Tuesday, February 24, 2009

The Right Track

We have been through the process of writing an IEP with 3 different school districts in the last 8 months and today I finally signed something. The one we wrote in our new district is by far the strongest of the 3 and the only one that states that a deaf school is the best placement for Ethan. It occurred to me today as I signed and dated the final document that it would be really nice if I had an IEP for myself. It would have goals that pertain to taking care of my own basic needs and there would of course be support and accountability built into the contract.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the role of parenting a child, but especially one with so many issues that are under constant care and consideration. I've put so much of my mental and physical being into parenting Ethan, that I've neglected to care for myself on some pretty basic levels. Moving to this place has enabled me to finally relax in the knowledge that Ethan’s needs are being thoughtfully addressed by wonderful and talented professionals. Seeing him thrive here has made it much easier to change my focus, or at least widen the scope. I’m trying to take naps (I don’t sleep well due to Ethan’s continued sleep disturbances) and I've been making wiser choices about what I eat. I have enrolled in an exercise class that I really enjoy and while he is at school I’m spending less time creating and maintaining to-do lists and more time taking baths or reading for pleasure. I have even been so bold as to schedule a couple of doctor appointments for myself. It feels good to let go of the reins a little bit and let other people work their magic with Ethan. I think he likes it as much if not more than I do.


tammy said...

Wow ... I LOVE this post. I realize from time to time how caught up I can get in Aiden and his therapies, trying to still understand "deaf" (will I ever?), his physical therapy, speech therapies, etc. and it's so true, that we need to take time for ourself to do what we like to do ... for a healthy body and mind. With two older kids (and a husband), I feel guilty when I try to do what I want to do (i.e. blog, browse, read, etc) Yet, these are things I enjoy and really, the only time I get to do them. But I don't take that time during the day or at night ... not to the extent I'd like anyway ... I have constantly neglected my needs, but even more so since I quit my job to stay home and take care of Aiden's needs. I think as moms, we always give, give, give and when we have a child with special needs, we give even that much more. I'm glad to hear you're doing for you! You've encouraged me to do the same! I did start working out (3 days now!) and just told my husband that I need an hour each night of "me" time. I'm posting my IEP on the fridge tomorrow for all to see! We need to come up with our own acronym!

PS - I'm catching up on my blogs ... so congrats on your new house (beautiful!), and glad to hear you finally got something signed! Ethan's a doll!

slouching mom said...

I'm really glad. It all sounds so right.

Kyla said...

That is wonderful!! I've been feeling much of the same lately, which has made me seriously contemplate wildly crazy things like switching to premed. Agh!

She said...

A W E S O M E!

I often read while in the bathtub!


Love the photo of your little guy!

leah said...

That photo is so adorable! Moms need to take some time out for themselves, but it can be so hard to do with all of the things you have to keep tabs on! Ethan has such a great team now- sit back, take a bubble bath, and find a good book to read!

KC said...

So glad you are taking care of yourself now. Yes!

I'm prescribing you bubble baths, a massage, a few incredible books, and a pedicure. Stat.

Kel said...

Awesome! I am first thrilled about the IEP, and very proud of you that you're taking time for yourself too. It certainly is hard to justify sometimes, but it is very much needed! I think I would go certifiably insane if I didn't find time to sneak away and read and relax now and then.

Anonymous said...

Oh Heather, this is such a good message. Happy moms are a blessing to their children and to their husbands and extended families. We love hearing that you're catching just a bit of time for yourself ... finally! Good going.

Grandma Innis

Beck said...

I constantly have to work at not letting myself vanish within motherhood, at making sure I also take care of myself. This was a great post and a much-needed reminder for other moms, I think!

I am Trish Marie said...

I realized this week that I finally hit a point in my life where I can relax. Emmi is in school full day. The doctors' appts have dwindled down to six month check ups (although that still averages at least once a month at Texas Children's!), private therapy is only twice a week and before school. I can finally take long lunches with my friends, take a bubble in the middle of the day, go running when I want, etc. I feel like a different person lately!

Aliki2006 said...

I'm glad you're finding some equilibrium--sometimes it's hard!

eda said...