We’ve seen the school year end as well as the fiscal year. We have a stopgap budget in Illinois and we are considered a national leader in governmental dysfunction. A dubious distinction to be sure! What can we do as community leaders and leaders within our families to make changes?
We can speak up and we can reach out. I have the pleasure of meeting with several local congregations regarding ways in which they can support the community as well as members of their own congregations who have intellectual/developmental disabilities. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be big or fancy or funded to have impact. One of the churches is considering hosting a games night that would offer a meal and fun for the kids so that their parents can have an evening of respite. Another church is considering mentoring some of our kids who have an autism spectrum diagnosis and taking them out for ice cream or a movie once a month.
Sometimes the hardest thing is admitting that you can use some help. I know that I was always determined to do it on my own. That can be an admirable stance but does that allow others in who could and would love to help you? That line of vulnerability and openness can be a difficult one. Determination and stubbornness are siblings. Maybe your neighbor will swap some child care with you. Maybe your sister will take your child to the pool. Maybe you can do a little craft with the cousins?
These are days when summer gets to be long. It is difficult to manage working, child care, maintaining a household and the unthinkable – caring for yourself!
Be kind to yourself – it’s a good model for others to see!