Some days, the best you can aim for is to make it to bedtime and hope that nobody pees on the carpet, and even that is negotiable. I’ve been so dead tired lately that even typing this is a real effort. I’ve got all the classic signs of being way over-stressed. And I think I just stared blankly at the screen for five minutes before writing this sentence.
Some have encouraged me to write down a few good things J-Man has accomplished even in the midst of the really bad days. Since I wouldn’t call him having digestive issues and whining constantly for the last several days worth celebrating, I had to try a bit harder. I just feel like wallowing in self-pity, and the sage advice I received once that “when life gives you lemons, remember to lead your targets and follow through with your throws” seems a lot more appropriate. Regardless of your strategy, whatever works is good enough.
In OT today, I watched him actually ride a plastic rocking horse for the first time. He pushed back and forth a few times and leaned along with it some to build up a little momentum, too. For him to coordinate all of the motor functions needed to rock that thing on the floor by himself was quite an achievement. He even sat on one of those pushable riding toys and pushed it around in reverse using his feet. He hates those things, so again, this was a real achievement. It was only a few minutes of the day (though he did well in OT overall today too) but it has gotten me through most of it.
It’s not really despair or hopelessness by any stretch. I think it’s just sheer exhaustion with the gravity of knowing that we have a couple of very busy, very stressful months to go before it lets up much at all. I look at all the to-do lists for preparing for his IEP, all the people we need to contact, all the stuff we need to write up, all the day-to-day stuff we need to do, all the projects on my work lists, all the stuff that needs fixing or cleaning around the house, the weed-infested yard in front of our house, some green junk growing on our deck, all the lint stuck in the dryer exhaust which vents out from the roof, and God knows what else, and in the moment it all feels like too much. I notice a loose toilet paper roll holder and feel like sobbing. That’s just how it’s been.
It’s like getting to mile 17 of a marathon and realizing you just hit the wall, except you can’t just turn right, get in the car, and go home. Deciding not to run isn’t an option. In our area of the world, people often call it being ‘bone-tired’. That sounds about right.
If you go looking for it, some nugget of something will pop up and hopefully nudge you a while longer. I forget who it was, but someone once said something to the effect of, “We can only see in the dark with our headlights a few feet in front of us, but we can make the whole trip that way.” From some recess of my brain, that came up and bumped me along a little bit. I guess getting through the day is sometimes just about driving a couple of feet at a time.
Not long after, I read this quote in a book about typography of all things (it was an example in the book – no idea who said it): “Today’s mighty oak is just yesterday’s nut that held its ground.”
I guess sometimes feeling like a nut isn’t so bad. Good thing. I’d still prefer some other way.