While this isn’t a sponsored post, there are affiliate links included below. All that that means is that when you purchase a cute shirt or one of my favorite bracelets, I make a small commission at no cost to you.
As I sat waiting for the dial up to work on our computer so that I could research just a little bit more… I already knew. In my heart I knew what I would find. With each new word that I read, it was only confirmed more and more that our sweet J fell within the autism spectrum. That afternoon Josh comforted me as I was a puddle of tears. Full of unknowns. What if’s. How do we do this’?
We had a decision to make – we could curl up in a ball or we could pull up our big girl and boy panties and get to work. Be brave.
Sure we went through the cycle of grief. We went through stages of anger, denial to some extent, bargaining everything we ever had, depression. And we’re still learning to accept.
I never thought I’d have to be brave. At least not like this. When I imagined being an adult, I thought I’d get to make all the decisions and have all the fun. Ha ha. Are you laughing right along with me? What was I thinking? I’d love to go back and enjoy all the naps instead of fighting through each one.
There have been lots of tough decisions, big ol’ challenges, tons of things that I never ever anticipated. Times that I have had to put on a brave face and weather the storm. (let’s see how many cliches I can write in one sentence..) Ya know what? Sometimes I just don’t feel like being brave. There. I said it. I want to go back to being a 4 year old and throwing a tantrum. I need a time out. I want someone else to make the tough choices for me. And I think — wait? How did I get here? I am the adult? These kids are looking at me like I know what I’m doing… ummmmmm…
Right after my Dad got sick my sister delivered her sweet boy, “Calvin Brave.” That year kind of turned into the “Be Brave” year. Our family motto became – Be Brave, Choose Joy.
When I don’t feel like being brave (but don’t really have a choice in the matter), I have my go to’s. I put on a t-shirt that tells my mood. I’m serious. Maybe it’s my way of telling it like it is without actually saying it. I wear one of my bracelets. Yep – perfectly imperfect pretty much sums it up every day. I turn my music up waaaay loud and go on long drives. Driving (without my kids ;) clears my head. I lose myself in service because I can’t really concentrate on my stuff if I’m worrying about other people. I buy a Cherry Coke. Granted – not the best coping method.. but it sure tastes good. I take a long shower. I have a big old bawl session by myself. I walk the aisles of the antique mall or Home Goods or Target.
But here’s the thing. In each of the challenges I’ve faced, all of the hard stuff, I have learned that after driving with music full blast and crying alone that I can do this. Even if I don’t feel like it and even if I don’t want to.
I can fight the school district. I can squeeze my Dad’s hand and tell him that I love him as I say goodbye to him one last time. I can speak in front of a room full of people even though it scares the daylights out of me. I can and I will.
I know you can too. Even if you don’t feel like it or even if you don’t want to. Sometimes just knowing that someone else is going through the hard stuff is enough to put one foot in front of the other and keep on keepin’ on. So consider me that person for you – you got this!
While I adore my Be Brave shirt, I love every single item in the Be Series Collection. Today you can get all of it for 50% off & FREE SHIPPING. For reals!! Just use the code- BEYOU at checkout.
What a special post. Your story makes me feel like my current struggles are so small (and I mean that in the nicest way possible). Music is one of my go-to ways to relieve stress and just get back to a happier frame of mind. Thank you for sharing your story and for sharing your coping mechanisms. (P.S. – love the bracelets!)
Sonya J Choate says
I’m going to have to order a couple things maybe more from the Be series. We were told my healthy 77 year old mother has Alzheimer’s disease, well otherwise healthy. She is so strong and d has been in pain with both knees that I told her last night that having surgery on her knee would improve her quality of life. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry, but I know I have to be brave. And by the way, your school district should cave, if not find a lawyer or like my son and daughter in law, you are going to meet some educators who care. Our grandson was finally diagnosed this past year. Cole is in 2nd grade and yes it was a fight, they fired the first Dr and found a Dr who cares for his kids. Cole has been through about 15 medications. As I am sure you know with ASD comes, sometime severe ADHD. But as long as these kids know that they are loved unconditionally, they can be sweet and happy. Feel free to e-mail me anytime. And thank you for the pep talk I am beginning to feel brave again. Stay brave, Sonya Choate
Bless your heart….I have two boys on the autism spectrum also. Give your son a big hug for me.
Susan Sorrells says
I think if we are honest, all of us feel like this at times, and it is very important to have our “go to” stuff to get us back on track. I like to play the song “Overcomer” by Mandisa. And you are spot on about helping others. Thanks for your post.
Margarette Karasz says
Thank you SO MUCH for your lovely words of encouragement. My dear mom at 102 passed away last Feb. 24th and I miss her dearly. You are right that life goes on and I take it one day at a time and am starting to feel more peaceful. She passed away of kidney failure in her sleep and thankfully no pain. We were blessed to have had her so long. I also lost my brother and sister to the dreaded C word. Again thank you for your kind words. Margarette
Thank you for your response. I’m sorry to hear of your Mom’s passing. She sounds like a wonderful lady. <3
Love all of this, I probably should get one for each of the days of the week!
I need to get one for each day of the week too! Depending on my mood. ;)