One of the only things worse than struggling as an #Autism parent, is feeling alone in your struggle

August is going to be a tough month for us. We’re really struggling with groceries because it’s so hard to find things that the kids will actually eat and eat more than once.

Elliott and Emmett are both going through something because it seems like everything they used to eat, now tastes funny.. This leads to wasted food, frustration and it has a significant impact on our limited budget.

I’m not sure how we’re going to pull grocery shopping off this month but the one thing we have going for us is that school starts in about two weeks.  This means we don’t have to worry about the boys during the day and that will save on food, therefore extending our budget.  ☺

While that’s a blessing, it’s also a curse because with school starting almost three weeks earlier, it falls before the paycheck I was going to use for school clothes and supplies.

School has always started the first or second week in September and so we plan around that.  For some reason, this year they’re starting about two or three weeks earlier and school will end for the summer about two or three weeks earlier as well.  We weren’t prepared for that, as the announcement came via email last week.

I’m feeling alot of stress because I don’t know how we’re going to pull everything off. We always seem to make it work but until we figure it out, it’s hanging over my head.

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I’ve no doubt that many of you can relate to this and while I’m sorry for your struggle, there’s comfort in knowing you aren’t alone.  ☺

In general, we’ve fallen behind on things and getting caught up is never easy. Something always seems to come up and the other shoe falls quite frequently.

Each of the boys are struggling with one thing or another and it requires a great deal of time and energy to manage.

Elliott’s knee deep in puberty and while he’s such a sweet kid and I love him tremendously but he freaks out over everything. He’s a kid with Autism and severe anxiety issues, fueled by raging hormones. His mood swings are often and drastic. He’s waking up almost every night and struggles to go back to sleep as well.

Elliott dwells on everything and just can’t let anything go.  This means that he’s constantly worried and overwhelmed because he doesn’t just sweat the small stuff, he sweats everything.

Emmett is in this phase where he’s a danger junkie.  He has absolutely no fear and the idea of safety is a concept that escapes him.  He’s putting things in his mouth and ears a lot more in recent months.  I hate to say this because I love him so much but he simply cannot be trusted with anything that could be used for anything.

Today he apparently jumped out of a moving car and ran off.  He’s fine but it freaked out his brothers and his grandma..  When he got home, we tried to explain to him how dangerous that was but it just doesn’t seem to click.

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If you know Emmett in real life, you are aware that he requires constant supervision lately.  He cannot be left alone for long because you have no clue what he’s going to do.  It’s exhausting and frustrating because I really thought he’d outgrown this stuff but it seems we’ve come full circle.

Whenever someone spends time with the boys, especially Emmett, we almost always hear, OMG…. I don’t know how you do it. You can’t look away for a second…. I’ll talk more about that later.

As for Gavin, he’s still in a psychotic break and for safety reasons, we’ve opted not to increase his medication.  This of course means we have to ride this out and it’s already been almost two months (give or take) because it began shorty before school let out for the summer. It’s hard to see him go through this because I love him and it definitely impacts the day in countless ways.

Overall, he’s doing okay.  He just struggles with reality and that can be difficult to deal with as a parent.

Lizze and I are listening to his mission debriefings and it’s so hard to show no emotion because we have to be very careful how we handle this.

Lizze is currently undergoing a med change that’s proven to be difficult for her.  She’s pushing through it though and once this gets worked out, she should be good.

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Her and I are really wanting to focus on our health and losing weight is on the top of the list.  That’s proven to be much harder with the boys home from school but beginning August 24th, that will change.

All things considered, I’m doing pretty well. I have days where depression and exhaustion kick my ass up one side of the street and down the other but it’s not all consuming right now.  That means for now, I’m winning the war or at least I’ve turned the tide of this particular battle.

Life is an imperfect work in progress.  We are struggling in many ways and I’m feeling the weight of that on my shoulders. All I can do is carry on and keep moving forward.

My hope is that by reading this, someone out there realizes that they aren’t alone.  I know from personal experience that one of the only things worse than struggling the way we are, is to feel like you’re the only one struggling.  Knowing that others out there get it and aren’t judging you, can give one the strength to take on yet another day. The strength to get back up just one more time than they’ve fallen and comfort in knowing they aren’t alone.  ☺