Planner = sanity = a better me…..

 

file_000I am a creative person in most everything that I do!!  I love to create new recipes, decorate my home and then redecorate it again and again. And who can forget….scrap-booking, tole painting, card making, any type of paper crafting, quilling, quilting and so many other wonderful outlets.

With being a wife of an Epileptic husband and a mom of an Autistic son…. my days do not always allow me the time or frame of mind to create in the above areas that I mentioned.  I also work full-time and home-school our youngest…while doing that, I am also involved in support groups, and many ministries in and outside of my home. So a planner is a practical tool for me…. but also a much-needed outlet for me.  But I have now learned to enjoy on a smaller scale the joy of be part of the planner community and to decorate my planner.  This is an outlet that can allow me to create on days when I need to do  mindless work, and a simple creative opportunity.

To some of my family and friends…they find this just plan nuts!!!  I have always used a planner since my first job and the start of my career.  Even back then 30 years+ ago…I would add a sticker, or doodle in it with a flower or two.  I loved the look when I would open my calendar and see the art work next to the event or schedule I needed to attend.

Move forward 30+ years….and the planner community has allowed me a whole new way to create.  Are you part of it?  Have you been bitten by the planner bug?  file_004Does the smell of stickers and does pen ink excite you?  Is going to the Dollar Tree and finding a new sickly note a highlight of your day…..well it is for me and many others. Just watching my Facebook groups with new hauls and new items from Etsy and the “DT”….is so much fun.

I will share in another blog post the breakdown of my planners and how I currently use them….but this was just a quick preview of what I like to use for my daily planner. My work schedule, my daily activities, my to-do list and other misc. dates to remember are in my Mini Happy Planner.  This is a new style of planner for me this year and I am loving it!!!!!!

Here are a few pics of some of my favorite items and a picture of a before and after for both a monthly and weekly spread before the pen.file_000

Reply below and tell me how you use your planner…..what items do you like to use in it?  What is your favorite pen to use? Oh yes send pics too!!!!!

 

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

A life filled with Routine or a Life of Adventure…..

img_0775I am a Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of adventure with a constant new norm. 

 I just love to watch people and how they live their lives, I try to figure out why they do what they do and I learn about what I like and don’t like and how I want to live my life. It got to thinking today when I watched three people who are in my life…and how they are living their lives, and if I want to this that way. 

Do you ever people watch?  I have a friend who fullsizerender-2was
sharing witProcessed with MOLDIVh me that he and his wife where having a “discussion” about what to buy at the food store.  Now you might ask “what is the big deal”…but we have all been there. Discussing, fighting, arguing about which Ice Cream to buy, what brand of bread to get etc…. It sounds silly and it really is and yet we let this get to us.

I have another friend who has a very, very structured life.  She maps out her life in increments of time and activities.  She will work her 8 hours and 8 hours only.  We will plan for evening after work, to take on one task which can include baking. When she goes home….she will prep, bake, clean up and call it a night. Mind you I would be washing dishes, doing a load of wash, listening to a You-Tube channel and stirring the pot for dinner …all while baking.  Her life is so planned out and she never deviates from this.

I have another friend who as I would like to say…gets upset over a pen falling on the floor.  She is wound up so timg_1913ightly that everything in life seems to bother her.  She can bully anyone in her path for the smallest thing they have done wrong and yet if you try to talk to her about anything she will burst into tears with fits of anger.  Yikes!!!

I have two other women in my life who I admire for the way they adapt to life.  Both of them deal with a “special needs” situation in their life.  One seems to run with ease …I know she will tell you that is not the case, but to me she does.  The other friend seems to just live life and take on new adventures anytime they pop in her life.

Now getting back to a life of structure or a life full of adventure…..well, you probably guessed it, I will take the life of adventure.  Yes it can be filled with chaos at times, it can be filled with half done jobs, dishes in the sink, laundry not done and drive-through for dinner. But life is too short to worry about a pen dropping on the floor, it is too short to worry about which ice cream or bread to buy and it is too short not to taste life at its finest.

If you have read my story and the journey that I am on….my life is never normal and it is always a moving target to finding a new normal.  I am a “Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of variety a constant new norm”!!!img_9065

I work full-time, I am involved in three distant ministries, I homeschool, I am a mom of a special needs son, I am a wife of an epileptic,  I am a mom of adult children, I am a women who strives to live out her dreams, I am a women who loves to blog, craft, scrapbook, be a planner nerd, try new things, travel, make homemade soups, decorate her home and much, much more.

Some people ask with delight how do I do it all….they watch me on Facebook and see how full my life is.  Some watch with judgement and question all that I do and wonder if my life should be more structured.  Some watch with wonder and they would love to live this way but are afraid to step out and try it.

