Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Child's Eyes

A child's eyes can tell you so much about what they are feeling.  You can look in their eyes and see excitement, joy, comfort, security, love, fear, sadness, confusion, hurt, frustration, so many things.  Lately one of my children has been having a struggle.  It is something that has developed over the last couple of years.  It wasn't until the end of this last school year that we got some answers that finally made a little sense to us.  It explained him and some of his tendencies.  Summer started and he relaxed and most of his symptoms kind of disappeared.  The last few weeks though they have started to come back with even more added to them.  However, the new symptoms have kind of thrown me for a loop and I am not sure where to go with them.  It is frustrating and at times maddening to try to deal or help him deal with things at times.  Yesterday was an especially hard day for him.  By the time the day was over I was at a complete loss as of what to do.  I feel the other kids need some sort of explanation, yet I don't even know what it is I need to explain.  Sometimes I feel he needs an explanation, yet I don't know what I would tell him either. 

Through out the day I kept looking in his eyes.  His eyes made me hurt inside.  I could see the anger, the frustration, the sadness.  As the other kids would tell me how he behaved, his eyes would fill with tears.  I knew he was struggling and I felt so helpless.  I wanted to protect him from whatever it was he was feeling.  I wanted to make it all better but I didn't know how.

After all the other kids had gone to bed I sat him in my lap and talked to him.  He had no explanation for his behavior.  I didn't know what he understood, if anything, about what was going on.  I didn't know if he was aware of some of his actions.  I didn't want to add more burden if he wasn't aware but I wanted to be able to explain things to him if he was aware.  He was very teary eyed and emotional.  He could hardly talk without crying.  I asked him if he ever did things he didn't want to do but couldn't stop or if his body ever did things that he couldn't control.  He started crying really hard and said yes.  He said sometimes he gets really mad and he doesn't want to but he doesn't know how to stop it, then he does things that he doesn't want to do. 

We rocked a little longer and he calmed down.  Then he started crying again.  When I asked him why he was crying he told me that every time he thinks about what he did he feels so bad.  This little child of mine is one of the sweetest spirits I know.  He is always looking for ways to help, always asking what he can do.  He leaves notes on my bed and draws me special pictures.  He hugs me and loves to be with me and his daddy.  He is extremely smart and remembers everything!  He is gentle and kind.  That's why the things that are happening are so frustrating for him and for me.  We don't know why.  I don't know how to help or where to go with it.  I don't know if everything that is happening is connected or if there are multiple things going on.  All I know is that it hurts. 

Today his eyes are better.  There is calm in them and a lightness about them.  He has had a much better day.  Today his eyes make me smile and bring me peace.  Today we will embrace that and make the most of it.  We will enjoy the happiness of today and do our best to keep the shine in his eyes.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Valley Fair and the Horse Races

This last weekend we took our annual trip to the horse races.  We also decided to go to Valley Fair.  It is the first time we have ever been and the kids were really excited to go!  We got up at 5am Friday morning and headed out around 6:30.
We got to Valley Fair around 11am.  It was the perfect day to go.  Cloudy skies and not too hot yet warm enough to be able to do the water rides and go to Soak City.
We spent about 11 hours there.  Some of the kids were dare devils and went on the thrill rides with Michael.  Some were not as daring and went on the smaller rides.  Every one loved Soak City and Bumper cars.

Zeke was the most daring.  He went on everything and had no fear!  He did the Power Tower (shooting up and falling down), Wild Thing, Extreme Swing and everything in between.  The Wild Thing even had mechanical difficulties on the way up to the top of the first drop and he still loved it and went on it another time!

They all relaxed a little on the slower rides in Camp Snoopy, played in the water for a few hours at Soak City and even took a ride on the carousel.

Saturday morning we got up and went to visit our friends, Bob and Lorie.  She cooked us a big breakfast and then the kids swam in the pool for a while.  It was nice to see them.  Then we went to the horse races.  We love going there every year.

(Yes, we took some selfies at the horse races!  We had to have proof that we were there!)
When the races were over they had a human cannonball come and get shot out of a cannon.  It was kind of cool to see.  We had never seen one before.  The kids stood right on the ground near where he landed. 

It was nice to get out of town for a day or two and spend some time together.  There was no fighting or arguing and everyone seemed to have fun.  The kids are already talking about what rides they want to go on next time we go!  Now it is back home and back to reality.  School starts in 3 weeks!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

You Have a Big Butt!

It is true.  I have, once again, been blessed by the bluntness of a child :)  It's okay though.  They are right.  I do have a big butt!  Bigger than I would like for sure.  Sometimes I get down about my big butt.  I work out every day.  I count my calories.  I don't even buy ice cream on a regular basis any more, or chocolate!  Yet, it is still there and as pointed out, it is still big! 

Since hearing this comment I have done a lot of thinking and observing and remembering.  My big butt has been through a lot in the last 14 years.  There have been six kids brought into this world and a miscarriage in 6 1/2 years.  There has been a broken tail bone too, just to add a little more fun to life.  There have been 6 huge moves where we have loaded up and relocated our family and our lives.  There have been many smaller moves too where we just moved to a new house.  Some of those moves have been made while I was pregnant, during sickness and with lots of tears. 

My big butt has spent many nights up with children - feeding them, taking care of them when they were sick or sitting in the emergency room with them hoping we would get to go home soon.  This big butt has spent countless hours reading stories, baking cookies, singing silly songs, rocking babies or chasing little ones around the yard.  This big butt has made birthdays special, Christmas magical, even the first day of school something to look forward to. This big butt has bandaged knees, mended hearts and cried many tears over the years.

This big butt has sat on bleacher after bleacher watching basketball, volleyball, football, indoor soccer, and track meets.  It has even ran around golf courses cheering at cross country meets.  This big butt has coached baseball, basketball and cross country.  This big butt spends summers working out with the neighborhood kids and parents to help them get ready for the fall. 

This big butt has taught her children to work, to respect and serve others, to love those around them, to love God, to pray and to live a life that leads to joy and happiness.  This big butt has done what so many other big (and small) butts have done.  So, here's to all you butts out there - thank you for who you are and what you do!  May we all find time to sit on our butts, enjoy a diet Dr. Pepper and relax!