Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The week of March 27th; I which I have a little staycation and have time with R

Friday

I clean insanely while DH and R are away for gymnastics with my I pod in my ears listening to "The Hollow" by Agatha Christie-

 ( My local library now allows you to electronically check out books- can you belive how cool my little town in getting?)

I have read it many times before - at different parts of my life.

But somehow this makes it even more enjoyable.

Like a favorite bit of road you like to drive on -

More fun each time you do it as you can expect all the lovely bits,  that you know are waiting for you

The last time I read it was several years ago.

I find it interesting that the parts I remember are mostly the eccentric personalities and all the romances ( for its one of those set of characters where each person is in love with another - who does not return their love but in fact is in love with another person - who as it turn out also does not return their love and so on )  -

I have forgotten all about the actual murders - which is what the story was all about !

I think what people remember, tells you a lot of who they are!

( I have been reading murder mysteries for as long as I can remember- for nothing was really censored while we were growing up and I read verything I could get my hands on and dreadful books like The Omen as a small child.
Nowadays, parents are always encouraging their kids to read thinking if they do not -their kids will not like books.
We grew up obsessed with reading and my mum was forever telling us to go to sleep and not stay up late and ruin our eyes- though my dad - himself a great bibliophile -  would induge us in our obsession with books )

I enjoy cleaning tremendously - mostly when I am alone in the house

I am setting things to order- such a sense of peace!

By the time, DH come back I have made a nice tea for us though R has lost his glasses and is in major trouble for this

I do dinner and bath and then put R to bed.

DH and I have a very nice time watching a movie( did you hear about the Morgans )  - its full of cliches but I love it

Saturday

Since its a sunny day today we postpone all our work to tomorrow and have a lovely time with R

I write a schedule down in the morning ( of course starting with the awful Wii Fit - but its only 40 minutes as I am terribly careful to set the timer !)

We do a great Floortime session in the trampoline

We have a lovely time setting up a whole batch of Thomas trains that DH has purchased from Ebay at my behest while his therapist is here.



I am so enamored by Thomas that I told DH to buy it "at any price" "if he loved me at all" 

(I really enjoy kids toys - I suppose I enjoy a good bargain even more - for  when we go to Target the next day I am quite crushed to see that the batch was not such a great deal after all )


R watches a backyardigans show and I try to repeat the scenes as they happened  with the dolls

He is equal parts intrigued and nervous about this  and tries to get me back to doing what I ususally do with one of the characters.

 I am curious is to why this is making him nervous- why he wants to get back to an old and familiar pattern

He is not distracted by what I am doing - paying great attention in fact - and somehow I feel like I am literally seeing new neurons fire.

Besides half the game of being a good mum to an autie is to expand the comfort zone

So I plan to do this again at the next opportunity

We recycle all our trash and then  go to the library in the afternoon.

I try to offer him a couple of books but R points to a poster and says clear as bell "if u give a mouse a cookie" and so we quickly try to find it for him - he is looking so cool in this picture in the corner of the library  - relaxed and disdainful



We come home and R has his session with S at which time I clean the play room and re-organise everything

DH and I always marvel at the way R always plays Thomas at Toysrus - but never at the one at home

Suddenly DH suggests that maybe our train set-up has too much going on -

 I try to look at our set up with the eyes of R and realise DH is right -

So I remove the construction site , the helicopter set up etc

Lets see how R reacts to it tomorrow

I sweep the garage

I have also made a resolution to make R try new foods

I try the following

  1. Apple
  2. Minestrone soup
  3. Strawberry yogurt

R acts like all of these things  are poison

I have read one of Barbra's( therextras - really cool blog  by a professional in the field - see link on the side )  posts on Heavy work  and am thinking that we will need to do more of this


We watch a really boring movie "Dawn of Lying"-

Its depressing and annoying as its about the world as it would be if no one lied .

I give up half way through as its too depressing - confirms what I already know - the world would be a dreadful place if everyone always said exactly what they thought ( isnt this why Aspies and Auties are always getting into trouble socially? )

I read somewhere that "truth and beauty are one and the same "

This is NONSENSE of course - love and beauty are one and the same -

I tell DH the 100% honesty is a very bad thing and he should always feel free to be kind and untruthful to me as long as it makes me feel better ( who really wants to know the truthful answer to "do I look fat?" )

Sunday

Dawns rainy and grey

But somehow the shades of grey remind me of the monsoons in India which I love

 ( for it does not rain through the year as it does here - it rains a lot in two months of the year )

The rains are eagerly awaited and all the songs etc are about welcoming the rain and the clouds ( in the way in the West all the happy songs and poetry is about  Summer and the Spring )

We go to Target and R really wants to play with my Iphone ( baby flash cards ) I tell him he cannot have it while he is walking around

He weeps bitter tears and then tells me emphaisizing EACH word -

Can I have Baby Fash cards please?

