So… looking forward to the coming year, I feel more hopeful than I have in a while… yes I know “it’s the New Year feeling”… no it isn’t. This is the first in several that has felt hopeful: illness with unknown cause and chronic pain, redundancy, adoption agency drama, knowing the fate of my motherhood lay in the hands of other people, waiting for news on if I was officially my children’s parents and then of course the “I’m a parent of an adopted child, struggling to remove the post-Christmas shrapnel and glue us back together in whatever ragged, wonky and fragile form I can”.
I am not sure I can use words to clearly show how helpless I have felt to begin each year for the last several years. But this year… this year is different.
- Being away for Christmas means that the explosion didn’t happen, so there’s no shrapnel to clear
- having had no explosion, or shrapnel, means we only have our normal levels of shame and unworthiness (which are still pretty high, but not “crisis” high)
- co-sleeping (well, them sleeping in bunks in our room) means we are all having at least double the amount of sleep we were having in the few years prior to this New Year
- Home educating, and me being with the kids almost literally 24/7, means separation anxiety, shame, self-deprecation, emotionally-triggered situations and so forth are much lower in frequency or severity
- less anxiety (and shame) means less meltdowns, means more energy for me
- professionals have finally put the words I have been screaming about sensory, coordination and attachment in black and white (it’s not supported yet – but it’s on paper…)
- Caitlin finally has a wheelchair, my back, shoulders, neck and legs have been partying for about 3 weeks (from when the wheelchair was collected). The big days can be more often, and it doesn’t matter if I feel like death cause she can wheel herself
- I finally have an appointment with a surgeon to fix myself… really, it’s more about the fact “I can fix myself” (the children are mentally stable enough for it to not completely spiral now) than I am seeing a surgeon but who’s being picky?
We are starting the New Year with not with just the vim and vigour that, for some, New Year can bring, but with knowledge that life is changing. Life might actually be “lived” this year. This year may be more than just survived. Hope has been restored!