes sense to me though. I could say I’m sad that Ariana has to change schools because she is so upset about it (and she doesn’t even know yet that it is definite).

I could say I’m just flat out tired because I have been working 15 hours most days of the last 3 weeks. I could talk about the daunting task I have ahead of me of getting Ariana an Individualized Education Plan written and signed. I could yet again begin to lament situations surrounding my husband's illness and death that have put me in various uncomfortable situations over the last two years. But then I’d have to say how I really wish I didn’t think about those things every time I had certain challenges.

Change just isn’t welcome is all. I guess it was not guaranteed that I’d be able to stay on the path we laid out for the children. Things happen. We find out things we didn’t know before now. Private school was a huge part of our plan for them, but I have resolved it in my head. There is just one here that can serve her with these challenges and we'll need a scholarship. I am applying though. What’s important is that each child’s needs are met however I have to do it.

Decision time came and went. The evaluation came and went. Then the results came in. Now I’m in the process of initiating the necessary communications for the transition. I started communication with the public school I chose and resumed it with the private school I chose. As advised by the psychologist and several other people who have been down this road, I got myself an advocate for the process of getting my daughter what she needs. There is a special needs teacher at my church I have made aware of Ariana’s situation. I had asked her to tutor her, but all of her time was taken. She said though that she would do what she could to make sure Ariana's Indivual Education Plan was a good one. I made an appointment with her pediatrician to talk about options for dealing with the ADHD. It’s not for a couple of weeks due to availability.

What I’m facing and I think what hurts is the plan is changing without the man with whom I devised the plan. People who know are supportive but no one can dive into this at the level her other parent would. I will miss her going to the same school and I can admit I’m a bit emotional about it at times, but I’m looking forward to getting her what she needs. But I think my emotion about it has as much to do with having to leave the plan Thomas and I made together as anything else.

This was one of those things that would always keep him “active” in their lives in my mind and once we go off that plan, he’s not or at least not like he was. My children are so young, I have had to and will have to make so many decisions about them without him. Just makes me feel really alone I guess and it feels like he is even further away now. Knowing that 1 of every 10 children has a learning challenge has not helped yet. Not sure if that makes any sense, but I know it would not have a snowball’s chance in the desert of making sense, if I didn’t voice it.

But I look back and see I have been on my own with them for 26 months. Elijah was 2 months old when this happened and I am floored when I look at him now. Ariana having been through all she has been through could have a lot more issues going on. But the psychologist said she had no reservations of recommending any program or school for her because despite everything else she is well-behaved and a joy to have around. Her teacher said she is one of the most well-behaved children she has ever had.

I lamented about the situation with Ariana over on the widow board I go to and one poster said she had read a lot of what I have written over the time I have been on there and that I wasn’t giving myself enough credit. She said I’d held things together for a long time and should feel more confident in my ability to move forward. Nothing I haven’t heard, but I think I reached a point of being tired of feeling bad about myself when I read it.  And I thought to myself.  Yep, and there was so much pressure on me it was unreal.  I should give myself, and therefore God more credit for all that is intact at this point including my sanity.

It’s just that sometimes, when I think about it all…it just hurts. It hurts like a dull ache of a weight on you.

This journey prior to and after Thomas’ death really did a number on my self-esteem. I am not where I want to be yet, but with all of the trauma and drama we have experienced…I should be amazed at my little family. I am amazed at my children. It’s being proud of myself I have issues with and I realize that. As I have carried on in a situation that would likely crush a lot of people I realize it would serve me better to acknowledge it more often. Even progress towards progress is progress.

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