Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween 2013

This was a different Halloween for us.  We split up -- I went with Willow to a friend's house to go Trick or Treating and Michael and Chewy went out, bought a pumpkin, carved it and watched a scary movie.

Michael is now old enough he doesn't want to go out really--but still wanted a scary mask.  Willow is prime Trick or Treating material.

I went out with her and three of her friends.  It was a bit wet (it was a bit rainy) so there were a few slips and slides, and shoes being wet.  There was a point where I told them about being the Four Musketeers so that they would hopefully try to stay together...but there was always one straggler.

At one point, someone had to go potty in the middle of the route--no where near the host family's house.  A very kind couple who had their house decked out let her go in to use their bathroom--and then let Willow and another girl also use it.

We got back to the house, had some candy and went home.  Where we got to see a pumpkin Michael carved...and we watched a Halloween show...

and now...the kids are asleep and we are going to have some candy and maybe watch something scary.

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!








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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

PAIL Bloggers - Monthly Theme - October: Birth Story

I thought this was an interesting theme to participate in as I am definitely far away from the experience of the Birth Story....to read other stories, please click HERE.

I have always felt like Birth Plans are a waste of time. Which is ironic for me--since I am usually an organized "planning" type of person.  But I think that perhaps I my feelings on this particular issue is because any plans I had for the birth of first child....well, they all went out the window!

It started on a Thursday, three weeks before.  It was supposed to be my last "once a month" check up with the Doctor.  After this check up, it would be once a week.  Everything seemed to go fine until the blood pressure check.  Our plans for the evening (having people over) were abruptly changed as I spent a night at the hospital to see if they could get the BP in check.  

The diagnosis was pre-eclampsia.  The week or more left of work was no more. I was on strict bed rest.  

Considering that my husband and I had moved 800 miles away from any family--that made it even more tough. 
I was fine for the about a week and a half--I read comic books, watched movies, television, played board games, read books and magazines.  And then I was bored.  And more sick.  The rest.not.so.fun.

After that came the pitocin induction, the being hooked up to machines and not being able to move (bye bye walking around during the birth, bye bye whirlpool).  No medications...I was all into non-natural child birth--but I got to have the taste, oh yeah, no pain meds for me!!  12 hours.  10 cm.  And my son was in distress.  Exhausted, tired and worried.  It was time for the emergency c-section.  The epidural from hell. While in surgery, feeling like I was going to die...I was going to swallow my tongue I knew it.

And finally.  finally, my son.  My son blue and being rushed to make sure he was okay.  And he was. And he was bundled on my chest, wrapped in blankets.  I breast fed him 1/2 hour later.

I also was violently ill, felt the chills and shakes. I don't remember the rest of the day, as it was spent in a morphine drip induced haze.  

TAKE TWO

That experience, that birth story did influence the choices I made nine years later.  The experience with my daughter--a planned c-section, went very smoothly. I was healthier and was not on bed-rest (I was a bit crazy and went on a hike).  

This time around I was prepped and was able to ask questions about the c-section, I was able to control things a lot more...and, most importantly--I wasn't sick!  :-)




Monday, October 28, 2013

False Sense of Security/Wits End

This year seems to be the year that things fall apart.  Whenever I feel like we have a handle on something, my grasp is taken away from me and I find myself at my wits end.  I am usually good under pressure.  I usually can keep my emotions in check (at least in public).

But.  The last few months, the last few weeks, the last few days.  I just don't know anymore.

I am trying to deal with various issues and things going on.  I am juggling and dropping the balls.  I am trying to keep it together, but crying in public.  I am trying and failing.  And trying and succeeding.  And failing.  And succeeding.  And falling again.

I am just tired.  I want to give up.  But I know I cannot do that.  I know that people need me.  My children need me, especially right now.  But I am tired.

I feel like we just do not have the support we need--and I know it is within our grasp--but it keeps being just out of reach.

I hope that this is just a phase. I hope that in two weeks I will feel differently.  I hope that things work out in the end.

Right now I am tender and raw and tired and angry and worried and wishing that I was a better person than I feel I am right now.


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Friday, October 18, 2013

The Picture from Back to School Night...

Willow's teacher put the Back to School Night Slides up on the website.

So, I was able to capture something I wouldn't normally be able to.


For those times when I need reminding...that is my little boy.  

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Re-Boot

Okay.  Our life has gotten a re-boot and now we are trying to get used to a new normal again.

Seems like it has been a while since I have just written about how/what we are doing individually.

Michael:  Tough transitioning aside, he is in the school band and seems to be enjoying it.  He will be marching in the Halloween Parade next weekend. He is studying the Civil War and Tale of Two Cities, among other things, in school. He is still obsessing over Batman and other superheroes. Has ordered another hand held 80s computer game based on Batman.  Is still eating us out of house and home.  Sometimes you can tell he is maturing, other times, not so much.

Willow: She sings a lot, asks questions a lot and has opinions on EVERYTHING.  She is frustrated to not be able to READ already, although she is learning sight words and how to spell and is well on her way.  She is also frustrated that her almost-loose-tooth has not come out yet (her best friend Kayla has already lost 4 teeth).  She loves "My Little Ponies", but dad was brilliant and introduced her to "The Land of the Lost" so we have been given a break from the ponies.

Me:  Struggling with full time work that is stressful, as well as being full time mom and trying to eat right and exercise too.  (This year has not been too kind)

Chewy: Started a new job on Tuesday.  Is getting used to the commute (a bit longer than last time, but in an area we used to live) and all the new job stuff.  Going well so far.


Monday, October 07, 2013

Surprises



We had a meeting with Michael’s school counselor.  A pre-meeting before the tests are evaluated and the IEP is recommended and accommodations are made, etc.**

The typical behavioral stuff was said.  The stuff I hear all the time…he is extremely smart and the teachers like him to a point…some of whom know how to handle him, some of whom do not.  There were newer issues dealing with his age and temperament.

But there were surprises that make me amazed and frightened at that same time.  Explanations on why his last year in middle school was so much more difficult (an extraordinary effort by a counselor who then was gone that last year; an effort we were not aware of) and the fact that the boy he stood up to (and got a “day off” from high school for) is a notorious bully and his MO usually consists of violence (which makes me feel good that my son stood up for himself, but worried that he doesn’t always know when he could be getting into something over his head…).  How he had a choice to take a foreign language this year (the one he was in was WAAAY to slow for him) and have to let go of band or take a foreign language next year instead…and the fact he picked band instead (BAND? The SOCIAL thing…the thing that he doesn’t practice for and never seems to show enthusiasm for…that Band).

I was a bit depressed after this meeting.  All the things that have to click for my son to have an education.  For him to graduate.  For him to fit into society’s norms.  The teenage years multiplied by his issues and behaviors.

But, the reason why I am writing this is because I just felt an uplift.  Mulling it over at work.  Thinking about ways to help him.  Realizing how much we have accomplished.  How much HE has accomplished.  How he has gotten over hurdles before.  How he is at this teenager phase that will end.  How help is on the way (once the IEP is in place, there are Aspies that are already mainstreamed that meet and help each other with the social aspects).

And I am proud of him (and wonder how he will take my expression of this—he may shrug or be offended—he is at THAT stage of teenager).

Yes, there are a lot of things I have no answers on.  Yes, he frustrates me every day. 

But I am proud of him and what he does every single day.  

**For those who want to know more about Aspergers in school settings, click HERE.

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Things I haven't done yet...

Things I haven't had the chance of doing yet or been prevented from doing: See my son's presentation on Rabies for his biology ...