Saturday, April 29, 2006

Super Swingset Saturday

Well, we almost bought it. We checked out Lowes and HD and looked at the swingset kits. The Swingset places are just too expensive, and our budget only allows for their dinkiest model, so we settled on building ourselves. I feel we are more than capable, we are quite the handy couple! The directions on the box said 4-6 hours for two people. Add in two kids, a dog, the neighbor's kids (they go back and forth between the two yards, mine kids included) and a few potty breaks, and I figure this is a two-day weekend job for us. Even if we do read the directions! Which I will encourage Darling to do.

Just when we settled on what we THOUGHT we would get, a friend reminded me about the one at BJ's she bought last year. About $100 more than the one we were going to get, but it is REALLY nice. And it includes everything, it is all precut. Hmmm...We will go see it tonight and decide. Either way, we will end up with a decent playset, the one at Lowes is mostly precut, there are just 10 pieces of 2X4X8 wood that we need to get to go with it, but they require no cutting.

In the meantime, we FINALLY cleared the area behind the garage,which is where the new swingset-o-rama will be located. We went back and forth about where to put it, he wanted to stick it near the trees, I wanted it where the old pool was located, but the grass grew in a little too nicely since Forrest-Gump-the-grass-obsessed-Darling fertilized the heck out of it last year. It needs to be cut TWICE a week right now. No kidding! SO, since the only place we don't have grass is in the junk pile behind the garage, we measured it and it is perfect. But this is what we had to do to clear it:
  • clear wood and logs and stack
  • clear up all sticks and leaves pile up
  • pick up broken pieces of cinderblock and discard
  • Move broken air conditioner (we really need to get rid of this)
  • rake as much gravel and we could and dump it elsewhere
  • Cut the grass and weeds growing there
  • dig up the pile of dirt and spread it flat
  • spread all of the sand (not and easy task) to make it flat
  • Put all of the tools and wheel barrel back.

Doesn't sound too difficult. It took us roughly two hours, give or take, and that is with the kids running around. Not too shabby. So, the ground is flat and ready! Once we build it, I will call and order playmulch and VOILA!!!!

I can't wait! I think I am more excited than the kids!

Friday, April 28, 2006

An excerpt from our "conversation" this morning

Bug Boy has many one-sided conversations. That is, he thinks we are conversing, but it is really all him. It is just one endless stream of thought. Here is an example:

"I have two arms. Two is a pair. I don't have four arms because that would be two pairs. And I really don't have ten pairs. If I had four pairs I'd be an Octopus. I can't get this Spider Man pajama shirt over my head. I have to leave my tee shirt on because it is cold outside. Is it cold outside? I'd better check. Yup, it's cold outside. I think I'll leave my tee shirt on. I can't get this button undone. I need your help. (I un button his pants) Yup. It's cold outside. I am going to need a jacket. I really like counting money. I like the money counter you got me. I am going to count all the money in my piggy bank. I have 25 monies. I am going to save all of my monies an buy a new video game. How many monies do I have? I think I have a lot. I am going to count all of it so we can go buy one right now. Hmmm...This one's a penny. This one's a nickel. What's this one? A Quarter? Oh yeah, that's right! Ha! A Quarter. But this one's too big to be a quarter. I wonder how many monies it is? A hundred? (I tell him it is a half dollar) A half dollar! WOW!"

Is your head exploding yet? Yup, that's what I thought. And this is just a tiny sample of the endless thought process that he has. He never stops thinking. Sounds like someone I know...hmm...

Friday Feast

I really like doing this Friday Feast thingy...

On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how polite are you?
Ummm...when I was a kid? A 2. Lately I am closer to 8, I think. But realistically maybe a 7, since I can't seem to keep my mouth shut.

What was the last thing that made you laugh out loud?
Watching my Bugaboo play last night. He gets so giddy that he gets a little clumsy and throws himself on the floor. It is a scream.

Who is your favorite cartoon character?
I used to love watching Mighty Mouse

Main Course
Tell about the funniest teacher you ever had.
I had a teacher in High School, Sr. Jean, that made History really fun! She cracked jokes all of the time, had a great sense of humor, but was a real stickler for the rules. She used to have us play Jeopardy and other game shows as review.

Complete this sentence: I strongly believe that ______________________.
I strongly believe that with enormous amounts of hard work, and infinity patience (in other words A LOT!), Bugaboo will learn to speak someday.

That is all.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Thirteen of my Favorite Movies Ever!
  1. My Fair Lady, Roman Holiday (Audrey Hepburn!)
  2. Parenthood
  3. Moonstruck (When I lost my hand, I lost my pride!"
  4. Princess Bride
  5. Best in Show, Waiting for Guffman and other Christopher Guest Films
  6. Dogma, Mapprats, Clerks and other Kevin Smith films
  7. Star Wars Saga
  8. Star Trek (except #5...ewww!)
  9. Jane Eyre (various versions)
  10. Pride and Prejudice (various versions)
  11. Monty Python Films (addicted)
  12. Meet Joe Black (one word: BRAD!)
  13. Kill Bill Vol 1 & 2 (and other Quentin Tarrantino films)

See a trend here? I tend to like a series of films by the same folks. I could have added my top one hundred movies of all times, but it is a thirteen list. To be fair, I have to tell you I love Harry Potter, but I thought the movies were "OK" and not favorites. No one can do justice to those books. Or most books.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


Yesterday was teh. worst. day. Evar.

Not really, but it felt like it at the time. I think I have to crash and burn every once in a while in order to know what it is like to soar higher than the clouds, you know?

Nothing went as planned. I got a letter over the weekend that Bugaboo's placement for the fall is as yet undetermined. It seems the IU is moving all of the classrooms around, trying to get kids closer to home, etc, etc. They claim we will have more options. Yeah, right. In other words, they are trying to save money. And they don't want to put money into old buildings. So they are moving kids around. Grr...he likes his class, I hope we can keep the teacher!

We also found out that Bugaboo was denied, AGAIN, for wrap around services. I don't know what the problem is. I went through all of the proper channels, and everyone on his case agrees that he NEEDS TSS at home. We need help! We are so frustrated with his behavior and we don't know what to do. When I talked to Darling about it, he asked why. I don't have a clue! I have been trying to call to talk to someone, but I need to talk to his case worked before I call the mental health provider. Darling thinks it is because he is only 3, has no violent outbursts, doesn't injure anyone, doesn't bite or kick. He is a happy kid. But he is destructive (breaks and messes things constantly) and runs around without stopping from dawn to dusk. And he does dangerous things. It is making me furious! I am considering looking into a different agency that can help us with obtaining a TSS that is trained in DIR, which is the direction I want to go anyway. I'd just hate to leave behind Elwyn, they've done great things for us!

