Livin for Livi – Love always wins

About 2 months ago a woman from my home town (just a few years younger than me) lost her daughter due to a drunk driver. She has been sharing Livi’s story with everyone. She was a kind, loving little girl who loved to help people. Without knowing how big it would become she started the #livinforlivi movement and it’s been amazing. It’s so easy. Just be nice. Be kind. Help someone. Pay it forward.

Love always wins

#livinforliviAlivia’s Mom posts “all I ask of all of you to do is Live for Livi.  Give for no reason, love , share , make someone smile and just be kind! Oh and NEVER Drink and Drive!”

My first act for #livinforlivi

I saw a post on Facebook recently about “lunch shaming” for kids whose lunch balances at school are too high. Who knows why these parents haven’t kept up with it? It doesn’t matter.
I asked at school and I was able to pay off the balance for several families. I don’t share this so that everyone says “Look at her being generous” I share this because I want everyone to do something nice for someone else. I don’t know who these families are that I helped. I don’t care. I’m just glad I was fortunate enough to do it and I hope that they pay it forward in some way.
You never know what battles someone else is fighting and how just a small kindness can turn the tide for them.  

 

If you want to join #livinforlivi check out the group her mom created. https://www.facebook.com/groups/LivinForLivi

A glimpse into life with OCD

A glimpse into life with OCD

It’s been a hard week in our house.  The OCD monster is back with a vengeance.  Dealing with that is causing my anxiety to go through the roof.  It’s been a major struggle to get through a day.   But it has helped to remind me just how much OCDsupport we have.

I’m not looking for pity or sympathy. I’m looking for support and understanding. Don’t judge me when you see my child having a meltdown and I don’t seem to be dealing with it the “right” way. Don’t judge her when you see her do something strange. It might be the only way she can cope with the situation. Until you’ve spent a day in our shoes, don’t judge.  To give you a glimpse of our life, here are some things that happened this week.

Monday

I had my first 504 plan meeting at G’s school.  We’ve always known it needed to be done but the staff worked with us so well we just decided to wait.  Things have gotten bad enough, and she only has one more year at this school, so it was decided to start the process now.   I know it’s what’s needed, and I know the school only has her best interests at heart but it’s so overwhelming to try to lay it all out; makes me feel like a failure.  Every day I have to hear from the staff or other kids about all the things she’s doing “wrong”, all the things she’s struggling with. I know I need to know this stuff, and I ask to be told, but that doesn’t make it any easier to hear.

Tuesday

We spent her lunch time in the office trying to calm her down so she could eat. She was having a melt down because even though she wanted to be in the lunchroom eating lunch she couldn’t. All because the lunch before hers got out a little late and the benches and tables didn’t get wiped down like normal. You might think this is silly (and she knows it’s not logical) but the OCD will not let her and sometimes she’s just not strong enough to fight it. And when I ask her what I can do to help she just screams at me because she is so frustrated because she doesn’t know or understand. Imagine trying to fight a bully 24 hours a day. How many adults are strong enough for that? She’s 8!

They are doing the M-STEP standardized tests this week. After dealing with the lunch problem it was her first day of testing. She couldn’t even step into the computer lab because it wasn’t the same lab they always use. When they were finally able to get her in the room she couldn’t sit in the chair or use the mouse since she didn’t know who touched it before. Once they got her a new mouse and got her going she still had to take this test (standing, by her choice) with all that anxiety. (Thank God our school has such supportive and understanding staff!)

cat camp
Someone doesn’t want her to leave!

Meanwhile, during all of this stress with G, I’m trying to help L get ready to leave for a 2 night camping trip with her school where it’s going to be in the mid-40’s and rain constantly!

Wednesday

Wednesday was a stronger day.  I received so many comments and messages of support I was overwhelmed.  It helps more than people realize. Some times on this journey I feel so alone and I forget how many people have my back and support us.

