It was a typical Sunday morning.I came downstairs for breakfast but my husband had already eaten. I was tired and still drunk from the night before so I was mad that he had not waited for me to eat. . He was preparing a bag to leave for work. He normally went out-of-town on Sundays to get set up for his week ahead. His phone rang and he carried it outside. I could see him laughing and enjoying the conversation on the other end of the line. He came back inside and told me he was leaving for work. I was shocked because he normally left around dinner. I started the typical fight and the day dragged on. That night when he called me from the hotel the fight continued. Out of the blue I asked if he wanted a divorce and to my complete hysteria, he said yes. Just like that. He did not want to talk. I did. I begged for some kind of connection but his voice was cold and numb.
So this is how it started. It came on like a gun, only it left me wounded and begging for death. I could not move. I felt a creepy burst of anger clawing its way in but at the same time a guilt of selfishness overcame me so intensely that I wanted to justify every painful feeling and dysfunctional behaviour. But there was no one to justify it to. My side of the story did not matter anymore.
I was unpleasant to be around. I was embarrassing, irritating and basically rude. But I was sad. I was gasping for air. I had strong cravings for anger and bitterness. This lead me to lash out at anyone who stood in my way. Some nights I would lie in bed and call out his name but no words would come out. I felt like I was in a room with no ceiling or door. It had hurtful characters covering the walls and I scratched my way up the wall only to fall back down into the hurtful pit that began to devour me in the first place. The agony paralyzed me for years. I just could not take responsibility for my actions. Bitterness and jealousy impelled me. jealousy attacked my heart. It raided my emotions, motivations and relationships. This can cause an irruption in your relationship with God.
Does God give us more than we can handle? My answer would be yes. 2 Timothy 3:17 says: It matures me and equips me to be ready for every good work. Most of us willing to follow our own hearts not God. Lead your heart to God. The heart can sometimes be untrustworthy. Our problem might have a redefining purpose. It might hurt so bad that the pain will draw you nearer to God. We could also be being tested and purified. Others can see your faith and strength through your distressing times. How are you handling it? It is not up to us to judge what purpose God has laid out . If it hurts, tell him, cry to him. He is the only one who knows why trials have crept into our lives.
When you have Asperger’s you wake up every morning in a strange new world. You scan your room to make sure you still have four pillows. You look to see if your books are stacked neatly the way you left them. Your lampshade is tilted just enough to shine the light at the bedroom door. Your cars you lined up on the window sill are now neatly put in your blue bucket not the red one because that one is for your legos. Ok, it is now safe to climb out of bed. I watch Caleb walk over the dirty cloths and miscellaneous toys to go to the bathroom. It is the one certainty in the morning. He has lists in the bathroom, bedroom and kitchen to help him get ready and prepare him to leave at a certain time. His head stills spins widely out of control. We pick out his cloths the night before but he still forgets to change his underwear. The first time I told him to put on deodorant he proceeded to rub it on his entire body, face and all. He has a bucket with deodorant in it but he doesn’t remember to put it on. He has to make his bed but he forgets. Since he has already checked his pillows, to him his bed is complete. He has to pick up his room but he only sees his buckets are in order and lined up. He does not see the trash and cloths that I see. He forgets to brush his teeth so we have a toothbrush in the kitchen so it will remind him.
Being an Asperger’s mother makes me proud. I love his attention to detail. I love that he puts all of his energy into something he is passionate about. But with the teenage years creeping up on me, new problems are now arising. He has learned hopelessness. He lacks self-confidence and is beginning to act out. He has developed poor problem solving characteristics because he can’t handle situations. He has to be taught through every problem. He needs to know how to handle it and work through it so he can function with confidence and competency.
These children do not have a choice. We are their voices. At times they are truly victims of their circumstances. We are so tempted to lose our patience. But, to have mercy we need to have mercy on ourselves. All they need is encouragement and the love to persevere in any situation.
Italo Calvino said: The more enlightened our houses are, the more their walls ooze ghosts. Image credit: “love Don’t live here anymore…” – © 2009 Robb North
I look at this house and see the western sun filling the windows with a warm amber glow. I see the loving family embracing the children running in and out. I also see the family very rich in love while only providing the bare necessities of life. My 10 yr old sees sadness. He cannot see passed the dilapidated house with no windows whose previous owners cold not have enjoyed the supplementals of life.
How could I as a mother have failed so much? I thought I had taught my children about selfishness, and having a proper attitude. Not to see things from the outside in but to look at a person’s heart to find their true identity. I write this as I hear my boys fighting in the next room as they are playing on their newest hankering, their “precious”. My husband calls the xbox the “precious” because if left up to them, my boys would play on it day and night. They began to plan their days around it. If I call them for dinner they eat as if they are mesmerized by the hum of the power button in the next room.
