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

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Tell me when it's safe

We wrapped up instruction in my classroom this week.  Concluded the year with lessons about reptiles, birds and mammals.  For the day of the reptile lesson, I made a mad dash into the art room and snagged a pottery turtle a student had made, painted in a lovely red and yellow checkered pattern.  I dashed upstairs to my classroom and put it on my desk in time for class to begin.  Of course, the students were curious about the turtle and I feigned ignorance, claiming that I thought it was cute, it made me happy and I just wanted to pet it.  Then halfway through the lesson they all groaned and rolled their eyes.  Nope, nothing a teacher does is arbitrary.

Personally, the turtle was a fitting symbol.  Oh how I want to dash into a turtle shell and hide!  I want to sequester myself in a hard shell house and come out only when I think it's safe to do so.  Truth, I have only myself to blame for the recent upheaval, planning to move the kids and I so far from all they have ever known, to a state that I am certain will get us more assistance for their care and therefore improve my ability to earn income to support the four of us.  OK, I also want to be out of Georgia, so it's personal.  But when I have so many doctors and therapists agreeing with me that this is a right choice, how do I not follow through?

Still, I want to turtle myself.  I'd prefer a purple shell over the red and yellow checkered one a student made.  This is one enormous leap of faith.  Sell a house, find a job, move the kids and me so far, and relocate to a different state to start fresh.  All.by.myself.  what's more, I want to be in PA but I'm having a hard time landing a job however, Syracuse, NY contacted me for the second round of interviews for the public school district.  I don't know anyone in Syracuse!  but...a job is a job...


I think I'm crazy.

Darn it, I want to go HOME! Or at least to the land of the functional humans.   And wow, I'm lonely.  Unless you've been a single parent of disabled teenagers that are ages 2 and 8 comparatively and a rambunctious 9 year old (who is functionally my oldest child), you have NO idea how lonely it can be.  Get out to mingle with adults?  Pbft.  Yeah. not happening.  I am texting and calling people all day long and on the weekends crying and practically begging them to spend time with me so I have contact with functional adult humans.  I text a morning funny to everyone and last night texted a picture of a glass of wine to toast to my friends (since they weren't with me drinking it too).  *sigh* This weekend I got lucky.  Spent time with my friend G yesterday and with S and C this evening.  That doesn't normally happen.  (thanks ladies! xxoo)

And let's talk about the crying thing, shall we?  *rolls eyes*  It can stop anytime it wants to now.  Today?  No tears.  *cue squeals of congratulations* But this past week?   Let's say, I bought two more boxes of tissues today. I know, some of you are concerned and actually, I'm very grateful for the concern.  My friend A is worried that this is more of a mood imbalance and a reader is concerned that I should consider hospital care.  *nodding head in acknowledgement*  Rest assured, I am doing a self-check daily, sometimes throughout the day, to be sure that i am safe.  I always text or call someone when I hit the low spots.  I journal, I talk it through.  I use the coping skills I used in all of those years of therapy.  I stay on my medications and herbal supplements.  I exercise, eat healthy, balanced meals and get plenty of sleep.  So what's the deal?  In my daily reading (all therapeutic or affirming volumes from various sources), I came upon this:

"Recovery requires acceptance of what you are feeling and embracing these feelings in order to heal them. Your emotions are powerful tools because they provide you with messages and signals if you know how to listen to them. They are screaming at you now to take notice, and to go within and heal yourself. That is why they are so 'loud' and have reached this level of pain, because until now you were ignoring them." ~Melanie Tonia Evans

Sadness, fear, loneliness, pain, sorrow, heartache, anxiety - all of these plague me daily.  I can't satisfy them.  They speak so loudly.  The question becomes, how do I meet these needs so they will go?  I need to find a way to speak to my broken parts and heal them once and for all.  I didn't cause these events in my life.  I can't cure them and I can't control them.  I must learn to love myself.  I must learn to trust.  I must learn to receive what is meant for me.  So, that is the deal with all the crying.  If I push it away, it will come back again and success, happiness, healing, hope and love will avert my grasp again. 

Meanwhile, Sissy is beginning a new medication as soon as the doctor completes the prior authorization to have medicaid approve it. With C's help today, we cleaned Sissy's room, removing two 30 gal trash bags of refuse from her 6x8 safe room and discovered many items she has stolen or claimed as her own from other persons or from around the house (she never wears things with pockets and I usually pat her down after we have been out.  HOW is she pocketing these things?!?)  AB has changed how he doses one of his medications and we have added a PRN because he is beginning to spend more time in fantasy than in reality (read: watching for schizophrenia). WG is still struggling with peer issues in the classroom but after an entire school year, the teachers have finally worked out a functional behavior modification plan. (seriously?  with four weeks left?!) We will likely have to rehome our chihuahua when we move.  The new puppy will become a certified emotional support dog for AB so we can keep her.  I am wrapping up another school year.  I've packed (with help) more than 25 boxes.  The house is listed with a realtor.  My inbox in inundated with job positions to apply for.  I have steam-cleaned the carpets. I'm having a yard sale on Saturday. And all the daily nuances of life still occurring in the midst of it. Then spice it up with the crying jags and that about sums it up.

My head hurts.  My body aches.  My ears ring.

Anyone want a cup of tea?  I'm going to hide in my lavender turtle shell.  Tell me when it's safe to come out.


schnitzelbank said...

I hope you schedule the 2nd interview! You could always put your GA house on the rental market, if it doesn't sell. We have moved for jobs, and not known anyone in that area...it's ok! Really! Change can be fun and positive, especially after all this pain.

Integrity Singer said...

to schnitzelbank - I did schedule that interview. I'm apprehensive but staying calm and positive. I'm teaching myself how to trust and receive what is best. Right now, moving so far from family and friends (I have so much love and support in PA) makes me very nervous. But not having employment that can support the kids and me makes me more nervous....i think? it's a catch 22. Truthfully? I wanted the best of both worlds.

Ilsa said...

FWIW, NY is a lot closer to PA than GA! Stepping out in faith is terrifying, especially when its a step beyond the already-terrifying step of faith you were planning to take. I will be continuing to pray that you have wisdom and discernment in facing the decisions ahead.

Integrity Singer said...

Thanks Ilsa!

Anonymous said...

Your the best blogger ever I've read you for years. I think this could be really good move and NY is right next door to PA.

Jennie Skrobisz said...

Anonymois - i am just now seeing your comment. not sure how i missed it? Thanks for the accomades! I cant imagine that im the best blogger ever but i humbly bow and receive the compliment