Tag Archives: emotionally ill children

10/18/2015, Just ONCE!!!!

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Good morning, almost good afternoon. I have gotten a good deal of rest this weekend, which was badly needed, and I am so grateful. 🙂 I threw myself into a couple of novels this weekend and stayed away from the computer. The novels are great distraction from the tasks and issues at hand. I relaxed so much yesterday that I forgot my youngest daughter’s dance rehearsal. I got a call from the studio and got her there about 30 minutes late. The old me, prior to adopting our son with emotional/mental problems and a continual tendency toward criminal behavior, and experiencing trauma as a result of all that, held myself to very high, difficult standard. With my two oldest, biological children, who are now grown, I typically was on top of everything and early every wherever I went and I could never sympathize with anyone else that didn’t seem to have their proverbial sh*t together. I judged them harshly, never thinking for a second about why they might be forgetful or struggling to keep it all together. I guess payback is a “B” if you know what I mean. Judgement isn’t ours to make. Our minds can only handle so much and there comes a point when the “overload light” blinks on and doesn’t shut off very easily. You never know what someone else is walking through. I am there and have been for quite some time. So, I apologized, once, which is unusual for me. Whatever people think, they will think, so what! If I made that kind of mistake in the past, which was rare, the apologizing and appeasing for approval would continue until I was satisfied I was back in a person’s good graces. One apology for an unintentional error is enough! Where I am at now and how I see things is this: I am a human being with a hell of a lot coming at me, daily, and I am grateful not to be put in a straight jacket and carted away at this point with all my family and I have been facing. So running a little late for things here and there is not fatal and I am pushing a half century at this point so I am giving myself a break. It’s about time. The constant beating I have given myself over my lack of perfection for 46 years is done. I have no space anyone’s judgement, not even my own right now. My “give a damn”, about the small things, is slightly impaired now and I don’t think I want it to ever work the way it once did. I think that was fairly sick and far too heavy a burden to carry.

Had some wine on Shabbat. First time since July. Hopefully it won’t negatively impact my weight loss. Maybe it will break my stall. I don’t know. Extending myself a little mercy these days. I need it. 🙂

Gotta run!

Cheers!

April

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10/16/2015, Don’t Contribute to the Faulty Programming

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KOREA: Pfc. Julias Van Den Stock of Company A, 32nd Regimental Combat Team, 7th Infantry Division, rests on a Chinese Communist bunker with a Russian type Browning automatic rifle, along the slope of Hill 902 north of Ip-Tong. NARA FILE#: 111-SC-365083

“Billy don’t be a hero”.

I am dating myself with that line from the 1974 Song by Paper Lace about a young man going off to war. Of course I was 5 when it came out but as the child of young parents, that had a lot of the popular music of that time playing in the background, I still have a lot of those lyrics floating around in my programming.

Aspiring to be “a hero” in life is a bit like playing God and often a fatal or at best a very damaging, presumptive move. Just ending up one is different than the ambition to be one. The latter preferable to the former because the first is ego based and the second not.

Yesterday while listening to the controversial but always profound Roy Masters, he said something that got my attention. An 88 year old now he kind of mixed up his words with a bit of English accented stammer but I put his thought together in this slightly paraphrased quote:

“You can’t fix people, but you don’t have to contribute to their faulty programming. Act if you must, but don’t react.”

When we react we take action or speak in response to the emotions we feel as a result of the actions of another person. Conversely, when we act we make objective decisions based on facts, not emotions.

Don’t play the hero. People can’t be fixed by other people. Can God or YHWH use people to help other people? I think so. However, it won’t happen if:

1.) They do not see an issue with their actions and don’t feel they need to change their behaviors.

2.) We react emotionally to their behaviors.

3.) It simply isn’t the plan, ever or at this time, for their lives to get better for reasons we don’t understand. (This one is a hard one to accept, but it is a reality that is impossible to deny sometimes)

I guess the only factor that we can control is the second. It is not up to us to repair people. If we think so, we have an ego problem. I did and I thought I was being “a hero.” When we “play” the hero, we will typically react to a person’s bad behavior, which will happen when we try to play God (because we are not Him). Being reactive we only contribute to or support their faulty programming. We don’t help it. We can actually make it worse because they are already in a perpetual reactive state and we join them in a proverbial never ending war of trading resentment back and forth, no matter how justified we might feel about our resentment. (Resentment is never justifiable)

I have made a lot of mistakes in my life but one thing I do not want to do, no matter how evil another person’s intentions are, is contribute to “tripping them up” or provoking them to sin more. I won’t be able to justify that one no matter how hard I try.

So today I pray not to be led in to temptation so that I won’t contribute to the faulty programming that is already at play.

Shabbat is on it’s way. I need a rest. It’s been a long week.

Cheers!

