Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Mood Swings and Birthday Cake

The past week has been chock full o' family dynamic goodness. Well, some of it not so good. Tyler's birthday culminated with him throwing a major tantrum, barricading himself in the kids' shared bedroom. He'll be paying for the door out of his allowance. We had a good counseling session with Tyler's therapist, and Tyler seem to be rebounding well. I think the arrival of summer break - and all the attendant activities - will be a much needed break for him (although not for me), and the switch to a new school will be a positive step.

There was a fire at school, allegedly caused by the same kid who had been picking on Tyler earlier in the school year, saying that he didn't believe Samantha was really dead - that she was just hiding from the family. Needless to say, this kid (whose parents are not in the picture at all - he's being raised by his grandmother) has a lot of personal issues. According to the report from Tyler, the kid was expelled.

The kids' school is one of a dozen on the chopping block this time, at least three of the dozen are in West Seattle, which seems a bit disproportionate, but I don't have any of the enrollment data at hand. According to the current plan, the school facility would be closed, but the program would be relocated. As long as Kayleigh can stay in that curriculum, I'll be happy.

We headed up to Bellingham last Sunday for our usual May birthdays celebration. Because five of us have May birthdays and more than half of them are up north, it makes sense to just gather all at once, rather than making a bunch of trips (or none at all). I was tired from the start. Although Tyler likes to ride shotgun, he usually just plays his Gameboy - not much for conversation. So of course I start wishing Sam was there to keep me company for the trip. Once there, I was OK until we ate. Then I had to go outside and have a grief attack. Kept feeling like there were two other people who should've been there. Got home and slept for 2 hours.

I can feel the mood pendulum swinging over to the depressed side, and for once I'm not trying to stop it. We're coming up on the one year marker of my dad's death. I still remember very clearly how he had everything all tidied up and in order regarding his estate. I think he knew on a subconscious level what was going on, and he wanted us to be cared for. I remember how, after his first brain surgery, he insisted on attending Tyler's birthday dinner. I think he knew that would likely be the last birthday dinner he would share with his grandson.

I miss my dad... and my wife. The craving is not as bad. Now it's more just feeling pissed off that they're not around.


JenniferJaneD said...

Hugs to you Todd!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Poor Tyler, at such a tender age, a birthday without his Mother or Grandfather. It's no wonder that he has outbursts, I doubt he has the outlet, support and maturity that you have to know how to deal with his grief. I'd probably want to barricade myself in my room too.

tbone said...

He has the outlet and support, but you're right that he hasn't yet found a way to get in touch with his feelings and allow himself to grieve. The maturity will come in time - he's so far ahead of the game intellectually that I often forget he's only 12.

Ali said...

Yeah, miserable is the only word that comes to mind.

It's horrible how celebrations become just another kick in the guts.


go_go yubari said...

Welcome to the 2nd year wave game (errghh!)...hang in there, T.

tbone said...

Yeah thanks, Lisa. It's great, isn't it? Bleh.

Actually had another really bad wave last night as I was going to bed. Woke up this morning and pulled a muscle in my shoulder as I was walking across the kitchen floor. Interesting how that stress manifests in one's body.

JenniferJaneD said...

Interesting how losing a partner varies from one to another. The "second year wave game" never happened for my fiance. I believe it must depend on the relationship, the extent of loss. When we met 15 months after his wifes death, he was beyond it. Lucky for me!! ;)