A family's story

Anxiety is a Beast

Anxiety is a beast. If I had to draw it, my anxiety beast would be dark purple and black, with sharp claws and pointy teeth. It would have spiky, somewhat matted fur…and it would stink. (You know, the wavy lines…)

Anxiety has the power to suffocate, inspire fear, deprive sleep, deprive experience, hinder social prowess, and prevent growth. It is insidious. It is ugly. It is nasty. I try to fight it…to keep it under control, but it is difficult, especially this time of the year.

The end of any chapter in life causes some anxiety. But the end of the school year?! It’s one of the worst offenders! Jake is so off kilter. It’s causing him to be more forgetful, more short-tempered, more clingy. He was making progress again…but now?? He’s stymied in this ugly place.

Last night he had lacrosse practice. He griped about going–for the first time this season. He just wanted to sit and watch tv–the familiar, predictable past-time of his. I made him go. The coach had the boys doing laps. Jake melted down. It was not pretty. I was torn between letting the coach handle it and running out there, and dragging him home. I restrained myself…and Jake calmed down and began practice again.

This morning Jake had a tantrum over a water bottle. I prepared it and told him to take it. He balked at it. Temps were forecast to be near 90, and there is no a/c in his school. He needed it! After some encouragement, he put it in his backpack, grumbling all the way.

Tate is a mess. He’s not sleeping (see yesterday’s post). He’s fighting his therapists. He whines for a good 20 minutes (even with 10 and 5-minute warning) at dinner. He has tried (unsuccessfully) to talk me into staying home from school. He has 5 days left, for goodness’ sake! If I ask him questions, he avoids. If I want to play with him, he stims and perseverates. He is mostly “himself” in the early hours before school, or when we go to the park and he swings.

I’m so scattered. The end of the school year brings anxiety…the unfamiliar…the “official” end of the old and the beginning of the new. We have the “last” of this, that, and the other. I have to adapt to a big schedule change.I have to get everyone ready for their repsective summer activities. (Aaand,there may also be some tears shed over the prospect of being with the kids for 12 weeks. Yes, they have plenty of activities and what-not, but still…).

And, of course, there’s Cole…he feeds on all of our unrest and contributes the only way a soon-to-be-three-year-old knows how: he’s naughty. I swear that child’s ears are broken! His increased need for direction, attention, and love just drains my already depleted stores of everything.

We’ll power through the next week and we’ll make it through…we always do…but I am just so done. And in need of a break.

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Comments on: "Anxiety is a Beast" (4)

  1. So many families seem to be having a hard time now with the end of the school year getting closer. Hang in there mama. It’s almost over. For this year at least.

  2. your lack of sleep is making all that other stuff harder too. God knows when I’m missing sleep everything seems that much more painful.

  3. I hate the end of the school year. Anxiety is running high in our house because son is changing schools this year too. Hang in there.

  4. Hugs, girl. When you are feeling it all, and you get a moment to rest – and try to sleep, fight the anxiety beast with those beautiful posts about all that progress on the playground and with the neighbor kids. We often misplace those little gems when the bad stuff comes bit it is there to help us out. Yes, the change is hard and the longer daylight hours are probably throwing them off schedule too. But overall, they are getting older and wiser and if you look you will see that even in the midst of the meltdowns. I’m seeing it with Tay too. Take care of you and try to escape to Target – that can do a girl a world of good. 🙂

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