Tommy and I are unfortunately well versed in tough parental decisions. Thomas gave us plenty of experience in that arena. From deciding to have him take prescribed medication at a young age to residential school also at a young age and again during his teen years. You know, when Thomas returned to living with us after the first time at residential school I had this vision/life plan of his growing up with us in our home with the rest of our family. But that’s not how it panned out. Through no fault of Thomas, we had to discontinue a medication for medical reasons that was essentially holding his aggression at bay. Without that medication he became violent and could not continue to live with us. Hence the second time Thomas had to live at a residential school. We were fortunate that in this circumstance God was certainly present and the staff at this school was amazing. Every single one of them. They worked diligently with our son so that when it was time for him to leave he was a safe, pleasant young man who transitioned to the group home with ease.
Again, I had a plan of what it would be like to have Thomas living geographically close to us. We would have him over for dinner a couple of times a week, we would go to church together; if he wanted to go to the mall or wherever I would be happy to take him. Well, things didn’t work out that way. Thomas prefers to come here once a week on Sundays. He doesn’t like coming to our house during the week and shopping trips with him are not for the faint of heart. I did take him to church and Thomas spoke loud and throughout the whole service. If he wasn’t talking about God knows what, he was telling me how much he needed a tissue. Of course I didn’t have a freaking tissue. Not a good time; for me anyway. I stopped making plans after that and just decided to give it up to God and our relationship with Thomas would be what it would be and we would be more than happy with the situation.
There have been many times I’ve given situations up to God and have been amazed at the outcome. I shouldn’t be amazed. I should be grateful and humble and most of all thankful. He does move mountains, more than we ever know. However we also need to acknowledge His ways are higher than ours and when a mountain does not move, God has His reasons and we are not necessarily privy to His reasoning.
Our cat Smokey died last week. Tommy found him. It’s terrible and sad. There’s seriously enough going on right now in the background and then Smokey dies; goes over that rainbow bridge. We had 3 cats; in order of their ages, Belle, Smokey and Cash. Smokey was the coolest IMO. He didn’t care if people came over he would stand his ground and hang out in the kitchen or dining room. Even if someone came over to visit with their dog like my parents when they had their dog Daisy or Sam and Alyssa with Clayton. Smokey wouldn’t care or be intimidated nor would he leave “his” kitchen. Oh no.
It’s so sad when you lose a pet. They are seriously a part of your family, part of your daily routine. I would have my coffee in the morning and my gray friend would jump up on the chair right next to me. Then he would be half standing on my lap. This is after he had gotten himself underfoot with Tommy trying to get Temptation treats at 5am. Not a good time to be weaving in and out of someone’s legs.
He always looked unkempt because Smokey wasn’t one to really clean or groom himself much. I would have to brush him and even then his fur looked weird. I didn’t care, to me he looked handsome. He was such a good cat, never mean and he always made us laugh.
I always thought our most difficult seasons in life were all about Thomas. Getting him diagnosed and appropriately treated; finding the best schools for him. Dealing with doctors and medicine changes and having him attend a residential program away from home. I was wrong. Difficult seasons don’t go away and never come back. Seasons in life that are difficult to navigate shift and involve different main characters. Today Thomas is doing well in the group home he calls “my” house. So we were able to weather the seasons that involved Thomas.
These days we are deep in the depths of a difficult season with our youngest child. I tell myself this is temporary, that’s it’s “only a season.” However when you’re in the midst of said season and there doesn’t seem to be solid answers or light at the end of the tunnel you feel the weight of the situation as being even heavier and there’s an indescribable sadness. You would think with all our experience in handling difficult situations with Thomas we would “pro’s” in weathering storms. Nope.
I’ve been praying and thinking a lot about God. I don’t blame God for this situation, no where in the Bible does it say you will have an easy life when you accept Jesus as your Lord and Savior. Nor does the Bible say “God never gives you more than you can handle.” I loathe that saying. Bullshit. He certainly does give us more than we can handle. I can attest to that. It is only when we go to Him and ask His help that we are conquerers of the dark times.