Sunday, August 29, 2010

Wishing

Doesn't it make ya sick to hear, "When you wish upon a star your dreams come true." It doesn't always bother me but sometimes it really does get my goat.

Actually, I am not feeling bitter right now, I am tired. Of what you may ask...what do I have to be tired of? Nothing bad really, the boy is doing his work and is really good about his homework. My husband is good, and enjoying his birthday, and the male tabbies of the house are relishing their new brand of cat food.

I am writing a story. Really, I am writing this story purely for my own entertainment value. I doubt anyone else on the planet will ever read it and in a years time it is likely that I will burn it.

I have escaped into stories all my life, starting with "Black Beauty", and thru the "Misty" stories, then going into Alcott, Hawthorne, Emerson, and growing up to Throeau, the all the Austin and on and on. When things are not that great, I go back to my "comfort level" and read this stuff over and over. I know the characters, story lines and the mythology of the authors better than my Bible. That is not a good thing BTW. I am perusing Romans again because I can't bear to read much of anything else right now. I turn back to the Potter series, not because I am lame (OK yes I am) but because it lets me forget for a while.

Stories that allow us to forget are wonderful. As a child, I was FASCINATED with the Bible stories that didn't seem very practical. Noah's ark was something amazing to me. All those animals on a BIG boat with a family, and I bet it stank.....Seriously, how much hay could one have there, unless God kept providing more? Which I am sure He did- as my old Bible study leader used to tell me, "Don't read into it so much." The other story about the prodigal son....what was that dumb kid thinking anyway? Take your part and go blow it all...OK, you are done then right? DUH. I guess those are the questions that I get to ask in heaven.

Anyhow, I started writing this mythological, magical totally impractical story. I am thinking I am done and then I keep adding more to it. I have NO idea why I started this. What I was doing was reading a book by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. For those of you who don't know, she was Charles Lindbergh's wife. She met him in Mexico when her dad was the US Ambassador. One quote from Anne was,  "Everything today has been heavy and brown. Bring me a Unicorn to ride about the town." Her stories about her live prior to meeting CHarles was pretty typical of most teens backthen. The amount she had read was beyond anything. She was able to discourse on some pretty heavy materials at length.

During the middle of my perusal of Anne's story, I decided to write some things down. Initially I was just jotting down IEP notes, and blog ideas, then I started with journaling...then the story. There is no title. There is a lot of a whole lotta nuthing. I think I would let only one person read it, but I am too embarrased to let anyone else. The quality and the style isn't there in my opinon. But then I am my own harshest critic.

I know, none of this has anything to do with living with Autsim or Aspergers or anything. I just thought it was interesting how the mind works and where we are going and what we are doing. Besides I am not going to make up a new blog for a single topic. Even Penelope Trunk advises against that plan.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Doing stuff

Today was OK. We had to do some stuff. Lots of stuff.
Nothing bad or major, we are back at figuring out what to do for lunches as the fried food is off limits.

Although I am sounding like a health freak weirdo, I can see the changes in my son's face. He is breaking out more since we changed the diet, which means, in part we are clensing his system from the ickies that were in his diet. We see many changes, the boy tryed grilled zuchinni, and ate most of it.

I will say that we are on the verge, of what I don't know. I do know that I have seen a lot of people on the internet doing and saying things that are frankly offensive. I have one friend in particular and honestly I don't know HOW she stands seeing such things on her blog and website. It really is disturbing. In fact I am so pathetic, I made certain that I commented on her one post that several people needed their mouths washed out with soap. I am not up for sainthood or Aspie Mommy of the year or any junk like that. I will say that we work darn hard to get our son to be socially acceptable. It is wearing and a pain in the neck. But if the example of people who are adults and have autism and are acting and behaving as they do to others in cyber land it is no wonder they are having issues with their neighbors (people on the street and a work). I am wondering why I am trying so hard with my son. What is the point.

As was in a prior posting on this blog IT IS ABOUT MANNERS PEOPLE. WE have to teach our kids GOOD MANNERS. I will say here and now, my son had better thank anyone who gives him a gift, I don't care if he doesn't like it much, he had better thank them and appreciate what he is getting. A good example of this is a time where he was seeing a doctor. The doc was rewarding postive behavior with gift certificates. My son was appreciative of the gift certificate because it saved him from having to earn more money for whatever he was saving for at the time. He showed good manners by thanking the doc for the gift and then using it appropriately. Would he have liked more $$ on the gift certificate? Heck yeah, but he had the manners enough to say, "Thank you, I love it" instead of saying, "What can I get with that? It isn't enough to buy anything with."