Now my dishes do get washed, and my laundry gets done…..we don’t run around in dirty cloths. I do stay at home and with a task list in hand at times and “try and get more organized”. fullsizerenderYet on the other hand….life keeps calling, new places to see, new things to taste, new adventures to try with my family.  I have people to meet, lives to encourage, people to share great experiences with, people to mentor, people to learn from and a whole lot of life to LIVE.

What Journey are you on? What path have you chosen to live? This is your life and your choice to make…..what do you like “structure”, “wound up tight”, or “a little chaos”?  Tell me your story in the comment below…I would love to hear from you today.img_0921

Follow me on my blog for some fun, new and interesting topics.  Like my blog post  and share with a friend who might need to rethink how they are living their life.

 

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

Modern Day Working Mama with a homespun twist and a dash of special needs and disabilities – a life of adventure a constant new norm!

#Beating the Odds…..My Story of Epilepsy.

Well…..here we are at the end of Epilepsy Awareness Month.  You have heard from me on being the wife of an Epileptic and what is the like for a spouse.  Now let me intro you to my husband who has Epilepsy.  He has struggled with this since the age of 12…he has been my husband for 30 years and has raised two sons, he worked at one point in the medical field, he drove a car, and he was very involved in many areas of life…and now find out where life has left him.  Grab a cup of coffee and take the time to read his story ….right from someone who struggles with a chronic illness daily and sometimes hourly but has found a life within this life and is #beating the odds.

resumeofamother_familyI really appreciate the opportunity to tell my story of Epilepsy in my life and what is like to live this life daily and hourly! Find out firsthand the life that some of us live and how I have adapted to a new norm.

For me it started many years ago… I guess I was about 10 years old. I had been asked to stay after school because of a problem.  I actually had been in trouble at school for something  … so when it was time to leave I jumped on my bike to ride home but I did it in anger.

When I got to the traffic light it was green for me…..but the car on the other side had a red light, and did not stop.  Needless to say the car hit me and I went flying into the windshield with my head getting hit. I can only recall half way across the road and then waking up in the hospital.

Well I was pretty beat up with a dislocated my clavicle, got a big bump on my head and chipped my front tooth.  They decided to keep me in the hospital for a couple of days under observation.  At that time they could only diagnose me with what they thought was broken …the seizures were not noted yet.  It wasn’t until a few years later that I had my first observed seizure…and that is where my story begins….

I sensed things from time to time….but it was not something that I could really explain.  Not knowing that I had a problem…..I just dealt with it the best I could.  It was a hard thing…not being able to explain to anybody what I was feeling or going through.

Not knowing what a seizure was ….I did not know what was wrong with me.  It wasn’t until years later at college that I had a large enough seizure and finally got the help that I needed.  After that….my life completely changed. One major thing that changed was that…. I learned quickly how people will treat you differently when they do not understand what is going on!  People that treated me normal…such as family and friends….now treated me like the hardly even knew me.

People will avoid you for fear that something might happen while you are with them, they are afraid of what to do.  People will just not talk to you since they don’t know what to say.  People will talk about you only feet away as if you can’t hear them…..and yes I can hear you.  They will ask my wife a question to avoid actually talking to me.  I have said to my wife that it’s kind of ironic how some people seem to be able to understand if you have a sugar problem or something else wrong…and they seem to be able to cope with that better than people with a seizure problem. Don’t be afraid of us…..we are just like you with added personality in our life.

People are educated and seem to know the steps on how to care for a person that has a sugar attack or similar …..But when somebody has a seizure… people panic!!!!

I will say that it affects every area of your life, but I will not let it have power over me!!!

A quotation that has always motivated me is and that I live by…

“Look for the good times along the way .You can’t put off enjoying life, waiting for the day when epilepsy is no longer an issue.”

 – Diane H. (Mother of patient)

Epilepsy has affected my marriage in many different areas.  It has affected how I am as a father to my two sons and now daughter-in law. My sense of self-worth is something that I struggle with all the time and trying to fit in the mold of husband and father…..my self-worth takes a back seat.

It is hard to copy-of-file_0001be the head of my home, and someone who my wife can depend on ….because many times my thoughts are not clear. I have days where I know exactly what is going on and then many days where I have to just depend on my wife and children to help direct me.  As a man that is something that is unspeakably hard for me.

After years of struggling and many situations with my seizures…..It has gotten to the point where I finally had to go on full-time disability.  Let me tell you from again a husband/fathers point of view….. it was a definite low point in my life and it took me a long time to get over it!!

I have found that having seizures has given me a unique perspective on life.  I can relate to many people who struggle with chronic illness.  The most useful perspective is with my youngest son who has Autism. Both he and I struggle neurologically with many things, I can so relate to him when no one else can.  This has been a huge blessing for him and also for my wife. It gives her a sense of security…knowing that someone can honestly understand some of what our son goes through.  There are times when both he and I have reacted to things because of our neurological problems and we can relate to each other.  For instance when the weather is stormy… I know it’s going to be a rough day for me, and I know that it’s going to be a tough day for him as well.

