Lots of lessons have been learned this past week ... people disappoint, we all have different ways of doing things and there are natural consequences for our actions. Life is difficult, on it's best day. But, working through it as a family is what makes it all worth it. I'm not sure everyone is feeling 100% yet, but we're working toward it.
The decision has been made for Kyndal and Dawson to continue living here with Rick, me, Eli and Brynne. Not one of us would have ever been the same if they would have left us. Now that the decision is made, it's final and something we will not visit again. I've always known that Kyndal and Dawson belonged here with me and that it is most definitely in their best interest that they be here. But, I think it's a positive thing that they explored the options and decided it for themselves. It was inevitable that they would be faced with that at some point. Now was as good a time as any.
But Rick and I also learned some very valuable things through this, and our relationships with each other and the kids are now stronger than they have probably ever been since we have become a family. We have learned things about how we love, or not love, and how we parent kids who are totally different from us in personality. What we have learned is that it's okay that we are different. I must say that it's easier for Rick than for me, but with his continual help and encouragement I will hopefully allow my kids to grow the way they were made to grow.
Here is an example: When I was a teenager, if I was assigned a project, I was so excited and probably had it done within a day or so! I was, and still am, a Type A personality! (Of course, the exception to this would be my junior science fair project that I neglected and then cheated on to get it completed in time.) My point is, I was way gung ho about assignments and projects, and am still that way!
Kyndal ... is ... not!
She called me on my cell phone last night while Rick and I were doing some shopping and needed supplies for a project "due on Friday". She needed a large styrofoam ball and 21 smaller ones, some paint and toothpicks. She needed to make an atom 3-D model, and wanted to get an early start. When I got to Walmart at 7:00 p.m., all of the other 9th grade moms had already been there because there were no supplies!! Another boy was with his mom trying to figure out what he was going to do now. I asked him when his was due and he said, "tomorrow." I called Kyndal ...
Me: "When is your project due?"
Me: "You don't have school Friday. You only go until Wednesday."
Kyndal: "Oh, well, then, I don't know. Let me see. Oh, when's the 12th?"
Kyndal: "Oh, it's due tomorrow then."
Me: "Well, there aren't any more supplies. Now what am I supposed to do?"
Kyndal: "Can you go to Hobby Lobby?"
Me: "If they weren't closed on Sundays!"
So, long story short, I bought her the one ball they had, some beads, some sparkly pipe cleaners and pom pons (because I know she likes sparkles). I walked in the door and handed her the bag of supplies, my hot glue gun and a drop cloth and said, "I would like to ask that you get your head out of your *ss." Then I turned around and left her to do the project on her own. I honestly figured she would struggle, would beg for help, would be up half the night, etc.
And you know what? It took her about 30 minutes, it looked so good and looked like she had spent days on it! Irritating!!!
But, that's the way she does things. And it's okay. She makes me crazy, but she gets things done. She just does it her way.
And Dawson does things differently too! Where Kyndal can be left to take responsibility for getting her things done (although she does wait until the last minute), Dawson needs help staying on track. I've been so stressed about that, so afraid that he is lazy and will never grow or mature and make it on his own. But, that's just his personality and he needs help from me every day! And that, too, is okay.
We won't even start on Eli and Brynne. I'm too exhausted to go there !!
My real point in all of this is that we don't have to be alike to love each other. Life is a journey! It's a hard journey! But, we're going to make it!