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I am a below knee amputee. More importantly, I am also Mommy to two boys, a very active 10 year old (Robby) and an mischievous toddler (Timmy). I have learned that being a parent with a disability can create some unusual and sometimes humorous situations. This blogger is available for hire! Let's talk and learn how a blog can expand your business.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Stress Tipping

When I was little, one of my favorite board games was "Don't Tip the Waiter." A cardboard cut-out of a formally dressed waiter was balanced precariously on a stand. Each player had to put a plate of food (a cardboard circle) onto the platter until the weight tipped the waiter over, causing him to drop everything on his tray.

Last night, when I was having trouble sleeping, I found my mind wandering back to that childhood game. I am beginning to feel like the waiter, visualizing my stress and anxiety piling up on top of me. The game is not nearly as much fun in real life!

As much as developing a plan about dealing with my insurer has empowered me, my frustrations about this issue have reached a boiling point. I am on the verge of tears whenever I think about Elsie (my nickname for my workman's comp adjustor) and the turmoil that she is causing my family. I feel like I am being victimized simply because I want to maintain access to prosthetic care in the future.

With September approaching, my anxiety about Robby's enrollment in Kindergarten is increasing. I am excited about this new chapter in his life, but I would be lying if I didn't admit to being sad. Scott and I have decided to enroll Robby in a private Kindergarten program that offers half day classes. He will be in school for four hours a day and will have his afternoons to run around the yard and play at home.

Unlike the public school Kindergarten classes in our area, Robby's days will be filled with music, art, and creative play with other children. The school emphasizes parent involvement and expects the family to work with their child daily for one to two hours on academics. Robby will be provided with a packet of worksheets each week and Scott and I will teach him and help him to complete his work.

I realize that the school is unorthodox, but in many ways, so is our family. I felt a huge weight lifted off of my shoulders when we discovered the school. I know that it is the perfect fit and that Robby will thrive. Despite knowing that Robby will flourish, this change is causing me anxiety.

Another stressor is the response of friends and family about Robby's school. I am distraught over the amount of criticism that our family decision has garnered. To insinuate that Scott and I do not have Robby's academic best interest in mind is insulting. I know my child, and I know how he learns. His creativity, enthusiasm and love of learning would be squelched in a classroom of 34 other kids where art, music and movement were not included in the curriculum.

With Scott gearing up for a new school year, readying for a family trip to Texas later this week and the unanticipated need for four new tires, my stress levels are toxic. Lying in bed at night I feel like I'm going to buckle under the strain and worry. I am trying to be proactive and to deal with the issues that are within my control. I simply wish that I had control over more things. Sometimes being an adult is just really hard!


  1. Just for the record, put me in the column that absolutely loves your choice of kindergarten for Robby.