Denise
Big feelings....after years of attending therapy with Will I have talked about my share of "big feelings".  I have learned how to identify them in others and see when they are affecting behaviors.

There is a part of me cringing as I think about what I am wanting to say here.  I am not good at sharing my own big feelings.  I am not writing or posting this for accolades or pity.  I am not a victim or some kind of saint.  I am a person who just tries to do their best with the cards they are dealt.  I try my best to not let any of this affect my daily life that others see.  The past couple of weeks that has become more and more difficult.

To really give a true picture I have to rewind to the beginning of the summer....May actually.

Will did not graduate from high school in May.  He should have, but for many reasons it didn't happen.  He went to court in late May and was put on probation.  If you want to catch up on the details of that you can find those here.  He was given probation with the following terms:  attend school, live at home, attend therapy, and follow all laws.  He will be off probation when he graduates.  The County Attorney wanted more than that, but the judge knows his trauma history and told him to pick himself up and stop being a victim. 

Will was enrolled in summer school.  He got on the bus EVERY MORNING at 6:40am.  He went to the school, ate breakfast and left.  Sometimes he was picked up by a friend and sometimes by a fifty-something woman who he had charmed into thinking I was evil.  That is yet another story for another day.

So no graduation after summer school...which was possible.

July...my high school reunion.  Highs and lows there.  Seeing so many old friends and reconnecting.  Three people back in my life who I needed....all of them for different reasons, but all three of them the same.  They are my life "plot twists".  A year ago if you would have told me I would be talking to one of them every day I would have thought you were CRAZY and if you would have told me I would be road-tripping with another of them to see the third that would have seemed outside the realm of possibility to me.  But here we are.

Mid-July...Will couldn't even muster up the ability to show common courtesy to me.  He wasn't doing anything he was supposed to and he would go missing for days.  He wouldn't answer my texts or calls.  I reported it to probation and we talked about it at therapy.  Probation did nothing even though he was essentially following none of their rules.  His therapist told him he could either start to show common courtesy to me or move out.  He moved out that night.  That basically made me an instant empty-nester with the exception of Charlie's friend who I hardly ever saw.

August...I helped Will enroll in Accelere.  It's the public school program where you can complete a single class in a three week period.  There is no homework and if you go and participate you get the credit.  Perfect.  Will should graduate no later than September 24.

I am the guardian for a boy who is developmentally disabled.  He made a HORRIBLE life choice and had to leave the home of his caregivers IMMEDIATELY.  So for two weeks I spent time working with the state on what was best for him and searching for a home for him.  He is now placed, but I disagree with the state and think he needs more help than he is getting where he is.  At this point I am considering rescinding the guardianship.  I am not what he needs.  I don't understand the system he is in.  Don't for a minute think there is not a huge amount of guilt involved in that decision.

There were some things that happened at work and a team leader position became open.  In my time at the company I have gone back and forth over whether or not it was something I wanted to do.  Honestly when I was approached about it I had so much on my plate at work that it wasn't even remotely on my radar.  I was already preparing myself for trips to Cuba, Djibouti, and Japan for work yet this fall and here was this opportunity and I wanted to job.   A little surprised myself at how much, but there was a lot of discussion and a wait.

While I was waiting I found out that Will was living in a house that didn't have running water.  Imagine knowing that your child would prefer no running water to living with you.  I know that isn't necessarily the case....it's his RAD, but it doesn't make the message any less hurtful.

I got the job.  I am a team leader.  It has been a challenge and amazing.  I have made some BIG MISTAKES already and have had some difficult discussions because of it.  It exhilarates me and makes me energized to go to work.  Because of it and my projects that haven't gone away I am working A LOT of hours and I am tired...mostly a good tired.

Will had been going to the accelerated school.  He got a job at UPS and things really seemed to be looking up for him.  Sure he wasn't living at home, but things were better. 

He stopped taking my calls and responding to texts a couple of weeks ago.  He would call me at times he knew I was not available and then blame me because it was the ONLY TIME during the day he could contact me.  More RAD tactics.  He told me he had been kicked out of the accelerated school, but I knew that was not true.  They had called and said he had been missing class and was in danger of being kicked out.  Since then he has not gone.

This week...lots of work stressors...lots of hours.  Literally trying to keep my head above water.  Wednesday probation called that Will was being court-ordered to return home no later than Friday.  He was ENRAGED.  He called with threats and accusations.  This was ALL MY FAULT.

Thursday and Friday at work were HARD.  Could have broken me all by itself, but at the same time I was trying to coordinate Will's imminent return home.  He arrived at 11:50pm on Friday.  He met the intent.  Honestly...I expected 11:59:59 so he exceeded my expectations.  When everything is said and done it is good to have him home.  There is still a lot to be talked about and worked out, but just having him here....well...it means a lot.

Last night....because you can't make this stuff up....heres how it went.  A couple of people in my neighborhood came over to tell me that when I am at work and out of town for work they were pretty certain drugs were being sold out of my home.  What?  Am I na├»ve?  Am I an idiot?  Was this really possible?  I thought about all of the evidence that was presented to me and I think they are most likely correct.

Brings me to this morning...I asked Charlie's friend to move out.  I had no idea how it would go.  Would he be outraged?  Would we be safe?  What would happen?  There weren't options given and there wasn't discussion.  He wasn't angry and he left peacefully.  What could have been horrible was as cordial and uneventful as possible.  I am thankful for all of the prayers being said for us during that time.

Then I see this obituary and it breaks me.  I sobbed.  All of the emotion....good and bad of the last few months....flooding out.  This could be either of my boys.  By the grace of God it is not.

So...if you made it this far in this post I appreciate the grace you have offered me when you didn't know what was going on.  When I just told you I was tired or that I just couldn't do something...thanks for not pushing me.  I don't expect or need special treatment.  I don't need it any more than the next person.

This life of mine....I wouldn't change a thing.  I am living it because I was given this.  Sure I could have made different choices, but I own every part of this.  Thanks to all of you who are in my journey.  Thanks for the love and grace you give to me unknowingly...every single day.  You matter.