3 a (1) : a usually sudden manifestation or perception of the essential nature or meaning of something (2) : an intuitive grasp of reality through something (as an event) usually simple and striking (3) : an illuminating discovery, realization, or disclosure
After weeks on end of extreme exhaustion, frustration, mental annihilation, emotional anguish, utter despair, escalating anxiety and unmitigated fury regarding Sissy's complete unwillingness to embrace truth, wisdom, change and discipline; after weeks on end of her lying, deceitful, manipulative, hateful, spiteful, violent, disrespectful, rude and conniving attitudes and behaviors, The Dad and I have had an epiphany.
There we sat, side by side on the sofa, attempting in vain, once again, to help Sissy see the error of her thinking and the certain path of doom laid before her because she fails to choose wisely, we were exasperated. The Dad was fuming and I was numb, as I have been for weeks on end. Sissy? She was raging. Duh.
Finally, I said with a sigh, "well Sissy, it really doesn't matter. Write the sentences for lying or don't. Just know that you won't get to wear the cat costume for Halloween ... again."
The Dad turned to me and said, "Right. Because she was supposed to have worn that costume last year but didn't because she continued to rage and choose poorly."
"Yep. We're exactly where we were at with her, one year ago."
I swear, after I said it, the earth stopped for a nanosecond. Maybe it was the aftermath of the tsunami in Indonesia, maybe it was the heartburn from the dressing on my southwest grilled chicken salad, but I swear to you, the earth stopped.
The Dad and I blinked at each other and then...
Because OMG! The CRAP we've been through this whole year with this kid, the crap we've done for her, the crap the therapists have tried to teach her, every second of it, every.single.thing and we're exactly where we were at with her one year ago.
We've been staring down on the face of a raging, mindless fool that refuses to accept consequences for her actions. It's the same idiotic insanity day in and day out with her, no matter what we do or say. And it all boils down to the same stupid Halloween costume she didn't get to wear because she'd rather lie, manipulate, rage, cajole, deceive, irritate, harass, ignore and abuse than do whatever inane thing we've asked her to do to EARN SOMETHING SHE HAS TOLD US SHE WANTED.
Three weeks after last year's nonsense, her butt landed in RTC. Guess where she'll probably be three weeks from now? RTC. Will it matter?
And that's the epiphany. 100 days at RTC, intensive family intervention for seven months, CBTs, DBTs, social stories, therapies, respites, IEPs, medications, pdocs, psychologists, social skills, unskilled wrap around services, CBAY waivers, action plans, crisis plans, cops at my front door, EMTs and ambulance rides to the ER, 10 hours on my ass in a hard chair - twice in 7 days - 72 hours in a psych ward, a dead fish, revoking of privileges, a safe room with padded walls, removal of all personal items, threatening harm to our dog, being incapable of being left unsupervised for 2 seconds, stepping on her kid sister's stitched up ankle 5 days after the dog bite, cutting her hair, hours upon hours upon hours dealing with hygiene, constipation, toileting and showering, having to answer to all of the professionals about what WE'RE doing to help Sissy, all of the angry friends and family members that don't understand, all of it, every single second of it all, all of my time, money, energy, hope, love, worry, concern, effort, all of it
because she still won't do the simple thing we've asked her to do as a consequence for a behavior. She still won't earn a privilege. She still won't respect us. She'll still lie first and foremost. She'll still tell unsuspecting people how horrible her parents are, how miserable her life is because of US. She still won't reciprocate love but will still demand it from us ad infinitum. She still refuses, refuses, REFUSES to be a "normal" human regardless of the interventions acted in her behalf. She still rages for hours on end, throwing things, kicking, hitting and punching but mysteriously never loses her voice. She still hurts those that try to love her. She will not change. She will be this way
and there's not a damn thing I can do about it.
Except laugh my ass off. Which I did. And so did The Dad. And WG was bewildered and Sissy was raging because she didn't get the joke. But we laughed and laughed and laughed. In between gasps for air, The Dad replied to Sissy who said, "It's not FAIR!"
The Dad said, "Fair? FAIR!? Sissy, don't use big words you don't understand!"
and we high-fived and laughed some more.
Here's all I've got left for Sissy unless by some strange miracle, she gets a clue:
"whatever, kid. Change or don't. Learn or don't. Be a functional human or don't. Love or don't. I'm over it, kicking the dust from my shoes and washing my hands of it all...and maybe wearing your cat costume come Saturday because you obviously won't have seen the need to obey long enough to earn it."