Thursday, June 4, 2015

Why hello there...

So it seems it's been awhile since I've written.  No, I haven't not fallen off the face of the earth, but a lot sure has happened.  I'll spare you the history lesson and just go from here forward.

I am not happy.  I can realize this and can admit it, if only to myself and strangers on the internet.  Recently we have moved to San Diego.  By recently I mean January of this year.  I left a job that I absolutely loved in Virginia working with people I absolutely adored.  My job filled my proverbial cup.  My friends in Virginia and my volunteer commitments filled it too.  I was happy.  Even if I was stressed out, I was happy.

Since packing up and heading 2700 miles away, I've become someone I don't like.  Someone who spends her days in her room, in her dark house, crying while her 13 year old is at school and husband is at work.  Someone who feels positively invisible when she goes to the grocery store and people just bump right into her or push past her with no regard.  Someone whose health has gone completely to crap since moving, except I did quit smoking, so that's a good thing I guess.  I hate this.  This is not me.

I feel resentment towards my husband.  I resent that his career has taken me away from my home.  Almost 20 years for him in the Navy and most of it was spent in Virginia, my home.  Now we are in California, his home, and I hate it.  I am trying not to resent him, but I can't stop that from creeping in.  He wanted to move here.  I've always said that I would go where ever, but I'm starting to realize maybe I was lying to myself.

I hate it here.  The people I encounter are rude.  Traffic is horrible and drivers are awful.  Everything is so ridiculously expensive.  I can't find a job.  I have been unemployed for 6 months now and it sucks.  We are sinking.  I need work.  I need friends.  I need my life back.

I'm not sure how to go about fixing this.  I'm not sure I can fix this anymore.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Isn't everyday autism awareness day???

Hm, guess not.  It should be.  We are well aware of autism in our household everyday.  ;-)

So today is.. yep.. World Autism Awareness Day.  Everyone is lighting it up blue today.  April is Autism Awareness Month, in case you didn't know that either.

Today the boy got himself up, showered and dressed for school all while I was in the comforts of my own bed sleeping through my annoying alarm clock.  I had planned on putting a blue shirt on him, but somehow he managed to pick one out on his own.  As he's watching Minecraft videos on YouTube, I tell him today is World Autism Awareness Day and it's pretty cool that he's wearing blue.  I tell him I'm wearing a blue shirt in honor of this.  So he stops watching the video and asks me if his school is doing anything to celebrate this.  I tell him no and he says well they should.  I told the boy to ask SpEd teacher lady about it.

After he was off to school and I was done running around there taking care of PTO craziness, I went and mentioned it to principal lady.  We had a nice chat (for once!) about the new statistics recently published.  1 in 88 children is insane.  1 in 54 boys is tragic!  1 in 54.  The boy is 1 in 54.  These new statistics really make me wonder what the new statistic for military kids like the boy will be.  It was 1 in 88 military kids were diagnosed with autism.

Back to principal lady, she told me "well if it's important to the boy, then let's see what we can do about it!" After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I said thank you and came home.

This afternoon I was back at school for more PTO craziness, and lo and behold, there were signs in the hallways mentioning April being Autism Awareness Month.  I love that!  I love SpEd teacher lady and how awesome she is.

So the boy was thrilled because why shouldn't he be celebrated?  He's so much more than a staggering statistic.  He is awesome, funny, smart, amazing, loving, caring, helpful, and an all around wonderful kid.  Yeah, he has his ups and downs like any other Aspie kiddo might, but he's awesome.  The boy is growing into a pretty darn awesome pre-teen and I hope we can keep him doing as well as he's doing right now.

So yes, we celebrated World Autism Awareness Day today, but really, we celebrate it every day.  Autism is a part of our lives now and forever until death do us part.  I didn't ask to be married into this exclusive club.  I didn't ask for my child to have to work ten times harder than his classmates.  I didn't ask to be so defeated it's all I can do to keep from curling up and crying when he's having a meltdown.  But it's what I got and I wouldn't trade it for the world.  The boy has taught me so much and teaches me more and more every day.  I wouldn't change him for anything.. even at our darkest moments.  EVERYTHING we've dealt with so far in his life is what has brought us to the point we are at today.  I'm thankful for everything we've been dealt and can't wait to see what else gets thrown at us!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Dear Presidential Candidate...

The Boy's 5th grade class is writing persuasive letters to Presidential Candidates to let them know what issues they think are important.  I am sharing his letter because it's awesome!  The Boy has such difficulty with writing and getting his thoughts out clearly, but he rocked this letter out!  I hope the kids get responses from the candidates from their letters.  They are sending them to Obama and the 3 Republican candidates battling it out right now.  Each student had to research and pick three issues they felt were important to them.  The boy chose Autism Research, Homelessness, and Federal Funding for Charities..