( we have taught him to script a few sentences after the Nancy Kauffman Seminar )

Really he is the rudest wellmannered child I ever saw

I  tell him I love him but he cannot have it

With R its somehow essential to tell him that you love him when you scold him or say NO to him  .

I sense he thinks you stop loving him when you say No

We play in the playroom

My hypothesis of yesterday was wrong and R is no more interested in the Thomas set up which is now clean and nice-  than he was before

Sigh !

We do some pretend play - but its uphill work

Again when we are in a set up with a lot of toys - he tends to go from toy to toy without deepening the plot with any one thing

There is certainly something to be said for the Sonrise principle of being locked in a room with the child and not having too many distractions

The bigger lesson is that R always has his OWN agenda and I need to be mindful of it -

Either all our games must be between him and me

OR 

I must play with only the characters du jour for R - this is Backyardigans right now !

We play outside for  a while

Then its time for dinner

When I say its dinner time

R tells me ambitously "chips and cheese"

I have to smile - I am thrilled at his desire to  negotiate

( but not so thrilled that I agree so he has his ususal chicken pureed veggies and rice )

Monday

I dont do much really except gloat about how I have the next two days off

Tuesday

R is up at 2.45 am and runs off to the computer and is watching "Lou and Lou's Safety patrol " ( two extraordinarily annoying children who spend their time smugly identifying mistakes that people make . I know plenty of real life Lou's and Lou's and they are terribly annoying people)



I sternly tell R to come back to bed and he slinks back reluctantly

For some reason though we have a giant King size bed we wake up in a heap in in one corner and end up sleeping really late

The morning is very rushed rushed as our cleaning lady is here and at the same time R's speechie is also here

R is a little weepy today - I really should have done a written schedule

We go off to Mc donalds and he tries to eat the  coverings and hide the meat

After this we go to the library and he makes me sing all the posters - its very very nice.



DH and I have been thinking about how we need to teach him to be less noisy -

There has been a lot of controversy about  a certain post in the blogosphere.

I suppose you all know the one I am talking off.( where a mum was annoyed by another grandma who had come to the library with her autistic child )

Because of this, somehow I am just more aware of R in public and more mindful that he not be annoying to others ( while ofcourse philosophically I am all outraged and believe people should be  tolerant of accepting of our Auties- and  should never make fun of them and their odd behaviors  in blogs  or elsewhere )


DH wins father of the year award by ordering chicka chicka boom boom in the library -

R is ecstatic and swoons over his precious treasure

We come home and he rushes out to rake all the leaves -

I love the way he interacts with nature

He touches and feels everything



I have learned more about what grass and leaves smell really like after being his mum

I  win many brownie points by singing about what he is looking at " Green green the grass is green " etc

Of course the songs he loves most are the songs that are about his many virtues and how much I adore him - he will giggle and ask me to sing again and again

We scooter and jump



 While jumping I am teaching him the words - "over "and "under by rolling with him - so I would roll with him and when I was on top - I would say -"Mama is over"

His therapist told me today that he was doing "much better" with prepositions.
This of course made me wonder immediately that he had memorized the tests ( without really understanding the meaning )

So I have made up my mind to use a lot of prepositions in real life

Unfortunately  in the teaching of these words, his glasses break-  - he holds them up piteously -and tries to put the broken stick over his ear.

While I am swearing in my head, I quickly take the chance to teach him the word "broken"

 ( Autie mums waste no real life opportunity !!)

Wednesday

Dawns gorgeous and sunny

I have learned from my mistakes yesterday and make a schedule - this is very helpful - written schedules are criticial for everyone -

I am bereft without mine ( after all what is  my Microsoft Office calendar but not a written schedule?)

