Can I even consider these posts part of 31 for 21? I’ve fallen so far behind.
Life has not been easy around these parts the last couple of days. That sounds dramatic. On the immediate side, everything is fine. Sarah is happy, healthy, growing, and adjusting to her new sleep schedule (in her own bed…sniff…sniff…), Dec and I are happy and healthy and preparing to move, and life is pretty good in that way.
But there are things that are going on that are just stressing me out and stretching me thin, and it’s hard to deal with these things when they all happen at once, you know, no matter how minor.
The first one is that Sarah’s mother has asked, her words, for us to “back off”. She doesn’t want any more contact with Sarah. No pictures or visits or updates. This is, obviously, draining. Perhaps not unexpected even though the arrangement we had set up when Sarah was ~3 months old was different, but still draining. I lost a friend, but more importantly, Sarah lost her mother. Even if she wasn’t going to fulfill a maternal role in her life, she was still important!
So there’s that.
There’s also the matter of my sister, which is something that I keep struggling to talk about on this blog. My sister has special needs. I don’t want to go any further than that in the interest of her privacy, so we’ll just go with that: she has special needs, both medical and developmental, that will require someone to care for her for the rest of her life. She’s fifteen years old, functionally 5-6 in most areas.
She is a wonderful human being and I adore her. I’m glad she’s my sister. But my parents are going away for three weeks (and yes, this intersects with our apartment hunting trip. Yes, we planned for this. Yes, everything is under control) and dropping her off tomorrow afternoon, and that kind of stresses me out.
Not because I don’t want to take care of her, not because I don’t love her, but because it puts things into perspective. My parents will have to take care of her until they are too old to, and then that responsibility will fall on me. Which was fine two years ago, but now I have Sarah to contend with, Sarah who will also require some degree of parenting for her entire life. She may have more independence than my sister, but how much more? Will I really be able to handle two adult children?
And then there’s the other question–who is going to look after Sarah when we’re gone? She has no adoring older brother. She won’t even have an adoring younger brother. I don’t know what the options are going to look like by the time this is something we’re going to need to worry about, but it still scares me.
That’s the thing about this journey. There’s so much more uncertainty and fear. No matter what there are bumps along the way, but there are not quite as many bumps for those with neurotypical children. It hardly seems fair, but what can you do about it? Nothing. Just like every other hard part of this, you have to pick yourself up and keep moving forward. That’s all that you can do.