I'm sitting here with a cup of coffee....all creamy and swirly. I'm happy to report that for the most part I'm no longer a "black" coffee drinker. All of these years, when people have asked me how I take my coffee, I have felt a certain amount of pride in saying "Oh, just black." They in turn look at me and raise their eyebrows and say "wow, you're the real deal."
My taste buds are changing...slowly I've been adding a little cream to my morning cup of Joe (I blame this entirely on my husband and his love for Hazelnut creamer.) Now when I'm asked if I need sugar or cream I can honestly say "a little cream please." I finally have learned that that is what I like. It's not a sign of weakness....and I feel a little silly that I ever thought it was. There is something about changing that makes me feel weak...like I don't truly know what my convictions are or something. I take this to task in EVERY area of my life. I allow change of rhythm to knock me for a loop....
Zac and I have felt very defeated lately. There's just been a lot going on...a lot of "little" things that have added up and have kind of been the main cause of my silence on my blog. I have let sadness and defeat take away quite a bit of my creative energy lately...I feel like I'm struggling to get it back - to get me back. For instance :
Brady's diagnosis...I know I have written about it and you can expect me to write about it more. Aspergers is something that is going to affect our lives for the rest of our lives. It is difficult living with autism....it brings certain elements of joy...but you have to dig for those elements. They don't just surface and shine and glitter....you have to dive in with your whole heart and dig and shovel and find...then you have to wash and scrub and dry. Then you have it in your hand....and it's beautiful. It's much easier to just see the ugly and accept ALL of it as ugly...to not take the time to polish. I'm trying hard not to do this. I never want to stop seeing my boy as beautiful and lovely just the way he is. A common problem with parents who have children that are autistic is constantly searching for cures and comparing our children to others. We feel like we need to do something...like we need to change something. All in all, we can help them to learn and to thrive...but they will never be changed and they don't need to be changed. We need to.
Brady has needs...some simple and some complicated. Some of the complicated ones (for us and where we are living) is that he needs a good school with a program for kids with disabilities. Brady has severe ADHD and needs speech therapy. Brady needs routine and structure, he needs friends and family that can see him as a beautiful creation...and not be scared by his differences. I would love to find a church that has a program for kids with disabilities where he can learn about Christ on his level. Some of the things that are supposedly "simple" , like him having room to run around or his own space....has been difficult for us to provide.
Last year the city of Denver contacted Zac and said that they needed him to come take a Spanish test because they were needing more applicants that were bilingual in their coming academy. Our hearts soared because we felt like Zac was being sought out....he took the Spanish test and of course passed with flying colors. Three airplane tickets later, a lot of money taken from our bank accounts ...Zac was in very good standing. He felt totally confident that he would get the job. We were told that the academy would start September 19th...we found that out at the first of August. Imagine our excitement ( and slight anxiety) to think that we could possibly living on OUR heaven on earth in less that a month?! When we looked at how much his pay would increase we were super encouraged...we were dreaming of being part of a family (his brothers live there) and we were excited that Brady would have really GOOD schools nearby...and that we could afford to rent a place double the size of our current home.
On Thursday of last week we were going to go quickly down to Florida for a visit to my grandparents. If he gets the job...I don't know when I will see them again. Thursday morning as I was trying to pack we got a call that someone would like to come take a look at our home...so on top of the stress of packing our home to possibly be moving, packing our suitcases for a weekend stay at Panama City Beach, now someone wanted to come look at our house! I cleaned the place from top to bottom in high hopes that maybe this couple would like our home and possibly by the future buyers?!
Fast forward to yesterday. We got back from a lovely visit with my grandparents. Seeing my grandfather so very sick was hard on my heart, but I enjoyed every moment with him and my grandma. We found out the people that looked at our house didn't want it....I was expecting that but felt a little defeated since we have been trying for four years to sell. Oh well....possibly a short sale is still in our near future.
