On life. Because "life happens."
Whelp. The past month has been a wild ride on the roller coaster of life. While my entire family has been adjusting to having our youngest daughter in a wheelchair, my business had one of its busiest months so far. My daughter was diagnosed with Legg Calve Perthes disease last year. It's a rare disease and she has been getting physical therapy. In December 2017 we were told that she would need surgery and would have her legs immobilized in a series of casts for 4-10 months.
Taking care of a newly-disabled child… it affects everyone. My husband and I feel like we are taking care of a newborn again with a baby-monitor and 2 a.m. trips to take her to the bathroom. It also adds an extra element of disaster to everyday parenting struggles. Like when your household comes down with the stomach flu. Because kids in wheelchairs can't get to the bathroom to throw up. Forgetting a lunchbox used to mean picking up a Lunchable at the nearest gas station. Forgetting your child’s wheelchair at home (yep!) is not so easily hacked. My oldest child, who is very assertive, has been used to having her needs a little more primary than her sister's needs. Now her world is upside down as Mommy and Daddy are preoccupied. She is acting out in every way, which isn’t great when Mommy and Daddy are stressed out to their limit.
Business… wow. When I started my own business last year, I never would have thought it would have been so successful so soon. I knew there was a hole in the market I was serving, but I had no idea how much demand there really was. I have had to tell many potential clients, “I’m really very sorry but I do not have the capacity to help right now. I can provide a referral or let you know when there is room for me to take on another client.” I feel extremely grateful and lucky that after taking the biggest financial risk of my career, it's not only fine. It's great!
That said, when I found out what my youngest daughter was going to go through a few months ago, I immediately stopped taking new clients. It was hard, but I knew that I wanted to be my daughter's "person" (borrowing one of my favorite phrases from Grey's Anatomy). I wanted it to be me right there with my daughter as she fought her medical challenges. I stayed home with her and kept up with existing clients by working from home about 80 percent of the time. Then, when my daughter's surgery was successful and she was able to return to school, I incorrectly assumed that our lives were about to return to normal. I accepted new clients, again. I found that even with my daughter back in school, each week was more draining than the last. My daughter may have taught herself how to dance in a wheelchair, but a wheelchair is a wheelchair is a wheelchair. Life is still really hard. I hit a wall last week and finally had to ask for help from extended family to take care of my kids so that I could focus on the work commitments I had made.
So what have I been reading? *Ahem* you probably see where this post is going. I’ve been reading very little. I’m hoping to return to my reading and blogging adventures in the next week. Sometimes life takes over and you have to focus only on the most emergent needs.