i should have taken pictures

I woke up to the gleeful screaming of two little girls at 530 this morning.

There’s a rule in my house, Saturday we sleep in.  That means no screaming till 8. 8am is sleeping in here. Needless to say 530 am had me quite perturbed.  As soon as I walked out my niece started in her persistent whining.  I told her “Enough! We do coffee, bathroom, space first thing in the morning” … especially when I’m up 2 hours early.

Roo came out … this is why he’s my favorite 🙂 he stayed in his room playing Lego’s till he heard my voice.  He reiterated my morning routine to my niece … “coffee, bathroom, space” My kids know.
Today’s Roo’s birthday, we had his party last week so nothing special today, he gets his morning snuggles and I sing him happy birthday. He’s less than amused.  He wants to play Xbox and usually this time of day the answer is no, but today’s his day so what the heck.  Play your heart out!  And he did all day! I know how I’m a terrible parent. Video games are bad … blah blah blah!

Then the most miraculous thing happened! My mom came to pick up my niece And took all 3 of my kids for the whole night! Woot!
Except what do I do now? No kids? No Roo?

I spent some time relaxing, it was awkward.  Then I thought I’d clean Sissy’s room. Mission accomplished! Then the hall bath. Then the Hall. Then Roo’s room. And now I’m stressing that I didn’t get his stuff in the right spot.
I should have taken pictures with my phone. Why didn’t I? He’ll get home tomorrow and all hell will break loose.  Maybe he won’t notice. Ha! Ha! I crack myself up. He will notice! And we will go through the process of putting it back where it goes. I should have taken pictures.


Happy Birthday, My Dear Sweet Boy!

The very first time I looked into your eyes and held your tiny little hand I knew you were destined to be amazing.   I knew that you were going to be something special, a treasure hand picked by God to be given to this world and to me! 
 I truly had no idea just how special you would be!  I love the way you see and process the world around you!  I love the joy you find simply in a mud puddle or climbing a tree!  I love your desire to learn more and more about the world around you!
I love that your sister is your best friend in this world!  I love your need to protect her and shelter her from the things you find painful in this world!
I love your big brown eyes and the way you marvel at the tiny details the rest of the world seems to miss!  And I marvel at you, the way you take whatever new challenge comes our way in stride!
I love your creativity and desire to release it from your brain only to be shared with the select few you have deemed worthy of your bubble!  I love your quirks and the uniqueness that is Roo!  I love that you color the world in way that’s all your own!
I love your contagious smile and your deep belly giggles!  I love your passion for knowledge and the intensity you have for whatever the topic of the month is! 
 I love you!  I’m so grateful that God has given me you, my wonderful dear sweet boy!  As I look back on the last eight years, I am bewildered at what we have accomplished together!  I am so proud to be your mommy! I pray that you are never jaded by this world, and that even though the world may never accept who you are, that you do!  That you are proud of who you are and what you are capable of.  Happy Birthday, My Dear Sweet Boy!

In Honor of Mikaela Lynch, Drew Howell, and Owen Black and thier family and loved ones!!!!

In Honor of
Mikaela Lynch, Drew Howell, and Owen Black and their family and loved ones!!!!

Last week we were frantic and terrified as we heard news that Mikaela Lynch, Drew Howell, and Owen Black were missing.  We sat, thousands of miles away unable to do anything but pray, around our TV’s, computer’s and phone waiting to hear the news that she had been found.  Unfortunately a tragic end to the waiting and praying.  Our worst nightmare had come to pass, they had in fact found each of them, just not they way we had hoped.  I sat gripped with sadness and despair for a little girl and two little boys I had never met and the families that I had never known. 

While we live in different states, miles and miles apart, there is a tie that binds us.  A connection because we are a part of the same community, the Autism Community.  There have been speculations and remarks that are unnecessary and down right rude and uncaring and I want each of these families to know that there is a multitude of people across this nation that are thinking about them, praying for them, grieving for them. These kids and my son live on the same spectrum, albeit different spots.  Their strengths and weakness’ are different but their struggle is the same – trying to fit a square peg in a round whole. 

