Taking the Long Way
One of the hardest things to do, as a special-needs mom of twins, is to remember to slow down and have patience. It is super easy to rush through life in a attempt to, simply, get through each day. Every night as my head hits my pillow, I am thankful that I made it through another day. There are always a million things that need to be done. The list never gets shorter and the days never get longer. I have learned, the hard way, that taking shortcuts leads to more work when your kids have autism. This is a difficult lesson to learn as a first-time parent. The amount of effort that it takes to slow down enough to accommodate my boys is excruciating at times. The long way is, often, our only option. This is time consuming and exhausting, but absolutely necessary for my children's future.
I fought this at first. I like to be in control, but eventually I had to give in and admit that the way I was doing things was making my life hard. I had to slow down in order to move forward. I spent a lot of time discussing this with my therapist, who suggested that I attend behavioral therapy to address my needs. I attended once a week in a group setting. This is where I learned how to handle slowing down. I was on edge constantly. Slowing down wasn't easy for me. I am used to living at mach speed. I think a lot of moms can totally relate to living at this pace. It is fully and wholly exhausting. In therapy I learned many ways to minimize my stress. This said, it took me a long time to truly incorporate these skills into my real daily life. I tried a lot of different things before I stumbled upon the idea that actually stuck.
I was on Pinterest pinning away when I saw a quote from Elsie De Wolfe that said,
“I am going to make everything around me beautiful - that will be my life.”
It really spoke to me. I mapped out the most the most scenic and least congested ways to get to each place I needed to go for the boys therapy appointments. It was the drive from home to ABA that has made the most difference. It may seem simple, but it turned out to be semi life changing. The drive I chose is a little longer than the congested and stressful drive on the Highway, which is the fastest route. I get to see mountains and a beautiful lake while taking these great curvy back roads that remind me of my youth in the South. I have to leave home a little earlier than before, but I have time to think when the boys aren't in the minivan. Yes, I said minivan. Ugh!!! I swore I would never ever. This is a change that I am proud to have made. Who knew how great it could be to have a Mom Van!?! I love it! The longer drive helps me stay calm because there is so much less traffic. It is hard to be in a bad mood when you are looking at beautiful things. This is a big deal because I have really bad anxiety when driving sometimes. I like the idea that my kids are seeing beautiful things as well. They seem to enjoy the ride. I find that the choice to take the long road has lead to an opportunity to be mindful on a regular basis. It takes my mind off of my daily stresses. This compounds over time and has lead to a routine that doesn't make me miserable while driving my boys around town all week. The long way for me is literally taking a longer drive, but it may mean something different to you. How can you make your life a little more beautiful each day by taking the long way? It can really make a wonderful difference.
The Millennial Twin Mom