Staggering along with my hands in the air

Do you ever wonder how wise you really are? I’ve wondered that a lot of late. I was expecting my son back from his two year mission in Korea, at the end of April. To make sure I’d have all the time in the world to settle him in, I pushed through and on the morning of the same day we picked him up, I finished the first draft of my second Willowdale book.

*throws giant armfuls of confetti*

Except…between my deadline and our son’s return, I slipped on helping my teen daughter manage her care. She has a connective tissue disease–Ehlers Danlos Syndrome–and deals with a host of complications which come with it. She’s a sweet, responsible girl, and generally we manage swimmingly. But, two days after my son returned, she crashed and burned with a major flare-up of her POTS. And I felt terrible, since a little more tlc from me might have prevented it. Caring for someone with a chronic illness is always complicated, and triply so when that person is a teen striving for independence. How much should I hover? How much should I step back? Do I have a right to my own interests, or is that selfish? What if I misjudge, and she pays the price?

I can’t say I always get it right, and I’ll admit sometimes I even wonder if there is clear-cut ‘right.’ The target seems to move around so much! However, underneath my worries, I’m convinced that what we really need to do is simply get up when we fall. Dust ourselves off. Shake it out. Take a quick look at why we tumbled (because life is for learning), and then move on. We won’t get it perfect, and we will fall again. But so long as we always get up, we’ll come through okay in the end!

It’s working for me and mine. I’m happy to report that my daughter is feeling good once again, and was even able to attend the annual party my publisher threw this past weekend. She and my hubby attended last year, too, so it was great to bring them back and also introduce my son. There was a mobile escape room Friday night–

–a super fun reading Saturday at Aversboro Coffee, which was my first and a truly thrilling experience–

–and a party for the century Saturday night!

I can’t say I pull it all off, cause I don’t. In fact, I go to bed every night with a dozen things on my To Do list undone. But I’m so grateful for the chance to run this race. So grateful that I can stagger along, falling down and falling again, and getting up. Because every time I rise, I know I’m winning, no matter how long it takes me to cross the finish line. Here’s to all of us, and you in your challenges! Rise up, my friends! We can do this. 🙂

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