I'm sort of feeling that way these days. And this too shall pass, but today my brain and heart are on overload.
I am having to sit reasonably hard on Kenny right now, something I don't particularly care for but have no alternative until he settles back into himself. And I find myself worrying more this past couple of weeks about his ever maturing appropriately. Will I be living with an 8 year old (on a good day) in a 25 year old body someday? Will his inability to think things through logically and sequentially eventually cause a serious accident or keep him from supporting himself? Where are we failing him, what are we not recognizing, what is the missing component?
Joshua had a scare yesterday, he accidentally locked himself in the garage for about 2 minutes before being found panicked and pounding on the door. The tears went on for almost 45 minutes, he is so totally terrified of being alone in a well lit garage for literally less than 2 minutes. And his tears are not screams or typical kid whining or cries, they are mournful, achingly sorrow filled ones...trembling chin, trying hard not to totally lose it but failing. He doesn't understand the panic either, yet it returns over and over again.
I then found him naked in his bed last night, after a late night bathroom run myself. I was puzzled when I found all of his clothes on the floor, and thought at first maybe he had an accident but all was dry. Went to his bed and found him completely naked under the blankets, the result of more sleepwalking and late night disturbance. He had no idea he was naked, no idea how he got naked.
Then we had a protracted visit to the dentist today, while we didn't get all the work completed in one visit, the end result was 17 cavities, 1 unexpected root canal, 1 chipped tooth repair, 1 narrow miss for a 2nd root canal...5 frightened kids and 1 dental hygienist who was totally not getting it when I explained that I was not "babying" my larger kids whom she thought should be left alone to get their work done. Thankfully, the dentist was a distant relative who offered to help us out and was extraordinarily kind and understanding with each one. Josh almost had to have a root canal at 7 years old because one of his teeth was rotting from the inside out, and the dentist said it was most certainly from improper nutrition in utero and infancy, that it was not the result of poor brushing as overall his teeth looked very good. Josh was in a great deal of pain all the way home, but is feeling better this evening. Angela too is hurting a lot as another root canal was necessary for her failing teeth. 6 cavities were hers, her teeth are in terrible shape. She was tough, but it hurt a lot.
Before we left town, we had to stop and get Matthew new orthopedic shoes, which ran us a whopping $180, but what can we do? We have to do what we can to help lessen the pain, even if only a little.
How I wish it was easier sometimes, for us and for them. I know none of these taken individually is all that big of a deal. But on the drive home today as Josh was sobbing in the back seat and I can't find a doggone grocery store or drug store to get a bottle of Tylenol after pulling off the freeway twice, I was just filled with an overwhelming sense of inadequacy. There are times I am just the teensiest bit envious of those mom's whose biggest challenge is trying to figure out what play date to schedule this week rather than worrying about surgeries and memory loss, heartbreak and trauma that lingers.
And it seems that nothing I am doing will ever really help eliminate any of this, like I am merely the Band Aid supplier that helps cover up the wound that lies beneath.
I am grateful this feeling doesn't flood me often, hardly ever in fact. But I am here in my swim trunks being swept away in a tide of momentary despair. I can't seem to adequately parent at the moment, I can not "Fix" even the littlest things, let alone the bigger things that loom so large. The boat is teetering on the edge of capsizing and I will be going down with it, I fear.
It isn't that I don't understand that every family has its challenges and ours are not necessarily all that unique. It isn't that I don't have an appreciation for this amazing assemblage of people I am blessed to call my family. It is an acknowledgement of the moments when you whisper to yourself "What else can I do??" as you struggle to keep your head above the water. I KNOW there are mothers parenting kids who have far worse issues, I KNOW there are parents who have lost children and would give their right arm and leg to be in our shoes, I KNOW I should not ever complain about the gift of these souls in our life and I am not really complaining about them, actually I am admitting my feelings of powerlessness over it all this night, and wishing my beloved sons and daughters didn't bear the burdens of some of this junk that they didn't create.
Sometimes, it is just hard, no two ways about it.
Sometimes, it is glorious.
We aren't at glorious right now, but we also aren't at Doomsday either.
I am just being a wimp and a whiner. I'll get over it, I always do.
And hard or not, damn I love them each so very much.