I also had moments with Bugaboo yesterday that caused me to call Darling crying and stating, "I can't do this anymore! I don't want him to be autistic anymore! I can't handle this! I can't DO this! I don't even know how to parent my own child!" Needless to say, I had three hours of sleep the night before, Aunt Flo is visiting, we had a very busy weekend, etc. In other words, my body is just worn out. I need a vacation away from the kids and Darling (sounds terrible, but I only need one day in a hottub!) so badly. Just silence. I am thinking of going on a retreat. I think it would refresh my body and spirit.

Darling, of course, knew just what to do when I called him crying. He came home as soon as he could, quickly ate dinner, helped bathe the kids and get them in jammies, and then whisked them out the door and left me alone. He doesn't say much (he tends to be reticent) but he certainly know just what to do when I need it most. He was nice to me, nice to the kids, and got them out of my hair. When he returned about 1.5 hours later, I had cleaned the bathrooms (helped me work out some frustration) and taken a very long bath, resulting in pruny fingers and toes. Then I parked on the couch and watch dumb tv until he returned with two sleeping children. Ahhhhhh....

Ok, you are wondering, what is so negative about this? Well, I am just a spaz. I keep saying I am fine with my kids the way they are. I am doing everything I can. I keep up with the endless doc appts, despite having a flat tire like this morning. I have them in therapy. I have them signed up for summer camp (therapeutic camp! YEAH!). I mother them, feed them, love them. But I feel this nagging voice inside of me (I think it is the little devil sitting on my shoulder) that keeps telling me that I want more from them! I want Bugaboo to speak and communicate! I want Bug Boy to have friends his age! I want kids to call my kids begging for playdates! I want my kids to be comfortable at a birthday party or picnic without being so overstimulated and hiding somewhere or running away. Why can't my kids be like other kids?

Now, before you get all preachy on me, let me explain. I know that all kids have issues. I know that no child is perfect. I know that God gives us what we can handle. I know that I am one lucky momma to have such beautiful children. I thank God everyday for what I have. But it hurts sooooo badly.

We went to a baseball game the other day. April is Autism Awareness month and there were a few families at the game, since there was an event in town. I can spot them (kids with autism) a mile away, after working with kids like Bugaboo for a few years, and then having my kids. But, this child, although he made some noises and perseverated a little, TALKED TO HIS MOTHER and PLAYED with his brother! I was in tears watching, I hope they don't think I was staring. I couldn't speak up and talk to this family, I was so choked up thinking about how scared I am that Ian won't ever be able to tell me he loves me or just say, "Dad." I am so afraid that he will be victimized, since predators know kids with disabilities can't speak up. I am afraid he will elope, escape, get hurt, or worse, get killed. I can't let him out of my sight for a second! It is so difficult! I keep wondering why. Why us? Why both of them? Bug Boy is doing well, and even seems to blend in, and people might think he is odd, but he seems "normal." But not Bugaboo. Even at the dentist this morning he was hurdling over couches, jumping off of tables, taking the cover off of the fish tank and splashing the water trying to get the fish. People smiled and commented on his energy. I know that look they give me, you know, the "Wow, your child is an undisciplined, hyperactive brat" look? Yeah, that one. I just want to scream sometimes. I am a good mother! It isn't my fault! He is as God made him, so get over it!

Good advice! I should take that myself, and stop beating myself up for it. But it is so much harder than it seems. There are a few things that keep me sane, other than my supportive husband. Family who is there for us and ready at a moment's notice when I am about to lose it. Friends who lend a sympathetic ear and help out when they can. Other families with issues like mine, networking is KEY in this world. And finally, faith. Actually, faith is first. Without it, I don't know where I'd be.

Enough rambling ,this is turning into an Epic...

Monday, April 24, 2006

Just another Manic Monday...

This is what my usual Monday schedule looks like:

6:30 awake (too many snoozes), make lunches, iron
7:00 DH off to work, kids eat breakfast, get dressed
7:30 I get dressed, eat, start laundry
8:30 Bugaboo gets on bus
9:00 drive Bug Boy to school
9-11 hit gym or food shop
11:30 Bug Boy is finished school
12:00 Bugaboo is home, meet bus
12:30 Kids in car with lunch in baggies
1:00 Bug Boy and Bugaboo both start playgroups, Bug Boy in Haverford, Bugaboo in Elwyn, Bugaboo is usually late (1:30)
2:00 back to get Bug Boy in Haverford
2:30 leave Haverford after conferring with Bug Boy's teacher about social lessons for week
3:00 pick Bugaboo up from Elwyn
3:30 finish food shopping or Target
4:30 home
5:00 dinner ready for kids
5:30 Darling arrives home
6-7 playtime with Daddy, mommy gets more clothes put away
7:00 baths, snack, stories
8:00 bed for kids
9:00 mommy finishes picking up house and cleaning dishes and falls into bed exhausted

Now, today is a bit different, thank goodness. Bugaboo is pretty sick, so no school. No playgroup for him, either. I do have to add Bug Boy's book fair at 10:00 (which I unfortunately have to bring Bugaboo to!) and probably the ped for Bugaboo (while Bug Boy is at Playgroup) but at least it is a little lighter. Oh, and I won't do food shopping with my cranky, autistic 3yo since it will be a nightmare of epic proportions. I instead get to be covered in snot (and Lord knows what else) while he tries to snuggle his ouchies away by sticking his head inside my shirt to rub his face on my tummy, a by-product of the nursing days gone by.


Deep breaths, deep breaths...

Sunday, April 23, 2006

The Sound of Silence

Since we were up much too late last night (and the kids were up WAY past their bedtime!) I am letting them all sleep in this morning. It is so peaceful and quiet around here right now. Not that it isn't ever peaceful in our home, it is just moreso today. Usually I have one child begging for food, the other getting upset because I won't let him turn on the idiot box, the dog barking and waking the Sunday sleepers and Darling half-asleep at the table sipping coffee. Today the dog is waking the Sunday sleepers, I ate, got my clothes ready for church, sorted through my music for mass (I play in the guitar group. No, not the guitar. The flute.). I am now sipping my tea in the last few minutes of solitude I will have for the day.

