Mar 24, 2007
posted in Uncategorized with  15  COMMENTS

I don’t post very much about what is going on with him. I’m not really sure why I don’t, its not that I don’t want to share, I am just not sure what to say, because it really requires me to put it all out there to really understand what is going on with him…..

He’s had a rough time, the last year especially, this kid has been through a lot in his 9 short years. My first husband, Ty’s biological father, left us when Ty was still a baby. His life spun out of control after he left us, so Ty didn’t see him much. For a long time, it was just the two of us, me and Ty, we were happy and very, very close. The weekend of Ty’s 4th birthday party, Tropical Storm Allison hit and we lost all of our possessions when our little rental house flooded. It was hard, just us, but we were ok, we moved into a condo in a great part of town so I could get him into one of the best school districts around. Plus it was high and dry, bonus. Two weeks later, in moves Jason next door to us. It took us awhile to meet, a while longer to become friends and even longer to start dating. It must have seemed like an eternity to Ty, he loved having Jason next door to us, and did every sneaky thing a 4 year old was capable of to get Jason and I together. By the time Ty was 5 1/2, he informed Jason that it was now or never….”when are you gonna marry my mom?” LOL I think he just liked to watch Jason squirm and see his ears turn red personally!! LOL

When Jason proposed, it was a surprise to me, but Ty knew all about it. Jason wanted Ty there, he just stood off to the side, let Jason do his thing and after I said yes and gave Jason a big hug, I looked over at Ty and saw the biggest ear to ear smile I’ve ever seen a 6 year old sport!! Fast forward 7 months, we’re in the throws of planning our destination wedding in Hawaii, Jason and I took a nice long weekend trip to get away from wedding stress. We returned to find out that my first husband had died over the weekend. Our world just stopped with this news. All I could think about was telling Ty, how hard that would be. It was incredibly difficult for him. It didn’t change his daily life, his schedule, his routine, all the things that children hold on to so tightly, but without a doubt, it changed who he is. That is an undescribable pain. Ty coped, and talked to me a lot. I think the hardest part for him was understanding that Kevin was doing a good thing by staying away, he was protecting us from the instability that his life had turned into, but Ty hated him for it. I never wanted him to feel that way. But how do you explain to a 6 year old that by Kevin not coming around, he was, in fact doing the best thing for him? And Ty felt guilty when Kevin died, he felt bad being so mad at someone who was gone, yet didn’t have good memories of Kevin to hold on to, so he grieved that too. With the initial news of his death, our world stopped, and then later came the news that it was at his own hands. There isn’t a day that goes by that it doesn’t cross my mind, and I wonder sometimes if there ever will be.

Jason, Ty and I, we all got through those dark days together, the best we could. Eight months later Jason and I got married on the beach at sunset in Hawaii. We were thrilled, so was Ty. We went on our honeymoon and Ty headed back to the mainland with my mom. We wanted to have a baby as soon as possible, and were lucky enough to come home from our honeymoon pregnant. We were thrilled again, and so was Ty!! He couldn’t wait to be a big brother!! And this is where Little T enters the picture 🙂 I had a rough pregnancy with her and ended up being home most of the summer. Ty would skip day camp to stay home and hang out with me. We’d play cards, he’d fix me lunch, bring me water, keep the AC nice and low and let me take long pregnant lady naps. Granted, he would steal the remote out of my hand once one eye was closed, but it was fabulous. He took great pride in taking care of me that summer, I love remembering that time, the last few months of him being an only child…

Taryn was due to arrive on August 10th, the same day Ty was to start the 2nd grade. This should have been a sign, having an 8 year age difference is fantastic, I love it, but they are often going in two totally opposite directions. Lucky for us (little did we know just how lucky we were at this point). Taryn arrived 3 weeks early and healthy. She was three weeks old when Jason’s adoption of Ty was final. Jason really wanted to adopt him, we had talked about it for a long time. Ty couldn’t wait for us to get married so we could start the adoption process, although he had a really hard time making a final decision on his name. In the end he decided to keep them all. I am thankful now that Kevin and I had talked about Jason adopting Ty. It came up the last time we spoke on the phone, after he had signed over sole custody. He gave me his blessing to move forward with the adoption when the time came. Not that I needed his blessing legally, I could have proceeded without it or him being involved, but it eases my conscience knowing he approved.

