|Josh and Dawson|
On a side note so worth mentioning... Not only did we have these couples, but I was team teaching with the "dream team" as they were referred to. My "mom" was across the hallway. I so looked up to Jan because of her a ability to get to the heart of any discipline issue. I even asked her once or twice if I could watch and listen in as she disciplined a child because I was awestruck how she would correct the heart and ignore the behaviour. I still think of her when I disciple! Next door were Dale and Susan, my Grandparents. I was a first year teacher and they taught me how to teach. Dale taught me how love opened the door. If my kids knew I loved them, then discipline was far easier. He was right. That first year with them, during the first month one of my girls was diagnosed with Leukemia. The last week of school she died. The next year I was pregnant with Abby. I'm sure it was all coincidence ;)
Back to our buddies... There were many appointments with a pregnancy like ours and halfway between the hospital and our house was Little Pigs BBQ which Doug and Melissa owned. We stopped there many times to "let" them hold us while we cried. We were so scared. As we were whisked from our last ultrasound directly to the hospital to deliver Abby, it was Renae and April (one of my fellow teachers) who went to my house and got my suitcase since they wouldn't let us go home and get it. I held it together through all the doctors coming and going in pre-op with all of their warnings of what my Abby would be like, until Renae came through the door. I didn't have to pretend with her. Not only were these friends close by, but word spread that the waiting room was full on a moments notice. We had checked in for an emergency c-section, yet they dropped everything and rallied around us. Of course they would; why wouldn't they? We were family.
We had a bit of calm before the storm of life with a child with disabilities kicked in because Abby bore no physical features of her diagnosis. It wasn't until she started to miss milestones that the chaos ensued. We were instantly caught up into a world we knew nothing of. Doctors, specialists, geneticists, therapists, special education, social services... this is not what we signed up for. We loved Abby deeply, but our lives were spinning out of control. We believed the optimism of her therapists, so we decided a sibling was a good idea. The plates I was juggling quickly came crashing down as Abby developed health issues and began to cry for hours on end for no reason, and asthma/allergies/viruses became a mainstay in our lives. Dragging a newborn around town to the endless appointments, I soon became a basket case. I couldn't even pick up the phone to ask for help because I didn't even know what I needed. This was my life and I couldn't handle it. Being pretty self-sufficient, I thought that admitting where I was would mean that my faith was weak. Such a silly girl I was (still am more often than I'd like to admit).
You see, we moved here with a lot of baggage. Among the worst was lost friendships. I felt like I had lost the world I set out to gain. I had to come back to my family like the prodigal son and beg to be part of this life I once ran away from. I never stopped loving my family. They've always been there... here for me. The life we wanted to have was gone, but...
|Reed and Evan|