After his morning therapy - we go off for a playdate with my friend L and her daughters L and C - C is in R's class .
I have gone armed with a bag of goodies to entice the kids to play together - bubbles and balls

( The holy trinity of enticing kids to play are the 3 B's Bubbles, Balls and balloons)

DH has coached me - to play the stop and go game with the two kids

So the idea is this - L and I will take our two kids by hand and we will do the stop and go game.. then we will gradually fade out and only R and C will be holding hands  and playing stop and go

However all this planning is futile

The kids will have NOTHING to do with each other

C splashes into a puddle so we leave the playground and  go to their backyard where they have a GORGEOUS playset !- (so that C can take off her wet shoes )



(I am quite enamored by the playset - yet with R things can be a hit and things can be a miss so when we return home - I wheedle DH to buy the playset - but lackadaisically - as with R you just never know

If I plead too hard - and we get the playset - and then R does not play with it much - it will be a monument - permanent and prominent - of my lack in judgment)

Today again I notice how sensitive R is to my moods and words.

For when L and I discuss assisted living for autistic adults ( for though I think R will be fine and hopefully not need a lot of support when he grown up - still its best to plan for the worst possibilities ) he pulls me to him and says "Go home " .

A little later we change the topic and I tell L - that while there are many stresses supposedly for Autie parents - DH and I often say that R is the best part of our lives .

He immediately sags in relief and lolls about in  the trampoline staring at the skies with all thoughts of going home vanquished

L and I are VERY alike in our parenting views and so we have a lovely time as much as the kids will let us

For the kids will not play alone today !!

All the stress of being asked to play with each other has caused them to want to make their separate world with  their respective mums.

L and I are forced to shout out conversation bits from the swings where she swings her daughters and the trampoline where I jump with R .

We say goodbye - and  though we have had fun ,  L says ruefully "The kids ruined our playdate "

This is exactly what I am thinking and we laugh because the truth is that the main fun of the playdate is how L and I get to chat - while still feeling like good mums -as the kids are outside and doing physical activity and not in front of a screen !

We come back home and I make Quesadilla for lunch - Yummmmm

 R eats a mountain of Pizza  - and makes an extraordinary mess

His therapist takes him for an outing to AC moore ( a crafts store for any non-southerners reading this )

DH and I eat while watching Law & Order

And R comes back with beads with letters on them and they plan to do an activity tomorrow with it

I am basking in the hot sun drinking coffee,  typing this  and listening  to the buzzing bees  and my DH working in the garden

I also have the added glow of being a good mom ( I spend an extraordinary amount of time trying to be a good girl  it seems ) as R has had a playdate and 2 therapy sessions and its only 3 in the afternoon

This is the life - my friends - this is the life !!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

SOOC Saturday : Oh the people we know

S is 20 years old

She is one of my son's therapists.

She posted on her Facebook wall this picture of R that she took with her mobile phone with the caption

"he makes my week... so thankful to have him in my life "


Just 20 and she carries the wisdom the world  with her.

When girls her age spend their time thinking about make-up and boys - S spends all her time with people with special needs .

Its not just a career for her - she truly loves the people she helps

Its such a privilege to know  people like her

One of my online friends said that you meet nice  people in land of special needs

And its true

I dont know if its becasue when you see someone that has a chld with autism - you no longer have the pressure of pretending to be perfect

Where this need to look whole and strong come from ?

Probably a left over from our  survival instinct.

Our desire to not show fear or weakness lest we fall prey to predators.

But  we no longer need to pretend in front of someone like me

Like some new friends I made the this week .

The introduced themselves as B  and B and I met them on my evening walk .

We talk about the superficial - how long we have stayed in the neighborhood,  the many advantages of its location, the terrible weather we have been having

And then I see their child pointing to the moon  and mention that  it took a while for my son to do that  becasuse he has autism.

After my mention of Autism - its like the converation deepens

She talks about her problems conceiving and her husband's battle with cancer

We have connected at a level that it would take years in the normal course of things

( In the normal course of things we would make promises  to each other to come over for coffee ....

each new time we would meet we would exclaim  about how busy we are but how we simply must get together soon ....and this would repeat..

Isnt that the normal way?   But now no more .)

I dont know if its because  the little stuff just  does not matter anymore !

 Whose kid is better at the soccer field?

Who is doing better at school?

 It  doesnt matter.

Or if its because  sisterhood of special needs mums is a secret society

Where we have entered - ( albeit unwillingly ) - through  baptism by fire.

Now we will do what we can to help each other out - because we are in it together .

So we connect with mums and dads deeply and more closely in this online world .. start cheering on kids we dont know in real life ( though really we do )

Is it simply a sort of natural selection where the professionals are concerned?