I just heard a door open. Two doors. Pitter patter, pitter patter (more like, THUD, THUD, THUD!). Here they come. Quiet time is over.

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Soggy, wet and soaked

Wow, this is certainly quite a bit of rain we've had today! After not having rain for nearly three weeks ( I mean measurable rain, the kind I have to mop the floor for when the dog comes in) this just seems like overkill to me.

We need it, the grass and trees appreciate it. And I love rain. Love the smell right before it starts. Love how quiet it is outside because people seem to be aquaphobic. Love how cool and breezy it is, and how I want to stay in jammies and snuggle with my boys under the blankets. The dog just doesn't feel the same way. She cowers, refuses to go out until it is absolutely necessary and she is doing the pee-pee dance by the door, and then she hangs out under the bow window and won't come in, because she will get wet on the way to the door! ACK!

Poor Bugaboo is one sick little guy. I knew that after we went to the GI the other day and she suggested taking him OFF of the GFCF diet so that they could run tests (like crohn's, celiac, etc) that he would end up with a sinus or ear infection within a week. And it only took him four days. I know they will try to tell me there is no connection, but it seems awfully strange that when I took milk out of Bug Boy's diet that he suddenly stopped getting ear infections and throwing up, and when I took wheat out of Bugaboo's diet the same happened. Hmmmm...don't need a medical degree to figure out that one. And I think it is interesting that the first thing the MD gave me was a prescription to deal with the tummy stuff. Ugh.
The good news is that I can cut it all out again in about six weeks, the time that it will take for the tests to be scheduled, run and results interpreted.

They are STILL awake. The result of spending the past three days straight with their much-loved cousins and getting hyper-stimulated. And dozing off for five whopping minutes in the car, which is enough to keep them awake several hours past their bedtimes!!!

Friday, April 21, 2006

Friday Feast

Felt compelled, just 'cause I think it is cool:

Friday Feast

List 3 things you keep putting off.
1. Getting my hair cut
2. Seeing the Neuro (but I do finally have an appt, just gotta work on not rescheduling it!)
3. Working in the attic to fling and rearrange.

What do you feel is your greatest responsibility?
Taking care of my family and raising my children

If you could have starred in any movie, which one would you have wanted to be in and why?
My Fair Lady, as Eliza Doolittle. It is my favourite flick, and the reason I am in love with movies. Movie magic at its best. Romance without sappiness and flashy kissing. Ahhh....

Main Course
What is an expectation you had as a child about being an adult and, now that you are grown up, you realize you were wrong?
I thought that no one made any money, no one lived in a house bigger than mine, every family was huge and intact, everyone was kind. In other words, everyone in the world was an Irish Catholic. How refreshing to find out that the world was SOOOO different and full of amazing people from all walks of life. But it was also an eye-opener to find out how cruel and evil some people could be.

When was the last time you had your car serviced?
In January; tires rotated, brakes adjusted, oil changed, inspection, etc. That was the minivan. For Darlings' vehicles: a few weeks ago when he worked on them in the garage.

Not much to say

I don't have much to share today, so I will leave you with this song:

Let It Be


When I find myself in times of trouble
Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
And in my hour of darkness
She is standing right in front of me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.
Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

And when the broken hearted people
Living in the world agree,
There will be an answer, let it be.
For though they may be parted there is
Still a chance that they will see
There will be an answer, let it be.
Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
Yeah there will be an answer, let it be.
Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

And when the night is cloudy,
There is still a light that shines on me,
Shine on till tomorrow, let it be.
I wake up to the sound of music
Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be.

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
A there will be an answer, let it be.

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be.
A there will be an answer, let it be.

Let it be, let it be
Let it be, let it be,
Whisper words of wisdom, let it be.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

Thirteen Things about Mar-j

1…. I love potatoes more than any food ever
2. I love the smell right before it rains
3. I thought I'd have my Master's or Doctorate by now. Didn't know I was stopping for kids.
4. My middle name is Linda. So my name (Marjorie Linda) means beautiful pearl. Which may account for why I am so cloudy sometimes.
5. I procrastinate worse than Hamlet.
6. I am one of seven children and my mom had a total of 15 pregnancies.
7. My favorite color is green. Like plants.
8. I am very sensitive to smells and loud noises, so much so that I get very irritable.
9. I met my husband when I was dating his friend.
10. I really, really, REALLY don't like my hair touched. Even to have it cut. Even if Darling touches it. Even if the kids touch it.
11. I love dogs and don't ever want to be without one.
12. I love old movies. B&W.
13. I consider myself a geek. But geek is chic, so I am actually en vogue.

So there.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!
1. (leave your link in comments, I’ll add you here!)

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The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Be sure to update your Thirteen with links that are left for you, as well! I will link to everyone who participates and leaves a link to their 13 things. Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Very late Wordless Wednesday


Not that I WANT to get rid of my kids, but I am lucky that my sister has off this week for Spring break (Delaware does everything a little differently) and volunteered to give us a night off. Then tomorrow I will give HER a night off. Maybe two nights. They were thinking of going to a B&B and I still owe her for taking the day off to go to the Developmental Pediatrician with me.

We have no idea what we are doing. I don't want to go out to dinner just for the sake of doing it, we do it often enough. We are looking into a ball game or a movie, we shall see. I don't want to just do something really random just because we don't have kids.

I am seriously thinking of making a special dinner (Mmmm...maybe filet mignon!) and then renting us a movie. We don't get to do THAT very often. And it is rarely quiet. But I will make him get his stuff ready for tomorrow before we sit to watch a movie, because I am soooooo sleeping in tomorrow!

No doubt I will still get up at 6:30, wait until 7 to call my sister and check on the kids. I am such a MOM!!!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Yet another article...

Oh no! There has been another Autism article in the paper, I know that everyone and their uncle will send me a copy of it, call me and tell me about it, etc. I happen to know (well, know of) the particlular family that participated in the article. I think these types of articles can help people demand better treatment for their children, but I also think they can be dangerous and give people false hope.

