Little Steps: Day 23 – Pause. Reflect. Move Forward.

Day 23: 3.14 miles / Total miles: 21.28mi / Days left: 156 / Time:2:01:15 / Pace: 38’35

Yesterday was my first hike since last Thursday (Day 18). I ended last week on such a euphoric high.

And then this weekend happened.

And I desperately needed to go for a hike. I couldn’t go Monday. I ate something that didnt agree with me. My body spent Monday revolting. So I decided it was a good day to do our taxes.

I was going to go on Saturday, but I knew it was already iffy. Friday night was our annual Pow Wow for the school district and I already knew I was going to be late getting home.

I set my alarm clock anyways.

7AM. Beep beep beep (or whatever music I have randomly picked)

ThuD Thud thud WHACK thud pitter patter THUD

I opened an eyeball and it was hailing.

Screw you snooze button, you are being turned off.

And I fell back asleep. Until 1030AM. And it felt glorious.

But I needed to get out of my head yesterday. Alot of my life has been piling up. And to say I have been struggling, is an understatement.

I have not been drowning perse. Just, alot on my mind.

And I am at the point that everything is converging together and something needs to happen. I don’t know what. But something.

I got notice that the Autism testing that we booked 6 months ago for E and is in 2 weeks – will not be covered by insurance. If we proceed, we would need to pay 2500 out of pocket.

E’s meltdowns are fewer and farther between (thank goodness), but are much more intense when they do happen (well…..can’t win it seems).

Oh and E is now starting feeding therapy………………………….On top of her counseling and OT and speech therapy.

While B on the other hand, has an ear drum that has been filled with fluid for the past 2 years. If I had $600ish in my pocket, we would have been able to afford the surgery that would drain it nearly 2 years ago. But we didn’t so we decided to take it day by day. B did not say a SINGLE word about her ear or complain ONCE. At all. For a year (or I would have taken her in ASAP).

Fast forward to now. Her ear is so bad, that she has to be on ear drops for a week, and next week we will see if they can drain it in office, OR if she will need surgery.

ohplusalso – there is a strong possbility that B now has permanent ear damage & hearing loss. Ugh

But wait. There is more. After talking with B’s counselor – we have determined that she most likely also has SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) like her little sister. But we never connected the dots? Or paid close enough attention? Or wrote off her quirks as just her being her….heh we should have learned.

So on top of her counselor, I need to fill out a massive amount of paperwork to get her evaluated by an OT (Occupational Therapist).

I love my kiddos with all of my heart and soul. My body aches because I cannot fix them. I cry because we need to medicate our children. With pharmaceuticals.Which comes with its own social stigmas today. But it is literally the only way our lives can be slightly functional.

It effing sucks. I know we are being judged. I hurt that I do not have all the answers. I am so angry that my kids are suffering in their own ways – that I cannot fix.

If I had more time, or patience, or money – maybe I could allievate all of their issues, or most. At the very least.

But I don’t have the time. And let’s be honest – I really don’t have the patience. I have the love. The unconditional love and praise and acceptance. But patience – that is my weakness.

As for the money – we are in SO MUCH medical debt (and other debt) SO MUCH, that we are thinking about declaring bankruptcy. We are drowning in debt. Financially, we are suffering. And we see no end in sight.

Especially as more medical needs keep appearing.

One of my friends told me I needed to start a GoFundMe. And I declined.

I love knowing that my kids (and our family) are loved by so many people. But honestly, I just morally cannot ask for donations.

Not when there are so many others suffering worse than we are. Our situation is not bad. We are going to be OK. Our kids are happy and healthy. Our family is thriving (not financially, but we will survive). We have a roof over our heads and food in our tummies.

The Autism testing can be put off until I get better insurance. It is NOT a life or death scenario.

If you want to donate to a family in need – there are so many others out there that need it more than us. It is not hard to find one.

So needless to say – I needed to walk. I needed to get out of my head. I needed to escape.

Hiking has become my way to escape.

Most of the time, I escape straight to my inner voice. Which is exactly what I did not want to hear yesterday.

Earlier yesterday, I decided to take a look at the elevations on Section G of PCT (OR). The section that I am doing this fall.

I saw this picture and almost fell out of my chair laughing. I immediately sent it to my work husband J and asked him “what the hell did I get myself in to?”

It is no secret I HATE hills. Our relationship is definitely on the rocks. Specifically because our uphill dynamic is based on pure vitriol.

I made a last minute change to where I was going to hike yesterday. Last minute. Turns out – I picked the park with the steep incline ahead sign. Like seriously? That is a warning?

The universe is laughing at me. It wants me to repair my relationship with Hills. And QUICK.

Of course, I was already at the bottom of the hill when I saw the sign…… At that point, if I wanted to make it to my CERT training tonight – I had to just put one foot in front of the other.

Walking uphills, my inner voice normally yells and cusses me out. But today, the only way I would be able to survive, and make sure this hike did not end my training completely – was to just count.

So I counted. 1. 2. 3. 10. 35. 49. 53. Stop.

Breathe. Stretch. Breathe. Stretch.

1. 2. 3. 6. 19. 42. 55. Stop.

Breathe. Stretch. Breathe. Stretch. Repeat.

I finally got to the top. And I looked down from the top.

I did that. I conquered that hill. I didn’t have a choice, but to just do.

My kids – they are going to be fine. WE, are going to be fine.

Hills are going to happen. Whether we are rolling downhill laughing, or suffering uphill. At either end, and along the way, there are points to pause and reflect.

Viewpoints to look at the trail we just traveled.

Viewpoints to look at the trail we have yet to travel.

The universe knew I needed to walk this trail today. The universe knew I needed this win. This feeling of immense accomplishment.

This feeling that whatever comes my way – is not impassible (Yes…impassible). I just need to take my time.

To pause and reflect.

And move forward.

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