Wednesday, December 30, 2009

#25 How do you take breaks?

Things have been quiet here for a while. Periodically, I take breaks from autism, if that makes sense. We live with it every day, sort of like an uninvited house guest. At times, writing or thinking about it too much narrows my perspective on larger issues, so I take a break. I don't read or write about it or surf the web for the latest study summaries.

And that's okay. We all need a break sometimes.

I'm feeling refreshed and ready to tackle hard stuff again, so I will. Today's question asks how you take breaks, get a second wind, refresh and renew yourself so you can dive back into the world of autism with less frustration and more balanced perspective. Do you need lots of little breaks--say, daily or weekly? Do you prefer months on end of just not thinking about it too much?

And Happy New Year, everyone!

Monday, December 7, 2009

#24 Holiday Stress and Joy

What do you do to cope with the stress and joy of the holidays?

We're often so focused on helping our kids cope with the stress of the holidays...the sensory overload, the breaks from routine, the abrupt and unpredictable schedule changes. But what about us? How do we keep our own sanity?

This time of year, I have to make myself very consciously take deep breaths to roll with punches that ordinarily wouldn't require conscious thought. I find myself craving more down time than usual, time alone when people aren't calling for my attention, when I don't need to be "getting things done," when I can feel some peace and simply breathe.

And yet it's precisely the wrong time of year to get more of that sort of time! Especially because I love spending time with family and friends and participating in all the pageantry and tradition of Christmas. I need the peace and quiet, but I need--indeed, crave--the community and activities, too. Finding balance is just harder this time of year.

Prayer helps, but not much else.

What do you do to keep rolling with the punches? What do you need to stay patient and focused?