Having good manners is like the book "The Divine Secrets of the YA-YA Sisterhood" In one part Sidda says, "How kind can we afford to be to each other." So we have good manners to be kind to each other. I remember reading that Temple Grandin said that we need to teach our kids manners. Good grief we need to teach adults manners! It doesn't seem that anyone has manners anymore. I am thinking that with a HS diploma there needs to be a Miss Manners book sent along with it. Maybe it is because my parents were so seasoned by the time they had me, or maybe it is because I was told, "Go stand at the punch bowl and serve punch until dinner is served. Your dinner will be in the kitchen after the adults are served" at parties, but I learned the value of good manners.

I think that it hit my husband and I when we were at a speech therapy session with our son. This was years ago, but our son was still in session and a therapist had come out with another patient and told the boy he could have a piece of candy. His mom decreed he could have one for each hand, and after the boy kicked at the therapist (my husband and I watching in HORROR) we decided that our son would never be that rude. Ever.

So he learned, "Please, Thank you, I am sorry, I made a mistake, I don't understand things": all of it. Maybe he apologizes too often or isn't as polite as some of the other kids, but by goodness if you needed help and were nice to himit is more than likely he would help you out and BACK YOU UP if you ever needed it. He learned to push a wheel chair, and help his Grandma and to come when called and to help and to do as he was told. He might not do it all the time but he does do it now and is trying hard to get his priveledges back. It is all about the manners!

When I read about adults without good manners, I remember a comment I used to make when I worked retail, "The nerve of some people's children."

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

9 1/2 Pounds

What is 9 1/2 pounds?

In metric it is 4.30912752 kilograms. It is also the size of a fish, there are people who have had 9 lb babies, and there is my son who has lost that much weight in about 3+ weeks. We have continued with the diet and exercise plan. Frankly, I am a little apprehensive. He is telling me that he is not happy about the diet itself, but is happy about the weight loss. My first thought is "Oh great a kid with an eating disorder here we go." Then I heard that there were others in the family that were on the low cholesterol and diet plan.

I think that we are on the right track, but it is hard to stay motivated when there is a kid who is a crank and a half. He is moody and irriatable. It is not fun to be here right now. His normal is pretty demanding, just generally, so add a diet change and we are in a place that isn't a whole lotta fun. I am running for cover (not literally). Today I hid in the family room watching the "Harry Potter" series and wondering how I ended up with Dudley.

On a different note, I was scrapbooking today (for those non-crafters I was organizing my family photos). I had about 3 books in various stages of disrepair. I decided that since I have the time (and no money for beer ha ha) I would re-organize pictures into an album. Some of this is one shot dealies... for example: we went to a baseball game or went to a memorial exhibit, you know the drill. Anyhow, I had over taken the dining room. Several large boxes of pics, albums, templates and paper, stickers,glue is everywhere. And what do you know, the boy child decides to talk to me. He is trying to work out our differences. Or more accurately, he is trying to talk me into what he wants me to do (not happening, hotstuff).

It should be amusing that he wants to have me learn about what he is thinking and feeling. However, his abilty to understand what I am thinking and feeling is a whole nother ball park. The comprehension for that part isn't there yet. He is workingon it, but he still hasn't gotten it down yet. We keep hoping, and we have been told that the atypical's (AKA gen's) have the same issues. Much of this seems to be the hs garbage that all kids are trying to throw at the parents. Unfortunately for my kid, Mom and Dad didn't just fall off the turnip truck (one of my Dad's sayings).
Today's arguement was over video games.The boylost again. One has to admire his persistance, but he needs a change in venue and tactics. The current way is not working for him. I think he needs lessons in technique....would it be unfair to teach him? I think I should, but I am tired of the discussions and endless questions and demands. Refrasing the question doesn't help. It makes the mom of the house more annoyed than anything else. I think teaching him would give rest to others and be totally unfair to my husband and I.

I think, ifthe boyhad realized how frustrated I really was maybe his decisions would have been different. my initial aggrivation came from the clothes washer quitting on me today. I couldn't get the thing going and someone is supposed to come by and look at it tomorrow. Making demands of me, and never shutting up about them, is likely to make the mom of all trades a tad cranky after having to manually dump out the water from the washer with a plastic container to the sink. Although the boy child helped, it was not without constant discussion and asking for what he wanted in no uncertain terms. Naturally, it got stale real quick.
The end result was the boy took a nap, I worked on the dishes and reorganizing the status of the photo albums and then took a long overdue walk with my husband. Mentally I am worn down. And a little sad. My sister is in town. I would have liked to seen her and her familya bit, but I am not going to subject myself to an afternoon of my son being a royal pain inmy neck and try to be social at the same time. It is too hard and too stressful. As I have said before, I am saying "No" to stuff I would have said "Yes" to in the past.Primarily, becuase I am now working on what is best for my son (and my mental health)and how to avoid completely stressful situations (going to the mall with no money and a shop-a-holic teenager-ICKO) having to say "No" to shopping with him would have caused a mini meltdown and it is just better to avoid it entirely.

