Overwhelmed. That’s how I’m feeling at the moment, with no real right to be. Nothing has happened, Emma continues to make nice strides, yet even as I say that, a little voice is muttering, “Really? Is she really making strides or are you just grasping at straws to make yourself feel better?”
Sometimes I just want to rant and whine and complain, yet as I write this, I know that’s not really what I want. Okay, maybe a little. But it’s more the feeling of wanting to turn the volume down in my head. If they had a worry lobotomy I think I’d sign up. Or maybe that’s what a lobotomy is. I just don’t want all that other nasty stuff that comes with a full lobotomy, just take the worries away, thank you very much. What I really want is to not feel this way.
When Emma was diagnosed and still two-years old I remember after a long training session in which Richard and I were supposed to continue with her ABA program after the seventh or eighth therapist left our home for the evening, I thought – I don’t want to be my daughter’s therapist. I want to be her mother. Being her mother doesn’t seem to rate high on the importance scale of most of these methodologies. A few years later when Richard and I went down to Bethesda and trained with the late Stanley Greenspan in his DIR/floortime, I felt the same way. After Stanley advised us that we should each be doing seven or eight 20 minute floortime sessions with her a day, I thought – I don’t want to run interference, constantly launching questions at her to encourage language like rounds fired from a .44 magnum. (Yeah, I just googled that, because I’m completely insane AND a stickler for accuracy in the similes I use.)
The point is – if I’m being perfectly honest – I’m feeling a little lazy at the moment. But laziness with an autistic child is really not something I can afford to be. I mean her life is hanging in the balance while I’m whinging about how I don’t want to take the time to map out her next study session. (Don’t you love it when people use words such as “if I’m being perfectly honest,” and “frankly” and “truthfully” or my personal favorite, “if truth be told” ? To preface a comment with “Truthfully” implies that one is NOT usually truthful, which, for some reason, strikes me as hysterically funny. Okay. I’ve had my moment..)
I know that feeling of overwhelm is like fear, or worry or any number of other emotions that do nothing positive, in fact serve only to keep me deeply embedded in the stagnating cycle of fear and worry, like air that’s being recycled through a dirty filter. (Stop with the similes! This should be said in a high pitched Monty Pythonish voice. But I can’t help myself!) I know the only way to break out of this is to do the thing I keep putting off doing.
Just do it.
I know. I know.
I think I’ll go make a list.
It will be a very long list.
I hate long lists.
To read my latest piece, Emma’s New Shoes, in the Huffington Post, click ‘here‘
And if you haven’t already done so, do vote for Emma’s Hope Book by clicking this ‘link‘ and clicking on the “like” button opposite Emma’s Hope Book.