Because people who enjoy working in this field .. are simply nicer, stronger, more  hopeful  creed of  people to start with

Or that this touches a kinder side of people

Or is it that the friends that remain.... those who reach out with a compassion and warmth ... are just the real deal

I dont know what it is

But this I do know

I now live in a parallel universe of a better kind  of people.

Where kindness and goodness abounds

If the first big blessing of this special needs road are the grateful eyes with which we look at our child each step .. with nothing taken for granted ever

Then the second big blessing is the people we meet

And the both together?

Well, it  can make for a lovely life

If we let it

We are just as happy as we choose to be, said Lincoln once.

And I choose


For more fun with SOOC Saturday join melody at Slurping life

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The week of March 22; In which we see Pretend Play Progress

The weekend

I finish all my cooking really fast on Saturday and there is  still a lot of the glorious Sunny Saturday left

DH and I have worked like maniacs and ALL our work is complete

OMG how beautiful the sunny neighborhood looks


We simply have a lovely time - lolling about in the trampoline- R and I - playing our silly games

R commanding me to sleep - then I wake up at the count of 10 -  I count all the way to 9  -

Then build up the anticipation ..

R wrigles and squeals and says 10 giggling .

At which point I wake up suddenly  with a lot of drama and tickle him

The games are very childlike- we-have a great time though

Another game is making me sing - he will command me to sing Jingle Bells .. midway through - he will demand I switch to Rudolph the red nose.

He gets a major kick out of this and wil giggle and squeal as I switch songs "on demand"

Then we hold hands and run - till he says STOP ... then he says GO and we run again

The sound of his laughter is like nothing I can describe

So delightful - it fills my heart !

We ride his bike and R does this pretty well . Its a small trike that my friend gave him last summer




He needs the gravity  but does relatively  well

R insists we" back"( bike ) to Ucy's house ( lucy's house )

So we do

Lucy is back after a back breaking day of selling her frig and buying a new one

She is off for more good works and is off to an old lady's house who lives in our neighborhood

She says "Bye darling" to R and to my surprise he replies "Bye dar-ing"

She is looking so tired that while she is off - I go back home and leave a big bowl of Minestrone soup  and Parmesan cheese  for her and Eli's dinner on her porch

I always think Food cheers up people

Later in the night she calls me on the phone and the spring is back in her voice :-)

It really feels lovely to do something nice for someone ( though I feel too goody goody gum drops for words - even typing this )

Sunday

Our Hanen speechie  is to comes home today for a video session

We are supposed to show a game that we play with R -

 this is an impossible task - We pull out this game and try to play with R - the idea is to put the alphabet on the picture that it starts with so to put "m" on the picture of milk

R gets this quickly and finishes off the puzzle...... by himself ( which is not the point AT ALL )

However, when we try to take turns with him... its like pulling teeth

he slumps - his whole body limp  - in an act of passive resistance


Our Hanen speechie  gives us an idea - just to give him the patience to do the game - to keep it really short

We write on a sheet of paper -
  1. R's turn ,
  2. Mom's turn,
  3. Papa's turn
  4. R's Turn
  5. Mom's turn
  6. Papa's turn
  7. All done - get 3 Junior Mints
We cross off as each turn is done and we do OUR FIRST TURN TAKING GAME

Yippeee






She also had many other  great tips

While reading a book describe what HE is looking at ( not just read the book as you think it should be read) This is FABULOUS example of the Floortime principle of following the lead and an example of how many of the principles that encourage communication are similar in Hanen Floortime  Sonrise and RDI

DH has made a book  called "My Family " where he has put pictures of R and all the people in his family with a description of each picture - like a picture of him and R with a description of who they are - and some simple things they do together - like eat lunch on Friday at the Mall.

This is a masterful idea

R loves this and I think we will soon have a library of "R books "

Do video modeling - so do a pretend play sequence - with  some dolls - make a video and show it to him
Then see if he can copy the sequence. Her theory is that .. he would start to add his own variations
I am eager to try this out

We also show her what we do with Wii Fit - she loves it and gives me some great ideas
  1. Create a disruption - ( example : put the remote on my head instead of in my hand )
  2. Put my face right next to the screen
  3. Speak less and with HIGH affect
Tuesday

T his therapist is here after many days

R makes a big fuss of her - holding her face, stroking her hair  and kisses her cheeks in that charming way he has - T asks me if she can take him home

DH has found the 100 calories popocorn snack bags - I tell him that the 100 calorie bag is just as satisfying as the 220 calorie bag

This of course reminds me that I could be using the same principes on the dreadful Wii Fit that is ruining my eveining

And so I set the timer for 40 minutes

And we are able to have a lovely time on the trampoline as a result

R still has a lot of something that looks like Separation Anxiety-

 I go off for a quick walk while he is eating his little snack after dinner - when I come back I find R snuggling on the couch with DH tearfully saying Mother mother

He is very reproachful and I have to humbly woo him back.