April

P.S. Enjoy a cool tune 🙂

10/15/2015, How We See Others

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I think the most grievous errors I have made in my life, certainly the most costly ones, have been seeing others in the same way I see myself. Many of us tend to think that other people think and feel like we do and that is simply not the case. We assume that they wouldn’t do something because we wouldn’t. That seems logical but it is far from it. I suppose we have emotional and spiritual Doppelgänger’s, or “look a likes” somewhere, out there in the world, but generally, on the inside, we are all pretty unique. Yet, we continue to assume someone understands what we do, feels like us and reasons in the same manner. I suppose there is some comfort in this false illusion, but it simply is an illusion. Perhaps we wouldn’t be so disappointed or even in some cases devasted when some one fails to meet our expectations if we understood “one of these things is not like the other”, in regard to personalities. Thinking you understand something or someone when you do not is a recipe for disaster of one kind or another. It tends to set you up as prey to the nefarious sort and there are a lot of those folks out there. Some of them live under your own roof. Sometimes I think there are more of them then good people in this world. I don’t believe anymore that egregious personalities are just “misunderstood”. Good people can make mistakes, although a good person has humility and will eventually exercise true repentance. That is key. I think the best faculty I have, and you have, is a God-given spiritual intuition or conscience and I intend to use it from here on out in my dealings with all people. It doesn’t seem to lead me in a wrong direction but my heart sure does. I am in a huge mess for that reason. Some people just are not good and that is a fact. Being objective about this truth is helpful. Trust your intuition. Don’t doubt your conscience.

Learning is tough. As I grow older I understand that I really don’t understand much or at least as much as I thought I did.

So that is what was swimming around in my head this morning. 🙂

I think dairy has got to go. I am doing the bullet proof coffee with butter, mct oil and collagen. The scale is not moving. There are probably a few reasons for this:

1.) Dairy, my body doesn’t like it, I am intolerant and it’s probably creating inflammation which stresses my system and creates fight or flight.

2.) Stress, duh. I have a ton! More meditation and more joy are needed in my life.

3.) Caffeine, the adrenals don’t appreciate that very much.

4.) I like coconut butter, too much, and that might be raising my calorie level too high.

So, I need to change some things up, again. But, hey, isn’t that what it is all about…..Hacking me to wellness. 🙂

Pilates today and lots of errands. Smallest child starts counseling to deal with the squeaky wheel’s continual antics.

Cheers!

April

10/14/2015 Keep Calm and Carry ON

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Yesterday started out with a bang! The bait was set and I stepped in it. I was not centered or objective and I should have been. The daily mental toll of dealing with a child with Reactive Attachment Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Attention Deficit Disorder is taxing. It is not so much remaining guarded as it is remaining non reactive to the barrage of attacks or antics that come with no prediction. Guarded means I am strengthening my fortress which makes him try and bring it down even harder. Like a waving a toy in front of a cat it just encourages more verbal assault and mental games. Non reactive means that no matter what flies at me I don’t react, staying centered and calm. That is my goal and yesterday I wasn’t successful. 😦

This morning I can hear him stirring above me, as I am in the office below his room and I feel like I am gearing up for the unknown. He could be pleasant and cooperative this morning or he could be belligerent and threatening if has any perception of not getting his way. My plan is spend some time in quiet meditation before he gets up, keep calm and carry on with what I need to do.

I have coffee with my grown daughter this morning. It is so important for me to have things to look forward to in life that bring me joy and this is one of them. 🙂 What are you doing today that brings you joy? What one thing do you have to look forward to today? If you don’t have one make one. It is so important. If you are like me and your home can be a war zone you need something to encourage you that life can be good.

Cheers!

April

10/13/2015, Don’t Look Back

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I am sitting here this morning with only a few minutes to spare. I am unsure of what to write this morning. Yesterday I wrestled with regret over choices made long ago. I do that far too often and I am trying to stop but my situation is in my face daily so it is difficult to silence those thoughts. Regret is kind of a waste of time really but an interesting movie plot none the less. I imagined a scenario where I could go back and talk to myself, the self that I was 10 years ago, and explain some things and undo some bad choices that looked like good choices at the time. A little like Peggy Sue Got Married only set in the early 2000s’. Then I thought that I probably wouldn’t listen because I wasn’t who I am today, back then. This situation has changed me and I will never be that person again. Sometimes I miss her, the naive woman I was, but other times I realize that it is right that she is no more. She had to go. I wish wisdom could be gained by a shot or a pill, like in The Matrix, but I guess the way most of us learn is by experience. Many experiences I can try to wish away but they are still a reality and the consequences of this reality really suck! How is that for literary depth?

Well, C.S. Lewis put it better:

“Experience is a brutal teacher, but you learn. My God, do you learn.”

Brilliant.

