Sunday, April 30, 2006

School Daze

So Twinks is back at school, full time. No more homebound; every morning she takes her roller-backpack and she disappears into the morass of swirling sixth-graders.

A little bit of my heart disappears with her every morning now; I had gotten used to her being *here* - at home with me - all the time. I must confess that I liked it; we had created a comfortable routine, just the three of us. Twinks would get to spend several hours every day with The Wrench, instead of just seeing him for about 45 minutes in the morning. I would leave them to their little morning ritual; The Wrench would get up early, just to spend time with Twinks. They would sit together to do homework, or if there was no homework, I would hear his voice, deep and rumbling down the hallway, blended with her sweet soprano as they puttered about together, doing everything from folding origami to folding laundry.

Now that has changed. Just in time for the last month of school, Twinks is back. She even got a standing ovation on her first full day back at school! She was really amazed, and touched that her friends were so happy to see her.

I, on the other hand, feel dazed and confused. (Stop it. Right now. I know what you are thinking: "So, what else is new? Thim is 'dazed and confused'. So? What else you got?") Well, when you quit laughing your collective asses off, consider this...

...I have essentially hit a brick wall. At full speed.

The Wrench and I have been so focused - fully, completely focused - on finding out what was wrong with The Twinkster that it was, well everything. When he wasn't at work, whenever I could find a free moment, we would be on the Internet, searching, learning, trying to figure it out. It was more than just a mystery to solve, it was our daughter, fading away before our very eyes, and we felt that we had to keep going - we had to keep looking for the answer. It was intense, all-consuming. We ate it, drank it, slept it, lived it, 24/7.

Then, suddenly one day, there it is. The answer is revealed, albeit in a parking garage, and you find that you have gone from 60 to zero in a heartbeat.

You have hit the wall.

Now, what do you do next?

Well?

It's a bit of a shock to the system. Nearly three weeks later, and I still sit in front of the computer, thinking that there must be *something* that I need to be checking on. I feel a bit odd and disconnected from reality; it's difficult to just let go of that sense of urgency. I know that the crisis is past, but the adrenaline is still pumping.

So, to occupy myself I did a bit of research. Good news: Fibromyalgia can be terrible, (we already know that) but if managed correctly, she'll be fine (Irony: she'll probably be "healthier" than all of the rest of us combined if she follows the recommended regime) Nearly three weeks in, and The Wrench and I can't believe what we are seeing. Twinks is a whole new kid: It's like a miracle, sponsored by the major pharmaceutical manufacturers of America. "Better living through drugs".

But, I'm still back at that wall. I'm not exactly certain what I'm supposed to do next.

We have a diagnosis.

We have a "treatment plan" (God, I hate that phrase)

We have prescription drugs.

We have our kid again - nearly completely pain free, and happy to be back at school.

Now I guess we need a "life plan".

Or, maybe I just need a vacation.

9 comments:

Kelly said...

Thim,

I know EXACTLY what you're talking about! Except I had FIVE YEARS of researching under my belt, and no good dx at the end. It was a real downer, to be sure! Blogging is what I use to preoccupy my mind now.

I think the vacation idea is a great one! Why not? School's out soon, you don't need to go far or spend a lot of money, and you can all "kick-start" a normal life again. Go do something you only wished you could do when she was in pain!

(Oh, and DON'T forget to post about it!)

:)

Ericka said...

i would suggest 2 vacations.

for the first, take the wrench away for a weekend and ravish him. you both need it, and it'll be time to reconnect the two of you.

for the second, take the family someplace fun (after school lets out) and finish your creep into normal by doing something as any normal family would.

i'm sorry about your wall. i went through something similar (though on a smaller scale, i think) after i graduated from college. i had worked so hard for so long for the degree that once i had it, i had no clue what to do next. everyone expected me to be thrilled to be done, and i was, mostly, but i had to shift my focus and i spent some time rattling around wondering what was next. i hope your transition is as seamless as possible. :-)

Suldog said...

My extremely humble opinion:

Give yourself and The Wrench a time together, by yourselves, to enjoy each other without the worries you've had for so long. If it is possible to get away on your own, take a day or two. It is vitally important that you keep the relationship between the two of you growing and happy without Twinks as well as with her. In the long run this will make all relationships within the family stronger and happier. Does that make sense? I hope so.

Garrett said...

That vacation idea sounds good, but I don't know if it should be a family vacation, and adult vacation, or both. :-)

Stu said...

I vote for a vacation, a reward for all your hard work. There are no award shows for great parenting, and there are no game shows where contestants compete at parenting. So you have to reward yourself. Dig.

Anonymous said...

Vacation, Vacation, Vacation.

I also agree with ericka that 2 vacations are in order: a family vacation and a "OMG! We're actually still married" vacation.

The wall dissolves in time, and with re-discovery of your own interests. Life will find a way.

Chuck said...

Hey, a vacation sounds like a great idea to me, T! If there is ANYONE out there who deserves one, it's you and your family.

I remember one time when I was running a lot, training for a marathon (MANY years ago) and also taking a computer class and coaching youth soccer as a volunteer, in addition to working full time. Soccer season ending, the class being over, and the marathon being run all occured within a few weeks of each other. I didn't know what to do with all my free time for weeks!

I'm sure you will find an outlet for all of your energy soon. You could always volunteer to be a free-lance internet researcher, since I know you've gotten very good at it.

Garrett said...

Thimbelle, I just ran across http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/links/doi/10.1111%2Fj.1545-5300.2003.00453.x while playing with "Windows Live Academic" - sounds like what you're talking about, but I'm not dropping $13 to find out how relevant it is. :-)

Thimbelle said...

Garrett:

Thanks! I found the full text of the article here:
http://www.ncfr.org/pdf/2002Decfamilyfocus.pdf

Interesting, to say the least!

Thim :)