Crazy Family, My Kids, Myself, Rants, Special Needs, Uncategorized, writing
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My Life is a Country Song

lucy lake

Well, feels like it, anyway.

2015 has been a real bitch, frankly, and I’m not sorry to see her go.

The last 2 months have been just ridiculous.  They’ve included Lucy’s annual ARD, which is always a big deal because we plan her next year’s education plan with the school district.  We are planning for kindergarten, and the thought of Lucy there just makes my stomach clench.  She just isn’t a kindergartner yet, which means that she will have a lot of pull-out time in special education.  Luckily, we are in the best school district in Texas, and we have fantastic resources and educators who really know what they are doing, but the bottom line is she’s just way behind. And as a parent, that’s hard to take.

November also saw us on a whirlwind trip to Dallas to see one of the top speech language pathologists in the nation at the Callier Center at UT Dallas.  It was eye-opening, and very useful, and we got a new diagnosis.  A condition called Dysarthria.  Essentially, it is a strength issue, and means that Lucy doesn’t have the muscle strength in her core to support proper speech, or in her mouth muscles to support proper articulation and also basic things, like chewing.  This has likely contributed to her low weight, as she fatigues quickly while eating and loses interest.  All of these things, as with her other disorders, can be helped with different therapies.  And again, we are lucky to have the BEST therapists and the insurance to support us in providing that for her, but still, having a new puzzle piece always means integrating new feelings and processing another complication.

Thanksgiving was a challenge.  We had some family issues.  On top of that, our dog disappeared.  We looked everywhere for her.  Put out a neighborhood email.  Put up signs.  Regardless, a week later she was found drowned in the lake.  The night before Allen went out of town.  So that Thursday night involved a call to our vet, the delivery of her body to us by the neighbor who found her, and then loading her into a cooler and icing her down until the following day when our vet could come pick her up.  Allen flew out that morning.  I thought the vet would just come pick up the cooler, since she asked where we would leave her (back porch), but she couldn’t lift the cooler into the back of her truck and so as I got out of the shower she called to ask me to come down and help unload her OUT of the cooler.  So we did.  We sent her off wrapped in a towel with one of Lucy’s baby blankets that smelled like home.  She came back in a cedar box a week later.

2 days before Christmas break our nanny quit.  Thank God I had 2 weeks off for Christmas.  It has totally complicated our lives.  You can’t hire a nanny over Christmas.  It just ain’t happenin’. So now my job is complicated.  And I want my job.  Add Christmas itself in on top of that, which you guys know exhausts me, and I am just toast.

Oh, and our snake died last week.

We’ve had more teenager boy drama.  I got a 3 am call 2 nights ago.

And still there’s Lucy.  Who has been out of school and a terror.  She turns six next month.  My mom always said even years were the worst, and I’m inclined to believe she’s right.  The child is STILL not completely potty trained.  This is so frustrating.  She KNOWS what to do and when to do it, but she just decides not to sometimes.  And kindergarten looms.  She’s started throwing massive tantrums.  A year ago, I dreamed of the day she would actually say the word “no”.  Hindsight is 20/20.  Now everything is “no”.  She does this thing where she throws her body backward, head first.  In some situations it’s scary, because if she’s around furniture she can really hurt herself.  In some situations it’s painful.  Last week she threw her head back while she was sitting on me and cracked my nose.  I’ve never been punched in the face (praise be) but I know now what it feels like to have your eyes explode and to see stars.  I haven’t been able to use Kleenex for a week.  If I push on it, it crunches.  Today, it was her head thrown back into my sternum.  That kind of pressure is handy for heart attacks, I guess.  Then tonight Allen went to put her to bed and she was flopping around like a fish out of water on the floor.  He said, “Say goodnight to your Mom,” and she was pissed about going to bed and kicked me with both feet.

I’ve seen SN kids before in doctors’ offices, or therapy facilities, acting out, having tantrums, not able to manage their emotions.  And I’ve always thought, “Thank God for small (or large) mercies.”  But maybe we didn’t escape that side of it.  I just don’t know.  I feel right now like I don’t know anything.  I don’t know if Lucy will come out of this behavior because it’s a phase, or if it’s forever.  I don’t know if, or when she will decide that crapping in the toilet it is the way to go. I don’t know when I will find a new nanny and if I can go back to doing my job the way I committed, originally.  I don’t know if my other dog’s hair is falling out because she’s stressed and depressed over losing her companion, or if it’s because she’s 13 and on her way to the Celestial Bus.  We’re all just kind of giving each other the side eye right now.

So that’s the round-up.  You can have 2015.  2014 was a shit show and last New Year’s Eve I was all, “2015 is my JAM!”  One thing I do know is that this New Year’s Eve I will not be so cocky. This New Year’s Eve I will be reverent and prayerful.  Instead of making resolutions, I will pray for resolution with humility.  Because I JUST DON’T KNOW ANYTHING.

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