Dear Candidate,

Thanks for your dedication to our country.  I am in the 5th grade at (insert school) in Virginia.  My father is in the Navy.  We are learning about the countless issues you must address in your campaign.  The issues that interest me the most are the need for more money for medical research about Autism because I have it, help for the homeless and loss of federal funding for charities.  I think you should work on these three issues because they are the biggest to me, my family, and my classmates.

First, more money needs to be given for medical research of Autism.  Did you know, 1 out of 110 children are diagnosed with Autism?  The effects of Autism on me are not that bad but it makes life harder.  I have trouble making friends because I do awkward things while doing it or shy away and miss opputunities to make friends.  Even though people with Autism are considered really smart they would have a hard time learning in class because they have a certain way of doing things.  I really want you to give more money to help find a cure for Autism.  It would be nice to me and everyone around the world who has it.

I also believe we need to help the homeless.  We need to make a homeless shelter for the homeless so they have somewhere to live so they won't get cold or die young.  Furthermore, we need to donate more money to homeless shelters so the homeless can have additional stuff to live on and with.  Now once we donate this and they can get a job they can get a place to live.

Finally I am concerned about the federal funding to charity.  It is sad we are losing federal funding to charities that preserve wild life and helping homeless shelters.  If you become President, give them federal funding.

I know you have a tsunami of issues coming your way but I know you can deal with each and every one.  I appreciate your consideration of my issues and know that through your help, that we will make the world a better place for everyone around.

The Boy

Thursday, February 16, 2012

What I did in school today...

Yes, really.. what I did in school today!  

A few days ago, my son's teacher asked if I was available to help out with something this morning.  Of course I said yes because I love being in the classroom with him and his peers.  This week, the story in the reading textbook is about cerebral palsy.  They have been discussing disabilities all week long, including autism.  I arrive this morning with him and she shows me the center I will be working at.  She read them a story about a little boy who has autism and the trip to the park with his sister.  (If I remember the name of the book, I'll share.. lol)  

When she was finished reading, she looked straight at the boy and asked if there was anything he wanted to share.  I silently started to panic for a moment until she said he'd been sharing all week long about autism.  (insert me almost falling over here)  One of his friends said "he had no idea C had autism until this week, but it didn't matter, he's still C and he's my friend".  (again, me almost falling over and wanting to run up to this kid and give him a huge hug!)

She then explained to them that they were going to go to several different centers and learn about what it's like to live with various disabilities.  She had something set up for a speech impediment, deafness, blindness, dyslexia, cerebral palsy and autism.  I got to do one of the centers about autism.  I had to give the students instructions on how to do something and speak in complete gibberish.  I said it normally, softly, loudly, getting more and more frustrated each time and commenting about how I didn't understand why they weren't doing it.  I then drew a picture and they immediately got it.  It was fun watching the light bulb moment for the students.  I answered their questions as best as I could.  They had some tough questions that I couldn't answer, but did as best as I could.  I think it really hit home with them when the teacher said 1 in 88 military kids has autism, because our school is a DODEA school and solely military kids.  

I also got to touch them velcro gloves to teach them about sensory issues.  Everyone hated it, except of course my own child who took the gloves after the lesson and kept touching his arm with it! haha  

We are truly blessed to have this teacher in our lives.  I didn't think we'd ever have another teacher as amazing as this one, after our second grade teacher.  His teacher is truly one of a kind.  As a retired Naval Officer, she runs her classroom with military precision.  This has helped my own child so much throughout the year because he knows up front what the expectations are each day.  But she has fun with the kids and she truly cares about each and every one of them.  She has made every effort possible to form a bond with with C this year and as a result he is once again enjoying school and is thriving in her classroom.  Her incredible patience with him will never be forgotten.   It makes me sad to think the school year is over halfway done and we only have a few months left with her before he's onto middle school.  The world needs more teachers like her without a doubt.  

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Spontaneous I love you!

This is a common scenario in my household.

me... "I love you kiddo"
kiddo.. "ok"
me.. "what do you say when someone says I love you?"
kiddo.. "ok"
you can see where this is going.. LOL

Recently the kiddo has been tossing out spontaneous "I love you" and I can't even begin to tell you how much it makes me smile!  Even more so, he's tossing them out to the hubby!  Who knows how long this will last with him, but I'm loving it right now!!! <3

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Surfer's Healing Virginia Beach!