And then there is the guilt factor. Guilt that I am not draining my savings to pay for more intensive therapy. Guilt that I am sending him to a county program, when it seems like the people who are successful have sued the county to get individual services. I do agree that the more individual the services, the more progress can be made. But how do you work on social skills with a kid who doesn't ever get to be around other kids? It is a catch-22, to be sure.
But the worse guilt I have is hearing about how many people do chelation and it helps their child immensely, and I want nothing to do with it. I hear too many horror stories. Might just be media sensationalism, but I am not taking the chance with my kid. Bugaboo is happy, loved and functions ok. He isn't a lab rat, he isn't here to be cured. Part of me wonders if I should just accept him the way he is and stop trying to find things to cure him. God made him the way he is, after all.

But then the little voice in my head says, "NO! He is worth more than that! He has more potential than that! Don't let him slip away!" I can look into his eyes, and hear his little voice tell me not to give up on him. And I don't want to.

The Autism World can be so political. There are many camps, many treatments, many people who claim that XYZ treatment will help/cure/alter your child. They make you feel so guilty, like a bad parent. Like up until this point you have done something wrong! Either you aren't training him appropriately, or you aren't feeding him right, or you haven't done this behavior mod, or you haven't taken him for $100 an hour therapy for intensive OT. Most of which can be done IN YOUR OWN HOME. And then I have to consider his diagnosis of severe ADHD (on top of the Autism) and wonder if by denying him medications to control his out-of-control brain, I am denying him the possibility of looking into my eyes, pointing to a picture or saying his ABCs.

The only thing that resonates with me so far is Floortime. It is a model developed by Dr. Stanley Greenspan and others. It works with a child in their natural environment, playing with their toys, with their parents. It is very intense, but you can go to trainings (which cost about $250, but the cheapest, by far!). And, it doesn't involved doing anything special except turning off the TV or computer and spending quality time with your kid. Not that I don't do that, but I think I can change the way I interact with him and get more affect out of him. And Bug Boy is doing so well with that kind of interaction. I don't know if he is "growing out of PDD" or just improving on his skills, but he is set to go to a typical Kindergarten next year, with minimal support. That is progress! Do I think Bugaboo with be ready for that in two years? I don't know, but I am not going to quit trying. He has already come so far!

Monday, April 17, 2006

Blah, Blah, Blah Blog

I managed to get to the gym to work out, the kids stayed in babysitting (thank goodness for that!). I think that because Bug Boy was off from school today, Bugaboo was a little more willing to be there. And they were outside, which was WONDERFUL. The child care people are very nice during the day, and Bugaboo has bonded with one of them (and has manipulated her into picking him up the whole time I am gone). So perhaps when he has off from school for now on, I will still get to work out!
I didn't get there all last week. He was in a MOOD, to say the least. Cranky, whiney, destructive, refusing to communicate at all. I know he is out of sorts due to the break, and i cannot wait until he goes back! I wanted to enjoy and savor these moments while he had off from school, but he is missing so much therapy and structure that I feel so badly for him. Isn't it sad that I can't duplicate it enough to make him feel more comfortable at home? At least it just goes to show everyone that he is so much more aware than we realize. He can be a smart cookie.
I feel so, well, blah. Double and triple blah. Don't wanna move, make phone calls, do anything. I have things I should get done, but nothing really pressing. Just need to do room rescues and reboot laundry. The house is in great shape since I did my WHB Saturday. I kept reassuring myself that I can be a little lazy today. And this is after I found out that i gained three pounds back after losing one, the result of not going to the gym for a week and pigging out on stuff I don't need. And drinking more tea and less water. Ugh. I feel like I will never get there. I mean, I know everyone tells me I look fine, I am thin, blah, blah, blah. But I know I am not in the best possible shape I can be in. That is all I want. To stop comfort eating and to work out regularly enough that my body doesn't turn to jelly.
Aunt Flo is clearly coming for a visit in the near future. No wonder I have such a bad attitude today! But I refuse to use that as an excuse, perhaps just a REASON for my bitchiness. So there.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Happy Easter

It has been a marvelous day so far, and I am ready for round two! I am taking a little breather while Darling plays in the yard with Bug Boy and Bugaboo hides in the basement (he has to poop, can only go - in his diaper - hiding in the basement, for some odd reason!). Food is in the oven for Jay and Stay. We have dinner with them every week, so this is like a slightly fancier version of our typical Sunday dinner. Usually we grill it and eat it!

This morning was lovely. The air was coolish but felt great, a good song was on the radio on the way to church and mass was nice. It was packed (C&E Catholics) and smelled good - about one hundred lillies lined the church and altar. I am glad I took some allergy meds before I left! The sermon was ok, our deacon gave it and we really can't stand him. He is very pompous and has a tendency to be sort of fire-and-brimstone. One Sunday he began his Homily by pointing to various members of the congregation and telling each one they were going to die. I mean, we all know we are going to die, but this is the CHILDREN'S mass! And, he always has a prop. Today was a toy Barbie house, and he chastised us for wanting too much "junk" in our lives, when all we need is simple. I agree with his message, but it is the condescending way he says it that makes everyone in the church squirm in their seats. One Sunday he had a loaf of white bread and a loaf of multigrain bread, and proceeded to tell us to go for the "whole wheat" in our lives rather than the squishy, nasty white bread. I think he likes metaphors.

Anywho, the homily over, the rest of the mass proceeded, and for some reason, when we sang, "In remembrance of Me" during communion, I could barely choke back the tears. Music really resonates with me, and I am trying so hard these days to understand the "plan" for me and why I have been chosen to be Bugaboo's Momma. It isn't as easy as just reading it in the scriptures. I mean, I know I was chosen. I know I was chosen because God feels I am the best one for the job. I guess I can't help but wonder how God came to that conclusion. It still amazes me everyday. I love him with my whole heart and soul, and his brother, but when Darling and I are at our wit's end, and are so very sad, it is difficult to keep it all in perspective. I have some comfort knowing that some day the plan will be revealed, and I will say, "AHA! I KNEW IT!"

Ok, gotta get off the ole duff and finish our not-so-fancy dinner. We are actually eating in the Dining Room instead of the kitchen, but using the every day flatware and dishes. I did go out of my way to get the nice cloth napkins out and am even using the silver napkin rings I received as a wedding gift from MIL. Casual yet elegant! Shabby Chic!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

A Most Interesting Day

The day started off well enough. Kids slept until 8 and then went downstairs while we lazed away in bed trying to ignore the dog's cries for "Potty." We finally rolled out of bed, went downstairs, made our Saturday list of "things to do" and Darling headed downstairs to gather trash. That is when the fun began.

