Today I decided to blow the dust off my blog and give you another window into our life. The kids are being calm and I just turned the TV on at 11 am (huge accomplishment actually) so I’m busting this out before I shut it back off. (Because ya know, the better we are at limiting the better we are at parenting).
Anywho! We left off with the discovery of allergies. Pollen is our enemy #1. (Right after gluten) Malachi’s big spring flare was headed off by antibiotics for sinusitis and constant vigilance with the nasal rinses. Things were much better in the fall. I was nesting like mad and really getting into a good cleaning schedule. We were barely watching TV and homeschool was in full swing. We had discovered a huge trigger in allergies and we were looking forward to building on that with our Neurologist and excited to see what he had planned for future treatment.
Then in September a giant atomic bomb dropped on our family. We lost our doctor. For reasons that arent important to discuss he was closing his office. We had no alternative. That type of doctor is typically cash only so finding another like him would cost hundreds of dollars per appointment. The man who had helped our son so much and still had a ways to go was no longer on our team, and I’d be lying if I said this didnt hit me harder than I realized at the time. This was the first time on our journey that that tiny fire of hope thats been burning in my soul for years had finally went out.
Life goes on, however, and Connor came into this world in the most beautiful and peaceful way. Exactly as I had envisioned it the last nine months. In the middle of the quiet night by the light of the Christmas tree. Smooth and quickly. The most beautiful thing I had ever seen in a Novemeber.
The fire of hope was being stoked once more. I thought, maybe this isnt so bad. Maybe we will be okay. Justin had four weeks off which was more than I could have ever expected. I knew things would be okay because there would be two of us here and that was plenty to do all that needed to be done.
Except I needed to heal. Though the birth was easy it was still a birth and I needed to rest. Which means Justin was thrown into doing everything. Hes always been great about helping when I needed it: do the dishes here, throw a load of laundry in there. Help me clean the house on a random day off. That’s not what I mean. We’re talkin everything. Cleaning. Laundry. Cooking the kids food. Cooking me food. Dishes. Letting the dog out. Sweeping. Grocery shopping. Making sure to take the older two out of the house. Helping me with stuff for Connor.Everything.
The kids had a hard time adjusting. Neither of them felt like they were getting enough attention, and they weren’t. No one came over and played with them. Justin was so busy maintaining the house and cooking he barely could play with them. We just made a huge change to Malachi’s diet so there was a lot more cooking that needed to be done. Pancakes that take forever to cook. Both kids were acting out in their own ways and poor Justin had to handle that on top of everything else.
Worst of all I just sat and watched my life implode. Trying to breastfeed successfully (which if you’ve done it you know how much it takes. It takes everything.) I needed to heal so I could barely get up. My anxiety was through the roof and I became extremely depressed.
Justin went back to work and I had a very hard time adjusting and managing everything on my own. Connor had latch problems, which eventually lead to mastitis. (Have you ever trudged through meijer with a one month old in one hand and a basket full of soup in the other, with mastitis and a pounding headache? Because I have and it really sucked) I was in so much pain and so sick, Justin had to call into work so I could rest and focus on taking care of Connor. The mastitis went away and in its wake came the thrush.
Meanwhile, Malachis diet was becoming so limited that it was actually scaring me. Olyvia was acting out so much I felt like I didn’t even know her anymore. My life was literally spiraling out of my control and I felt like I was watching it all happen from somewhere else. Disassociation, if you will.
Anyway I told you that giant sob story to tell you this: one day I woke up and I remembered something.
I remembered that I’ve been fighting my whole life.
Ive been fighting my whole life and I’ll be damned if I’m going to stop now when it really matters. So I started overdosing on motivation. I started reading motivational books, listening to sermons, praying. I prayed hard and God brought to mind all these tools I had from my life to help me overcome this. I realized that I am in charge of my own life. Did I want it to change? Yes I did. I was sick of just coping and going through the motions. I was sick of being angry and resentful towards people that had let me and our family down.
The point I’m trying to make here is that things get hard. Things get so so hard and I dont even think we realize that we just cope a lot of the time. We just do things to help us get through it without actually changing anything. We revert to the behaviors we learned as children that hurt us. In the last year I’ve dug deep into my past and brought things up and dealt with them so that I could be a better Mom. I’m still digging and I’m still dealing because when things get hard I still revert back to those learned behaviors from my childhood.
Today things are better and I’m better. Today I love all of these kids equally and I find ways to show them each that every day. I have learned that things will happen and I just have to take them as they come and address them as they come. I know that things arent perfect and I know things will be hard, and that I will fail. The important thing is I learn from my failures and am better next time. I hope that my kids will also learn from their failures one day because of it.
They are doing better. Malachi is doing the best he has ever done aside from the eating issues (which I have a plan to try and fix!). He loves his new brother more than I ever would have expected. Olyvia is getting better as well, and learning to be in the middle. A hard place to be. It’s amazing the effects that trickle down once you decide to change your life.
As always, if you want to fix your life you dont need a doctor,medicine, money, friends, family, material things, alcohol, or anything else. Sure, those things may help but what you really need is you. You know in your heart what needs to change you just have to change it.
Today, my hope fire is blazin’ you guys. 💜