Yesterday the kiddo was able to participate in Surfer's Healing for the second time.  For those who don't know, here's a little snippet about them from their website.  Surfer's Healing
Surfers Healing was founded by Israel and Danielle Paskowitz.Their son, Isaiah, was diagnosed with autism at age three. Like many autistic children, he often suffered from sensory overload-- simple sensations could overwhelm him. The ocean was the one place where he seemed to find respite.
A former competitive surfer, Israel hit upon an idea--with Isaiah on the front of his surfboard, and Izzy steering from the back, the two spent the day surfing together. Surfing had a profound impact on Isaiah. Israel and Danielle decided they wanted to share this unique therapy with other autistic children. They began to host day camps at the beach where autistic children and their families could be exposed to a completely new experience of surfing.
This was our second time going.  The first time was 2 summers ago.  The kiddo loved it then and loved it even more this time!!!!  Surfer's Healing is an amazingly awesome day at the beach.  First of all, you're surrounded by families who deal with autism on a daily basis.  No one cares if your child is laying in the sand throwing a fit.  No one cares if your child is running into people because he's so excited he's got tunnel vision to the beach and doesn't care who's in his way.  No one cares if your child is screaming his head off because he doesn't want to leave the beach.  NO ONE CARES!  It's all normal to them.  No judgement, no snide remarks, no dirty looks.  That in itself is absolutely awesome considering we deal with all that on a daily basis.

Second of all, the water is the kiddo's favorite place to be.  The ocean has such an amazing effect on him.  He wants to stay in the water all day long whenever we go to the beach and begs to go to the beach often.  (This is not doable normally because we moved from the beach 2 years ago)  He loves just standing in the waves and letting them batter him.  He loves the push and pull of the waves.  He loves the sand under his feet and even the bright sun doesn't bother him when he's in the ocean.  He was not happy at all when we had to leave the beach yesterday to begin our what should have been 3 hour drive home.

Back to the actual event itself.  We arrived at the beach around 930 am.  Later than I wanted, but we did have to pack the car up after our stay at my sister's house before we could head to the beach.  We got signed in, got our goodie bag and tshirts for the whole family.  The minute our toes touched the sand, he was ready to be in the water.  He had a 1030 surf time, so we dumped our stuff off and left my Mom in the shade and headed to the water.  Immediately he was in.  Wave after wave toppled him and he could have cared less.  I let him play for about 20 minutes before heading back to my mom.  We checked out a few of the booths they had set up and then it was time for him to go surf.  (after of course he started freaking out because I was being too slow and they were going to call his surf time soon... and all I did was smile and laugh and say goodbye to the person I was talking to.. no apologies necessary!)

We go get him suited up in his life jacket and wait for his surfer to come get him.  Out he goes into the water.  His surfer (whose name I did not get, but wish I did!) was awesome.  He was very aggressive with the waves, just going for it, not waiting around.. LOL  The kiddo had the most amazing time ever.  He caught 5 waves I think.  He got to do the paddling out for most of the waves, which was absolutely amazing to me.  He has such low muscle tone in his trunk and arms, and seeing him paddle the surfboard out while his surfer was standing on it was simply awesome.  My mom, sister, sister's best friend and I all cheered for him the whole time he was out there.  They totally wiped out a few times, but the kiddo didn't care one bit.  When he got out of the water he said "I got sand in my mouth one time, but I didn't care" HAHA!

As soon as he finished surfing, he wanted to go back in the water.  So my sister and her bff took him back in the water for some more time in the water.  He got to play some more and then it was lunch time.  Back in the water again after eating.  Then it was time to leave.  Of course he didn't like that too much, but it was the last day of our vacation trip to Va Beach and we needed to get home to celebrate the hubby's birthday, since he couldn't join us on the trip.  We reminded the kiddo that he had souvenir money to spend and he happily stopped complaining about leaving and off we went.

All in all it was an absolutely amazing day.  I wish we'd gotten a chance to meet Izzy Paskowitz because he is just an amazing person with such a huge heart.  I wish I'd gotten the name of our surfer.  I wish we could have stayed at the beach all day.  I loved watching all the kids surfing.  I loved seeing the joy on a child's face when moments ago he'd been terrified of heading into the water.  I loved seeing families hold their breaths as their child was carried out into the water and then moments later burst into cheers when their child was surfing a wave.  I loved being somewhere that having autism is the norm and no is judged.  

Here are some pics from our day yesterday...

Enjoying the water before surfing...

getting suited up to surf!

Almost his turn!

waiting for a wave to come..

Surfer boy!!! :-)

paddling out

high fives with his Aunt afterwards!

The kiddo with his surfer. :)

one happy boy!!!!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Happy Ash Wednesday!

26 more days to go.. ;-)

So I made good on my Lenten promise today.  I went for two walks.  Figured since tomorrow it is supposed to be rainy, I'd take another walk tonight.  For some reason, new fluffy dog, only seems to want to poop on the school property which makes me laugh.  Don't worry, I'm a responsible pet owner and picked up his poop.  I also decided that I'm going to do some form of cleaning everyday too.  Today I did some dishes and laundry.  I know it's not much, but I've been slacking in the housework department.  So my Lenten promise is to try not to be so lazy.  No clue what the hubby and kid are giving up, neither can seem to make up their minds.  Honestly, I'd like to see them give up video games, but both scoffed at the idea of course.  I told the kid he could join me on my cleaning promise, but of course he scoffed at that too.  Right now I'd take him just doing homework without a fight.  Would that work?  Giving up fighting over homework for Lent?  Sure would make my life a lot more peaceful.  :-)