At the beginning of summer I wrote a post called The New Baseline explaining where Lilly was a year later from her PICU stay. The conclusion was that we needed to work on some mental health issues to be able to move forward with other areas of life. To accomplish this, I had to step back from the jam packed summer I had planned and slow things down.
As I was stepping back from summer, it was hard not to miss those desires of being at the beach, taking in festivals, hanging out with friends and enjoying the long summer days. I decided to do things a little bit differently this summer, and I blacked out 5 weeks of medical and therapy appointments. During that time we were able to just focus on being a family and the benefits where huge!
Rest! – For the first time in over two years, I really got to rest. My mind wasn’t juggling a hundred different things. I got caught up on the house, visited some friends and became more creative. I was actually able to get out of burn out mode.
Closer to God – By getting out of burn out mode, I became able to hear the voice of God more. I started to do a bible study again and was able to retain it. My brain was able to focus on God more because it wasn’t exhausted.
Positive Attachment – In The New Baseline I talked about how Lilly had developed an unhealthy attachment to me during the last two years. Over the last few weeks she has started moving back into having a healthy attachment to me. I can now sit in my chair and watch a movie while she is by herself on the couch. If I leave her for an amount of time, she is able to handle it a lot better. It wasn’t until she started to heal that I realised how draining her unhealthy attachment was to me.
Taking Risks Again – Another thing I talked about in The New Baseline was that Lilly stopped taking risks in life. Looking back, I can honestly say that we stopped taking risks as a family. As Lilly started taking risks, it gave us the ability to do things again. It started small like trying to stand by herself, then we went to a movie, and just last Sunday. she decided to ride her horse for the first time. (Lilly got a new horse this July) Now, her father and I are thinking of doing a day trip to a kids attraction to finish off the summer.
Self Confidence -Staying home and setting up an activity plan to build Lilly’s self confidence I believe was the biggest benefit of stepping back this summer. If you follow my Instagram or Facebook I have made comments like “the smile is back” “Our girl is back.” As each day has passed, we have started to see the girl from three years ago. She has started talking on the phone again, sassing her therapist, laughing uncontrollably, joking around with people, and being more verbal.
The benefits of stepping back this summer have been amazing and it has made me rethink how we do things. Is there an area in your life that you need to step back from?