Thursday, May 23, 2013

Two Years and Counting...

Its been two years.
Two very very long and extremely difficult years.

That day is still so fresh in my mind, in my heart. 

I still get that lump in my throat when i think about it.
I still get that lump in my throat when i hear "Keep Breathing" by Ingrid Michaelson. 
It was on repeat when i got into my car. 
When i sat in my car, in that dreary parking garage, sobbing. 
This song played and played and played. 

That day changed my life forever. That day changed our little family's life forever.

I had no idea what was ahead. I had no idea how hard these next couple of years would be. I had no idea how i would have to somehow and somewhere find the strength to be an even better mother and wife than i had been before. I didn't know that i would permanently be stuck on this emotional roller coaster that is being a parent of a child with Autism. I didn't know that i would cry myself to sleep every night for months, then be super strong and fine for a few more months, then back to the tears. 

How could i have known?
How could i have known how hard this would be for my son?

Oh how hard it is for Recker. 
My sweet precious boy. 
How hard the past years have been for HIM.
How hard and sad it must be to not be able to communicate with the ones you love. 
To not be able to tell your mom and dad that you are tired, hungry, that your belly hurts....
How hard it must be for him.

Since that day two years ago, i constantly feel like I'm suffocating, like i cant breathe.
I feel this intense sense of URGENCY. That every second I'm not trying to find a way to help my son speak, to help him play with his friends, i feel like I'm losing him. I feel like every second that goes by, i lose a little part of him, that I'm a failure. I know its not rational. I never said i was a rational person. All i know is that i have had a lump in my throat and felt like i cant breath, for TWO YEARS. 

This has changed me. 
In different ways. Good and Bad.
I have never been a jealous person. I am now. 
I have never felt hardened and bitter. I do now. 
I have never felt helpless. I do now.
I have never been able to speak up for myself. I do now. 
I have never really truly relied entirely on faith. I do now. 
I have never been strong. I am now.

Honestly...These past two years have been an emotional hell.

I cant count the number of times people have praised me and applauded me for how i have handled "everything."

I feel like such a fraud.
I am a fraud.

Of course i am strong and collected when you see me.
No one really wants to know how you're "REALLY" doing. They would regret it immediately.
No one wants to hear how hard it REALLY is. 
How hard on your marriage it is.
How it makes your faith waver.
They don't want to hear about the endless sleepless nights stressing and worrying about his future.
They don't want to know that most of the time i am fighting back tears. 
No one wants to hear about all the thousands of doctors appointments, therapy sessions, and IEP's.
They don't want to hear about me and my husband holding and clinging to each other while sobbing because we don't know how to help our son.

They want to hear how strong you are.
They want to see you standing on your feet ready to "FIGHT THIS"
They want to see you out and about "keeping it together."

That isn't reality.
At least that isn't my reality.

This is the hardest thing I've ever done. 
Autism is hard.
Sometimes it feels IMPOSSIBLE.

The only way I've been able to get through it is Recker.
That quirky personality.
Those moments where he drops what he's doing and runs over to me, bear hugs me and kisses me.
His eyes. They're so deep. You can see and feel his heart through his eyes.
His need to cuddle and nuzzle us constantly. 
When he grabs your hand to hold it.
Those moments when he learns something new and gets that look in his eyes, like it clicked.
That contagious laugh.
His intense curiosity, that usually gets him into more trouble than good.
His love to help in the kitchen. 
How hard he tries to play with his friends. He's learning, and trying so hard.
Just his love. His pure love for everyone.

He is perfect in my eyes. 
I love him more than i thought i could love another person.

Heres to another two years. Lets pray they are easier than the previous two.

{I write this completely vulnerable and exposed...please be understanding}