He has always had an attraction to water since he was little.  We used to live very close to Navarre Beach in Florida, and I would take my boys aged 5 and an infant to the beach everyday.  When Roo started walking and a new infant, Sissy, came along I had to stop going by myself with the three of them.  Before I could get the baby and our belongings sat down Roo was stark naked and in the surf!  Unbelievable fear!  When we moved here to Missouri, he was 3 and I had to install locks at the top of all our doors.  The kind they have in hotels at the very top so he couldn’t escape, because he would.  When we moved out to the farm, I didn’t even think about the pond till I saw the look in his eyes when he saw it.  Again Fear! 
Roo has gotten away from us before on several occasions and the sheer panic that overwhelms you is indescribable.  You can’t think straight!  All you can process is fear and what if. 

Because my Roo is so big on rules we have made it very clear that he is never, ever, ever to go to the pond without Daddy.  It is a rule!  And in the 3 or 4 years we have lived on our farm with a 40 acre pond in the back yard, he never has.  Not that he hasn’t wanted too!  He “reminded” me on more than one occasion “We can’t go to the pond with out Daddy, it’s a rule!”  It’s his way of saying I really want to go to that water. 

I guess what I am trying to say is my heart is aching for each of these families.  They are not bad parents, they didn’t neglect their babies.  Each incident in an unimaginable and  tragic event, but It could have been any one of us at any given time.  Our worst fear played out in reality!  There is nothing I can do to ease the pain these families are feeling right now.  All I can do is pray that they find comfort and peace, that people will surround them with love and support and hold my own boy a little tighter. 

Mikaela Lynch, Drew Howell, and Owen Black 
Rest In Peace Sweet Angels
and we will pray that your family finds the love and support they need.

We rocked Autism this week, or did we?

We rocked autism this week!   I mean we really rocked it.  Or, Did we?

Don’t get me wrong, we still had sensory issues and quirks.  We still don’t like seams in our socks or the texture of certain foods.  We still are not real happy with crowds and loud noises.  We still want to know for certain what comes next and next and next.  We are still a little tape recorder with it reel running at mach speed.  But we didn’t over load, we didn’t meltdown.   We didn’t completely loose self control. 

It was amazing. It was beautiful.  I made a huge deal out of how awesome it was. 

Sissy was less impressed.  She went into full tantrum mode.  Ridiculously screaming and yelling and pouting.  She hates him, so she said.  He gets everything.  You love him more than me.  *SIGH*  She’s 6. 

Honestly, I try.  I try desperately hard to keep it all in balance.  Make sure they all feel equally loved and valued, but he does get a little more time.  They do everything together, for the most part.  He’s 7, she’s 6.  They are 11 months and 3 weeks exactly apart.  She follows him around like she always has, copying him learning from him.  He taught her how to read and write.  He reminds her not to do things and to follow the rules. He protects her and worries about her and takes his anger and aggression out on her too.  They are siblings, best friends, mortal enemies. 

I do spend hours at night researching ways to help him with what ever challenge comes up next.  I do spend time making sure to do things in order to not cause meltdowns and time trying to diffuse them before they even start.  But I also make a point of spending Momma time with her.  We paint nails and do hair, read books, and play dolls.  She helps me cook and do laundry, we even made up our own little laundry song we sing together while we work.  It requires a few dance moves so we stop and dance right in the middle of washing drying folding putting away. 

But alas, we spend 3 nights a week at least on him.  He has practice and therapy.   If he has a bad day then I spend the evening bringing him back to calm.  And yes I include her when I can, but lets face it the middle of a full blown meltdown is no place for my girl.

Last night was the icing on the cake, Roo came home with his 4th day in a row of excellent behavior.  I was beaming and could hardly contain myself.   I made a huge deal of how awesome he was, and then dad came home and made an even bigger deal of how awesome he was. My little girl crumbled.  She was an emotional wreck and the tantrum ensued.  Not only did he have mommy, he had daddy too!  She couldn’t take one more minute.  The most ridiculous over the top temper tantrum I have ever seen.  I of course picked her up and carried her to someplace safe and shut the door.  I do not and CANNOT reward bad behavior.  But my heart was broken, her method of communicating her pain was not the best, but the message was clear! Sometimes having a brother with autism sucks!