Archive for December, 2012

Reflecting…

I am again amazed that another year is coming to an end. The days fly by. The months soar past. And the years zoom right along.

Thinking of my word of the year for 2012, at first glance, I feel like I need to admit my failure for not following through.

My word for 2012 was Delight.

Have I delighted?

I don’t think so. I haven’t delighted in much at all, actually.

Now, I’m not really down on myself or beating myself up over it so don’t feel like you have to try convince me that I’m okay.

Sometimes life is hard — it’s just how it is. Seasons … trials … difficulties. That’s just life.

It’s been a difficult season, to be sure.

A tough couple of school years for Chloe. Lots of advocacy and frustrating meetings and conversations. Ultimately, filing Due Process — a step I never thought I’d have to take. Then the aftermath of a couple of years of stress: trying to “connect” with people again, letting down walls that are tall and thick, learning to trust again…

That’s really what I’ve been doing this year. I’ve been recovering rather than delighting. And that’s okay. It’s the season for it. While I was hoping that I could recover, get things put back together, and even delight this year — the truth is I guess I just needed a long season of recovery.

It has been a season of feeling inadequate at everything I do: volunteering, PTA, parenting, being a wife, housekeeping …. Literally everything. I feel like I am not doing a great job of anything right now. But perhaps all of that is necessary as I recover from the past couple of years. Not to delight or to excel, necessarily. Just to survive and recover, really.

I did also feel the need to ask for help from my doctor, too, to get over this funk that I’ve been in. I started taking an antidepressant a few months ago in hopes that it will help me get over this hump. For some reason, that was a hard step for me — why is it that psyche drugs are sometimes stigmatized and looked down on? Why is it difficult or embarrassing to admit that we’re depressed and in need of help? The medicine hasn’t made a huge difference that I can tell, but I’m hopeful that the medicine will help me get “in a better place” before too long.

So delight? Ummmmm, well …. Not so much.

But do the best I could do? Yeah. I think so.

By the way, admitting weakness is not in my comfort zone! But I’m learning to be real. So here I am. šŸ˜‰

Not sure yet if I will pick a word for 2013, but I’m tossing a couple around. If I do pick a word, I’m thinking I will not aim quite as high as I did with Delight…. We’ll see!

Photo credit: www.mennta.hi.is
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How High??

I’ve said a million and one times that my girl would love to sit in the corner and play with baby toys all day everyday. She would also love to convince everyone that that is all she’s capable of.

Chloe is a smart little girl, and she’s amazing at fooling people —Ā and she’s equally amazing at “reading” people.

How many times have I said that if you succeed at getting my girl’s heart, she’ll do anything for you? I’ve said it over and over and over. If Chloe knows you care about her and that you believe in her, then she’ll work for you and obey you. If Chloe doesn’t think you care about her … if she knows you don’t think she can do it, then I can promise you she won’t do whatever it is you have asked her to do. It’s how she ticks!

A great example of this is to compare last school year to this school year. Night and day! Last year, Chloe’s teachers were convinced that she knew nothing and was not capable of succeeding. They were convinced that she couldn’t read and couldn’t comprehend. They were convinced that Chloe did not belong in the general education classroom. And guess what? Chloe lived right up to their expectations. The result? A terrible year for everyone and a little girl who did exactly what her teachers expected of her, unfortunately.

Compare that to this year’s absolute opposite experience. The teachers and Chloe’s assistant are convinced that she knows it all. They are convinced that she can do and that she can read and that she can understand and that she can succeed. And they work hard at helping Chloe belong in the general education classroom. And guess what? Chloe is living right up to their expectations! This year miraculously (NOT!), Chloe is reading at grade level. Chloe is writing paragraphs. Chloe is succeeding. And the difference truly is the expectations and the heart of the staff of people working with her this year.

The moral of the story? We must be careful not to sell anyone short. We must always assume competency and act accordingly.

And just know that if you ever tell my little girl to jump, expect her to ask in her own way, “How high?”Ā  And you can be sure that she will jump precisely according to your answer ….

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