One true blessing in the last three years of my life has been the moving to a new church!  I have found a Pastor who accepts me …just as I am.  He is aware that I have epilepsy…yet he is willing to work with me and in doing so this has brought back my confidence and self-worth that I had lost. He always keeps an eye on me and he might come over and say “are you okay?” but I know he has my best interest at hand.  By him leading this way….it has shown the church that I am ok….it has allowed the church family to feel relaxed around me and my family.

It is still difficult though in many other ways. There are many times I have to use an electric scooter rather than walk and worry that I might fall at storecopy-of-file_0008s or other places.

I am blessed have a wonderful wife and family, as well as a strong support group in my church… and some good friends who I can depend on.  I would recommend to anybody that has any kind of health problems whether it is epilepsy or any other chronic illness to make sure that you have a good support group in your life…it WILL make a difference.

How can you help me and others with chronic illnesses….

  1. Don’t stare
  2. Don’t avoid me/us….come talk to me/us.
  3. Don’t talk as if we are not in the room.
  4. Don’t treat us like we are weird.
  5. Don’t act like if you touched us we will seize on you or that you will catch what we have.
  6. Treat us normal!!!!
  7. Treat us with respect!!!
  8. Remember we were created to be a unique person and to carry out the work that God intended. Don’t Judge us for that.
  9. Remember that people with illnesses are not being punished for past sins!
  10. Most of all remember we are a human being with families, lives and feelings. Treat us the same way you would like to be treated.

Feel free to comment below if I can help you in any way.  My wife and I would love your feedback and to hear from you.

Thank you for letting me share my story and if you have not read her Blog yet on being the “Wife of an Epileptic”.…check that article out too.

Graeme M Wilson I – Husband of Resume of a Mother

The life of a Wife of an Epileptic….how hard can it really be?

I remember when I started to date my husband and he said he had Epilepsy….it was a whole new world to me.  I watched and learned to know what he needed and what caused problems, so I would be a help.  His seizures were much different then and they didn’t even seem to be a challenge…little did I know.

My Wedding day……I remember standing at the img_0760top of the aisle ready to walk down to be married….my father whispered to me….”you don’t have to do this”.  He was reminding me that he had a long talk with me and that my life would be different, it would be hard, and we would not always know what was coming.  He wanted me to really think about this decision and not jump into a marriage that was not a fairy tale. Thisimg_0663 committment would be to myself, my future husband and children.  It would be a life that I would choose and not forced into…..and it would be a life time committment and a vow.

Well I can tell you almost 30 years later….we are still together.  I love him more now than I did 30 years ago.  Do I love his seizures?  Well….what I can say is that this is part of the package that makes up my husband and who he is and since I love Graeme…I need to accept this situation with as much grace as I can.

Is life easy as his wife?  No life is not… life is hard, frustrating, challenging and sometimes so overwhelming that I feel like I cannot breathe.  I can say that for me… I can understand what it is like to feel alone and yet be married, I can understand what is like to be a single parent and yet have a husband/dad always around, I can say that I understand the challenges of role reversal.  Let me explain a little about this…..

Epilepsy comes in all shapes and sizes!  Each day is never the same….we make our plans and then life takes over.  If my husband is having seizures….mood swings can come, anger issues, depression, lack of memory, needing tons of sleep and a total change of schedules and life style instantly.  These symptoms can also come on the “good” days when he is not having seizures which makes the good days not so good.  For us we have about 2 days a week of a really “good” day…and the rest are filled with these symptoms of some sort.

img_0757This leaves situations for me to handle on the fly all the time.  We can plan a family vacation, holiday or event and all of a sudden I am going it alone.  I might have Graeme with me but mentally and physically he is really not there with me.  This has left me many times….taking care of the kids and whatever else is needed pretty much on my own.  Many nights I get home from work to find him quiet, depressed, or seizing…..so then my nights arimg_0758e basically spent alone.

I find myself alone in my thoughts too…I don’t always know how to help him, I am afraid and fearful of what life can bring, I am tired and weary at times from just “keeping it all together” for my kids and making it as much of a “normal life” as I can for them….and I am still learning that “normal” is a moving target.

Now with that being said…..I don’t want to paint a horrible picture of our life.  YES, life is tough and YES it is VERY hard at times but we have a beautiful life!  My husband has been a rock in our family even when we feel like we are crumbling.  He has set the stage for us on his good days to walk close to the Lord for strength, for wisdom and guidance.  My problem is that I veer away from this path that I should be on daily and fear and anxiety sets in for me.  Graeme has allowed me to evolve into the woman who I need to be for our family.  I need to work full-time to keep a roof over our heads.  Graeme stays home and manages the home better than I ever could, he assists me in homeschooling our children, make the phone call’s needs, and keeps the running “to-do list” as current as he can for me.

