Friday, November 28, 2003

Karen here. Kyle is at an n.a. meeting. One of his old friends who is going to a local college here has been calling and went out with him last night. Kyle told me yesterday was his favorite Thanksgiving. He said he really enjoyed the food and company. It was just our immediate family and my parents. Before they came he asked me who was coming. He really dislikes holidays where he has to visit with people. I know his discomfort because I remember as a child feeling the same way. I think sometimes it is just too much for him. He never came to his brother's graduation party. He told me later that he just couldn't face everyone and didn't know what to say.

When dinner was over, Kyle started clearing the plates. It seems like such a small thing but it was major to me. He was helping and thinking of someone other than himself. And he is the only one who offered to do this. I complimented him on it and he jokingly said, " That's just me." He raked leaves with his brother and dad in the morning. He cleaned out the gutter. Jon said he really enjoyed being with him. He is undoubtedly the hardest worker. All our children are. They have had to be. He played cards with his dad and brothers later even though his friends called. He disappeared before dinner but his oldest brother went driving and found him. I really wanted him there.

Today, I told Kyle that I am really proud of how he made it through school. The boy who killed himself last week had problems similiar to Kyle and shot himself. Kyle said that he probably didn't have as strong of faith. I told him that I know how tough that last year was especially and he didn't give up. I have been getting rid of papers and I keep finding all of his lists of things to do. He struggled so hard with school. I had put together a book of letters for his graduation. He got some wonderful letters. One of my friends just sent him one with our favorite quotes. She had a high maintainence child also who just graduated. Her nephew is bipolar and I confided in her. Kyle's brother wrote an amazing letter but it is still on a disk.

I think all of us struggle with things that seem so easy to others. I hate seeing Kyle smoke cigarettes and he really doesn't let me. Jon thinks it helps him and is more accepting than I . I think that is why he goes off sometimes. But I really do admire his ability to cope with things such as when he was in jail, or failing in school, standing up for the underdog, and even being able to live on the streets. I think he has a strength inside of him that will get him through. I know his faith has so far.

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