We have officially moved the blog to www.torahfamilyliving.com. You will not be automatically redirected. Please go to www.torahfamilyliving.com and follow again if you would like to continue receiving updates. You won't want to miss all the goodies at the new site. Thanks for being a faithful reader. :)
We have safely made it to www.torahfamilyliving.com. Everything is looking beautiful. But my followers didn't follow. PLEASE! If you would like to continue following my blog, go over and click the follow button at www.torahfamilyliving.com. Thank you so much to all my readers. You brighten my day. Please spread the word so no one gets left behind.
Just in case you missed the last post, we are moving to www.torahfamilyliving.com. This is where my main website is and I will now have everything in one place. Please update any links or bookmarks. The mess is quickly disappearing! :)
I am in the process of moving my blog over to my website: www.torahfamilyliving.com I am also switching to wordpress. Things are already looking funny at my site, but I promise, it will be worth the effort. I am excited to have everything under one roof, with an easy way to make changes to everything at once. I hope to have everything taken care of by the end of Sukkot. Thanks for your patience!
This is a difficult post for me to write and also an important one. There are sometimes confusing moments in our parenting journey. We wonder how we got where we are. We have to face hard truths. And when we do, we discover rare beauties that we were missing.
As you will remember from a previous post, I purposed to take the time to read stories to Sadie all by herself for school. We have been enjoying our reading time tremendously. So far we have read:
The Poky Little Puppy
Scuffy the Tugboat
Frog and Toad Together
The Tawny Scrawny Lion
The Animals of Farmer Jones
Most of these stories can be found in A Treasury of Little Golden Books.
Our reading time has done a very important thing for Sadie. She has been brought to the forefront of my life. Previously, she was child #4, with many mannerisms and habits I didn't understand, sometimes lost in the shuffle. I love her so much, but I'll admit that sometimes she was a source of frustration as well. She screamed over the tiniest things, used animal noises instead of words, and flung her arms around in a very odd way. As a mother, something didn't seem right to me. But I was unable to put my finger on anything specific. She didn't even crawl until about a year old, and at 4, even I couldn't understand everything she was saying. I couldn't understand the grunts and moans either.
YHVH has been gently tugging me for the last few weeks, about the time that we have been reading stories together. He has been encouraging me to do some research, to find out if maybe there is something I need to know about Sadie. He led me to a very unexpected place, but the more I read the more it seemed to fit. It looked like perhaps Sadie was struggling with asperger's syndrome or PDD. When I found out that my cousin had been diagnosed with PDD many years before, the pieces started coming together. We discovered that his treatment involving a special school among other things, had left him frustrated and ill equipped for life. The "professionals" can offer no cure, no medication.
After prayer, we feel the best help we can give Sadie is not a diagnosis, but a strong supportive family that will meet her where she is, whether she "officially" has asperger's or not. At the very least, we have a framework with which to understand her. When she crawls up in my lap and starts barking at me, I try to encourage her to use words to tell me what she needs. I try to give her a little extra love when she starts grunting and flailing her arms in frustration. We try to show a little more patience when she screams about the things that seem little to us. We have also begun a journey to change our diet. (Thank you Lusi, for the link.)
Suddenly, that time of reading and cuddling with Sadie has become a lifeline for us both. She gets so excited to point out farmer Jones in the picture. She tells me how the poky little puppy is going to dig under the fence again! We laugh together and snuggle and for a few moments, there is peace and calm and safety for her. We pray that with purposeful loving parenting, her days will be easier and she will learn to tell us all the amazing things that are going on in her head.
"Your child was made just right. Your child is beautiful. Your child does not have defects and “problems.” Look at your child as being fearfully and wonderfully made. Why am I saying this? Because sometimes we get frustrated with our children. Sometimes we ask ourselves, “What is wrong with them?” We need a fresh perspective. We need to be reminded that YHVH made our child just right. Yes, they need work and training, but look into their eyes and see what YHVH sees. Look at what they can become. They are a diamond in the rough. Show them that they are just as valuable as a diamond to you."
Our daughter is beautiful and wonderful, an excellent dancer. She loves to trace and color, and play with her little toy animals. She has a great smile and loves to help me with little jobs around the house. YHVH made her just right. She just needs a bit of extra help along the way.
My life is made up of minutes.
Each minute I use costs me part of my life.
How did I use those minutes?
Did I waste them on silliness, or selfishness, or wishful thinking?
Or did I make a difference in the lives of those around me?
Did I share a smile?
Did I offer a drink of water?
Did I patiently change yet another diaper?
Did I serve?
Did I worship?
Did I obey?
I want to live my life with purpose, making each moment count. Will my husband be thankful for his friend for life? Will my children know I love them? Will I brighten my corner of the world? Perhaps my impact will not be huge, but I hope it will matter.
Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.