Our basement has a finished area and a utility area, which is where the washer and dryer are housed. I am now VERY happy they are down there, since we noticed the area rug was damp when Darling went down to collect the trash. So we looked around, realized the double laundry sink had overflowed, and tried to figure out why. After Darling took the pipes apart, we noticed that there was still water in the washer and it had not drained properly. So I turned it back onto the spin cycle. The water kept backing up into the sink. Uh-oh!

At about that time, Darling remembered that a few days before he found the cap off of the sewer vent in the backyard, and discovered that one of the kids (ours or a neighbor's) had stuffed rocks down it. He went outside to look in the pipe, and sure enough, it was backed up. Which meant that every time we flushed, washed, cleaned, etc, for the past few days, we were backing up our sewer line! ACK! We ceased all operations immediately, and called the plumber.

Four hours and $345 later we had the rocks out of the sewer vent line and a new cover WELDED onto the trap. They ain't gettin' it off this time! I am glad we discovered it when we did, because it would have eventually led to the toilets backing up, and THAT would have been a holy mess! As it was, we only had some laundry suds on the floor. WHEW! Catastrophy averted!

I didn't get half of what I wanted done today. The house isn't going to clean itself, so I am going to do the basics (dust, vac, S&S in the bathroom) and that is about it. Tonight after the kids go to bed I will put stuff in plastic eggs for our mini egg hunt with the kiddies tomorrow. Then I will cut up fruit and make stratta for the P-unit. Grandmom is also coming over, all 90 years of her. She LOVES stratta, so I am making it just for her.

Oh, and we did make it the town's egg hunt today. It was nicely done, but because it is 80+ degrees today, the chocolate was liquid by the time the kids picked the eggs up! But, they had fun and Bug Boy is spending time with other kids. He is doing great! A few minor tiffs, he still is very controlling of play, but the older neighbor boy (7 years) is great with him. Very patient, and Bug Boy follows his lead. It has been a very good experience for him!

Ok, back to work. My fifteen minutes are well over. I shouldn't have sat down, I now want to STAY down!

Friday, April 14, 2006

Calgon, TAKE ME AWAY!!!

Oy Vey!
I don't want this to turn into a "let's complain about Autism until we are blue in the face" blog, but it is difficult, given the week we have had.

  1. Bugaboo's sleep schedule is totally out of whack. He slept a little better last night, thank goodness. Now all I need to do is sleep like that for, oh, six months and I should catch up.
  2. He is once again running a nasty sinus infection. I really think it never goes away.
  3. We have 4 more appointments with specialists, had two this week.
  4. His stomach has been upset, either from the sinus issue or from stealing goldfish crackers, which I am NEVER buying again!
  5. Bugaboo has been tearing around the house, like a whirling dervish, getting into EVERYTHING and ANYTHING in his path. He has been quite destructive.
  6. Talk about cranky! I am trying to provide as much "therapy" as I can muster. But I have another kid, remember Bug Boy? He deserves a little attention. And he WILL find a way to get it, no matter how busy or tired I am. Thank goodness Little Princess was here yesterday to keep him occupied!

Ok, that is enough complaining. But seriously! I need a hot bath, a glass of wine and about 2 hours of COMPLETE silence. And he still has another week off from school!!! AAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!!

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Thursday Thirteen

I love the idea of doing this. It kinda helps me to learn a little bit about myself. Bugaboo is driving me nuts, and he has ANOTHER week off, so this may help me focus:

Thirteen Things About Being a Mom
  1. I never knew it was possible to love someone this way.
  2. It is a different love than romantic love.
  3. I love seeing them when they get out of bed in the morning.
  4. I love how quiet it is at night when they finally go to bed.
  5. I miss them when I am not with them, even when I WANTED to leave.
  6. I find things coming out of my mouth that sound EXACTLY like my mother, and it doesn't scare me THAT much. Not really. Ok, a teensy-weensy bit!
  7. I think being a mother is the most important job on the planet (and one of the best!)
  8. Being a mother is the most difficult job on the planet. Because you aren't just a mom, you are a personal secretary, driver, short-order cook, maid, personal shopper, nurse, teacher, friend...
  9. All I need in return is a few hugs, some kisses, a smile or two and an "I love you!"
  10. I thank God everyday for my boys.
  11. I really oughta thank my husband for my boys.
  12. I love having boys, but sometimes wish I had a girl, too.
  13. If I didn't have that teensy problem with Abruptia, I would have 13 kids. And hopefully some of them would be girls. Or red-heads. Or boys WITHOUT autism. Perhaps that sounds selfish...

Ok, that's it. I didn't have enough room on the list of thirteen to write it all. But, I think numbers seven and eight say it best. It is the most rewarding and wonderful, but is the most important and difficult. Precisely why I would do it again, and again, and again...

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Weird and Wild Stuff

Not really, but I had to get your attention someone, now didn't I? MWAHAHAHA!

Bugaboo was kind enough to sleep last night, and Darling and I took advantage of them being in bed and went early ourselves. I had the best night of sleep in recent memory, until Bugaboo fell out of bed at 3am and Bug Boy woke up coughing and sneezing and needed a drink. Thank goodness that was short lived, and then Darling hit the snooze button and we didn't wake up until just before 7. But I had DREAMS, and I haven't had those in a while. Kinda nice!

Today we take yet another trip down to duPont Children's to see yet another specialist for Bugaboo. This time Bug Boy is staying with the GPs because I cannot endure him being contained in a teeny observation room for an extended period of time. Last time we saw the allergy clinic we were there for three hours. Not fun. And then we had to drive home in rush hour traffic! ACK! I am praying that today will be somewhat shorter, I need it to be shorter. I may have slept well last night, but I still need three or four Ragood nights in order to get back on track.

In other news, Bugaboo won't stay at baby sitting at the Y, so I haven't been able to go work out. And he has another week off next week, so it looks like I won't get there next week either. Unless I bribe my parents. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

This seemed like fun

In order to keep blogging, I have to have material. I know that no one wants to read about how little sleep I have gotten (3 hours to be exact) and that Bugaboo is off for two weeks without therapy, and we are in day two and he is already off the wall and will never go back. Ok, I just told you, but I digress...

So I saw this on Nancy's site, and thought it'd be fun to do: Go to Wikipedia and type in your birthday. Record Three events, two births and one death.

