The Fall Can Be So Long

Weird title….right?  I know but it is what came into my mind today as I stared at the blank “Add New Post” page on my blog….I started thinking about Elizabeth and about her week and this is what came to mind.

I probably need to give a bit of backround here so that you can understand.  When Elizabeth was younger, say about four years old, we had been in therapy for about a year and a half.  This being said, Elizabeth was still so affected by her Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) and dyspraxia.  She would still cry and meltdown, show frustration and scream. But due to the therapy and the work we were doing at home, we were seeing these successes she was making.  New things she was doing, syllables of words she was attempting to say, moments when she would handle something or some situation better that we could have hoped.  Yes, we were seeing good things.  We were working hard with her but we were seeing good things.  Well this is where the whole “drop” thing comes into play.

I was usually so excited to see any positive change that I would laugh, rejoice and probably even clap or dance depending on the change and the level of privacy we had at that moment ( a mother dancing in a restaurant would certainly be cause for security to be notified) so it was like I got so lifted up by her success that when she had a stumble or meltdown or the next time she did NOT handle well, the same situation she had previously then I felt the fall…..the fall back into reality….the fall back into realizing that we are still on this journey and it will not be smooth.  the fall back into realizing that our work, while positive and her growth, while present….does NOT make her disorders go away. (Hard to believe that given all we had been through that I would think suddenly all would go smoothly….but when you want something bad enough you wish you could will it to be true)..The fall that reminds you yet again, that there is more work to be done and more support to be given….. Yikes, what a fall that is.

I don’t think we can really help it, I mean we want the best for our children so when the achieve something, we are their cheering section.   But if you take that fall enough times you can begin to hurt, you can start to realize you need to focus a bit more on “self preservation” Perhaps preparing yourself in certain ways for the fall.  I did not come to this realization on my own, it was my husband who  said to me one day that he hated to see me get SO excited over something Elizabeth had done,  because he hated to see how I looked and felt when the fall came.  So I have learned to laugh just as much, cheer just as loud, dance when I can (again the privacy thing) but all with the mind set that these successes and growths and the potential stumbles and setbacks are all part of the journey.  That a stumble or meltdown, five minutes after we just high-fived, does not mean we have to take the fall, just that something might have happened to overload her system. That her struggling with opening a container, one successfully opened just the day before, does not mean we have to feel the fall, just know she might not have been able to process the steps right then to open it….  all this to me means , that she is succeeding, but that she is the child who has these disorders… for forever,and they will affect her days….and that by understanding them and how they affect her will help Elizabeth as she continues to grow.

Taking the fall hurts, it is like skydiving and trying to land with a hole in your parachute…it hurts.  But knowing your child and how they work…helping them to understand their disorders and working together can make the fall less painful.

I for one cannot give up rejoicing and cheering on each success just to avoid the risk of the fall…..Right now I am rejoicing at the week Elizabeth just had….she was organized…pleasant…on task…happy and talking just beautifully,  I was home alone with her so we DID dance! and I am so proud of her…..Yes right now I am rejoicing and I am not afraid of the fall……Hope you all have a good week.


5 thoughts on “The Fall Can Be So Long

  1. I completely understand “the fall”. I’ve had it many times with my daughter. Sometimes it’s a short fall and sometimes it a long drawn out fall that seems never ending. We are in the long drawn out one at the moment as I prepare to battle at school for her next week to hopefully and finally get an IEP and possibly get the classroom she is in changed since her teacher is picking on her relentlessly which has me battling with my Mama Bear instincts while falling – even harder. What I discovered today before I saw your post is that we had a good day and she was loving and did well at Basketball practice and I hugged her for the longest time. She even put herself to bed which is a huge deal and extremely rare. It makes the fall softer. Glad I found your post tonight because you put exactly how I’m feeling in to words in such a beautiful way.

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  4. Thank you for your post!I have a sp, dyspraxia kid who is going through alot of what your child isgoing through and too often alot of our friends and family dont understand what its like to be her. Its like living on an edge of a cliff most days esp when she cant communicate. We enjoy the calm days and celebrate her accomplishments with high fives. Thanks again for your post it encouraged me to not only hang in there but to just accept life as it comes.

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