For the last several years, I have written an end-of-year review. Usually, it is a time to look back and reflect on my successes. This year, unlike in the past, I feel more like saying “We survived” rather than “Hooray we did it!” I’m going to be real for a few paragraphs here, and feel like I should give you a trigger warning. So, if you keep reading, that’s on you.

The Hard Truth

2022 was really hard. I received a diagnosis of Lyme disease and thought that meant I would be on my way to regaining my health. Instead, I spent much of the year feeling at war with my body. I had a lot of painful treatments. I had to give up most foods and all beverages besides water. At one point this fall, I went through the blackest depression I have ever experienced. I fantasized about dying so that the pain would end.

As I write this, I am in a little bit better place. I’m not in so much pain, and I don’t want to die. So, progress? I guess so.  I’ve even been seeing an OT for my own health this year! My therapist is lovely and has really been a lifeline for me this year.

Here are 5SLL, I didn’t get many wins. I did manage to keep blogging all year. Considering how I felt, that was a big deal. We kept the lights on and kept selling curriculums to those who wanted what I write. There were times I thought about folding, but we made it. Sometimes, the win is that you just didn’t quit.  For me, that was this year. I didn’t quit.

Finding The Good

On a positive note, I did some volunteer work this spring that I am very proud of.  My whole family participates in a scouting program called Outdoor Service Guides. It has the motto: Scouting for Everybody. I love that because I think the benefits of scouting are great for all kids.  To help them meet that goal, I worked with a team of scout leaders to put together a guide to scouting with those who need accommodations.

Originally, I referred to it as “special needs and neurodiverse scouting” but we changed it to focus on what we want to do: Accessibility and Adaptive Scouting. We are working to create resources so that scout leaders have more ideas for how to work with kids who have different needs. That way, everybody who joins us can have a positive scouting experience.

Looking Forward

As we start 2023, I want to write more curriculums. I want to regain my health and be able to do SO much more.

Here is hoping that 2023 is a better, easier year, for all of us!

About the Author

Laura Sowdon, OTR/L is an occupational therapist, writer, speaker, educator and creator of the Five Senses Literature Lessons homeschool curriculum. She has worked as an occupational therapist with children in public and private schools, as well as private practice. Laura has taught and managed homeschool co-ops as well as homeschooling her own three children. Laura is dedicated to the idea of educating children at a pace that aligns with brain and physical development milestones and respects neurodiversity in all its forms.

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