October 26th, 1972

Three events:

  1. 1936 - The first electric generator of the Hoover Dam went into full operation
  2. 1958 - Pan Am makes First commercial flight of Boeing 707 from New York to Paris.
  3. 1977 - The last natural case of smallpox recorded, signifying the official eradication of the disease, per CDC and WHO.

Two births:

  1. 1911 - Mahalia Jackson, American Singer
  2. 1947 - Hillary Rodham Clinton, former First Lady and Senator of New York

One Death:

  1. John D. McCollum shoots and kills himself after listening to Ozzy Osbourne's Suicide Solution.

Other interesting facts:

  1. In the Back to the Future movies, October 26, 1985 is the date that the present events occur.
  2. The following saints have a feast day on this day:
  • St. Bean
    St. Evaristus
    St. Albinus
    St.Alfred the Great
  • St. Cedd
    St. Cuthbert
    St. Demetrius (aka St. Dimitrios) of Thessaloniki
    St. Eadfrid
    St. Fulk
    St. Gibitrudis
    St. Lucian
    St. Rogatian
    St. Rusticus
    St. Quadragesimus

If I had a whole weekend to myself...

This is a writing prompt I saw on some friends' sites. Thought it might be interesting, since I haven't had even a day to myself since the boys were born, over 5 years ago! So here it goes:

Friday: Stay up late watching movies and eating takeout. Mmmmm, CHinese! Go to bed when I can't keep my eyes open anymore. Skip brushing my teeth just because I FEEL like it.

Saturday: Get up when I darn well feel like it. Or when the dog whines to go out. Make a nice breakfast. Go work out at the Y. Take a long, hot shower until the water starts to get cold. Get some clothes on and go out in the garden and do yardwork, planting, etc. Play with the dog. Take her for a long walk. In the afternoon I will camp out on the couch and read a book. Call some friends and do dinner. Go home and stay up too late watching movies again.

Sunday: Get up and go to church. Head downtown to the Art Museum and spend the better part of the day walking around just looking at everything. Eat lunch at that expensive place in the Art Museum, just for fun. Go home and veg on the couch until they get home.

I know, doesn't sound very glamorous. But all I really want is to hang out and do NOTHING...

Monday, April 10, 2006

4 things about me...

I've been tagged to participate in one of those tagged things, you know, where someone does "Tag! You're it!" and you have to answer a bunch of questions about yourself? Well, my sister did it the other day via E-mail, and for the sake of NOT being repetitious, I won't re-type it. Just see my earlier entry entitled "A Few Things About Me, Courtesy of Muppy," which was posted on April 6th. The only thing missing from that tag that was in this one is:

Four Favorite Foods
  1. Mashed Potatoes
  2. Twice-Baked Potatoes
  3. Scalloped or Au Gratin Potatoes
  4. Did I mention Potatoes?

Four Songs I could listen to over and over (and do!):

  1. Just about any Beatles son
  2. Just about any song from Crowded House
  3. Bridge Over Troubled Waters (most versions)
  4. ANY song by Queen!

Four Books I could read over and over (and do!):

  1. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
  2. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
  3. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austin)
  4. Wild Geese (Margaret Ostenso)

Four Reasons I blog:

  1. I have WAY too much time on my hands (HAHA!)
  2. To express myself
  3. Because all the other kids are doing it
  4. I find it therapeutic

Ok, That's enough for now...

As for tagging someone, everyone else has already been tagged! I gotta meet people!

Oh, so tired! Shhh! Shhh!!!

One of the biggest issues we face with children with autism is sleep and nutrition. It makes for a very stressful time. Bugaboo is thrown off so easily by time changes, trips, interruptions in his schedule (like having TWO WEEK OFF!!!!) that it disturbs his sleeping and eating. Since daylight savings last week, Bugaboo has gone to bed late and has been awake earlier than usual.

This weekend we hit a new record! On the way back from my sister's house 45-50 minutes away, Bug Boy and Bugaboo both fell asleep. This was barely 7 pm. In other words, much too early in the evening. Darling and I were happy to have some quiet time. We went out in the yard, cleaned it up, put out trash, chatted a bit and ended up inside. His sister called and they made plans to help her move from CA to NJ (long story) and I flipped channels. He decided to go outside and work in the garage for a little and I continued to be zombified in front of the zombie machine.

When I finished watching some B-movies and had finally decided to make my way to the bedroom, I heard a thud, followed by some pitter-patter above my head. Hmmm...Curious. Sounds like Bugaboo getting out of bed.

I crept upstairs so not to startle him and peeked into his room. He was standing there wide awake with a huge grin on his face. As soon as he saw me he jumped up and down and clapped. He ran out, downstairs, and grabbed the PECS for "I want" and "drink." He was hungry. Grr...

Now, let me back up a moment. Bugaboo went on an eating strike about 4 months ago, which just happened to coincide with him getting pneumonia pre-Christmas. He was sick on his birthday. He stopped eating most of his favorite foods and was on yet another antibiotic. Tummy troubles abounded. He stopped sleeping and was waking up with tummy pains, crying (screaming, really) and nightmare-like behavior. It was difficult, indeed! Then, he slowly started eating a few things here and there. Rice crackers, an apple or so, some apple sauce, perhaps a yogurt or two. I thought that the yeast was a big issue (though right!) as he also wasn't having normal bowels, not that he ever did. So, started a better probiotic and he seemed to improve, sleeping through the night in the first time in weeks. But then he stopped eating altogether.

He started preschool in this time span, so we blamed the transition. We blamed his tummy. We blamed his autism. We blamed ourselves. We tried everyday to get him to eat just one bite! One more! You can do it! To no avail! So, we are seeing an allergist, GI, Neuro and feeding clinic this month. He hasn't really lost weight, but he has grown several inches. Since he could never be categorized as thin, we weren't terribly worried. But we know he isn't getting adequate nutrition. So, I slip a mutivitamin in his juice in the am.

This is one of the most difficult things I have ever gone through. I could handle the colic, the speech delay, the chronic ear infections, the severe allergies and the other things that go along with having Bugaboo and Bug Boy. But this is the most difficult! I am so worried that he will get sicker since he is clearly not getting nutrition.

The crazy thing is that his mood is fine. He is as happy as he ever was. He smiled most of the day, chatters to himself, has that sing-songy voice that sounds like he is singing, and gets so excited when he sees us. So, if he is starving, he certainly isn't upset about it!

