Plenty of water flowing under the bridge. The water seemingly never ending.

In the run up to Christmas I was worried that it would bring sadness and hurt. Anniversaries and big holidays do that. As it happened yes one or two wobbles but son seemed to enjoy himself. That’s the only thing that matters these days. So it’s late on Boxing Day and soon Christmas will have gone. Job done. I survived.

But the flow of grief never stops. It’s ebbs and flows. The calm often masks the arrival of a raging flood.

Unknowingly my attention for weeks has been focused on the goal. The goal of giving our son the best Christmas possible. A real focus. A real direction. Caught up in the growing excitement of a child looking forward to time off from school and still hooked on most things festive. That rubs off on the parent.

Now it’s the end of Boxing Day. Heralding the coming end of that special time. The end of the focus. Suddenly it hits me. A new year. A year of more school strife. Son spending so much time in a place, an institution (sadly seems a more apt term to use than school) which goes out of its way to constrain, belittle and make him feel without worth. Hence another year of soul destroying fights with the authorities. Trying to squeeze more work into those hated school hours. Failing to find a way to rebalance the books to allow for home schooling. Adjusting to a world of increasing isolation which currently is the path of our sons Aspergers journey. Sleepless nights and tired days. Living in a country which is becoming increasingly alien to me. All wrapped up in another year without my beloved partner.

Tonight that is a truly haunting feeling. Son is in bed so no distraction from these worries. Suddenly I feel low. Very low. Feeling so unprepared for 2020. For all my fears Christmas provided a much needed boost. Something positive to focus on. Something tangible which I could have an impact on.

This haunting feeling will pass. It must pass. No one to step in if I shut down. Like most parents I will do what ever it takes for our children. A few tears tonight I suspect but tomorrow let’s make some more laughter for our son. OUR SON as it’s still our son. Yes I’m carrying the baton but he’s still our son. I just can’t drop that baton now. So after January 1st I will find a way to go again. Maybe it will be the year of progress. Maybe I will end up reposting these words next year as nothing has changed. Like the river I’m sure the bouts of sadness and loneliness will keep flowing. Constant stream of perpetual tiredness. But the good times and smiles will also flow. Yes remember that river – it keeps flowing – I keep going.

67 thoughts on “The river

  1. There always seems to be a dip in our mood once Christmas Day is over, and then a whole new year lies ahead with its adventures and challenges. But you will be fine, Gary, because you are not all-consumed with your own difficulties – you care about others too. I pray that God is with you, sending lots of good times … and lifting you up in the challenging ones.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. How would you feel about leaving your son for an hour or so to do something for yourself (of an evening) occasionally? Perhaps you are already and I’ve failed to pick it up…. I started about a year ago, occasionally leaving my daughter for an hour or so during the day or for an hour in the evening whilst still in the village. It was as much to build up my own confidence as anything.
    At first, it was such a novelty I was completely blown away but now I am not so excited. It does feel good to have a bit of non-work related adult time, though, even if it is only about once a month 😊

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      1. Poor boy! Does he have a phone he could use to contact you? Maybe over time you can lengthen the number of minutes…. one day he will be an adult and needs to be able to function without you – which I’m sure must be something you’re concerned about, too – so it’s for your son as well as your own sanity.

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  3. Yes, life just keeps on, another day and another, sometimes it’s okay and sometimes it’s not. Good advice from the river analogy, go with the glow and try to keep your head above water. You’re not Superman, but you are trying. Hugs!

    Sent from my iPad


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  4. You are making beautiful music with that baton – sometimes mournful and poignant, at other times light, bubbly, joyful. Life will continue to offer challenges. And it will continue to offer reprieve from the arduous journey. You continue to uplift, to inspire, to offer hope. You, sir, are an amazing human being raising another amazing human being. I am so glad I chanced upon your blog and truly humbled and moved by your honesty, by your words. May 2020 bring more goodness than you ever dreamed of and more help on your journey. Keep the faith. You truly are doing an awesome job. You are teaching your son by example, and that is where the true lessons lie. God bless you both.

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  5. wow Gary, got your name at last! You really have touched so many people’s hearts, the resonance and love from these messages is amazing.

    Is a geographical move possible … to help with schooling issue and grief. No idea of your housing and work situation but sometimes radical action can bring huge rewards. But only you would know … if you could find a Montessori or Steiner school, wow. Only you know what supports you have locally but thinking about it in a different way might help, maybe ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. After getting a phone call from the school about Bash…yup. We must keep going. We must ebb and flow, because THEY do. The more we teach our sons to move with the ebb and flow, the more prepared they’ll be to move on their own. They will not learn the skill without our example.

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