As I help a little boy who struggles with paying attention and has constant meltdowns in his kindergarten class, I am struck again and again by how life has prepared me for just this moment.
I could not have helped this little guy at all without the years of rigorous training which Maeve has put me through. She gave me a hundred different tools to help with meltdowns, distractions, peer problems, and anger. Nothing was a magic bullet with her, but because of that, I learned so many different ideas and hints.
And I learned what not to do. That instead of ignoring meltdowns, sometimes comforting is advisable. That anger can be turned aside with breathing, with laughter, with distraction, with recognition. That big feelings are not a crime, they just need to find their safe outlet.
Without Maeve, I could not be of as much use at my job as I currently am. This little boy's father has asked for my contact information as he walks through the difficult valley of diagnosis, IEP, and school interventions. I don't know everything, but boy, have I been there. And boy, am I ever happy to help however I can.
I am overwhelmed with the beauty of this one precious and tender life we live. How what we are given, overwhelming though it is, can be a gift to another. If I had known, on my hardest days with Maeve, that I would find another use for these hard-won skills, it would have been an immense encouragement. As it is, I feel such deep gratitude.