My name is Lindsay and this is just so I don't feel guilty for not keeping a written journal...

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Brenda's bubble

As a teenager I had to have a couple surgeries in my mouth.  (Stubborn adult teeth, hiding somewhere in my face...)  Even though I was numbed, it was still quite frightening.  Drilling noises and bloody cloths coming from your mouth just don't give off a relaxing sort of vibe.  Call me crazy.  But it had to be done and I was a big girl.  (When I had to go back and have the surgery redone my mom got me a Valium and though I'm sure it worked, I remember sitting stubbornly-quiet and thinking NOPE.  IT ISN'T WORKING.  I'M STILL HATING THIS.)  But here's the point of my sharing- I had an ah-ha moment today. 

During those surgeries I came up with a small but affective coping mechanism.  I slipped my right hand under my shirt and pinched a bit of skin next to my belly-button.  I can't remember how long the surgeries lasted (felt like DAYS) but I just pinched away while my gums were brutalized.   That harmless pinch was the perfect escape.  I was in control of that pain.  It was me, and that wasn't scary.

The ah-ha moment was seeing Brenda smack her head with her fists when Suzie insisted on talking over her movie.  (Garret used to hit himself, but with some training/parenting and growing up he eventually stopped.  For him it was stimulation and he was able to learn that there are more fun ways to stimulate the senses...)  With Brenda I always understood the behavior was an escape, a coping thing, but now I get why she chooses to hurt herself.  She is replacing an uncontrollable pain/stress with a controllable pain.  ...a pain that isn't scary.  AH-HA!  I have never thought of it that way!  Brenda is like me with my hand under my shirt!  (Um, that sounds weird.)

I'm seeing more why Suzie is the perfect sister for Brenda.  Garret has learned to (for the most part) respect Brenda's "world".  Suzie, on the other hand, will bravely barge-in, meddle-with and continue to connect with Brenda, whether Brenda likes it or not.  In the safe and loving atmosphere that our home provides, my 9-yr-old is getting some great practice in letting go.  Perhaps, in a way, Brenda is scared of Suzie.  Scared of the chaos she brings.  But she loves Suzie.  She knows Suzie is her little sister.  What a gift!  I think Suzie is going to help Brenda with confidence in stepping outside of her bubble.  I think it's a match made in heaven.

Speaking of matches made in Heaven- Brenda and "Peaches".


Brenda said...

It likely was a match made in heaven .... literally ... by God.

Christy Jones said...

I've never thought of it like that before, Alton hits himself when he feels he is not in control, makes it more comforting. I do believe that children and siblings are placed in our families for a reason.

Sue O said...

Your love for your kidlets shines through in your photos.
Curse the captcha.

DeAnn said...

Oh that's so sweet. It's like they made a deal in heaven to get each other through this mortal life.

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