I begin to think though why not love this game? My son does not have to change who he is to play it. He does not have to please a loving member of the family so that he can hear them say I love you. He does not have to face the pain and rejections that occur when we are around family that may not have the patience to see him for who he really is. He sees this old house as a self-portrait. A strong sturdy shell but hollow inside.
My job seems to be a little harder at times. Every day is a challenge to keep him from slipping into a depression that others see as controlling and demanding. It hurts to be alone. It also hurts to walk into the lion’s den. Imagine the fear he feels not being able to spend time with family because he is afraid of what might be said to him. My younger son just knows that something is not right. But each of them know about sharing and love. We have a unofficial cookie ministry for their friends. If someone is sick or in need, we bake. I have one that cooks and one that gives them out. I truly have the best of both houses.
Plane Crash. Bags flying everywhere. The captain standing at the front of the plane telling jokes in his Dallas cowboys pajamas. What a vivid imagination for a 10-year-old flying by himself. Through the eyes of a child life seems so unbalanced. These mystical experiences can seem so dangerous but, are they?
As a child our perspective is simple. It is life that messes it up. There is an intimate purity and love that can only be seen through a child’s eyes. At this time of year lights sparkle. Neighbors and friends give out cookies and cards. So why as adults are we so dismal? We are reminded of the loss in our lives. We try to replay the past holidays as if we can perfect the details of those gingerbread treasures.
We also hear the story of the birth a baby born to a virgin that ultimately grows up to die in a tremulous way. This story can be frightening for a child who hasn’t learned the power of sinful forgiveness. But he shines in everyone. He gives these little ones companionship and virtues. His intimacy guides them through experiences no mortal influence could.
Your substances belong to Jesus. Let no one defeat you… “little ones to him belong, they are weak but he is strong”.
Sisters are the pinnacle of sacrifice, responsibility, purity and love. There is no place in the heart of my sisters for hatred since all have fallen to sin and been forgiven. We each show a sense of security and well-being that has been rooted in us by the stability of home and family.
My seasoned sister radiates self-control, human kindness, and respect. She has a marvelous magnetic personality that demands control.
My mezzo cohort has a gift to turn struggles into solutions. She is a companion that will cheer me to the greatest heights. She will stand hand in hand with me for any biblical truth.
My puerile peach has a jovial, jaunty sparkle. Her days shine with thankfulness and empowerment. She is a visionary that sees the world with a formative, hip edge.
The glue that holds it all together is a spiritually protective mom that unites us with the power of prayer. Her sacrifice and love helped heal our family but she never forgot who gives us true companionship.
LOVE YOU ALL!
Slaves used to sing a song “Follow the drinking gourd.” It was a code to follow the north star to the underground railroad. Frederick Douglas although an escaped slave himself, criticized the movement. He felt it would allow slave owners to be more aware of these escape attempts therefore making it harder for the slaves to escape.
A Domestic violence Hooligan is aware of all these past devastating tools. These slave owners will hold on to every ounce of your spirit. They will recite their criticism reiteratively. Many of us look back and feel inside our timid little hearts, descriptions from a person who has chosen to withdrawal from a family instead of giving the unconditional love the family needed for survival. This is a devastating blow. Words can be the most camouflaged thing in a house. They can pull a child apart and leave her empty. The only happiness she can feel is when words of criticism are spoken. “Her” words make her comfortable.These are the words she is familiar with. They pull her into a dark space in her mind. She feels powerful and rapacious there.
She will stay there. Her misery will grow and develop in more spaces where she will save her sadness. Look for God in your difficult places. He will never leave you or forsake you–Hebrews 13:5. We never have to question his words.
Summer is upon us. The routine school days that are usually packed with schedules and soccer now turn into lazy, long and hot monotony that can be grueling for parents. My children have usually attended afterschool programs but this year I will be home with them through the summer. This is going to involve a massive dose of mommy magic!
Mommy magic involves a little tug on a closet door that magically locks when I try to open it. I am the only one who can lock the scary, dark unknown lair where cloths seem to become a dark evil force that my children cannot get out of their psyche before they go to sleep. Fear of the unknown and mommy holds the magical lock. My oldest child is beginning a new phase in his school life. He has become increasing anxious and lately. his fear has become apparent. I see his younger brother is stepping out on his own. He has been quietly pulling away from the domineering personality of his brother. But, as I have learned, a child with ADD doesn’t know he is bossy. He does not know that his self-esteem is being tested with every new relationship he tries to form. These children have often been in a constant cycle of negativity that can overwhelm any family.
This summer is going to challenge me. I will be right in the line of fire and I will be the mediator for the neighborhood brawls. It is actually going to test all of us. They will not have to stick to a tight schedule . I am sure the chore list will some how magically disappear on some of the long, lazy days of summer. I have learned to expect the unexpected. I hope to document the transformation this summer. I hope I can be a witness for some of the children. Growing up in a family of girls was hard I thought. That was before, well …. hopefully you will return to read some of these adventures. 🙂