What I find hard about the holidays is that there are more variables thrown into the pot…and no one but God knows how the soup is going to turn out. It could be terrific or toxic. And while I love a good mystery in books (yes, I started with Nancy Drew) I have never been that brave in real life.
First of all, it gets dark outside before supper, and I bet there’s not a bipolar alive who loves Daylight Savings Time. I would love to have a little sit-down with The Powers That Be that keep that little hiccup happening each fall .
Then there’s the change in schedule. Everyone is off work, or off school, and that can just lead to being “off” altogether if you know what I mean!
And THEN there’s additional people woven into the fabric of each day. Grandmas, grandpas, aunts, uncles, cousins, in-laws, friends…and every one of them have a different effect on our bipolar family member. And our bipolar family member has a different effect on every one of them. And by the time we’re done, we’re all affected!
Without consultation plans are frustrated, but with many counselors they succeed. Proverbs15:22
I can’t begin to tell you how many counselors we have needed over the years. And as I head into Thanksgiving week, I am very thankful for them. As a result, we are able to make plans now that succeed more often than not. For instance, this Thanksgiving we are adding in a set of parents that do not accept the fact of a bipolar diagnosis. We haven’t been able to have them for about 10 years. But this year we are going to try that again. In baby steps. For two days. How long can two days be?!
We have waited until we could both feel comfortable with it. We asked trusted counselors for their advice. We have built in a safety net of sturdy relationships to surround us. We have built in an “out” for my husband if it triggers him too much…although honestly, I may be the one who needs out. And now we wait.
And keep praying.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11