Thankful for the Quiet Moments
Thankful for the Quiet Moments
On the first day of November I always start to think about what I am thankful for – social media (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest) is a good reminder for this as many people post daily thankful posts throughout the month. This is the first year in many that I have not been doing daily posts. As I read what my friends and family are thankful for I am struggling with a myriad of emotions.
You see, 18 months ago I struggled to say “you better call my parents” as I was being rushed away for emergency surgery bleeding to death. I woke up intubated and in restraints somehow managing to communicate that I needed a way to ask if my baby was alive. I had no idea what had happened — just that the day before I had given birth to a darling baby boy.
The days and months after as my body healed, my spirit struggled to keep up. I experienced such severe post-traumatic stress and post-partum anxiety that I could no longer live life as I had.
Life up to this point hadn’t been easy, we had a 9-year old on the autism spectrum and I had been a single mom for many years, but I was able to hold it together juggling all the balls of life. I knew how to put on my favorite red lipstick and smile as I forged through.
Now, though, I no longer had the energy for lipstick or even a shower. I could not manage to go to work as I could not manage to even wash laundry. I struggled to take care of my family or myself. I felt like we lost everything – my uterus, my job, our dream home, my sense of self.
My husband and I have spent a long time putting pieces back together, pieces that no longer fit perfectly because their edges have been frayed.
In the quiet moments (far and few between with a 9 year old and a toddler) I sit and think about how far each member of my family has come since this day that turned our lives upside down and I am thankful that we had this experience.
Pain and tragedy breaks you to pieces, but what can come from that is so beautiful.
I used to make cute little Facebook posts about being thankful for our warm beds, my wonderful job, and such. Those things no longer seem as important (though I am still incredibly grateful to have them). Now I am grateful that my children, husband and I take one more breathe, that we have one more moment together.
As we sit at our tables this Thanksgiving Day, that table may not look the way we want it to be – we may be facing extreme loss, we may be exhausted, we may just not be the best cooks. No matter what it looks like as you tackle life while being the parent of a child with a disability know this…chances are you have way more to be thankful for than what other people share.
What I have learned the past year and a half is this: Be thankful for the simple moments in life – those moments when you take a breath, when your little one (or big one) smiles at you or grasps your hand… be thankful for those quiet moments that melt your heart.
In the Spirit of THANKS and GIVING…All of us at Parent to Parent are thankful to YOU for supporting our work with over 4000 families across Colorado. With your help, last year we provided support and resources to 19,000 individuals. In this season of gratitude, please consider a donation to keep our work going strong. It’s fast and easy to give at: coloradogives.org/P2PCO
What are YOU Thankful for? Share your thoughts and ideas with us in our Online Parent Support Group by emailing: Parents@P2P-CO.groups.io
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