Being Sheep

"I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep."John 10:14-15

Monday, July 23, 2012


Well, I'm pretty bad at actually blogging right now. I just am so burned out and tired these days that I sometimes can't muster up the emotional energy to put it all out there for others to read.

Our days are still filled with struggle. If you had told me two years ago that we'd still be struggling as much as we are, I don't think I could have continued to press on and do what I needed to do: to help my son heal, to be there for my other kids and my husband, and to take care of myself so I can keep caring for others. If you had asked me two years ago how long I thought the "adjustment" process would take, I probably would have said maybe about 6 more months? Certainly once we've been home for a year things will be back to a "new normal". It's a good thing I can't see the future. :)

But two years out we are still having many difficulties each day. Some days are much better than others. And then there are the weekends when Daddy is home. Things are usually pretty good then. N is always better when Daddy is around, plus we can tag-team and both of us can get a break. But then Monday rolls around....

Today is Monday. Today did not start out in a tantrum over what he wants to wear (yes, it sounds silly--but usually I don't even care what he wears, he just doesn't want me to agree with him on anything), which was a nice change. It started out with a minor fit about where we would sit for N to have his "baba milk", the milk bottle he gets three times a day. (Yes, he's almost three and still gets three bottles a day. Yes, I realize that's not normal. But it is what he needs. He missed out on getting the cuddles and rocking and nursing/bottle for many months, so we're making up for lost time.) He'll often tell me what he wants and it goes something like this:

N: "Can we sit on the couch for my baba milk?"
Me: "Sure! I'll be right there."
I pour the milk, head to the living room and proceed to sit on the couch.
N: "NOOOOOOO!!!!!" Scream, shriek, dramatically fall to the floor, kick legs, and possibly start throwing whatever is within reach if Mom can't get to him in time.
Me: "What is wrong?"
Me: "Well, we don't need to throw a fit about it. Take a deep breath. Good job. Now, where do you want to sit? Ok. What good words are you going to use?" (Sometimes this process takes an hour or more, today it only took a few minutes for the first tantrum of the day.)
N: "I please sit on the chair?"
Me: "Sure thing. Good job using your words. High five!"

Rinse and repeat with meals, snacks, what he wants to play, whether he wants the green or the yellow cup, what TV show he wants, etc.

Admittedly, there are plenty of times I don't want to use that "playful engagement" tone of voice. I think that if some people could see me now they'd be thinking 'look at that horrible mother. If only she'd do _________ her child would be fine.'

But most people who would say that have no clue about trauma, attachment disorders, PTSD, or sensory processing disorder.

Side note: So next time you see a toddler throwing the world's loudest tantrum in the store, hold off on the judgement. Maybe offer to help the parent carry her groceries to the car, or even just give her a kind look. You never know what someone is really going through. And sometimes you really have to buy milk, even when you know the possible consequences. 

It is nap time right now at my house, and my world feels at peace. But I never know who my child will be when he wakes up. Will he be happy and cuddly and tell me how much he loves me? Or will he loudly insist I don't love him, tell me he doesn't like me, refuse a hug or a cuddle, and throw a tantrum over nothing at all?

So slowly we will truck along. I will trust that God is still God, and he's still got it under control when I so often don't.

1 comment:

  1. Still praying for all of you - but especially you and N. ♥♥ Karen M