Monday, June 5, 2017

Find the Blessing

My thirteenth year of my career and twelfth here in Maryland draws to a close this week. I know by now I have to take the bad years with the good years. I know this; yet I still let the rough ones like this past year drag me down into a dark hole.

I have never felt as pulled in two different directions with my job and personal life as I have this year. Each year the job gets more demanding than ever, and as my kids get older I feel I'm actually needed more at home than ever before. I have never taken off as much time as I did this year without being on maternity leave. Between I think seriously three water issues in the house this school year; about 10 doctor appointments for Lincoln to follow up with his heart diagnosis and possible TS diagnosis; elementary school events; my own health with PPD, pneumonia, and having to have oral surgery; our bad luck impending on the sitter with water issues and sickness, a family death that took me out of town and another out of town trip home for my sister's first baby; and a five year old that what we thought at first was the flu with three different times over the course of a few months of puking may actually be signs of migraines on top of  the stress of the job that so many others in my school and district felt in overwhelming waves this year or that we've been left in uncertain territory about my husband's job position twice now since February for next year due to budget concerns and him being funded out of Title I funds it's been a mentally exhausting year that ended with my dear cousin being  diagnosed and treated for breast cancer. But in one week this school year ends and I get possibly my most needed vacation ever. Hopefully it's the positive reset I need. I need to be able to go back to work at the end of the summer without the crazy anxiety I am ending the year with.

I've tried so hard to be there for everyone that needed me, but too many times it always felt as if I was missing someone or something. So many things got overlooked and missed, and I know as a mom, wife, teacher, and even as a writer I'm going to encounter criticism and disappointments. At some points this year though it just felt like blow after blow.

I've avoided writing much lately because wallowing in all these negative events of the past year just seemed even more depressing so I've avoided writing. Something I haven't done much of in the past five years. So yeah, it's been a shitty disappointing year. It didn't go anywhere near the way I had hoped when I headed back to work after my amazing four month maternity leave. But you know what. Forget the negativity. It's time to turn it around. Someone that I find inspirational once took all the things that were dragging her down and turned them into a blessing so here goes.

So yes, the water issues in our house are a HUGE pain in the ass, but the blessing that I am choosing to see instead is that we have this house in this small town community we love out here in the country something we and our children all love.

Though I am again faced tomorrow with the dilemma of skipping out of work early again to rush the hour home to try to catch an end of the year event at my daughter's school, the stress and anxiety I'll feel about leaving when I should be staying after to sell yearbooks it totally worth it to know how happy and how much she appreciates me making it there to see her. The blessing is in her and all the amazing things she does.

All the time off to run my son to all his appointments this year was as time consuming as I feared it'd be but the most amazing blessing in that is he is doing AMAZINGLY well and is completely on developmental track without any signs of seizures or further benign tumor growths. Though this kid has caused me so many sleeplessness nights the past two school years with worry over his health and then his reluctantance to sleep when I went back to work, the blessing is in him finally being here and healthy with us and being the perfect final fit to our family puzzle.

As much as it saddened me to tell my grandfather good bye on my birthday, I'm comforted in knowing he lived a long life, is now with the loved ones he's been so anxious to see for so long, and am so thankful he got to meet his little namesake, my son, before he passed.

Even though we've been jolted awake in the middle of the night to a puking kid all over our bed and I've tried to catch puke in my hands again even though I know that doesn't work, hopefully she did just have bad luck and got this year's stomach bug three times while the rest of us never did, the blessing is just this girl and her overabundance of love that she always seems to give when I need it most.

Though I had a PPD episode that knocked me down, ended up with pneumonia, finally had to have oral surgery to remove my wisdom teeth and then ended up with nerve damage that messed my tongue up of all things for three weeks, and I am going to have to finally give in and check into getting a hearing aid next week when I see my audiologist because my continued hearing loss really is starting to cause professional and personal problems the blessing is I am overall in good health and have even over the past year managed to keep up with working out 3-5 times a week every week (except 4) the past year which is huge for me since entering motherhood.

Though these jobs have been a major source of stress for both of us this past year, the blessing is in that we have them and they provide financial stability for us now and security for our future. That and we've gotten great support from our superiors with so much of the craziness that has gone on this year.

Though we've had to take several unplanned days off throughout the year because our poor baby sitter encountered way too much of our bad luck with her own water issues and sickness and now deaths too the blessing of course is that we have her and her family in our life.

One of the biggest-if not the biggest disappointments of the year- was learning my cousin was diagnosed with breast cancer. But she's kicking cancer butt and the blessing is she's going to come out the other side of this even more amazing than before she faced off with this monster.

There is so much to be thankful for, and that's what I have to choose to see right now. I don't know what's going to happen from here in the next few years, but I keep telling myself to have patience and faith. Despite the fact that I've felt like one woman trying to do it all this past year, I haven't been doing it alone as one of my other blessings amidst the chaos of the year is my partner in crime. Though we may have butted heads a time or two I am impressed with how much better we've gotten at handling the tougher, rockier moments together as a team than how we use to in our younger years.

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