Ty started the 2nd grade that week with a new last name, still adjusting to having a new baby in the house. Two weeks of school, that was it, before Katrina blew into our lives. If you’re a regular reader of my blog you probably have a pretty good idea of what a complete hell and upheaval it was for all of us. We spent days not knowing if my mom (Ty’s best friend in the whole world) and step dad were alive and well, months away from home, Ty had to start school in a different state, knowing no one. We moved from Jason’s parents to my parents, evacuated again for Rita, back to my parents, into a trailer and then into a barron, not really livable house. All with a new baby and a struggling 8 year old.

He’s lost everything he owned, not once, but twice, by the age of 8. That’s just not fair. It’s not. After the first flood of our rental house, he saw the silver lining, he still tells me how thankful he is that it happened, “because it gave us dad”. Love that. I think he’s still waiting on Katrina’s silver lining.

This school year for him has been the hardest ever. He’s always made friends easily, but not this year.
He’s always made really good grades, not this year. It seems like it’s one thing after another this year. I don’t know how well we are handling it, one thing at a time right? He’s seeing a counselor, which seems to help him. But the problems are still there.

Now don’t get me wrong, Ty has always mixed it up a little. He’s a fun guy. He’d seen his share of little pink behavior reports, believe me. For example, he decided to skip his nap in pre-k one day to play leapfrog over all the sleeping children lined up so nicely. Or how about this one, first day of Kindergarten he shut out the lights and closed the door on all the little boys in the bathroom, even held it closed while they screamed like little girls. How is THAT for a first impression?!? Yeah, just ask Jason where he learned that, I’m not taking credit for that one!

The difference now, he’s not happy, you can see it in his eyes. It kills me, I want to make it better and I can’t. Jason and I constantly wonder if its just normal old 9 year old boy stuff or has everything he’s been through caught up with him? We will probably never know really. All of the things that he’s gone through, changes who he is. We’ll never know what any of us would have been without the pain.

So, I decided what I can do, what I must do, is love him as much as I can. That’s why I decided to take the summer off from the photography business. He needs me, he needs attention, so that’s what I will do. Of course he’s already making all kinds of plans. He informed me yesterday he has at least 50 things he wants to do together this summer. I will miss my work, and my clients, but I have to be a mommy first right now. Granted 90% of Ty’s plans sound like they are photography related so I will still have plenty of pics to post. I’m looking forward to a summer of exploration with our cameras and spending lots of time together.

Sorry for the novel, I’m just always so apprehensive about posting what is going on in his life because it involves so much. Now I can post and talk about it since it’s all hashed out. Gotta love blog therapy 🙂

The point of all this was to say that he had a lot of problems in school last week, got in trouble a few times, had a problem on the bus (he said a word that I have no idea where he learned it) AND conveniently “forgot” to bring home his report card on Friday. So he’s punished, all weekend. Plus, if he wants to have a potty mouth on the bus (or anytime for that matter), he’s gonna be on potty duty (meaning picking up the dog poo in the backyard before Jason cuts grass tomorrow). This is his ultimate punishment, he despises it will all his being. Drama from Mr. Huffypants is in our future.

If anyone made it this far, thanks for reading 🙂

  • I can’t imagine going through all you have been through just with Katrina, but add to it everything before then and at 9 years old…..Ty is lucky to have such a loving and dedicated mother. I bet having the summer off will be absolutely wonderful. You can all relax, have fun and just enjoy being a family!

