- Helping a child heal from a traumatic brain injury (TBI) from a skull fracture - thankfully we've had amazing detailed neuropsychological testing done and now know exactly where he's at in regards to ability. Oh, how I love this boy! My heart aches for him when he's struggling to relearn all he's lost through the injury, but rejoices in the little things in life that seem to matter so much more to him (and us) now. He truly is an amazing kiddo and I'm so glad I get to call him MINE! (Best part of parenting a child with a TBI - the stories...baby bunny at church, baths with fish, playful pet gopher. If you ever need a laugh, I have many TBI stories that could really lift your spirits.)
- Painfully watching your daughter's mental illness slowly take control over her actions, reactions, thoughts, feelings, words, deeds, etc...
- I've now learned that the hardest thing to witness as a parent is watching your child make life changing wrong decisions. Decisions which end up taking away a person's freedoms. As a parent, you feel absolutely helpless, ashamed, guilty, grief-stricken, defeated, judged, blamed, abandoned, ignored,...Nothing hurts more that to be judged by others by what your child has said or done when they have absolutely no idea what huge trials they are trying to battle. (If I've learned anything through this experience, it's the importance to try and see people through Christ-like eyes - even if they can't or won't see you that way.)
- Figuring out how to love and care for a mentally ill child whose sole purpose in life is to control, manipulate, and cause hurt and pain to everyone she meets because that's all she knows.
- Learning how to establish physical and emotional boundaries from said child so I can be present and engaged in all my children's lives and be a better mom. (Still working on this one...)
- Preparing and planning for my husband to be laid off. Thankfully we were warned ahead of time and had plenty of time to prepare. What a huge blessing it's been to have time to prepare financially. Now, it's all in the Lord's hands as to what's next for us. We can't make any big decisions until we know if Amaya will get accepted into a Residential Treatment Center for intensive therapy and counseling.
Let's just say it's been a long, long year...I was hopeful that 2011 would be a new start, but unfortunately we're still in the hitting rock bottom stage. Here's hoping that we don't hit a 'new' rock bottom and that we can finally start clawing our way out of the bottomless pit we're in.