So the lesson today is.... OK there is no lesson today. As Calvin and Hobbes used to say, "Live and not Learn, that is us." Right now that is the way I feel.

Scarlett used to say that she would think about it tomorrow. I think, for today I will think about it tomorrow too.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Making changes

How many times a day do we make choices? The easy ones, what to wear, eat or when to take a shower (before or after the coffee?).




We had to make a choice several weeks ago. Our son had a cholesterol test. To say that it was elevated is putting it mildly. Let's just say that it was OVER the allowed amount. WAY OVER the top. We had to make a choice, well many choices. Frankly, my husband thinks I am over reacting. He wasn't at the doc's office, nor did he take the phone call.



On our way to a wedding we got the news: "Change your diet or your son will die before he becomes 20." BAM.



How do we change a diet? Especially someone who has issues with texture, eating and, oh please don't get me started.

First off we were instructed to make our diet 80-90% veggies and fruit (more steamed veggies than fruit), 10-20% starches and meat. No fried foods: that means NONE, no french fries, chicken fingers, or even pizza. We told our son the truth. He was devastated to say the least. We are dive bombed and here I am scratching my head wondering if I remember how to prepare tofu.



So we started reading. First off we looked at Jessica Seinfield's book, can't rememberthe title, but we had a copy, or our son did. Pureeing veggies works for me, I had done that before and we can do it again. I am not sold on WHAT the lady makes, but we can use some of what she has. Then going back to how I used to make things...



For those who didn't know, prioir to me swearing off cooking, I was a full blown vegitarian. I made my own everything, without fats, dairy and all that stuff. A poor man's Martha Stewart. When my son and I moved back to IL I swore I was done with that. I didn't want to concentrate on food or think about what we ate. So I quit cold turkey; my son ate what the other kids ate, sometimes. Then when my husband and I got married I further proved my ineptetude in the kitchen and we decided it was safer for me to work on other things like laundry and my job. Since I haven't found a job replacement, it looks like I am back in the kitchen. Someone tell Susan K so she doesn't fall over into shock OK?



Anyway, showing my son how to make brownies without egg and oil was a bit of a shock. His response, "MOM, you are wasting perfectly good applesauce, HOW COULD YOU?" After we got them in the oven and I let him eat a little of the dough, he told me they were too sweet but might be OK after baking. We moved onto making mac and "cheese". Texturally, my son thinks mac and cheese is disgusting. He hates macaroni and it is a struggle to get him to eat it; Pureeing squash was a little weird, but then adding it to the cooked mac was beyond the normal for him. He did try it, but still hates macaroni.



We have to make some pretty rotten choices right now. We can't eat a lot of junk. Most of that we got rid of, and we aren't eating out very much. Most of what we have are salads, veggies and then a smaller than normal portion of the rest. We are hungry, but we need to not stuff ourselves and we need to exercise and work out and NOT EAT as much. Not surprising we are all overweight, we eat more than we need to and more than the portion sizes allotted. We are trying to drink more water, and eat the veggies prior to anything else.



To show our son a good example we have all cut back. It is hard. It will be harder when we are traveling or visiting and have to bring our own food becasue our son can't eat what is there. I am not looking forward to that at all. It will be an argument with both my husband and son and I am not relishing that one. Back at the over reacting, right, well not really. If my son is not able to metabolize that kindof food, then we have tomake permanent adjustments and it is better to do what we have to rather than think, "Great, he is eating (that) and it will kill him."



According to different reports I have read there is a way to flush the cravings for fat and junk out of our systems. We have to go without, recommended time is 6 months, then we can see if we want it or not or if we are heathlier or not with or without it. In the 2 weeks we have cut back, our son has lost the belly fat, is eating salad, drinking water and is staying away from juices ( high in sugar/fat) and not eating the junk food (fries, misc.) He is not happy without, but understands that it is better for him. He didn't like not getting his old favorites when we went out with Grandma, but he did eat what he was given and did decide that it wasn't so bad.



His next round of blood tests are this week. We are hoping that this diet change has helped and will make things better for him and for us.



What i am asking for is morale support, some extra understanding and no surpise if we decide our son can't eat what is served. Don't be thinking this is fun for us, it isn't; it stinks. We are already viewed as very strict and hard to take. Just wait until school starts and we have to see what he is able to eat in the cafeteria. That is gonna be a barrel of laughs (ugh).



In my own obtuse way, what I am telling everyone, "If we come by, don't be shocked if we have eaten prior to coming, or bring our own food for our son. His diet is very tenacious and we are being rather strict right now to make certain he will be able to make the healthy choices in the long term."