Sunday, March 7, 2010

Riding in cars with daughters.

I find it hard to get excited about things that Nicole does. I don't know if it is because her 3 year old brother has been doing them for months and she is just now mimicking him or because a lot of the time it is something someone in the family has been trying to teach her for months. Either way, I feel a lot of guilt about this part of our relationship.

During the week Nicole and Luke go to a learning center where they have excellent teachers. Nicoles teacher has been the most valuable resource we have had yet and I treasure what she has done for us.

On the weekends I have all four kids with out any help until my husband gets home from work. It gets tiring.

Needless to say, I'm sure all my kids could use a little more "mommy time" with me. With the exception of my youngest who is quite literally attached to my hip.

I have found that Nicole and I need more "mommy time" than any of my other children. It is essential for our relationship. It is easy to lose her special moments in the chaos that is my day. It is harder to make a fuss about her remembering what she did in school that day. A lot of the time her accomplishments go with out the tea party they truly deserve.

But she does truly deserve a circus themed party for all she has accomplished this year. She has both amazed me and given me more frustration over the last eight months with how much she has learned. Part of me wants to know why she is not learning this well at home. A part of me is eternally grateful that someone is able to teach her.

She is a wonderful little girl that deserves everything in life.

Today, in the car on the way to pick Luke up from their Papas house we got some rare alone time. She was just as yappy and silly as always. But it was so much easier to enjoy it without another child screaming for attention. She counted all the money in my wallet and even though dimes only counted as one I was so happy when she counted to 9 with out any help from me.

We took a few moments at a red light to look at the difference between a $1, $5 & $10 after she asked if she could have a dollar and took a $10.. Sneaky little thing :)

She learned two new words and said them very well. I even let her have a sip of my iced coffee. Something that never gets to happen. In that moment, I didn't care that she doesn't need the caffeine, or that it may have her bouncing off the walls. It was a very special 15 minutes for us.

She teaches me something new every time we get these moments. Today, she taught me how to slow down and appreciate the importance of 15 minutes with your mommy.

When we got to my parents house I let her sit in my lap to pull into the driveway. She barely held the wheel but she was so excited to tell her little brother that mommy let her "drive"

I really need to slow down. These moments with her are irreplaceable and truly, very special.

First Post. First time writing a blog.

I have a five year old daughter named Nicole. She is not biologically mine, but I raise her 24/7-365. I don't care what you have to say, she is my daughter. We have been on quite a journey trying to get a diagnosis for her problems. Not so much to have a name for what is wrong, but so we know what to do to help her. Everything has been a dead end. I recently came to the conclusion that I don't care what it is called. It wont make any difference. She is who she is and her father and I know more about her than any doctor could tell us. Sure, it might be nice to know why she does certain things, whether it is hereditary or something she developed from vaccinations, a seizure she had as a baby or any other number of things she went through before she was even born. But in the end, it does not matter.

I find I need a release from time to time on how hard it can be to raise a child with special needs. Some days I feel I could pull my hair out strand by strand. Other days she will finally tie the sash on her robe after nearly a solid year teaching her and I cry from a million emotions all at once. Frustration that it took so long, elation that she is finally doing it and a deep sadness at all the things she may never do because it will be easier to just give up.

My hope from this blog is that it will be a place for me to talk - to anyone that wants to listen - about my happiness, my sadness and my love for this special little girl. Some posts will be of epic triumph and happiness and others will be of sheer anger and frustration. With the good will come the bad and I have no plans of sugar coating my postings. After all, what would be the point of writing a blog full of half-truths?