Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Life's Challenges



I'll tell you, this guy can break me. He has put me through the ringer for sure. He has made me stronger and better than anyone else could have. But, my heart aches for him. I want to fix him but my magic powers aren't working right. 

He is now 6. When he was first diagnosed at 2, I told myself, and many others that I would have him fixed by 6. Well, we are there and my outlook has changed over the last 4 years. He is Tate. He doesn't need to be anything else and although he has come so very far from where he was, he will always be my special Tate. I am happy with that. Really. I am thankful for the blessing of raising him. He is happy and loves life, on most days. What breaks my heart, though, is that his words are trapped in his cute little head. He tries to say everything and says many things but it is very hard to understand. He can't form the letters well so the words are jumbled. I try so hard to understand but even as his mom, I can't always tell what he needs. I remember the first day I sent him off for school, I eagerly picked him up to see how his day went and then I cried. He couldn't tell me how it went. I had no idea what he did or if he had a new friend. Was his teacher nice or mean? Did they have recess or sing a song? I cried for myself and for him.

I started to get used to Tate not being able to tell me details as he could communicate just enough to get his basic needs met. But it is getting harder. He is smart. He knows what he wants but can you even imagine what it would be like to not be able to communicate? Not be able to tell someone what you want or what you need? I can't and when I think about this, my heart aches.

Yesterday was one of those heart ache days. The bus came and dropped him off in front of my house. He stepped off and as the bus was leaving, he started screaming for the bus. "Bus, back!" The bus went on and he was hysterical. I have never even seen him like that. He wouldn't leave the front yard. He wouldn't calm down. He even tried to go after the bus on his bike. Nothing I said or did helped. I could not understand what he needed or what he may have left on the bus that was so important. I felt so helpless. I tried to guess but nothing was right. I sat with him and cried. I told him how sorry I was that I could not understand. Then I got mad at him for carrying it on too long; that didn't work either. I kept telling him that the bus wasn't going to come back until tomorrow. He still wouldn't come inside. 

I left him outside with his dad and even called the bus depot. I asked them to have the driver call me after her shift so I could find out what he may have left behind. 

After an hour of Tate waiting outside, now pushing 5pm, he came in the door, shouting with all the excitement a boy could have! "Bus! Back!" Sure enough, this angel bus driver saw after her shift that Tate had left the snack bucket behind. It was his job to bring it back the next day to share snacks with his friends. It was so important to him and he had left it on his seat. She saw it there and after her shift, she came back to our house to bring it to him. She is my hero. 

I held back the tears and hugged him and shared his joy. All evening, I had a sad heart thinking about my inability to hear his voice, that I could not understand his need and fix it. I waited to get the kids to sleep and my plan was to take a nice hot bath and to cry my eyes out.  I started the tub and hopped in. After about an inch of water filled the tub, the water went cold. Then I cried. Could I not even have a little hot water to drown my sorrows in? Nope. I dried off, all one inch of my self and crumbled in my closet and cried. Mom tears. 

I pray and hope some day this little one can tell me everything. I won't even complain one bit if the stories go on too long. I promise. 

Being a mother can be hard. I left my friend, Annabeth's house today as we discussed her little one fighting for her life from cancer. I am sure Annabeth has been crumbled in her closet as well. But, we push back the tears, dry off and fight. We both agreed these little ones were here to make us better. We just both wished they didn't have to suffer for our sake. 


24 comments:

Sashay~Vanessa said...

All I can say is that I LOVE YOU, you are an AMAZING WOMEN and I am honored to call you a friend.. Love you

Kerri said...

Oh that story is heart-wrenching! I must say that bus driver is one amazing lady and so are YOU. I can't imagine your heart-ache, but Tate and you are so lucky to have each other!

Jill said...

Bless you and your precious child!

Terri Burges Hirning said...

Oh little Tater Tot, how I miss that smiling face!! I know how you feel dear friend, I know how you feel. I would leave Pioneer's parking lot sobbing all the way home. I am so sorry this happened. Kudo's to that bus driver though!! You are a terrific mom and Tate is a lucky little boy. You will keep figuring it all out and eventually you will find that which will let out his voice!! I just KNOW it!!!!

Cheryl Allen Salinas said...

Bless you -- my heart goes out to you and I understand a mother's tears. You have a particular issue at the moment, but there is always something. I am just as worried about my 17-year old as I have ever been. My niece has a condition that sounds like what your son might have -- I cannot remember the name of it, maybe "aphasia" --it has to do with word retrieval. She has always been very wise. She has had basic speech therapy that the public school provided and she has improved so much it is hardly noticeable now at the age of 9. I think you have to ask your county for the therapy, and it may involve moving to another school. I think only certain schools have it. If not, maybe look for some private speech therapy? Forgive me if I am off base. Of course I am unaware of your specific situation. Just know that prayers are coming your way. BTW I agree that the bus driver was an Angel on earth!

