On a good day, parenting will test the integrity of your character. On a bad day, parenting will test your will to live. Parenting children with trauma histories will cause you to test the integrity of everything and everyone you thought you knew, for the rest of your life.
~J. Skrobisz

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Darkest before the Dawn

I stumbled upon the phrase, darkest before the dawn,  today when I was reading a book.  I'd forgotten the adage and it immediately struck me.

Right, I told myself.  You know this inherent truth.  Just keep going.  Don't stop.  You're almost there.

Then just as quickly as the moment of clarity came, bringing a small measure of hope, the sorrow and grief returned.  So, I said a prayer, accepting that right now, I'm hurting.  I asked for healing and hope and for the ability to see the joy in the things before me today.

Yesterday I decided to embrace my hurting side instead of sending it away, ignoring it, or being aggravated by it.  I've continued to weed through my posts from the timeline of this blog and I'm overwhelmed by how much struggle and heartbreak my family has endured in five years.  Then I say to myself, see?  SEE?  This is why.  You buried the pain and now, to be free at last, you must push through it.  It is darkest before the dawn.

Today, Sissy's psychiatrist said he believes she is emotionally 2 years old.  He is prognosticating that her disorders are presenting as more autistic behavior than anything else.  He believes she is not intentionally making the choices she makes, in an effort to manipulate and triangulate, rather that she truly isn't thinking it through and perhaps isn't capable of thinking it through.  She is, as she is, as she will always will be.  At age 14, we now know what Sissy as an adult will be like.  An emotional 2 year old.  He agrees, moving out of Georgia is a good plan because there is so little here.  Actually, he said he was more concerned about ME than Sissy's progress.  (Sissy's psychiatrist works on the same team as AB's so they compare family data.)

One more confirmation that my choice is a sound one, even though, at this point, I am still without a job and the house has yet to sell and therefore I don't know exactly where I will land or what that future will look like and it is very, very scary, lonely, overwhelming and quite frankly, nauseating when I stop to contemplate it.

So I burn incense and sage.  I use aromatherapy lotion.  I snuggle my teddy and journal with my purple pen.  I read life affirming books and text my friends.  I eat healthily and get regular exercise.  I jump on the trampoline and play with the puppy.

And I cry.

I cry because my heart is broken.
I cry because life has been unfair.
I cry because humans can be so mean.
I cry because I hurt.
I cry because this isn't how I am.
I cry because I'm lonely.
I cry because I work so hard every day.
I cry because my head is full of noise and I can't quiet it.
I cry because my ears always ring.
I cry because I haven't loved myself.
I cry because I'm scared.
I cry because there is so much hurt around me and i have no reserves to give to others right now.
I cry  because I'm not a selfish person but that's what I need right now, to be selfish.
I cry because change is hard.
I cry because I can't predict the future.
I cry because I don't trust.
I cry because my faith is so small.
I cry because it seems hope is shattered.
I cry because I need physical affection.
I cry because I'm overwhelmed.
I cry because what if...

Now, I will answer the hurting part of me with I hear you, brokenness.  What do you need?

And it says - I need you to love yourself.
Love is patient.  Be patient with yourself.
Love is kind.  Be kind to yourself.
Love does not boast.  Do not boast about yourself but DO be proud of what you have done.
Love does not dishonor others.  Do not dishonor yourself.
Love is not easily angered.  Stop being angry with yourself.
Love keeps no record of wrongs.  Stop thinking about what you may or may not have done in err.
Love does not delight in evil.  Don't let the bad things that happened consume you.
Love rejoices in truth.  You are an amazing person.  Own it.
Love protects.  Protect yourself from potentially harmful situations and people.
Love hopes.  Yes.  you can do this.  HOPE for yourself.
Love perseveres.  You do this every day.  Thank yourself for perseverance.
Love trusts.  Learn to trust yourself.  You don't make bad choices.  You land on your feet.  Trust.

So I will cry until my brokenness is erased by love and this time, I'm starting by loving myself.  The dawn will come.  It always does.  I need only to wait.  And while I wait, I will heal my broken parts.


Anonymous said...

This American Life did a recent episode called "Bad Baby" in which a psychiatrist said something really, really scary about emotional two year olds:

"So to some extent, and this is an exaggeration, but to some extent, the most evil adult in the world is a two-year-old who never grew up, is a two-year-old who never managed to get control over his impulses. There's some studies that suggest that the peak of human violence is at age two. We are most violent of all at that age."

I'm praying for you.

Jennie Skrobisz said...

I agree joanee, it IS scary. Sissy is so openly defiant and clueless to cause and effect. She simply can't see how her choices impact herself and others. It is unparentable. I'm at a loss and ... not sure where I go from here with this new information.