Every morning has to go in a series of specific order to assure that everything is done. Clothes are out, alarms set, lunches packed, put in the ice packs, don’t forget the water bottles, breakfast, brush teeth…. You know the drill. Followed by my husband and I reviewing the extra list like who is picking up the meds at the pharmacy, or mailing out the bills, what about dinner… what are we having? Then after school, it is the same rush with redoing lunches, eating, homework, activities, plus the house needs love too. We don’t overschedule our lives, but they are still busy.
There has been an increase in yelling and meltdowns at my house with the incorporation of at home vision therapy. It is a dreaded task, but has to be done. My daughter has taken to reacting in a fight or flight manner. My son has a lot of responsibilities with school work this year and though he is pretty self sufficient I still like to try to stay involved. In addition, my daughter needs a lot of reteaching at home. Preparing for a test doesn’t take five minutes. I make practice tests up that we may do every day for ten days to assure that she can understand and pass her assessments. Every moment of extra work is a battle. By the end of the day, everyone really just wants down time to regroup, but between schoolwork and sports we don’t get too much time to recharge.
When I was an at home mom and worked just part time, the rushing was less exaggerated. I could get the grocery shopping and errands done while the kids were at school. I could be fresh when they arrived home with a focus on them and patience still left intact. I am part of the rushing now, the pressure to fit everything in just so we can have some down time. The more I hurry them along, the more they resist and the worse things get.
I wish I could say there was a solution to this, but we are not overscheduled with anything beyond normal life of these days. When you have a child that needs extra, it can be exasperating. I sometimes feel like I have been given this child, so I have more perspective on how the parents of my students feel. I want to say, okay I get it now, can we just make my daughter’s journey a little easier… The perspective is fully there and there are days it breaks me. For now, we navigate the rushing and try to find the downtime where we could recharge. I try to keep the stress level at home manageable and celebrate days without extreme meltdowns. We celebrate the fact that vision has now become a weekend only activity and hope that success will provide relief.
To all the families out there, we see your rushing and we understand! Now if only my children could move a little faster than sloths with 100 pound weights on their backs.