The Johnsons said...

I can only imagine the pain and frustration that you BOTH had...and the joy upon seeing an understanding bus driver. After you did everything you could, God took care of the rest. Miracles still occur today. Amazing! :)

Clairissa said...

Tate is so very lucky and blessed to have you as a mother.

The Stibal Family said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Simply Living said...

Even thought I do not know you.. you are amazing to me. I love how hard you work to be the best mom for your kids. I love all of the information you share with us so we can be better as well. I had a good cry on your behalf while reading this post. I cannot imagine how frustrated you feel at times. I know with all my heart that Heavenly Father sent Tate to you because no one else could show him the love and patience that you have for him. The things that you have learned to help him are amazing and the fact that you take time out of your busy life to let all of us know what you have learned is even more amazing. Thank you for the inspiration.

Shari Goodman said...

Thanks for all the kind words, moms. I knew you could all feel my struggle. It is a mom thing. As for therapy, yep....we have done that intensely since he was 2. 5 days a week, all day long. So wish that was magic ticket alone. We are still trudging those roads and he has great services. His supplements and Dr.'s are also key. Just found out he still has lots of lead in his system which is hard to get out. The lead and mercury have lots to do with speech as well so we still have a ways to go. We are hitting that hard again so I have hopes there are great things to come! He is also getting a new computer to help him talk. Thanks for all your concerns and stories of hope! Love my friends.

Tracey said...

That story got the tears flowing this morning...

What an inspired bus driver and an amazing mother. Heavenly Father is watching over your sweet Tate! What a tender mercy.

You really are one of my heros!
Love you- XOXO

RPH said...

I love that the bus driver came back. What a great lady!

You are so inspiring Shari.

Tiffany said...

Shari...
You have me in tears as well. What a special little boy. He is so lucky to have such an amazing mom that is his advocate. I know all too well what it feels like to not be able to communicate with one of your children. It can be so painful at times. Heavenly Father has blessed him tremendously by sending him to you. He knew you would fight for him and you are! I have considered many of Emmies bus drivers her guardian angels. Thank goodness for people who are in tune. Keep your head up and keep fighting! He will thank you for your persistence! XOXO
Also... I now have an extra aug comm device if you want it. Its called a Mercury. It helped wonders!

Kyle and Heidi said...

Shari... shed a few tears... yes mothers know... I can only imagine how that would make me feel. What a darling angel.... this life has its challenges for all of us, won't it be wonderful some day that all that intelligence will just come pouring out! You are amazing.... you are a mother warrior... you are inspiring. Stay the course. We all know you will because of who you are!
PS That bus driver is an angel.

Colleen said...

Sobbing. Tate is so lucky to have you as his mom! AND the bus driver, oh my goodness, makes you feel good knowing there are FANTASTIC, WONDERFUL people in this world.

Whole Food For The Whole Family said...

Shari, Have you read Disconnected Kids by Dr. Robert Melillo? I'm currently reading it and plan on using its home-based program (exercises) on my children (and myself!) It sounds very promising!

You can find it here: http://www.amazon.com/Disconnected-Kids-Groundbreaking-Neurological-Disorders/dp/0399535608/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1298564953&sr=8-1

Health Seeker's Kitchen said...

Your little Tate is a beautiful boy. I am so glad the bus driver brought the snack bucket back and you were able to figure out what was wrong. You are such a wonderful mother to him:)

Linda said...

Amen to all that has been said! and that is all I can say right now. I must go clean up my momma tear mess...

Kelli Brown said...

Oh, Shari. I am a bawling mess right now after ready that post. You already know how much I love you and Tater and wish with all my heart that you could "fix" things for him. I know that you are both being blessed daily, though, for all that you are doing and continue to do for him.

Thanks for being an inspiring mom.

Wendi and Matt said...

I am in tears. You are amazing! Thank you for this. We as moms forget at times that we are so blessed.

rachel said...

i love when you do posts on tate. thank you for being so honest. i have had many crying sessions on my floor in a closed room. i'm so happy tate got his little snack bucket back. that is the sweetest story.

Abby Runyan said...

Thanks for sharing, I know all to well how you feel. Tate is so lucky to have you, as you are him.

Trina Faulkner said...

Shari, my heart ached and tears flowed as I read your story. I have had several similar situations with my youngest child. Blake is 7 1/2 years old - he has autism and is also non-verbal. I have tried so hard to understand him and to help him. Many times, I cannot figure out what he wants or needs. The bus driver is one of the "angels around about you, to bear you up." Tate is very fortunate to have you as his mother.

Mary said...

oh my goodness what a beautiful post. i am crying! we don't know the reasons, only the lord. what a sweet sweet boy. loves to all of you!