I have definitely enjoyed parts of this Christmas even as others have proved difficult. It has been a Christmas where my mom was able to take J, A, and O to the Nutcracker just like she used to take me every year. Hearing how much my kids loved the performance is a reminder how much we share and how much we are raising them to be like us (heaven help them). My family and I have benefited greatly from the generosity of others this Christmas, and we have been able to celebrate the season as I wish we always could. We went to the zoo lights at the National Zoo which we all enjoyed, but the Christmas lights show which we enjoyed the most was closer to home: https://www.facebook.com/LightsOnIceCrystal
Every year around New Years, I try to look back on the past year to better appreciate all I’ve done, seen and learned. In January, we took a family trip to FDR resort in Jamaica which was the most enjoyable family trip I remember. I hope we can go back again but with K this time.
It’s been a year where A and O learned to ride bikes and read for fun. In fact, it’s been a year where we have all learned a lot. For me, I learned how little “privacy” we have (http://thelifewelllived.net/2013/06/10/nana-your-business-my-perception-of-american-privacy/)
My highlights for the year include deciding we will try to adopt K and on a slightly lesser scope, attending a conference at the National Academy of Medicine where I learned about healthcare systems from all over the world. On a personal goals front, I went from being unable to do a single pull-up without help in September to being able to do 5 by my birthday and 7 by the end of the year.
Still, even with all of the great moments and accomplishments of the year, it’s not been a smooth ride. I sleep less and hurt more. I make more mistakes and often find myself starting the day saying, “OK, so what have you got in the tank for today?” A lot of this is the result of strained family dynamics due to medication changes. With the change to our 6th psychiatrist in 5 years for O and A comes a change in treatment philosophies. The last doctor thought lack of sleep was the most important symptom to be treated, but the new doctor worries about the interaction of drugs taken for the past 6 months. Changing everything at Christmas time when sleep is fleeting for excited children has just been painful. We are all tired, and it feels like starting over with repressions in manners and self control at their lowest points in years.
Despite this, our kids have had some epic fun building roller coasters an Pac-Man adventures, reading and playing games. I guess there is an advantage to less sleep. Our imaginations can run wild.