Wednesday, January 20, 2016

And the Band Played On

"I know we've been struggling with staying positive in the face of how difficult things have been getting with Bennett's aggression." I said to her. "I was out and thought, I don't might be cheesy but maybe we could all use a reminder."

"Where'd you get 'em?", she asked as I started unwrapping from the newspaper.

"Dollar General."

As I lay them out in a row I asked if she could tell me which one was for each of us.

"Let's see...Laugh is for Carter. Believe is definitely for you. Cherish is for me."


"I'm just that good!"

She walked triumphantly back into the other room, as if she had just won the Pick 4, past the window covering I'd picked up for her car. One that you can put on your windshield that keeps you from having to scrape snow and ice and shit off in the morning.

She didn't thank me for that one either.

I felt a heaviness in my chest...that same one I feel every day. Multiple times a day. That same one I have felt for years. Looking down at the cup I clutched the handle and stared at the word 'BELIEVE'. A small part of me wished the cup would break in my hands, shredding my skin and sending me to the hospital for a few days.

I don't know what I believe anymore. I only know what I know from moment to moment. And at that moment all I knew is that I was determined that Bennett would not have the night like he had the night before. Tonight he would stay calm, he would be happy, and if not happy at least content, and he would fall asleep before ten, not at 2AM.

And that is exactly what happened. When the trouble started, I asked Jennifer to go to her room and Carter to go to his and stay there. Within 2 minutes Bennett and I were having a great time and within thirty he was asleep. It wasn't rocket science. Not at all. I just can't explain to you why I am not able to facilitate this all the time. It's complicated.

I would be lying to you if I told you I was happy. I'm not. My youngest son is disabled to the extreme and we are pulling him off the one medication that controlled some of his most horrifically violent behavior. My oldest is angry, afraid and isolated. My marriage is a wreck. My family's ability to interact with each other is fractured. My career is a nonexistent joke. My parenting skills are laughable my social skills eroded to the point of almost being unusable. And I'm certainly no saint. I've screwed up in my life far more than I've succeeded.

But occasionally...every once in a while...I can steer this ship away from the worst part of the storm...occasionally I can do some good.

Tonight I did. And I'm proud of it.


“You were standing in the wake of devastation
And you were waiting on the edge of the unknown
And with the cataclysm raining down
Insides crying "Save me now"
You were there, impossibly alone”
-Linkin Park


  1. You're a mensch. It's a hard road.

  2. Sitting at my desk in my office here in the "great" state of South Carolina, wishing, wishing, wishing I could help you guys in some way.

  3. Good job. On all of it. :)

    Remember, big things are built from little ones. Let last night's win be a Lego of faith. Work to collect more. No need to build anything yet...just keep your eyes open for more blocks.

    1. Funny you should say that. I have been sucked back into the world 't get of LEGO recently and I can't get out. Coping mechanisms are so...addicting.

  4. It's a really hard road and sometimes, seemingly endless. Except when it's not. To compare one's life to another's is folly, but can I tell you that this time last year, I was trapped in a dead marriage with no money and the threat of losing my house? That despite Sophie's seizures vastly improved, my own life was maybe the worst it'd ever been? And that today, I am getting ready to start a new, very lucrative job, that my marriage is, yes, ended, but that it's a relief and a new life actually seems promising? Still overwhelming, but things can change on a dime. I will wish that for you and for all of your family. That something gives in the best of ways, that you will continue to find courage and strength like you've shown over and over again. Sending you gratitude and love, too, for a long online friendship that is sustaining.

    1. Still, comparisons are good in the sense that it helps to show a person who is mired in a depression that there are doors that lead to better places. I do appreciate it.

  5. Take the wins wherever you can get them my friend...

  6. I just spent about a half hour reading through your posts and come away with the feeling of how deeply and loyally you love your kids. They are very lucky to have you.

    1. Thanks... I appreciate that very much. I wish I had as much faith in myself.


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