Heavy Hearts

I mentioned a couple of posts back that I was on overload and had some things weighing heavy on my heart. It's taken awhile, but now I am ready to share.
My kids have been through more change in the past four months than any child should ever have to.  While kids are amazingly resilient, it is quite apparent the tole it has taken on them.  It saddens me and breaks my heart.  Mostly because I know in two months they will have to go through it all over again.  
Austin, our oldest, is just like me. Super sensitive and does not deal well with change.  While he seemed to keep it together while I was gone, it seems he is having some "rebound behavior" (a therapist friend I have been consulting informed me of this behavior) now that I am home and things are returning to normal. (Well... a different sort of normal for us now) He gets stressed pretty easily, cries and tantrums at the drop of a hat and will walk around even when I am right beside him and say "I want my Mom".  It's like he has said it so much it's become a habit and he doesn't even realize that he says it when I am in the same room.  He has been struggling in school, refuses to nap there and has become quite repetative as I mentioned above. 
Mason is more a mixture of my husband so while he is quite affected, he deals better than Austin. He does want to spend every second in my lap. His temper is rearing it's ugly head. He constantly fusses, whines and fake cries that he wants to "hold you".  I love that he wants to hold me all the time, but I am sad that he is so distraught. He screams bloody murder for me at nap time and WWF grips around my neck any time he is put to bed. He just doesn't want to let me go.   He can be distracted pretty easily at 2 1/2 still so that's helpful.

I am spending the greater part of my time together with the kids trying to calm overwhelmed children and I hate it!  I want normalcy for my boys. I want them to be free of the worries that seem to consume them lately.  My heart hurts for them. I want to fix it and am consulting each and every person I know on how to help them through this.  How to prepare them for my next departure. How to teach their teachers to soothe them when they are in the midst of a meltdown.  
We are going to put Austin back in speech therapy and begin occupational therapy with him. He has been known to have sensory issues. Doesn't like his hands dirty. Wears shoes on his feet nearly all the time because he doesn't like his feet on the floor and gets very upset if he spills on himself.  I spoke with an occupational therapist that sounds just amazing. She is ready and willing to work with Austin and is well aware of our situation and has many tools that we can put in place to help our boy learn to adjust and adapt to change. It's when I talk to positive people like this that I feel hope for the future.  I know that these tools that are put in place for Austin will be able to be used for Mason as well and hopefully we can help these boys through what is proving to be a tough time in their lives.  

I can't imagine trying to learn and navigate the big bad world with all the added stress of having the person you love and trust most coming and going.  Austin is picking up on WAY more than we realize.  While I hide all that I am feeling from him and am really doing quite well, he must be picking up the undertone of fear I am carrying about Paxtons next surgery. He constantly asks me "what's wrong Mom?" and I try and assure him that Mommy is great. He told his teacher the other day that she had a broken heart and started to cry. I am assuming somewhere along the way he has heard us talking about Paxtons heart and is trying to differentiate.  It's all of these little signs that creep up that show me we need to help these boys however we might be able.  We have structure in place. They spend all five weekdays doing the same thing every day. We started going to a playdate group on Thursdays with just Mommy and the older two. We spend the weekends together playing and frolicking about.  I spend every minute that I possibly can trying to reassure the boys that I am here for them. That I love them and that I am ok.  It's hard to wax and wane between the coddling that they clearly need right now to also being a disciplinarian when they lash out because I know why they are doing it, but I can't let it happen just the same.  It's a delicate balance.
We are all going through so many changes, with a lot more to come.  While life has seemingly returned to a new normal for us, it is apparent my being gone has affected my babies. It weighs very heavy on my heart. Knowing that just when they may possibly find some peace about the situation, I will have to leave again.  
I try to remember that our blessings are many and constantly remind myself that we are taking every action we can to help our boys through this period.  I try to find peace and hand it over to God. When I see them smile and laugh and hear them tell me they love me, I know they will be ok. We all have had our battles to fight in this life and as a Mom I wish I could take them all away from them, but I cannot and I try to find comfort in the fact that in the end this will bring us all closer!  Somehow, someway we will all forge on through this and I have to trust that God will carry ALL of my babies to the other side of this mountain...

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Melissa G said…
Oh Jen, you all have been so brave through all this! I can't imagine how you have balanced everything lately.
A verse that comes to mind for you as i was reading this is Isaiah 26:3 "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee."
God will give you His perfect peace and He can give His peace to your boys too. I'll be praying for you tonight that you all will adjust to everything.
I'm sorry that your heart is so heavy. I will send up some extra prayers for all of you!

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