Thursday, July 18, 2013

Glad to be Back

It's been a little over a year since my last post.  I walked away from the blog all those months ago because I felt uneasy about mostly sharing all the great things in our lives.  I felt like I was just sharing all the great accomplishments and triumphs.  I didn't want to show off and come across as this family that did everything, which I felt was the direction it was going.  That's just not me. Yes, we are an active family and that is what we choose.  We are thankful that we have the resources, community and family support to be able to do what we do.   Certainly, it is not doable for every family.   The blog had evolved into stories about mostly our successes leaving out all the struggles, heartbreak, and hurdles it took to get there.  Perhaps it was a subconscious decision because really, why would we want to relive some of our tough struggles? With each and every success story there is a back story of our struggles, failures, heartache and disappointment.  Each and every success came with a price.  Each and every success was a culmination of sometimes months if not years of trying and never giving up.   Were there days when we wanted to give up?  Certainly.  Were there times when we decided that we should slow down and not push so hard.  Certainly.   Were there fights and tears?  Absolutely.  Were there hugs and high fives?  For Sure.

So now, we will put it all out there!  We will share stories of getting called a Mother F'er at the public pool when someone didn't want to join the swim team and going back everyday for 3 days, facing the looks and stares as someone carried on until she finally swam 1 single lap with the team and THEN she didn't have to practice anymore.  We will share stories of how that same child cursed, hit and bit me at her Middle School Musical Practice because she wanted to be home taking a nap instead of at practice.  When she was able to calm down after 45 minutes we could finally leave nicely but only after I attempted to explain and apologize to the other parents for Sophia's behavior while being at my wits end. We'll share stories of the struggles of our typical children as they deal with some of their siblings behaviors and often enduring physical harm (hitting, pulling hair, pushing) at their hands.  We'll share stories of crying ourselves to sleep at night from being so mentally and physically drained.  Of wondering if we are doing the right thing, of feeling we are doing too much and of feeling we are not doing enough.  And there will always be funny stories like when Liam said to his Principal, "Hello Toots" when she entered his classroom this year  or when Jacob and Liam were jumping off the edge of the pool (public) yelling nonsense words as they jumped.  One non-nonsense word came out of Jacob's mouth and Liam loudly repeated "SEX" as he jumped in the pool. 

And now,  a good story to kick off the resurrection of The Luckiest:   We live very close to Hershey Park.  We've been taking the kids to the Park every summer since they were little. It was a very sad day when he got too big for the baby rides.  Jacob loves going to the Hershey park and seeks out all the rides that spin.   We have spent years building Jacob up for his first official roller coaster ride.  A few years ago we began to practice riding the coaster each time we visited the park. We'd wait in line and when it was our turn we'd walk right through the roller coaster car to the exit.   The whole time in line Jacob would be hand flapping, jumping (right on the heels of the person in front of him), and growling.  People would stare and some would giggle.  I would explain to the people around us that Jacob was so excited and nervous and that we were just practicing. Once they understood, people people were understanding and some would talk to and encourage Jacob. The next year, we upped the ante to Jacob stopping and standing in the car and then exiting.  The next year, we made Jacob sit for a split second in the seat of the roller coaster and then he could get off.  Last year, we made him sit in the coaster seat for 5 seconds and then he could get off.  One time, the entire group of people clapped for Jacob as he successfully sat for 5 seconds.  This year, we are making Jacob sit in the seat and pull the restraint down in front of him.  The ride operators will then release it and we can get off.  This whole process has taken years and we have to quickly explain to the ride operator what we are doing...just practicing riding the roller coaster.  Last week, Jacob said he wanted to ride the Coal Cracker, the log flume ride.  Jacob has tried to ride this ride over the years too.  He would sit in the boat for a few seconds and then jump out (there are no seat belts and it floats super slow until the ride leaves the loading area = too much time to worry and easy escape.)  So, when Jacob told me he wanted to ride the Coal Cracker I was not confident this would be the time.  We got in the boat, Jacob in the back., myself in the middle and Sophia in the front.  (Sophia loves all the roller coasters.  We never had to practice with her. We practice other things like language control!)  We floated for a few seconds and Jacob didn't try to get out.  This was success.  I sat still in my seat afraid to look back and make eye contact with Jacob.   From the front of the boat, Sophia starts saying, "Jacob, you're doing it!  You're first roller coaster.  Good boy.  You're not even scared!"  I couldn't get her quiet fast enough and thought for sure Jacob would jump out. But, I could hear from his giggles and "whoo hoo's" that he was happy.  His anxiety kicked in at the last second and he tried to get out  but I pulled him back into the boat and off we went.  You can see from the photo that Jacob LOVED it!  And in order to keep the success fresh, we have gone back to the park two more times just to ride the Coal Cracker. 

Glad to be back. 

Sorry about the poor quality.  It's a picture of a picture.


1 comment:

  1. LOVED, loved, loved your post. I know that sometimes it takes years of baby steps to be able to make that big jump. Way to go Jacob! So proud of you. And you too Deb!