As usual, I have recess duty 4 days a week. Often people comment about how giftsthey don’t know why I do it. The kids! That’s why. It’s Staff Appreciation week, just out of the blue, a boy handed me a note. “Dear Mrs. Springer, Thank you so much for being a great person and watching the 3rd graders and taking time out of your day” At pickup another boy and mom handed me one of those large Ikea shopping bags and inside was a Costco size bag of coffee (now explains the strange questions about what I like to drink )

Friday

More lunchtime issues but she is able to pull it together and eat lunch in the cafeteria.  After lunch we try to take her to the office, just to talk with her and get her to give us input to help her but she has a meltdown.  First because she thinks she’s in trouble, then it builds because she doesn’t want to talk about it (it’s really hard for her) and all she wants is to go back to class.  I ended up crying on several shoulders that I never would have thought of crying on.

Even with all her issues, G can always make me laugh.

Bedtime conversation with one night:
G: (out of the blue) I’m going to miss you when you’re dead.
Me: um, ok?
G: but I call dibs on your car…… oh! And your jewelry!

The point

I guess my point in all this rambling is just to give you an idea of what we go through.  And to remind everyone that it is OK to ask for help or just to say “I’m not OK” You probably have more support out there than you know.

 

It’s All About the Attitude

 

Happy Friday!!!  It’s supposed to be a beautiful day here and I’m looking forward to enjoying it.  Today is Guest Reader day at G’s school as part of March is Reading Month.  I’ll be taking off the mom hat and putting on the Black Belt hat and reading to the 3rd and 4th grades today.  I’ll also demonstrated some karate

reading black belt
Me reading to the 3rd grade classes

by breaking two 1” thick bricks (yes I can do that! Amazing, right?!)  It’s crazy that I’m more nervous about reading and talking to the kids than I am about breaking the bricks!  Talking in front of large groups (even 8-10 year olds) gives me a lot of anxiety!  But I can’t expect G to fight her OCD monster if I don’t fight mine!

Crazy morning

We had a somewhat crazy morning here.  First L, got up late so she was rushing a bit.  G loves to go out and ride her bike or swing before school.  Doesn’t matter if it’s 7:30 in the morning and still cold.  This girl loves to be outside and active.  Her teacher and I have also come to realize that on the days she doesn’t do this, she has a much harder day at school.  Anyway, apparently her bike helmet was contaminated because she left it on her bike last night instead of bringing it inside.  Makes total sense right?  So she tries to put water on it but Daddy catches her and doesn’t allow it.  So what does my creative little girl do?  Takes the helmet to the back yard where there is a sled that is filled with rain and melted snow and dunks the helmet!  I mean, that water is so clean, right?  Anyway, we see this and make her do an exposure right away like we learned at Mayo Clinic (to read more about our time there check out Mayo Clinic Saved My Family)

After dealing with this I was getting a late start to my workout and then to make it even better the Beachbody on Demand site I use wouldn’t load (maintenance or something I guess).  In the past I would have just said “screw it” and gone about my day.  But I know how much I need that workout to clear my head and set me up for a good day.  Thankfully I’m doing Hammer and Chisel right now and there are sheets listing all the moves to track your weights.  So I pulled that out and just did the moves on my own.  The site started working about ½ way through so I fast forwarded it to where I was and finished out my workout.

Then I grab G’s lunch out of the fridge to put in her lunch box only to realize it’s L’s lunch!  When I packed L’s lunch I must have grabbed the wrong container.  So after dropping G at school, I drive up to L’s school to switch the lunches. Thankfully I work at G’s school doing lunch and recess duty so I can just take her lunch with me then.

The moral of the story

Anyway, moral to this long winded story is don’t let the problems define your attitude!  In the past this would have made me stressed out and grumpy and just ruined my whole day.  Today I made a choice not to let it bother me.  I solved all the problems, all is well and I moved on!  I decided not to let my attitude be the problem!

How do you shake off a bad morning?

It’s all about the attitude!

P.S. In case you are wondering if I broke the bricks

(If you listen you can hear my daughter defending me when it didn’t break)