We have to deal with what we are dealt and most of the time it begins with our choices. Some choices are innocuous, some are harmful and some are lethal. This one has been incredibly harmful. It was never intended to be but good intentions have paved a hell laden road for sure. I have yet to see bargaining to make it all go away an effective strategy although God knows I have tried. At some point there will be a light at the end of this tunnel but the tunnel will remain. There is no way out but through with this one it seems. I am praying for strength for us this morning, for those of us that are trying to make it through a dark place. Today I will just keep walking forward and at some point the momentum will make a dent. One foot in front of another. I need to stop looking back…..

Pilates today, other errands and hopefully a break through.

Cheers!

April

10/8/2015, Walking in the Rain

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I lived in the Seattle area for 2 years. I moved there from Southern California with my husband and 16 month old son. I was very young. Before we left a friend who always was able to put a positive spin on any situation, not, made the statement that the suicide rate in that area was, at that time, higher than any throughout the nation. “Thanks” I said to him. :/  I already had suffered and recovered from postpartum depression and that was horrific and now I was going somewhere where there were record numbers of people “offing” themselves. Good grief! I didn’t need that floating around in my mind coming off the heals of what I had just suffered. Keep in mind that during this time, some 23 years ago, people didn’t acknowledge postpartum depression and had little compassion for it, so I suffered and recovered completely alone. It was a very scary experience and it took 10 months for the chemicals in my body to right themselves. It was as if someone or something else had taken over my body and my mind during that time and no one could understood what I was going through.

Well, we arrived in Everett Washington, and moved into our new home and it was sunny and beautiful. We didn’t know a soul there but we had high hopes for our new home. The next day it rained and it didn’t stop for 3 months. For a while I stayed inside, waiting………… and waiting, and waiting and waiting. I had no friends there and no car to go anywhere and a small child. There was no sign of the sun, not even a quick peak at it. It’s like it disappeared off the face of the planet or something! I came from an area of the country where it rained maybe once a year and now I was living somewhere where it was dark and dreary all day, every day and for months on end.  It wasn’t long and I was suffering from SAD, seasonal affective disorder. Again, this was a time that there wasn’t a lot of information on what vitamin D deficiency could do to a person. I was finding out first hand. Thankfully I at least had the clarity at that point to understand that something odd was happening to me chemically. I began to research and found out that the use of UV light could be effective in eliminating it. Having little money and only one vehicle, buying a lamp for that use was out of the question. So, I began to walk, in the rain, my baby’s stroller covered in plastic to protect him from the constant rain, whether I felt like it or not and it worked. The symptoms began to lift. What little bit of Vitamin D I was absorbing from above the cloudy sky was somehow working to correct my chemistry. I didn’t mind getting wet to accomplish that. So I walked, in the rain, every single day.

Sometimes in life you can’t wait for the rain to go away you just have to get out and walk. You have to make yourself live even if you feel like curling up in a ball and dying. You have to tell the weather conditions out there to be dammed and pick yourself up and press forward. It can mean the difference between mediocre survival a.k.a. death in slow motion, and really living and thriving. The situation I have found myself in feels like a never ending rain storm that I can’t get out of. I know that at some point it will end, but I have no idea when. It could be 2 weeks from now or 5 years from now. I don’t know. I have to somehow make peace with that as I work towards a solution.

Meeting my oldest daughter for breakfast and then going to do Pilates. Weight remains unchanged. My blood sugar is reflecting stress because my food macros are perfect. I need to meditate more than once a day apparently and stop reacting to my situation and just walk in the rain. 🙂

Cheers!

April

10/7/2015 Ambition

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Last night it occurred to me that I have had unrealistic ambitions for certain individuals in my life. This has led to a great deal of disappointment and frustration for me. I have wanted better for people that simply can not do better than they currently are, at least at this time, given the circumstances they entered this world with and the experiences that have shaped their minds prior to coming into my life. It might be that they never will be able to overcome. I don’t know how to help them and my efforts to do so may have caused more damage then good. Whether or not they will ever take the great leap to self awareness and accountability is unknown. On the surface those ambitions seemed reasonable. But, are ambitions for others ever really reasonable? Ambition is an attachment to an outcome in disguise. Sneaky little bastard! More attachment. :/ I guess I confused ambition with faith for a long time. It can be confusing. There is so much misinformation out there. So much opinion. So much indoctrination. Abundant wrong thinking lacking in Reality and Truth. When people become a “faith object” the One who is supposed to be our object of faith falls by the way-side. They and the plans we have made for them put on a pedestal and not the Creator.

I want better for them, but I let go of the wanting today. They have to want better for them and they have to look to the Creator to find that path. My only, and very limited influence, is walking my own. No amount of “wanting” will force anyone to do the right thing.

Today is another day of letting go……..and walking my own path…….hopefully the one He has set forth for me and not my own ambitions.

Cheers!

