Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Letting go and falling down

As you know if you read my blog regularly or ever, the last 3 years with Emily have been the worst for her and for us witnessing her pain.

Diagnosed at three with autism and learning disability and then at ten with epilepsy Emmy's progression into adolescence has been a real struggle because of her violence and inability to articulate what she feels.

She's in a tunnel of pain. yearning to detach and being unable to, she's targeted her rage at me and as a family we've been in crisis for more than two years.

I've been managing it and hoping for better and yearning for her pain to calm but it hasn't and last Friday it boiled over to the point where she had to access an emergency bed in respite as a priority. She left the house in her nightie and dressing gown. The system took over so that I'd be safe and she would be protected from the awful remorse she feels, by hurting me. I'm so grateful for all the amazing people Emily has working with her and for her.

The decision has now been made that the move we were looking at for Emily, into residential school at some point, is upon us. As I say at times in the last few days I'm crying so hard that I think I'm going to pass out. More than the broken coccyx last year, or the broken finger two months ago and more even, than the physical pains of labour bringing her into the world.

Last night they told her that she wasn't coming home and gave her the present I'd taken along with a card telling her how much we love her and that we'll see her when we've had a rest.

Emily knows now so I can tell you.

It's the right thing to do. It's the only thing to do, but just because we have been living a version of normal that would break many people, doesn't mean it's the easy thing to do.

We're battling to know what's happening, to make sure Emily knows and to make sure she is ok with knowing. Predictably we're also fighting during this agonising time, to get those with the power over all our lives to do what they need to do quickly. This is not a straightforward thing.

I heard the Norah Jones song featured above when Emily was seven. It was to me a beautiful representation of my beautiful girl so I thought it was fitting to post it here today as I detail the fact that I'm letting her go.

When I posted my Guardian piece about our deciding to send Emily to residential school back in August some kind soul tweeted me with the words "good luck abandoning your kid"

Meet me, look me in the eye and say that.

Or consider, even briefly how you or anyone else has the right to judge people you don't know on a false premise of presuming to know what love is.