If you like to color, or even if you don't (you're probably just not doing it right and I invite you come hang with me and do it with wine and friends and at least one great topic of conversation) Fantomorphia by Kerby Rosanes has got to be your next purchase.
I've been a long term fan of Kerby Rosanes insanely intricate illustrations, but now that I get to add my own touch with my favorite art supplies, I am am sold.
This may sound lame to you. but I have Friday night blocked out so I can spend a well-deserved hour (or two) with a bottle of Merlot and some new gel pens and you're all invited.
It’s been a long winter. A winter that’s refusing to recede to a muddy Spring and instead sends us Nor'easter after Nor'Easter to remind us who’s boss. We surrender, of course, but what else could we do. I suppose we could stand outside and yell ‘Screw You’’ at the sky or something of that nature but it would unlikely change our circumstances. So, instead, we Canadians settle in for the last ‘big one’.
It’s fine, really. It’s just fine!
Anyway, enough of that. I’m writing today because I fell apart, once again, after exiting the pediatrician's office and the saddest part of that sentence is that no one is surprised, least of all me.
You’ll be pleased to know that I made it to my van. It’s really the best place to cry. It’s the only time I am alone and if I put my sunglasses on the guy at the coffee drive through can hardly tell, or maybe he can and that’s why he keeps putting cream in my friggin’ coffee!.
Back to the van; Oh, if the airbags could talk, the story they would tell of an over-caffeinated, middle-aged mom, who alternates between loudly reliving her middle school years, loudly listening to The Cult, and crying into her steering wheel because parenting is a lot harder than everyone said it would be.
Now, I don’t mean to paint myself as a pathetic, blubbering parenting failure, because I also suck at other aspects of my life. Kidding, I kid! Relax. I have some things totally figured out; like how many episodes of Forensic Files I can fit in on any given evening or how to remember to compliment my husband’s cooking skills so he keeps preparing our amazing meals and I’ve even recently realized that painting, along with writing, are excellent ways to express myself because swearing at the sky wasn’t working for me.
That’s quite the useless preamble, isn’t it? After all, you come here to read my thoughts on autism and all things related and here I am spewing some confessions that you may or may not be interested in. Ah well, that’s the beauty of writing one’s own blog. I make the rules. Look at my lazy title, for example. And today, I feel like writing whatever crosses my mind as my fingers sweep across this keyboard. How is that different from any other day, you ask?
Fuck if I know.
The reason I opened this page on google docs today is because I spent the morning with Kate’s pediatrician. (Can anyone spell that right, first try? Sheesh). She’s joining the Co-Morbid club with a second diagnosis of ADHD. Neither Alex or I, were shocked, and it certainly doesn’t change our rock star little girl, at all, but there was something about discussing the things that are hard for Kate that got me. It’s never the label, or the potential medications or strategies or any of the good and helpful suggestions that we hear, that get stuck in my brain. It’s the fact that her Dad and I spent the better part of an hour describing how Kate has a hard time with this, and this and sometimes this and almost always this.
It hurts. It’s unnatural and the parents of kids with exceptional needs do it for a goddamn living.
I held it together, though. Until we walked out to the parking lot and parted ways and Alex, said “are you okay? Do you want to talk about anything before we head back to work?” And I with my Irish indignance, said “No, I’m fine. See you at supper.” And then I proceeded to walk back to my van and cry. I didn’t cry long, because I am an old pro now, sad as that may seem. I cried a little and then I drove with fogged up sunglasses back to work.
Before I made it to work I pulled into the grocery store and ran in and bought Kate a little Monster Truck toy she has been eyeing and I bought her sister some silly putty and I tucked them away in my purse like they are some sort of consolation prize for having an emotionally fluid mother.
I’ll give them their little prizes tonight and hug them extra hard because things are good and we are lucky and I’ll try and remember that even when James* puts cream in my coffee.
So, hey ADHD parents, and adults. Is there a secret word to join this club?
*Names have been changed to protect slack-ass drive-thru employees.
It’s St. Patrick’s Day and maybe my Irish blood has me boiling but I’m about to entertain you with some seriously lazy writing because I’m mad and I want to use all the swears.
My seven year old with autism is aggressively, and dangerously social. If you don’t know what that means, please let me clarify.
She’ll talk to anyone, anywhere about anything and she truly believes you’ll enjoy the interaction just as much as she does.
She’ll chat with her teacher, the lady in the grocery store, her Coach, the border guard, the gas station attendant and even the ex you’re trying to avoid in the grocery store.
She doesn’t understand this is not “normal”.
So when that little blonde spitfire repeatedly tries to engage you in conversation, your ass best take a minute out of your day and acknowledge her!
Sure, she may be about to remark about the size of your belly or the smell of your breath, but she she also might be about to describe, in painful detail, an episode of Power Rangers. Either way, you’re the Jesus grown-up and you need to check in with her to see what she has to say.
Not long ago, there was a time when she could not connect to anyone, and if you think I don’t rejoice every fucking time she makes a connection no matter how odd it may seem, you’d be wrong.
And furthermore, you DO NOT need to remind me that talking to strangers is dangerous. You just let me handle the weeding out of the assholes from the awesome fuckers like you, whom she relishes in chatting with.
Maybe I am asking too much. Maybe your day is far too busy to take thirty seconds to tell her your favourite superhero.
But here’s the thing.
I don’t care.
That’s my girl.
It’s your god damn pleasure to chat with her.
Happy Mail to:
27 Wellington Row
Saint John, NB
Grace and Kate's mom. (Shanell)