Wednesday

Today is the one day when we can have a date lunch - DH is in his last Hanen class - and he is late coming back

he tells me to meet him at Bravo's  and order pig for him

its 12.15 by the time I get there and we get a rotten table and I have to sit by myself and order our meals

This is not my idea of a date lunch at all - for I love to chat in a leisurely fashion- not be starving and shoveling the bread in my mouth without regard for calories or grace

Still its better than nothing

I am full of reproach at how late he is but cannot say anything as he is after all, coming from a Hanen  class- "doing all the works" as he tells me righteously

As soon as we get the meal - we  have to ask for a box and the check...





While his therapist is here - the front door opens and shuts ( DH has asked someone to come to estimate new windows )
 R runs down and is very releived to see I am still home.

He simpers at me happily and walks backwards up the stairs with his therapist - so he can look at me till the very last minute 

E smiles and says "was there ever a child who loves his mama more "

Really we are  very very blessed to have R as our  child 

He is the best thing ever 

The great thing i am noticing with Pretend play these days is that R repeats what I did yesterday

So if I had Annie and Leo dolls play "Ring a ring a roses" he will try to do it again

This is wonderful - guess who did bedtime with us today

Yes - its Diego

He does not have an original repertoire but he finally truly gets pretend play

Thank you god

And now I must go to sleep because tomorrow is another long day at work

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The beauty of a short term perspective


R's grandma is on the phone

 " Tell me a story of R" she asks

I know what she is looking for

A story of signs that he is progressing

So I tell her about how he called me to show a yellow submarine on one of his DVD's as we had both enjoyed the Beatles song on youtube yesterday

I tell her a few more stories of how she showed me he knew the months of the year , the date for today and seasons - all through the great teacher internet - via starfall

She listens delightedly

She asks then – what do other people say about him ?

She wants the extra reassurance of these other people !

People outside the circle of enchantment that surrounds R -not his parents, teachers or therapists who all universally dote on him

People who live in the normal world -whose standards are typical children

Those whose reference is not  other autistic children

For that, in some ways is the parallel universe in which we live

The parallel universe of parents of children with special needs -where mothers and fathers boast about first words at the age of 4 and 5( and later ...)

She wants some reassurance  that R will do well in the world of the neurotypical when he grows up

Being the mother of a special needs child herself- this is something that she has spend a lot of her life as a mother thinking  about -(  what will happen to my child ?)

I do understand her worry well

Sometimes when I blog hop – I will encounter a depressing article on autism
But the future is far far away

And there are no guarantees

And I find that thinking too far ahead – in the sense of worry - can hurt your present

Irrevocably drain away your joy

Its like the Ski Slalom that R makes me do on his beloved Wii Fit –

I find you can only keep your eyes on the arrows right in front of you

If you look ahead – you will most likely miss the arrow right in in front of you

Looking  ahead , in fact will make you lose the game

For your attention has shifted

So I tell her that we keep our eyes only on the step right in front of us

And as long as we are headed in generally the right direction…I really think we will be fine

I meet Lucy ( my neighor) on our walk in the evening – I ask her about J– Lucy's friend's son – a delightful young man that we met in July - who has/had ASD. I ask about J

She tells me he is doing great.

She smiles and adds  – "he is probably doing better than her friends' other children" ( the other kids are great – just that they are teenagers )

There are good outcomes in Autism land and there are not so good outcomes
Really there is no telling what will happen in the future ( not just for R – for any one )

All we can do when we want progress is to keep our eye firmly on the next step in front of us.

Keep a short term perspective

For the beauty of the short term perspective is is that it not only helps you achieive your long term goals, it also helps you to enjoy your present fully



For Yesterday is but a Dream,
And To-morrow is only a Vision;
But To-day well lived makes
Every Yesterday a Dream of Happiness,
And every Tomorrow a Vision of Hope.
Look well therefore to this Day!
Such is the Salutation of the Dawn!

