I’m going to be all over the map with this post so bear with me and lean into the turns. It’ll make it easier for us both.
After the weekend in Cincy, I came home to Andy who hugs me and fakes that he missed us, and Larkin who ignored me. This is typical for her and heartbreaking for dear ole mom. I am just another body to her and most kids when they haven’t seen their mom for 2 days get pretty fired up. Well most kids under the age of 13. So I took her 16yr old attitude and dealt with it. Took a shower and changed from the day and then sat on the floor next to her to try and force her into liking me. She was more interested in her toy. I actually got waved off. “Talk to the hand mom”. So I pushed more. Isn’t that what we are supposed to do when someone ignores us? (checking dating handbook from 1986) I became Larkin’s stalker mom. I kept at her. Kisses. Hugs. Talking. All to no avail and more waving me off. However I am a great stalker. I leaned into her neck and nuzzled her very hard. Munching on her fat little neck and raspberries galore!! HALLELUJAH!!! ANGELS SINGING ON HIGH!!! She started to laugh and cry. The kind of cry of recognition. Parent’s know that cry!! Finally she realized mommy was home!! She threw herself into my arms and accepted my kisses and love and gave me back smiles, laughs and Larkin hugs. She just needs more time to process missing me.
It was a first for us. It made my heart soar. A connection my friends and all it took was deep sensory love. Something I think we would all would benefit from being given every day. Stalker mom’s unite!! Keep after those kids because deep sensory love and pushing get to all of em after a while.
Lean into the turn here. I viewed Larkin’s school on Monday of this week. When children with disabilities turn 3 they leave the Early Intervention program. Early Intervention known as EI is where all of her therapist come into our home and into Larkin’s environment to train and help us. This begins at birth until 3. Then we move into the Early Education phase. She will go to the Early Education building which is attached to Stratton school on North Neil. Andy and I went on Monday morning for a tour. We met the principal and saw all of the classrooms and saw a few people that we know personally. Beautiful building. Beautiful classrooms and settings. I want Larkin to go and see how she progresses beyond our wildest dreams. This is the path that she needs to be most successful. We asked all the questions we had. We felt safe and welcome. We left and put Larkin in her car seat and as Andy was putting away her stroller I burst into tears. I couldn’t stop crying and that is how I spent my Monday. I still cry about it now. Please understand that the school is BEAUTIFUL and this is not about the transition. I want her to go to school. I want her to move along. What I can’t stop crying about just yet is the lack of choice and where I fit in as a mother. We are supposed to interview 3-5 preschools, be presented with a curriculum, meet the teachers and then make a choice. I am supposed to sign up for volunteer time and make copies in the office or help with reading groups. That isn’t how this path works. This is where Larkin will go. This is the people she will be with. This is just how it happens and the staff runs wonderful program. This is it. I am now leaning into the turn. I am learning to navigate new territory. I am grieving. Loss of how it’s supposed to be all over again. Loss of choice. Loss of who I am as a parent.
Those of you who know me well know that I first and foremost try and turn the situation into either a joke or a positive. Usually I manage both. This week has been hard on me but instead of loss I am going to lean into the turn with gain. Gaining with her growing in leaps and bounds. Gaining a new team that wants to love and support our little girl. Gaining new friends on this stretch of road who will open our world. Gaining a little bit of freedom every morning to work on Larkin’s Place and go back to my real job on a more regular basis. Yes I do have a real job that I love and people that I have missed terribly for the past 3 years because I work at home so much.
Balance is necessary in all things. Loss/gain all depends on how you look at it. My tears will stop. Our world will become wider and our little Larkin will become stronger, more independent and maybe just maybe I’ll be able to stop being stalker mom and just become a loved soccer mom.
It would have been so nice to have had Larkin’s Place up and running on Monday. I needed it. She needed it. We all need it.
I don’t know anyone who knows how to turn lemons into lemonade better than you do.