Trinity and I went grocery shopping, and while we were in the check out line I looked down at her arm to spot several little red flat bumps up and down her arm. Great. I knew what they were....hadn't seen them for a couple months but I knew. I felt instant defeat....stupid bed bugs that refuse to leave us alone. We have already had to burn two of her beds...we have cleared EVERYTHING our of her room except for a mattress that we have zipped up in one of those covers....every week I spray her room and sweep it. It doesn't matter...they refuse to leave our home. I check her bedding weekly....walk around and check the baseboards with a flashlight...I haven't seen them forever. Guess they obviously have found a VERY good hiding place.
We came home and once again started the procedure of washing everything in hot water...drying everything.....pouring boiling water all over her floors. We can't find them. Zac took her mattress to the dump and we decided that they must just be in the walls behind the bead board. There are a lot of cracks where they can get in and hide and be safe from bug bombs and our jug of spray. So, now my child is sleeping on the hardwood floor in a sleeping bag until I can figure out what to do. We figured though that if we are moving we would rather just buy new stuff there so that it can't be infested from this little house. I would ALSO like to add that we killed two mice in my kitchen (not little ones either) AND there was a dead roach on the floor in the kitchen yesterday morning. You'd think we were dirty people or something....but we honestly aren't. I DO clean. At one point I looked at Zac and said "Lord save us from pestilence."
Last night Zac received an e mail from the city of Denver saying that he didn't make it into the fall's academy. That's it.....nothing more...just that he didn't rank high enough. I think we both felt like we had been slapped in the face. After them contacting Zac, having him come out three times and then never even allowing him to have an oral interview...we are confused why they came to this conclusion and wondering what they are basing their rankings on.
We were both quite for a time....just not wanting to accept this news. We already had several things packed...at that very moment my bed was on the front porch waiting to be posted on Craigslist...we had already emotionally detached from Georgia. We feel lost....Zac basically has no chance of getting a pay raise here, we don't have a good school to send our children too in this area...we can't move to Chattanooga because his job doesn't allow you to live more than 20 miles away from the station.... our family no longer fits in this home, we don't feel like we "fit" in any area...our church, our friends....we feel very isolated. We had already been dreaming of helping out our family in Colorado...really belonging to a unit. I want so badly to help others outside of our little family. I couldn't wait to wrap my arms around my best friends neck (my friend Aubrey lives in Denver) and enjoy her companionship again...I've missed her so badly these last 10 years since graduating high school. We looked forward to a warmer home for the winter...one where we don't have a 300 hundred dollar heating bill. I wanted to find a church that we felt comfortable with leaving our kids in the nursery and finding a place where Christ can be presented in a way that Brady can understand.
I cried last night. I cried for a long time. I told God that I feel forgotten. I know that He's here...I know deep down inside that He cares and that He has a plan - but I'm tired.
zac is writing Denver today to ask a LOT of questions. We still feel like we belong there even if the door keeps getting slammed close in our face. So, pray with us for answers please....pray that maybe they might possibly add him to this academy or to one in the spring. This morning I had a music station playing and it was on a song called "You are all I need."
I feel like I need beds for my kids (not ONE of our children has a bed), I feel like I need to be around family, I need fresh mountain air, I need a good school for my little boy, I could use more money to make ends meet....I need to be part of something. But, I also know that God and my relationship with Him is what I truly need....is what my life is about...Glorifying Him. He knows these needs, and I know that He loves me....I just don't understand right now. I don't want this crushed dream to cause bitterness, I already feel it seeping in a little bit.
Today I'm adding sugar to my coffee....if my thinking has to change again, if the rhythm is going to be jostled AGAIN...I'm going to try to do it with sweetness. I cleaned our home today with pride, thanking God that I have a place to live. I pray for him to give my babies their own space when time comes, to show us what it is that He has for us. I'm so proud of Zac...he has done all that he can do. Hopefully his e mail will bring some answers.