April

p.s. This song is running around in my head this morning. I know it’s about romance but the words seem appropriate in regards to letting go of an unhealthy attachment in any relationship. We want to hang on, so much, when true love is letting go……

10/6/2015, Going Through

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Precip 0%, the weather report reads. Still a little cloudy. Still clearing after all the rain storms. The ground is still very wet. Puddles and mud abound.

I need to “weather” it better. This system isn’t going away soon. It is going to take time to clear. I don’t know how long. I need to get to higher ground and stay there. It took me by surprise and it shouldn’t have. These things had happened hundreds of times before. Unconsciousness had been my motis operandi for so long. I wanted it to be what I wanted it to be. And…it wasn’t.

Abusing food kept me from dealing with what was right before me. Before that religion, religious activities, religious people and remaining busy doing, constantly, kept me sufficiently distracted. These very things distanced me from my Creator and from the Truth that would begin healing and sustain it.

Irony.

Yes.

I see it now. I didn’t then.

Now they are gone. Things are more clear. Painfully so. Hard on the eyes. My eyes are still adjusting to the light and there is no where to go but through. Through……….

When I was a child, so long ago, I learned some variation of this song:

Goin’ on a bear hunt (repeat)

I’m not afraid (repeat)

Got a real good friend
(children hug each other during this part…repeat)

By my side (repeat)

Oh, Oh (repeat)

What do I see? (repeat)

Oh look! It’s some tall grass! (repeat)

Can’t go over it (repeat)

Can’t go under it (repeat)

Can’t go around it (repeat)

Got to go through it
(repeat… Make motions with arms like you are clearing a way thru grass)

Got to go through it. Isn’t that the truth. There is no other way there but through. I wish there was. I looked for the other way for years, but it comes down to that. The hard, cold truth is that there is no other way there but through, with everything. I just need to find peace, consistently, in the “through” as I travel this journey. Today, that is my prayer.

Today I have Pilates. Weight remains unchanged. Did not check my blood sugar this morning.

Cheers!

April

10/5/2015 Monday, Monday

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Good morning. Not much to say today. I have a lot on to do this week and made myself a pretty hefty list that is growing longer by the moment. Heading to Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods today and that will be a nice distraction for a few hours.

I was just thinking about my expectations and hidden judgements regarding many relationships over the years. This morning I was made acutely aware of some of them. While meditating this morning I was releasing those to my Creator and choosing to extend mercy to them and asking for mercy back, not from them, but from Him, because truly His is the only pure form of love that there is and most of us, in and of ourselves are not able to do that for ourselves let alone anyone else. It is too much to expect. It is amazing what can be hidden in our hearts that we are unaware of until we begin to Be Still enough to hear. It is humbling and liberating. Mercy isn’t excusing behavior. Mercy is letting go of an attachment to exact our form of justice in response to an offense and surrendering the outcome to our Creator. At least that is how I understand it.

This week I will have to continue to act on a decision that was probably one of the most difficult ones of my life. The intent with which it must be done cannot be one of reaction but rather action to prevent this person causing more pain and destruction around them. Emotion causes the lines to blur so part of releasing this person this morning was crucial to continue in what must be done and remain objective.This isn’t easy. There is a lot of water under the bridge. Praying for endurance.

Blood sugar a little high this a.m. Weight not currently moving. Doing IF this week post shark week and hoping that will kick weight loss back in. Didn’t want to stress adrenals last week. Need to get back to walking. Looking like the rain is going to stop, thankfully.

Cheers!

April

10/4/2015 Drying Out

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So the last couple weeks of been very stressful. So much so that I have let some things go, like exercise, that I shouldn’t have.

The weather hasn’t been helpful as here in the South as we have had constant rain for two weeks and I prefer and am in the habit of exercising outdoors. That is an excuse, really, because I was lacking fortitude  if I am fully transparent with you. Several things have been dropped, but not everything, not what is important, although it is very tempting to drop it all. I see a pattern in that while I need to surrender some things, emotionally, I end up holding on to those unproductive thoughts, feelings and emotions to the degree that I struggle to retain all of the good I have been adding to my life. I guess it is really a question of saturation. The condition of my soul is saturated like the Georgia red clay soil beneath my feet. As the rain is currently saturating the ground outside and causing almost flood like conditions I am experiencing something similar inside. Key to recovery is light and heat from the sun to dry things out and time for the water to soak in but the continuous deluge and darkness are so tremendous that what little bit of light that is trying to poke through is hardly sufficient to do the job. So whether I have the strength or not I need to hold strong to the Rock and wait for the light. I must persevere and endure even if somethings fall by the wayside from time to time. I have to recover from those mistakes and be gentle with myself. There is nothing gentle about my life right now so I will not add to it by punishing myself further . The only direction is forward and that is where I intend to go. Drying out.

Cheers!

April