Today is a Good Place

I’m on the second school morning of the new year…and it is going really smoothly. Usually we hit the second day and it is hard because we’re tired and feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the things we’d forgotten we ought to be doing over the holidays. Except that yesterday Link was like a different person than the one I’ve been dealing with. He was up and focused, ready to work. He put in several hours as my assistant and also reviewed the school work he needs to be doing. It seems that finding a dream makes a huge difference in what he is capable of doing in a day. I’ve seen this forward-momentum version of Link before, but not for at least two years. Two long, depressed, emotionally difficult years. I’m not yet certain that the forward momentum will last past the first goal, but maybe it will. For now, I’ll be grateful for every day we get to have it.

Last night I had a conversation with Patch about his (giant) pile of missing and overdue assignments. The term ends on Friday and he has to hustle this week in order to pass a couple of his classes. For the first time in a long time, Patch was able to talk with me calmly about what needs to be done. For the past year or more, any discussion of incomplete work triggered anxiety and sometimes a full panic attack. He was able to acknowledge that while he doesn’t want to have to do the assignments, he really does want them to be complete. We made a plan for working on things. The plan included a reward and consequence structure that Patch thought through himself. He’s learning how to motivate himself in good ways. We also discussed the possible failure points of our plan, one or both of us may forget to follow through. We’ll see how it goes this afternoon. He was pretty tired this morning.

Gleek has continued her habits of getting herself ready for school and out the door. She’s always prepared for class and gets grades that make all the adults around her pleased. Over the last week or two it became clear that the same thing that makes it so I don’t have to manage her academic life, also causes difficulties in other areas. So Gleek will be getting more attention in the coming weeks. I’m fine with that. I like spending time with Gleek, she makes me laugh.

Kiki is off at college, doing college things. Her classes start on Wednesday. Howard has thus far experienced the regular ups and downs of daily creative work. Though having the quiet hours when the kids are out of the house makes it easier for us to settle in to working. All in all, it has been a really good start to the new year. I’m feeling happy and hopeful, which is a nice change. I’m not going to try to project trends or make predictions about what is coming for us this year. Instead I’m just going to recognize that yesterday was a really good day for me, and I’m going to try to make today be good as well.