Ok, time to finish my tea. My eyes are blurring over and I am not sure if this post makes ANY sense!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Friday Feast

I saw this on a friend's Web site and thought it was cool, so here is my SECOND post today! HAHAHHA!

Friday Feast

Name a trait you share with your parents or your children.
My kids and I (and Darling) all have amazing energy. Friends call us energizer bunnies. Nuff said.

List 3 qualities of a good leader, in your opinion.
Honest, Assertive, has some morals. In other words, not a politician.

Who is your favorite TV chef?
Ohhh, hard one. I used to love Pasquale's kitchen and Yan can cook. And two fat ladies were a scream! I don't have much time to watch tv these days, so I couldn't tell you who is even on.

Main Course
Share a story about a gift you received from someone you love.
Darling doesn't get flowers and such very often, but when he does it is very special. His way of expressing his feelings is through actions. When we were first dating, I had some issues with my car. He said he'd wash it and dropped me off at work. When I was picked up, he washed it, changed the oil, changed the spark plugs, rotated the tires, fixed my crappy radio and a whole bunch of other things. I knew right then he was a KEEPER!

How do you react under pressure?
I work extremely well under pressure. I get the job done. But, when the stressful moment has passed, I TOTALLY crash.

Hope that this has been an enlightening experience. Peace Out.

Tummy Trouble

Poor Bugaboo!
He has such horrible stomach pains today, and even worse hives! I will be glad when we get to the bottom of all of this food allergy nonsense (will we?) and he can eat something without getting sick. No wonder he doesn't want to eat! He feels AWFUL!!! He is on probiotics, vitamins and a retricted diet. He can't eat anything with wheat and dairy, which WAS making a huge difference in his sleep and his ear infections. Then the stomach probs started all over this week. Daddy is away on business until today, perhaps that is why? Who knows. Since Bugaboo is mostly non-verbal, I can't get it out of him. All he wants to do this morning is sit on my lap with his head on my shoulder and his hands on my tummy (his comfort position since we stopped nursing!).
Bug Boy had a playdate today, which we are now cancelling. Bugaboo's bottom is so red I will no doubt just stick him in the tub for about an hour. And I cancelled the bus, called his teacher and called to let them know he won't be at the afterschool group. Sigh. He really enjoys it, and will be off for the next two weeks!
Speaking of being off for two more weeks, we are going to go NUTS. I will need to be very creative to survive it. He is thrown "off" so easily, I am sure that as soon as he gets over daylight savings time he will be up for a week straight because he hasn't had any OT or PT or Speech.
Ok, he's roaming the house upstairs. Gotta go shut the doors...

Thursday, April 06, 2006

A few things about me, courtesy of Muppy

I know it is Thursday Thirteen, but my sister Muppy (long family story, I will tell you later) sent me one of those stinkin' chain E-mails that you are supposed to delete their response, forward it, forward again, yada, yada, yada. In the interest of time, I have decided instead of mailing it to everyone, I will use it as material for my BLOG! MWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!
So, here goes:

Four jobs I have had in my life:
1.Cashier at Swarthmore Co-op
2.Teacher's Aide/Paraprofessional
3. Personal Assistant for Realtor
4. File clerk at SEVERAL insurance companies

Four movies I would watch over and over:
1.My Fair Lady
2. Moonstruck
3. Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Donny Osmond only)
4. Pride and Prejudice or Jane Eyre (any versions)...ok that's five.

Four TV shows I love to watch:
1. South Park
2. CSI
3. Oprah (i've completely lost it!)
4. What Not to Wear

Four places I have lived:
1. Norwood PA
2.Ridley Park, PA
3. Glen Riddle, PA
4. Rutledge, PA (see a trend?)

Four places I have been on vacation:
1. New Hamshire (ski!)
2. Tennessee (fun!)
3. Vega$ (Vegas, baby!)
4. Utah (more ski!)

Four websites I visit daily:
1. Wil
4. (live Web feed)

Four places I would rather be right now:
1. In Bed
2. Under the Covers
3. Snuggling with Darling under the covers in bed
4. Someplace they still have snow so I could ski

Four friends/family who I have tagged that I think will respond:
No one, since I put it on my blog.

Four musicians/bands I would love to see live:
1. Beatles (when I go back in time with my sister who is building a time machine)
2. Neil Finn/Crowded House
3. Barry Manilow
4. Melissa Ethridge

Four jobs that sound like fun:
1. Gardener
2. Mommy
3. Video Game tester
4. Mystery Shopper

And besides, I don't know the rules or anything for Thursday Thirteen, so I don't really get it. Perhaps that will happen next Thursday after I read about it a little bit. So I will make up my own, code-less Thirteen responses for now:

Thirteen Things about Autism That You Were Afraid to Ask
1) No two children with Autism are alike (think snowflakes). Even kids with the same diagnosis or type don't have the same symptoms!
2)People with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) get married, have kids, have jobs, make money.
3) People with ASD have feelings, thoughts and emotions.
4) Some People with ASD have sensorimotor dysfunction. It means their senses don't regulate like everyone else's and it makes it difficult to deal with everyday happenings.
5) I knew that my boys had ASDs when they were infants, but no one believed me!
6) My boys weren't officially diagnosed until this year (at 3 and 5 years of age), even though they've received services for 2 years.
7) There are other members of my extended family with ASDs. Some are undiagnosed, but we know they are there!
8)There are many diffierent camps or groups out there that have different agendas. You have to read about as many as you are able to decide what is best for your family.
9) I am very interested in Stanley Greenspan's Theories on DIR/Floortime and The Verbal Behavior Approach.
10) My boys don't have a life-threatening illness, are happy and well-loved and like they way they are, so don't feel sorry for us!
11) Some people with ASDs are on special diets due to extreme food allergies and sensitivities. My boys have dairy and wheat allergies from when they were infants, we only recently found out about GFCF.
12) I don't believe that my sons' ASDs were caused by heavy metal poisoning, but I can see why that may happen to some people.
13) There is a wealth of great info at and if you google it, you will get even MORE great info. Just don't believe EVERYTHING you read on the internet!
Ok, enough for now. School bus is coming!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