                              -Kalidasa

Saturday, March 20, 2010

SOOC Saturday - this women's work is done

They say a women's work is  never done

I often feel that way myself

But today is different

We planned like  strategists  and  our odd medley of  Southern, Italian, Thai and Kashmiri  food  for the week is prepared and stored



Many hours of the weekend still left

For now .... this woman's work is done

And this woman is happy

For more fun with Straight out of Camera Saturday visit Melody at Slurping Life

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

The week of March 12.In which I am full of self pity but overcome it eventually

The weekend



I have declared this weekend to be one of NO driving to house-hunt and only relaxation
However my plans are to be foiled and it’s a weekend of unending toil and feeling mentally drained


Friday


The bank that is selling the house gives DH a boat load of heartburn by adding clauses to the property they are selling. DH thinks of ways in which to hassle them in return.


R’s evening therapy session is cancelled – this is an hour and half only BUT – it’s a critical hour and half as this is when I change sheets and generally get things ready for the weekend. I am very out of sorts as to not have this put things in place


We do the inevitable Wii Fit( SNORE- I am so bored by the WiiFit Lisa as R makes me do the same things everyday ) . Then we sing songs on the trampoline which is a lot of fun. I am really thrilled by the way R is initiating a lot of singing these days.


R takes ages to fall asleep . I am sleepy by the time I get him to sleep too – but I have had NO time with DH at all – so I wake myself up and we watch some TV together . Forgotten is one of my faves right now






Saturday


R is up early ( why wouldn’t he – it’s the weekend? Each school day however he must be scolded/cajoled/bribed/persuaded to wake up !!!)


I make GF Pizza and GF cookies from scratch.


Our ABA team meeting is at 11 and I make strawberry cupcakes for the meeting and DH ices them with cream cheese icing artistically


The team meeting is great!

 R is doing VERY well in ABA. Before the meeting we were starting to wonder if ABA is still the appropriate choice after he turns 6. But all the program changes that are added make us think otherwise


We are adding in Intraverbals( knowing and using words like between, in front of etc ) which is the next step from Mands ( asking for things )

He is getting really good at Mands but Mands are really Stage 1 of language


He is also getting dreadfully cute with all the singing – he asks for Lollipops and I ask him to sing for it and he sings “O-i-pop, o-I pop …. Ooooo o-i-pop”( lollipop, Lollipop … ooo lollipop)


We are making lunch for some friends tomorrow and need to go to Walmart and Toys r Us to buy a present for their new baby. We tell R about this.


We find what we need at Walmart- and so decide NOT to go to Toys r us but as we turn towards our house

 R exclaims “There there"( pointing to the road that leads to Toys r us )  .. toys r us

His sense of direction is great and as we never go back on our word – we go to Toys R Us where R falls upon the Thomas train set excitedly as though he has never seen one before ( while resolutely always ignoring the identical one at home )


We go back home and while R’s therapist is here DH and I do our massive cooking.


I am SO exhausted


Sunday


We finish our prep work for lunch and make some more cupcakes.

This is our friends’ second child . Their first daughter is a year younger than R . We assume C ( the older daughter ) may be feeling left out at the new baby and so make a special shaped cupcake with a face made of strawberries and blue berries for her –

DH is a master artist.

This friend had major PPD after first baby and we had had no idea

She told us about this terrible phase she had been through last year and we had felt terribly guilty about how we really had not been there for her


We are really fond of this couple but you know how life is – months pass by without meeting old friends.

And every time you meet you wonder why you don’t do this more often .

And this is what had happened the last time


However, to our surprise, our friend is completely relaxed and cool though the baby cries incessantly .


She says second baby is no stress compared to first baby.


They love the lunch we have made.


Marinated roasted chicken in hot wraps – with cilantro –lime dipping sauce and I and DH beam with pride


R is frankly in a really terrific phase of interaction . He is constantly pulling at my hand and asking me to do things with him .


While this is LOVELY – (I have to keep reminding myself that this is my goal )– I am simply unable to finish my housework and interrupted housework tends to take 3 times the amount of time.


While all these self help books tell you to let-it-go – I really cannot -as a dirty house makes me depressed


By Sunday evening I am completely drained and when R spits out his dinner – I yell at him very angrily


He is shocked and keeps saying Sorry and crying and smacking his hand


Which breaks my heart


I apologise profusely and give him a bath and put him to bed .


While he hugs and kisses me he is still upset – I cannot forgive myself


Guys I feel overwhelmed.


I am behind in everything .


Sometimes it feels like all I do is work(And that too not very well!)