I am blessed to have someone who fights daily with this thing called Epilepsy. I am blessed to have someone who does so much for us as a family.  I cannot even imagine as a man how he must feel.  He cannot work outside the home, he cannot drive, he cannot play sports, he cannot hang out with the guys, he cannot do the “normal” things
that he would like when he would like to and sometimes he will never do many of the things he dreamed about.  Yet he strives to beat the odds, lift his head and move forward daily!  Yes he suffers from down days….but his strength comes from the Lord and keeps him striving for a purpose filled life.img_0759

What can I recommend to other spouses who stand by and watch and stand by and support their spouse with Epilepsy? First before anything ….take care of !!!  I find that we put everyone before ourselves and then there is nothing left.  Take time for a good cup of coffee, take time for devotion, take time to sleep, eat and take time for a segment of time just for you…to shop, have fun, go to a movie etc….  Make a point of finding a support system for your family, your spouse and a separate one for yourself.  Support can come in the form of a structured support group, a Facebook group, family, friends, and your church group and in other ways that you might find. Also, remember you are living this unique life and not your friends and family who “think they understand”.  Sometimes there is a need for you to say stop, no, wait, not now….leave us alone, no thank you.  You are the one who needs to take a stand and protect what is yours…..we live with this and we know better than anyone else what is needed….be gracious if you can but be firm too.

Please let me know what your story is in the comments below….please let us know where you find your support. I would love to hear from you all!!!!!

Lynn A.C. Wilson – Resume of a Mother

 

Epilepsy Awareness and the Do’s and Don’ts…

November is “Epilepsy Awareness” month….but I often wonder is anyone really aware or how much do people really know?  We are a family who has been affected by Epilepsy.  We know what it is like to live with this daily; we know what it is like to live a different life copy-of-file_0005than most.  We know what it is like to consistently tweak our schedule, routine, meds, family events and almost everything else.  We know what it is like to just think that “we got it”, to find out we don’t…and what we thought caused the seizures changed again.

I wanted to write something about some of our challenges when trying to live a “normal” life and also in spite of this thing called Epilepsy.

copy-of-file_0008

How has Epilepsy affected our family….let me list a few things that either you will relate to or hopefully will give you some insight to what “normal” is for us…

  1. Seizures daily
  2. Mood swings daily
  3. Anger issues
  4. Depression
  5. Loss of full time work
  6. Loss of friends
  7. Way to much advice from everyone as to what we are doing wrong
  8. Loss of a drivers license
  9. Large medical bills
  10. Health insurance issues
  11. Always trying new meds
  12. Trying to balance being a parent with your kids when Epilepsy gets in the way
  13. Trying to balance being a spouse with your wife when Epilepsy gets in the way

copy-of-file_00071 in 26 Americans will develop epilepsy in their lifetime. An estimated 3 million Americans and 65 million people worldwide currently live with epilepsy. Each year at least 200,000 people are diagnosed with epilepsy. In two-thirds of patients diagnosed with epilepsy, the cause is unknown.

http://www.cureepilepsy.org/ or http://www.epilepsy.com/

Epilepsy is real and does affect many, many families.  Each story is different and each person is unique!

I write to you today not to complain but to explain.  We are a typical normal family with an added member call Epilepsy.  We believe that this is part of what has been ordained to becopy-of-file_0001 the package that makes up our family.  We call ourselves the #teamgwilson
….and we strive to live each day to the fullest, we try to beat the odds, aim for a
fun filled live, not hold onto what we do not have etc…

Our greatest strength comes from the Lord!  We also find strength in our church family, family and friends and some support systems that we have put in place.

With most disabilities we as humans are normally frightened by it.  It is different…we don’t know what to say, what to think, where to look etc… Just remember that these people are human, and have feelings.  DO NOT treat them different or like they have a rare disease.  DO NOT offer advice when you have no clue what is going on. DO NOT pamper them. DO NOT ignore them when they walk in a room, walk the other way and DO NOT feel sorry.

My husband is one of the strongest men if not the strongest man that I have ever met.  He is a true example of what a life with Epilepsy can be when someone purposes in their heart to live a filled and purposeful life.

We will be writing a 3 part articles this month to share and encourage you all on this subject.  To help paint a full picture the articles will include….what is like to be the wife of an epileptic, what is like to be the son and grow up with an epileptic dad and then what is like to be the EPILEPTIC person.

Feel free to let us know part of your story in the comment below.

Thanks for sharing our lives with us!

Lynn A. C. Wilson – Resume of a mother