On Tuesday, Caleb went back to school. This always seems to me to be the logical start of a “new year” rather than January 1st. After all, our lives will be measured in school days for at least another decade, right? So because of that and because of some conversations with my BFF, I’ve decided to make some new year resolutions. It’s time to begin again.
I said back in June, “There is so much room for hope based on what we and other families saw. I need to rebuild that hope within myself right now.” (Balancing Hope)
It turns out that hope doesn’t rebuild itself, I have to do the work. *Booooooooo!* And the only idea I have at the moment is “fake it until you make it.”
I’m going to try to get back to focusing on the positive in our lives again. I’m going to try to get back to being the mom I was before all of this…the one that had to plan weekends and stick to it, the one who would tell her anxious, little boy over and over and over and over what was coming next. The mom who would model deep breathing when his behavior began escalating rather than snap at him to “get it together.” (P.S. – That isn’t effective, I would not recommend trying it near anything breakable if you decide to test it out on your own child.)
I did all this once, not very long ago either. I can do it again. I just need to stop stomping my feet and screaming over how unfair it is (see how easy it is to slip back to the negative? Redirecting quickly!)
Bedtime – Caleb has one and, now, so do I. I need to get at least 6-7 hours of sleep and I need to get up at 5:45/6:00. I need the sleep to recharge, to keep my temper in check, to get moving on-time in the morning.
Mornings – We are going to get Caleb to school before the first bell every morning (we had been shooting for 2nd bell). We’ve built in a half hour buffer in the morning. We are 2 for 2 so far. He transitions into the school better when he’s part of the mob that rushes the doors at the start of each day. If it’s a super anxious day and he can’t handle the crowd, we will be there early enough to skip it.
Evenings – We will be starting up homework again. Unlike most families, for us homework is optional. That is probably the one thing that I admit typical parents should feel totally jealous of, we don’t have to have homework battles. We choose to. Errr…put that way it doesn’t seem very smart. Anyway, we got a list of what the 3rd graders will have for homework (reading, every night…) and we have requested the same for Caleb…ours would need to be modified. I’m thinking some of him reading to us and some of us reading to him.
Organization – I have some ideas on how to be better organized to help manage Caleb’s anxiety and for him to gain some additional independence in the mornings in particular. I need to be organized in order to create opportunities for success for myself because I’m tired of failing at life. That requires that I get it together…so that is what I shall do.
I’m excited, these are all things I have control over and I need to feel in control of at least part of my life again. As a bonus, these are things I can do to make him feel better too.
I love a good plan…now to follow it…eep.
24 thoughts on “It’s a new year.”
In our house we all need to figure out the snapping issue too. Oh the calm happy voice is so hard to keep when his anxiety makes you edgy or you become the object of his frustration/aggression. And then add two typical girls to the mix and the angry voices at them only cause more problems. Sigh. If I could always just sound pleasant and happy and if my typical daughters always just listened or did what they were supposed to do! 🙁 Wishing you a happy, organized year!
His anxiety totally sparks mine…which makes his worse…which makes mine worse…which…sounding familiar? It is NOT an easy goal and I will fail at times. It sucks being human sometimes.
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I love a good plan! You’ve got this <3
I think all parents struggle with snapping and raised voices…it just is WAY worse with our kiddos. I’ve been doing the “three” count in my head lately to try and keep it less snapping and more talking normally. I have to keep reminding myself that my emotions are parroted onto the kids and if *I* can’t keep my anxiety in check how can I expect Ayden to. You’ve got a LOT of friends to help you along the way! (a little irish cream in your dunkins wouldn’t hurt either. 😉 )
I love that you added sleep to your resolutions. Not enough people put their needs first…and that is a very important one. I’m a total cranky bitch when I don’t get enough sleep.
We chose the homework route for both kids. 4th grade has to read 30min a night. Andrew has to read 15, he gets to pick the books at school and gets personal attention from the regular ed teacher when picking so he wants to do it and then will get to talk to the teacher about it. The homework does put a lot of work on your end to motivate them to do it and they may need a ton of help, but it definitely has benefited my guys in many ways, one being they are just like their classmates.
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It’s funny how just reading a list about being organized can calm my anxiety! I too have chosen to treat this school year as if it were January 1st. 🙂
Sonja…I even made it my first because I CANNOT do the rest on 3-4 hours of sleep, not anymore. If I want to succeed at it I HAVE TO SLEEP. It meant leaving the Red Sox game in the 7th inning last night….I NEVER leave games early…but I needed the sleep and had to work today *sigh* This won’t all be fun and games!
Kara, 30 minutes is the requirement for 3rd grade…I think there is a writing component introduced in a couple weeks but that was left as “we’ll explain this later” so we’ll see how we modify that too.
Erin, some of my FB friends have an exercise group to motivate each other…we should do a get organized/manage our anxiety group, lol.
Yes it was for us too, but some nights we get 30 and others just 15 based on attention. Just an FYI for writing, we had trouble picking topics if not writing about an assigned one or the basics of the book, so if we get stuck we use pictures we’ve taken and they describe the activity, or some part of that day.
I like the manage our anxiety group idea.
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Kara, we’ve been using photos from our family activities for writing purposes at school for a while…it is a FANTASTIC idea. I’m hoping to tie his homework to whatever the inclusion class is learning about…perhaps science since it’s the highest interest area for C. We’ll have a team meeting the 3rd week of school to figure out the details, they’re all just settling in for now.
Melissa, totally sounds familiar times 5 in our house — the other people in my house have the same problem even grandma. We all try and we all fail. Then we start trying again.
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