That my life has no room for me


I have been edged out to make room for all the roles I must play employee, mother parent-therapist, homemaker, wife


Tomorrow is another day and I hope it’s a better one


Monday


I actually go back home at lunch time to finish up a few errands so I will have some time with R in the evening


In the evening however R wants Wii -

R’s Wii madness is really boring me to tears and I am also very frustrated that our golden evening hour is wasted in this most boring of all activities


Plus the Wii is in our basement – it’s the “family room “ but I hate it as its dark and gloomy


I hope R will start doing the Wii in his afternoon break – between Speech therapy and me coming home – so we can have some time outside


I take a walk in the evening with R’s ABA therapist is here and cheer up somewhat –

There is something most uplifting about being outside – even though its gray


When I get home – R’s therapist has left and I hear him weeping downstairs … mother mother he is sobbing


I call him upstairs and tell him I am not doing Wii with him and if he wants to go outside – I can do that


He agrees


OMG he is blossoming


He does little games with me – holding hands saying “go “ and running and then saying Stop and coming to a halt.


He is very proud to teach me this game


We go on the trampoline and he “teaches” me the actions to “Row Row .. row your boat” its so adorable to see him shape my hands to do the oar action


Then after we have fallen down after singing “Ring around the roses” he strokes my face lovingly .


He comes to my ears and realizes for the first time that my ear-rings actually pierce my ear


“Ears hurt?” he asks me sympathetically


While I am looking at him with a fatuous smile, he yanks the ear- rings off – I suppose to solve my problem
( NOW my ears hurt )


We do our nightly routines and then I put him to bed .


He wriggles excitedly by my side and nestles in the crook of my shoulder


As he drifts off to sleep, I feel a sense of contentment come over me


I wonder about other tired mothers around the world doing bedtime with their children


Perhaps our lot is not in getting rest but in these little moments of reward


Suddenly this constant feeling of being behind is behind me

I have "stepped out of the circle of time and into the circle of love" ( read it somewhere cannot remember the author)

I dream of what I will wear tomorrow - I know it will be red -for red is my love and I think of this necklace- do you love this necklace - I bought it in Delhi and drift off dreaming of it



Tuesday

I am determined to be more productive and positive today

I wear deep red today and dress up as its our date lunch day





However it is not to be

 DH calls andt tells me that R was rubbing his eyes and they thought it was pink eye - its not - seasonal allergies is what it is but they now need a note from the doctor

While normally I would be crushed, as I was so looking forward to being alone with DH but I am determined to stay cheerful

We meet outside the doctor's office and R's most excellent memory reminds him of all the other times he has been here and he urgently whispers "Mc Donalds Mc Donalds"

( we dont go to the doctor's office unless we HAVE to as I firmly beleive its a pit of germs )

Attitude really IS everything and we have a most marvelous lunch at Mc Donalds ( where else ? ) and I am fawned over by R excessively -



We later go to Mc Kay's and pick up a few books for him

Ever since I discovered the world of second hand books - I will simply never buy new books for R

It appeals to both me environmental and my thrifty side

I go back to office and R and DH go home

At home he cries and cries for Mother - I think the bloody Benadryl depresses him

DH snuggles him and explains to him why Mother has to work

R says suddenly " I miss mother "!

Dh calls to tell me and I am speechless

Was there ever a more satisfying child and a sweeter husband?

The weary week is sloughed off

 I am new again !

Saturday, March 13, 2010

SOOC Saturday - The courage of a child

R is often seen these days ( and in this picture ) with looking for English Language clips on “Youtube”





When I ask him what he wants – he replies these days “ ee ef ay sar dot co “( eflstar.com)

These are all tutorials for people who are learning English as a foreign language.

He looks at each picture and listens raptly as the announcer says the word

Then he rewinds the clip

Then he tries to say it himself

He does a pretty good job – considering he cannot make several sounds ( l, r, w )

But he tries

Sometimes, he even does a hard word like "Hippopotamus"- (which is long – but does not have the dreadful l, r, w )

His eager face- hungry to learn, his daily and cheerful labor makes me want to cry ( and sometimes I do)

There is something so deeply touching about the cheerful courage of a child

For a child simply does not know what he cannot do.

I am so glad he did not understand when his speechie said it was one of the worst cases of Apraxia she had ever seen

So glad he has no idea how many problems he has.

For R does not know what he cannot do.

He simply knows he wants to

The best way out is through” said Robert Frost.

More recently my weightwatchers meeting leader said yesterday , "There are two things essential to success- first, to start and second, to go on!"