An apple a day...and other stories

Ok, I eat apples. Like, religiously. We buy 10 lbs a week, mostly because Bugaboo eats several a day. So, why I am at the doctor's office so often? Either I am there weekly for a specialist visit for the kids, a sick visit for the kids, and lately, for my visit. The same thing happens everytime. I call, wait on hold forever, tell them I am exhausted, don't have energy, have headaches, numbness, etc. They take me in "right away," which usually means in a day or two. There I sit for up to two hours, the doc comes in (takes her time with me and is very caring, I have to give her that) and tells me that I am stressed out, the boys are alot of work,etc, etc. Then I go home with a prescription for MORE antidepressants (which I am not taking any longer) or a phone number for a psychologist. Now, I agree that I could use some counseling. But I really don't think that my physical issues are psychosomatic! I feel great mentally, I really do. And I get plenty of sleep. And I eat very well, and exercise regularly. This is NOT just getting old! I take great care of myself!
That being said, I recognize that parenting my boys is a stressful thing. Two kids with special needs is like having four kids. I don't sit for most of the day, I get VERY LITTLE leisure time and go to bed shortly after they do. I spend 3 days a week running errands or taking them to therapy appts all over God's green earth. So from an outsider, this may seem like a horrible, hectic life. But, I am well adjusted! I feel fine with it! This is MY life, I like it and I deal with it quite well, thank you very much!!!
Sorry for the rant. I am just super-frustrated. I want to park myself on the couch for the rest of the day, but something is holding me back. You see, there is this family tradition when Darling is away, that I have to do home improvement projects that he would SCREAM to see. Like paint the bathrooms with "OOPS" paint from HD or rearrange furniture.
It all started when Darling went away the first time several years ago. He was away for 3 weeks and I couldn't join him in Europe because I was student teaching. So, I went and bought a bed, since we were sleeping on mattresses on the floor. The next time he went away I was preggers and decided to paint one of the bedrooms. Another time I changed all of the furniture around.
This time I went to the Home Improvement Warehouse (HD) and went in with the most sincere intentions of merely purchasing some wallpaper remover, since Dif AND a steamer isn't taking this crap off of the walls. They moved it to the paint section. I tried not to browse! Honest! The next thing I knew, I was getting aqua blue paint for Ian's room, to paint it like an ocean, waves about half-way up, and clouds at the top. Sheesh! What am I thinking? I also bought natural wood stripper to start work on the piano this weekend. I am going to painstakingly restore the wood and replace the ivory keys that are missing. The piano may not be worth much, but to me it is priceless. It was the piano I grew up with, took lessons on, sat on the bench for family dinners, etc. I love that another generation is playing it!
Ok, this is TOTALLY a Tome. I apologize whole-heartedly.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Monday, Monday

Mondays are sooooo busy. My head just wants to spin and my body wants to climb back under the covers. Between the kids having school, me having to get all errands done in under 2.5 hours and then both kids having their social skills groups in locations 20 mins apart at the SAME TIME, I spend the entire day in the car! And then when I finally get home at about 4 in the afternoon, I wonder why I am unmotivated to pick up around the house, reboot the laundry and start dinner.
I crashed for 20 mins while the kids watched a cartoon. I know, baaaaad Mommy! But, I couldn't stay awake and they weren't going to nap. Besides, if they did nap, they wouldn't go to bed! Daylight savings has them totally messed up time-wise. Ugh. I know typical kids get messed up from daylight savings, but it seems that kids with "issues" always get it worse. Once when we went to Tennessee for a week, Bugaboo was on schedule the whole time we were there. But as soon as we got home from our trip, he was TOTALLY off and took over a month to start sleeping more than 6 hours a night! ACK!
Darling is leaving for a trip for a few days, which means Bug Boy should be a basket case this week. And when the witching hour comes around (5:00, when Darling is about to arrive home) there won't be anyone to rescue me. Ugh. I also have a parent training this week, so at least I will get out for a break for one night!
I am impressed that I have enough brain cells left today to put together a few cohesive sentences. It may not make sense to you, though. But since these are my personal feelings and thoughts, PBLTT!!! So there!!! (just kidding.)
CUL8TR. Alligator.
Forecast: I am tired of forecasting my feelings. People can read me like a book and I am rarely in any mood except cheerful and optimistic. So I am sticking with the LA weather forecast and doing it for the next month: Bright and clear.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Deep thoughts with Jack Handy

I used to love the SNL segment featuring "Deep thoughts with Jack Handey." I thought it was a scream.

I have been doing quite a bit of thinking lately. I (and Darling) have a few difficult decisions to make regarding treatment and education for the boys. In a way, Bug Boy is easier. He will go to the local Kindergarten Center in the fall, in a typical class with typical peers and a few with autism specturm disorders. But for Bugaboo the decisions are more difficult.

Which (if any) behavior therapy should we try? What is our educational philosophy? What is our philosophy as parents? What is it we are looking for or want out of Bugaboo? Where do we want him to end up in the next 2-3 years? What about diet? Should we keep up the GFCF? Should we try Body Ecology? ACK!!!

Perhaps I am just thinking about it too much? I mean, I have everything I wanted out of Bugaboo already. I wanted a healthy, happy child. Check! I really wanted another boy since I had all of the stuff already. Check! I can hold him and love him and take care of him. Check! I can take him to the playground, play with him at home, go for walks, take him on vacation, peek in his door and kiss him when he is sleeping. Check, check, check! So what is it I am looking for?

I have a little confession to make. I have been praying so much my head hurts. What exactly I am praying for I just don't know. I don't expect a miracle cure. I think I just want a relationship with him. Perhaps some reciprocal communication? Or for him to look at me when I call his name? Heck, I'd settle to hear him call my name. But I know as soon as he did that, I'd want MORE. I will always want MORE. I have to find a way to accept him the way he is for the beautiful gift from God (his name means gift from God) that he is. He IS love. He GIVES love. He reminds me everyday why I am here. So, why aren't I appreciative of him? I cannot help but think about what he would be like at this age, had he been born "normal." UGH! What an AWFUL word! is anyone really normal? Is there a such thing as typical? Or is it just that everyone expects you to be the same, just like them? I don't want that for my kids, no matter their disability or ability. I have been working so hard my whole life to be different, perhaps I shouldn't ask less of my kids.

I have to follow the advice I gave to a friend. It is a personality quirk. It is part of what makes Bugaboo, well, BUGABOO! He is the same happy, loving, joyful child that he always was. With or without Autism. With or without speech. With or without stimming, chewing, food issues and humming.

He has ten fingers and ten toes. Good enough for me!

Feelings forcast: The Sun is peeking over the horizon. Should be bright and cheery soon!