You are Enough.

The monkey’s last day of school was this past Thursday. He doesn’t qualify for summer school this year. Since he has not regressed and has actually done amazing at school, he doesn’t qualify.

Friday was a tough one. He was waiting for the bus. My daughter and I kept explaining to him that it wouldn’t come but he didn’t want to hear us. He would get upset. So we let him wait. Then he wanted car rides. I realized this would be an issue. I work from home which means I can’t give him car rides when he requests them. So I kept telling him to wait till dad gets home. I had talked to my husband about how this would be a struggle for the next two months of summer school. But I hoped that he would eventually understand.

After a while of waiting for the bus and wanting rides, he got very upset. So upset that he lunged at me. When this happens, I need to restrain him so he won’t hurt himself or me. But he is getting so strong. And it has been getting harder. My daughter happened to get home and right away went to help me by holding his legs. Between my daughter and myself, we were losing the battle. We couldn’t restrain him in the proper way so that everyone would be safe. I kept trying to talk to him but when he’s in this phase, I can’t reach him. He’s so mad that I just can’t get him to come to reason. He doesn’t hear us. His entire focus is on hurting us. This struggle usually takes about 1.5 hours. I am pouring in sweat as I’m fighting to make sure we are all safe.

But this time I was just so tired I realized I wasn’t going to be able to hold him down any longer. I remembered what one of our online autism readers had suggested – Take him to the pool.
I know if someone looks at this, it appears harsh. But if you would see my arms filled with bruises, scratches, and sometimes bites, you’d understand that during this phase, there just isn’t a perfect solution.

So I told my daughter: Lets put him in the pool. She was a bit surprised. But she nodded. She reluctantly agreed. We take him out and throw him in. He was so surprised. He didn’t realize we would do this. And I saw how he came back. He wasn’t angry anymore. He was hurt. He was able to snap out of his anger. As he got out, he started saying he was sorry. He kept crying and trying to hug us, looking at our eyes to make sure we forgave him.
And we hugged him. He kept saying we knew he was sorry. I told him he is not allowed to hurt us simply because he can’t get a car ride. And he kept apologizing and crying.

All day the guilt wouldn’t leave me. The guilt of not being a mom that can give him undivided attention. The guilt of being a working mom. The guilt of how I couldn’t simply give him a car ride.
The guilty of it all. And I thought to myself: Today, I failed. But I will try again tomorrow.

And later on that evening, I receive this message from a dear friend. She forwarded me a tweet (from Megan Lane) that said: “You can be a bada$$, boundary setting, strong, confident, independent woman… who is soft, nurturing, kind, and graceful. You can have self-discipline AND self-compassion. You can be emotional AND tough; you can be everything and anything you want. This is your power.”

And then she wrote: This reminds me of you.

And I just cried. It’s strange how we don’t see the best in us, we don’t see how others see us, we tend to look at the worse in us. It seems this is just human nature. When we see pictures of ourselves, most of us tend to look at our defects, while others typically don’t.

And I am so grateful for this tweet, this reminder. That I am kind, and I am confident, and I am compassionate, and I am nurturing.

I am enough. I am more than enough.

And if you are not sure if you are, I am here to tell you that you are. Own your story, own your struggles and successes. Own your struggles and successes.

Remind yourself of all of those mountains that you have climbed, and you are still here.

You are brave, you are worthy. You are enough.

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