R is living these things

He is talking in spite of having a mouth that did not know what to do !

What could you do if were unburdened by the knowledge of what you could not?

For more fun with SOOC Saturday please visit Melody at Slurping Life.Melody asked us to share something good today . Its really a great way to get in touch with a lot of wonderful bloggers as they share a slice of their life !

Thursday, March 11, 2010

In which I ramble on about the excruciating minutiae of my everyday life


In "The Secret Adversary" Jane Finn regains her memory after several year.( I am listening to an Agatha Christie novel in my car for it's a wonderful way to "read" for those of us who have little time. Further, tt and has turned commuting into a pleasure )

Well what Jane Finn says when she wakes up after her memory loss is this

"There are all these years I knew nothing about … just gone from my life " she laments.

Its for this reason that I blog and I miss it ( and my readers and other bloggers ) so much when I am gone from it
But simply have not had the time and energy to put together a post that is worth reading

Still,  if I don't write about this week at all - it  will be gone – as though it never was

And a future K , some years hence,  will be unable to relive a small portion of her simple but happy  life!

The Weekend Was simply spend eating giant breakfasts and driving up to the mountains to look at cabins .

The giant breakfasts are so that we do not need to stop to eat

Big breakfasts to me mean carbs - to DH they mean meat!

I am slightly repulsed by meat

So I yell down stairs sulkily "come up and slice up the sausage If you want it"

DH will yell up the stairs "Can't you do this little thing for me "

I will exclaim "it's a BIG thing.. its as repulsive to me as kissing a man would be for you "

I have to add with honesty " An attractive man though".. maybe wearing a plaid shirt" ( for the equivalent of DH kissing an unattractive man would be like chopping meat with bone- not just slicing sausage which is really not THAT awful  )

The attractiveness of the man to be kissed, is not a factor for DH and so he rolls his eyes and comes upstairs

We leave R behind with E on Saturday ( E is his therapist ) and they have a great time

And R chose to stay back with R rather than drive with us when asked –

 I find I can literally not stand it when R is unhappy in the back seat – for I know he gets car sick and since he works SOOOO hard on the weekdays – I really want him to enjoy his weekend

DH and I look at many houses and I really enjoy our time together - there is something so romantic about househunting isnt there ?

One of the houses that was on our short list has been vetoed by a contractor as having too many problems.

I am crushed by this as I had fallen in love with the house and it really did seem magical

I tell DH "there is a cold hard stone where my heart used to be … now all my house choices will be cerebral "
We come home – I cook frantically for the week

R had a great time with his therapists and went to Mc Donald's and the park .

However he guards me jealously when I am home and will not even let me walk to the garage unattended

Sunday We go YET again

The weather is gorgeous and R is with us and we end up having some fun

All the foreclosure are making me depressed though

One house we liked last week – but already had a contract on – has had the contract fall through – and its up for sale again

The realtor says we must see it and I tell DH that he could go by himself

Monday He goes to the house and loves it - I think this house may be it

Since we have to move fast,  we drive up AGAIN in the evening !

I love this house too – its very picturesque and sweet

Tuesday and Wednesday R makes me do the Wii Fit everyday – Guys I cannot tell you how boring this is while it encourages speech as R has to say what he wants me to do

Overall he is doing great with speech

He is not only using words ( and appropriately ) - he sings songs ( or the parts of the words that he can pronounce ) the other day he balanced the chairs and cushions to get to some hanging bells and jangled them - singing "jingle bells "

Hickory Dickory Dock and Yellow Submarine by the Beatles is the current top of the charts

We are having so much fun with him !!

The odd thing is that other things like joint attention etc are also coming - like he will point out things to me these days

He will point out and name all the characters in the Wii Fit and show them to me and look back to see if I am enjoying it as much or not

Perhaps he never showed things to me earlier because he did not know what things would be of mutual interest

He will also spontaneously ask me to sing songs and if I am off key he will say "Quiet it" ( very rude but the cutest thing ever )

He also shows some sympathy at times - like he will look at a scab and ask "hurt?"( of course he will try to help by scratching it away which is not cool LOL )

He also demands sympathy for his hurts

Sometimes the words he uses are not exactly right but they are correct

For example if I ask him "how much cheese do you want?"

Instead of saying "A lot" he will answer "big cheese"

All in all we are VERY happy with the way language is coming .

Floortime Lite Mama

On my life as the mother of an adorable 5 year old with Autism and Apraxia