it’s knowing when to ride the wave—giving more buoyancy to your body to keep your head above the smooth, normal wave—and when to suck in air and go under to avoid the brutal salty blow of the really big wave. that’s what i figured out playing in the waves along rehoboth beach a few years ago on a family get away. there’s a sense of watchfulness and expectancy for those bigger waves, and being able to sense their arrival that allowed me to keep from drowning.
it was a day a few weeks ago, that i saw the wave, the really big one come into our family with the news that my oldest child has dyslexia. and although it wasn’t a surprise, it was hard to see the test scores and to name what has been causing so much of the difficulties for her. so i sucked in air and went under. in that movement i had to grieve the loss of what i’d envisioned: her reading finally ‘taking off’, her independence in and exploration into the written word, and summers of finding her lost in chapter books, greedily checking out her favorites at the library. instead i gave over my desires and traded those in for seeking out what she needed most and a resolve to keep mothering. i popped back up to the surface with lungs full of hope and a mama bear fight in them.
i’ve been ear listening to books about dyslexia, finding resources online, talking with other parents in similar circumstances, meeting with a tutor, communicating with her supportive teacher, trying to understand the policies and laws, trying to build up her strengths and inform her in a way that doesn’t feel diminishing or overwhelming, maintaining normalcy while doing the best that i can being mom to BOTH kiddos in the middle of this.
and waves keep coming: new information, more emails to send, stability to find and an acceptance of these changes, uncomfortable and tiring as they are. we move forward and keep treading water knowing this is the reality of life for this season of motherhood.