  • Nothing hurts a Mom’s heart more than seeing their children in pain, in trouble or struggling in life. Ty is so lucky to have a Mom and a Dad who love him so much. You are good parents and Ty knows you both love him totally. I think you are making the right decision to focus on him this summer. It can only do him good. I’ll help you all I’m able. Maybe I can watch Taryn on Thursdays so you and Ty can go off together…..

    My heart hurts too. For my child and my most favorite grandson!!

  • Lindsey- I’ve been a regular “follower” of yours since you were planning that beautiful wedding on the Knot!! As a middle school teacher please believe me when I say that you’re are doing the absolute best thing for Ty by spending the summer together. The bonding will be essential to make it through those scary middle school years. Ty has a great support system and you are a great parent for seeing the signs and doing something about it. He may not show it now but I bet he will be forever grateful! Best wishes!

  • With the love of family you can get through anything!

  • Oh, Lyndsay – you are a wonderful mom for just realizing how much he needs you. I hope that you enjoy your summer off -together – to just be a mommy to your two adorable children, and a wife, and maybe a mommy to a third??? Thank you for sharing his and your story. You are an inspiration!! Many blessings to you and yours.

  • Lyndsay – You are sucn an incredible mom! I love that! I am sure that you will never regret putting Ty first this summer. Ty will always remember that. You guys have been through so much and are an amazing inspiration. I can’t wait to hear all of the fun things that Ty has planned!

  • Lyndsay, I’ve read bits and peices before, but never all together. Your story is amazing. Ty, Taryn and Jason are so lucky to have you. I think you are going to have an incredible summer and there is absolutely nothing better you could be doing. No amount of clients or money or exposure will ever be equal to what you all will gain. I love your blog. I love that you put it out there. I am a “talker” too and it resonates when I find someone else so willing to share… it helps us all develop in the best we can be.
    Thank you and my best wishes.
    (BTW, I will not stop bugging you for help, don’t go too far)!

  • Lindsay – thanks for sharing with us!!
    It must be difficult for you .. to try and understand what might be going on with him .. now knowing…
    I think that you are doing a wonderful thing in staying home with him this summer .. You are an inspiring woman.
    Thanks again for sharing – take care.

  • Lyndsay, you are just a powerful person. My heart breaks for Ty, as someone who has had to grow up with a less than stellar father figure. I’m so glad that Jason can fill him up with good memories of what a dad should be! You have such an amazing story to tell… have you considered writing a book? =) I’m so happy that you’ve decided to take the summer off to spend time with your kids. They need you more than your camera does. Just as long as you pick it up every once in a while.

  • Lyndsay, you are a very gifted photographer, but you’re a far more excellent mother. I have to admire your dedication to your family. I hope you enjoy this summer with Ty and Taryn!

  • You guys made me cry! Thank you all so much for your kind words and support, it means a lot. I’ve debated for awhile as to whether or not I should put a post like this up, and now I’m so glad that I did. I just love that kid more than words can say and want more than anything for him to be happy again.

    I can’t believe anyone even made it through that novel length post – much less 10 of you LOL!

  • Make that 11 who got through it … Lyndsay, you are such an incredible mom. I think you taking the summer off to spend with Ty and Taryn is a wonderful decision and I hope it will help your little man heal some from the uncertainty that has been his life since Katrina came. His comment about the first storm bringing “dad” to you guys made me teary. You are a beautiful and strong family. Hang in there.

  • Lyndsay,

    You guys have been through alot. Just know that you are a great mom. You and Ty will have so much time this summer together. I think it helps to talk about whats going on sometimes. Everyone needs a support system and someone to lean on. If you want to talk, I’m always here. We need to do lunch soon. – stacy

  • That is such a moving and amazing story Lyndsay. Everything I learn about you points to what a compassionate person you seem to be. How wonderful of you to share your story … I confess it made me a little teary and I already knew part of it. 🙂

  • Awww Lyndsay. I think you made the only decision you could make – putting your family first. You’ve got your ducks in a row, girl. I think this will be just what Ty needs 🙂