We were well into the third year of our family’s new normal, before I had come to the realization that things really were different for us. That no, all kids really don’t do this-whatever “this” may mean at the moment-and
that we were not imagining the stress. We were not imagining the
frustration. It took nearly four years to accept that the challenges we
were facing couldn’t simply be dealt with by working harder or doing
more. It took nearly four years to come to terms with the fact that
living in a family with children who have experienced early childhood
trauma(s) can be an isolating, lonely, and oddly enough traumatizing
endeavor, with very unique and difficult challenges. So few on the outside can understand what it’s like to live inside our walls.
That is not to suggest whatever is inside our neighbor’s walls is more
or less difficult, just different perhaps. Below is my imperfect attempt
to give words to some of our family’s daily struggles.