Friday, January 27, 2012

Unexcepted Blessing or My cousin is the next Dionne Warwick Physic Friend

 Editors note: This originally appeared elsewhere for THE DIVA's 1st Birthday. As I watch her rapidly approach her 4th (how did that happen) Birthday, I remembered this post. It's one of my favorites.  Because as much as she is being all sass and brass tacks lately, she is really and truly a blessing.

Late in July 2007, my cousin U. came to visit me. I was in probably the best shape of my life. Boy Wonder had yet to be diagnosed but I knew something either wasn't right or I was a really shitty mother as he didn't seem to like me. While U. and her daughter K. were here, I came close to fainting a few times. U. said to me,"Maybe you're pregnant!" I said, "Maybe I'll slap you."

I tell Big Daddy what U. said and we laugh until I start counting. So I take a pregnancy test and get this.....

Unexpectedly pregnant!!! Oh shit! I was thrown for a loop but quickly accepted it which led to this.......

On the first day of Spring March 20, 2008, my water broke in Target at 9:30 am which then led to this at 11:21 pm later that evening....

Which brings us to one year later, Happy 1st Birthday, Diva! Mommy and Daddy love you more then we can ever say!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

What It's Like To Have A Child With Autism

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared elsewhere in March 2010. While our sleep issues have mostly subsided, the Tasmanian Devil is a rare sight these days, and Boy Wonder is far more present, a lot of this is still true. ~J

Some days it's like having a ghost in the room. You can see them but you can't touch them. They can't hear you.

Other days, it's like someone dropped off a Tasmanian devil. A whirling, stimming, running, jumping yelling dervish who leaves a path of destruction in their wake.

Every day, a constant worry about their future and selfishly your future cause you sure as hell didn't sign on for this shit.  Some days the worry is manageable and on the bad days it's paralyzing.

Wondering if something happens to you who will care for and love your child because you know there are very few if any people willing to do it.

Watching the news and wondering what you'll do if your child ever gets so violent your life and that of your other children could be at risk and praying it never gets to that point or become the mother who is so overcome she overdoses her child on medication and kills him.

Cringing when you hear other parents complain about the budget for special education kids in your school district and kind of wishing you were still that ignorant but knowing you are a better person now.

1:00 am wake up calls followed by another at 2:30 am and 5:00 am because God forbid we sleep through the night.

You get to have some one come to your house 6 days a week to give your child therapy.

But there's progress, love and hope. Progress because you never let up on him EVER. Love because he's your child no matter how God made him and when he looks you right in the eye and smiles it's all worth it. Hope that all this hard work will pay off in a miracle.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Oh Wait This Blog Is Suppose To Be About Boy Wonder or Pay Attention Mommy

Boy I've been a whiny mess lately. Jesus. Time to pull up the boot straps. Ok here is what Boy Wonder has been up to lately. Ready?

Ok big one first, he is starting to take himself to the bathroom at home to umm pee unprompted. Yes!!!! He toilet trained himself for um "Code Brown", as Judith and Jeneil call it, years ago. 

No matter what he asks for he always says please at the end unlike THE DIVA  and Sweet Baby Girl who just say NOW!!!

He is mastering out of programs at school weekly and he is showing an interest in reading. This is huge but ya'll get that right??

The hand biting has almost completely disappeared and his hand has healed.

He is learning to ride a bike and he loves it.

He is trying new foods unprompted. He ate Big Daddy's egg salad. I'm not personally a fan but hey he tried something new that wasn't candy or chips.

He has his first loose tooth and he is tolerating it well.

He is initiating playing ring around the rosie and tag with the girlies more and more.

There's plenty more but these the big and small things that have brought me a lot of joy and hope over the last few weeks.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

#yearoftheoxygenmask or I Ran Away For The Weekend

Because I can't take care of the 3 maniacs if I can't take care of myself.
Because the last 6 months nearly broke me.
Because the years are short but the days are long especially when you are a special needs mama.
Because I have things going on that are difficult that I can't share just yet.
Because I could, I ran away for the weekend and sat by the pool with my lovely wonderful friend. 
I needed it. I feel like I can draw a deep breath and I'm ready for whatever 2012 is going to throw my way.
2012 is the Year Of The Oxygen Mask Project. Do something for you. I did and it feels really really good.

Ed. Note: To learn more about the Oxygen Mask Project, please click here. You can also follow the Oxygen Mask Project on Twitter @OxygenMaskProj. You can also visit their Facebook page at The Oxygen Mask Project.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Time for A Change

It takes strength to survive;
It takes courage to live.
Strength and Courage
~David L. Griffith
The winds of change are blowing wild and free.
Make You Feel My Love
~Bob Dylan

4 years ago, Boy Wonder was diagnosed. All we've done is survive since then. There's been ups and downs. There's been joy and sorrow. There's been 2 steps forward and 1 step back but we've been in crisis mode. We can't stay here anymore. I can't stay in crisis mode anymore. I also can't be Mommy or Autism Mama all the time anymore. 

I will never be the blissfully ignorant, happy go lucky person I was once upon a time. The past 4 years have taught me too much about judgments, incorrect perceptions, empathy, acceptance, patience and love. We aren't who we were pre-diagnosis.

 So I'm choosing to make changes. I start college this month. I'm looking to go back to work.  I'm practicing forgiveness of myself and others. I'm thinking seriously about what would make me happy no matter what other people may think.  

It's time to stop surviving in the land of what could've been and time to accept what is and go after what would make all of us happy. Everyone deserves happiness. I just have to let go.