Elise has been consuming my thoughts and life again.
It seems like I had a break for a little bit where life was just "normal." It's hit full force again this last week and I'm afraid will continue this way awhile more. More tests, more therapy, more doctor visits and now we are working with her budget which is way more complex than I ever realized. This involves lots of paperwork and classes I have to attend.
I love quotes. They speak what I feel or tell me just what I need. The latter is what I needed today.
"When I take a small pebble and place it directly in front of my eye, it takes on the appearance of a mighty boulder. It is all I can see. It becomes all-consuming-like the problems of a loved one that affect our lives every waking moment. When the things you realistically can do to help are done, leave the matter in the hands of the Lord and worry no more. Do not feel guilty because you cannot do more. Do not waste your energy on useless worry. The Lord will take the pebble that fills your vision and cast it down...it will then be seen in perspective. You will find peace and happiness and will not neglect others that need you" -Elder Richard G. Scott
Elise has taught me so much already but one thing that really stands out is recognizing the Spirit more and being taught specifically. Many times I've had questions that have had to do with her therapy, sleep, and some much needed upliftment.
I have received specific answers.
It is so humbling to know how involved Heavenly Father is in your life and it shows me how much He cares.
"God is in the details of our lives." -Pres. Thomas S. Monson
I received an answer to a prayer that I didn't want to hear but I was reminded in general conference,
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts." (Isaiah 55: 8-9)
I know if we put our trust and faith in God then He will help us in raising His children.
I received a tender mercy during a moment of frustration.
My friend back east has a son with autism who is a few months older than Elise. She was telling me how many hours of therapy he was getting per week and the progress he was making. I couldn't help but feel jealous and how it wasn't fair how much help he was getting just because of the state he lived in.
One day I felt the most calming and peaceful feeling that our Heavenly Father would make up the difference.
I could only do so much, the state could only do so much, but our Heavenly Father makes all things possible. I know He knows our concerns, worries, and efforts on Elise's behalf and I know He will help Elise grow to her greatest potential here on earth, whatever that may be.
I found this quote and can't help but think of Elise. I love how Anne Pingree uses the same wording as was given to me by the Spirit:
“Sometimes, in spite of all we do to ‘make weak things become strong,’ the Lord, in His infinite wisdom, does not take away our weakness. The Apostle Paul struggled throughout his life with ‘a thorn in the flesh,’ which he said served to humble him ‘lest [he] should be exalted above measure’ (2 Corinthians 12:7). Three times Paul asked the Lord to take away his weakness, and three times the Lord declined to do so. The Lord then explained that His grace was sufficient for Paul and that, in fact, His strength was actually ‘made perfect in weakness.’ Then Paul wrote, ‘Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.’ …
Ez and I took a tour of the Autism preschool Elise might be attending in a few months. It's weird because since day 1 of us knowing she had autism I've been so anxious to get her as many hours of therapy as possible, preferably 25+/wk.
When I found out this preschool does 30 hrs/wk plus our speech and OT on top of that I was so excited. But when we drove home from the tour, all I could do was cry. This was not the reaction I had thought I would have knowing we were so close to what I've been wanting since February.
I guess the realization of my little 2-year old leaving me from 9:00am-3:00pm every day all year-round hit me. She still is so little; too young to be gone away from home that much. I don't want her to leave and I don't want her to go there. It hurts to think about.
I know it's all very selfish of me, but all I want is for her to be here with me and for me to be a mom to her, nobody else. I know that that can't be. The only way for her to make these big improvements is to have as much therapy as possible; it would be wrong of me to rob her of these opportunities.
I'm beginning to learn a little more about what sacrifice really is and it's hard.
We've been asked a lot how we knew Elise had autism before she was diagnosed. Besides her failing her screening, there were many signs that, looking back now, all fall into place. Here's a little bit about Elise for others to understand about her and to help me remember:
Since February I've entered a whole new world.
I've read books, talked to a few people that have kids with autism, and talked to doctors. I know there's still so much I have to learn. It's all very fascinating and what I learn is so helpful in helping me understand Elise better.
I have to parent her so much different than the other kids. When she throws a fit or does something unusual, I first try to understand what may be going on, but I always say at the end, "I don't know!"
The biggest lesson I've learned through all of this is that the most consistent thing with children with autism is the inconsistency. I think I get her, but I really don't know most of the time! This applies to all children but adding sensory issues and other things on top of everything else makes her even more complicated.
She's been getting occupational, speech, and developmental therapy since March. Now that we have a diagnosis, it will help us get more help so she can get even more therapy. I'm just anxious and excited to get things moving along more.
All in all, she's a great happy girl and we love her to pieces! We couldn't ask for a more smiley, lovable little girl. For that I'm extremely grateful and always say to myself, things could be a lot worse.
I LOVE being a mom to my 5 kids; one with special needs. There is no greater joy than being a parent! I love each one individually but this blog will mostly focus on our daughter with special needs and our journey with her. Thanks for reading!