Several weeks ago, when it all seemed so overwhelming, you know, life with disabilities, all the Dreads of the Earth kind of thoughts, I called and got an extra appointment with my Counselor. We walked into his office and sat down. We just looked at each other. Neither of he nor I said a word. Then all at once, I started telling him some things that I used to do with my grandkids, the neighbors kids, and well, any kid that happened by. I was The Babysitter. The Caretaker. The Teacher. The Sports Coach. Their Best Buddy. I guess to be honest, I would have to say, I was just another one of the group of kids that gathered around my daughter’s house every afternoon and most evenings. All the parents trusted me to take good care of their kids and knew that being with me and Our Group would be a really fun, energetic, learning and safe time for everyone, including me. No one had a clue I was Mentally Ill. I was recalling all those memories that had been lost for so long, as I talked. The HAPPIEST times of my life were those 14 years I spent babysitting with all those children.

One thing I used to do with the kids was to build a small fire with sticks, encircled by large rocks from the walkways, and we would toast marshmallows once it got dark. We would take turns making up short stories to tell each other. The older boys seemed to enjoy tales of mystery, including ghosts and goblins. I would have to ease the younger ones fears and try to get everyone laughing. My Counselor couldn’t believe I actually built fires in the road. Was it safe? Didn’t I fear I would get in trouble? What did the parents think? Then, we just sat and laughed at the idea of campfires on the roadside and doing it over and over again.

I was so Energized when I left that session. No more Dreads…I felt Alive. Reliving HAPPY TIMES with my grandkids.