Some mornings, everything falls into place. Others, not so much. Yet each morning, I get up and hope for the best. This morning seemed to be moving along better than most, especially since my parents are still here helping me recover from my cancer surgery. My incision wasn’t hurting too much, so I hobbled up the stairs to get up our youngest. That is when things fell apart.

Rachel, bless her heart, inherited my approach to mornings: pull the covers over your head and wait for midmorning. That, combined with her severe autism, can create big battles. This morning was no exception.

It started out just fine. She came out of her room and even pottied. I suppose I pushed it too far when I brushed her hair — it sends her into sensory overload. Screaming, she ran back into her room and shoved herself between the bed frame and the wall. As I still had stitches and couldn’t lift more than 10 pounds, dragging an unnaturally strong 50-pound six-year-old out from behind a big bed was not going to happen.

My other daughter, my mother, and I crawled under the bed, pulling almost everything out, but Rachel kept screaming and pulling at a large white box that held my wedding dress. I know she had no idea what was in that box, but she wanted it, and she wanted it right then.

In the end, my parents pulled the bed out, and my little one insisted on dragging that huge wedding-dress box down the stairs and into the car. It was as if her life depended on it. The relief and smile on her face blew my mind. I didn’t know whether to laugh or scream with frustration. And I kept wondering what I would have done if my parents hadn’t been there to help. In the end, Mom laughed and said she wished she had her camera — it would have been a great moment. Too bad neither of us have one of those really high-tech phones. … Anyway, I was glad Mom laughed. Life is too short to be irritated, so I might as well enjoy the ride, no matter how strange it gets.