Tuesday, June 26, 2007

4:00 to 8:00 pm

The crazy time. It is at every house. My friend once said, "With kids the hour before dinner is the worst. So I made dinner an hour earlier. It didn't matter." I think lots of us Mama's have tried that. It is just a crazy time for all. particularly when you throw in a "special" kid and a wine drinking women with Alzheimers who is likely sundowning. Tonight felt particulary crazed.

AJ hurt his foot at camp today. They had me pick him up earlier, at 2:00 pm. I'd been told it was a scrape from the bottom of the pool and maybe some minor swelling. I arrive and his foot has an ice pack ace-wrapped on. No crying, I know he is fine. Aj enjoys drama, and was unable to walk, so I carried his wet butt to the car. On the way he said, "The life gaurds should have given me crutches." As he climbs into the car he looks at me and declares, "Mama, you need to get a wheelchair." I had a real tough time keeping a straight face. So we headed home and I set he and Ki up with TV (Granny awake and keeping an eye on them). Then I retreated for a nap.
The real fun started later when I got up. AJ hadn't exercised much, and likely is tired and thus was more volatile than usual. Likely a total of 4 to 5 to raging events from 4:00 to 8:00. My requests to turn off tv and do home work yielded one. We got thru some with me doing the dreaded "writing" part of it. He screamed at Ki, which caused her to cry. Granny kept asking how his poor foot was. Which caused the limp to become more involved with each query. Java, the puppy, chewed a pool Noodle and distributed it across the porch. Granny was drinking wine at 4:30. The dog kept barking. Granny asked 4 times where we were going for diner (same answer every time). AJ yells at Granny when she, again, asks how he hurt his foot. AJ blows up in the car on the way to Chili's because Ki did not tell a joke the way "it is supposed to go". Ki asks a few minutes later, "why is no one talking?" I know I am not talking because I can't talk and grit my teeth at the same time. Dinner was not as bad as I feared (Pops out tonight so it was "just me"). She asked, and was told, 3 or 4 times where Kurt was and what he was doing. Granny always wants to pay for dinners. I appreciate the offer, but the hassle often overrides the benefit. As we left she asked if she left a tip. "Yes." Then in the car, "Sage, did I pay for dinner?". Oh boy, I thought, this gonna make me fucking nuts tonight. So I decided to be a real sicko and count the number of times she asked about paying and try to look at it as a form of entertainment. 2 more times in the car. Currently, we are at home and there have been 2 more. So a total of five. But neither of us have gone to bed yet.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Mommy, my arm hurts

By 11 am today we were out at the end-of-season Little League Picnic. OH such fun, jump houses, swimming, potluck, trophies for every kid. And at 11:20...
Ki, "MOMMY, I hurt my arm. AJ jumped on me in the jump house!"
Ki can be a bit dramatic and is quick to cry. Especially if wronged in any way by AJ. Of course AJ is very rough and I have no doubt he jumped on her.
Me, "Okay, okay, just sit here and rest a bit and I'll give you a hug." My version of pacifying her. But she continued to complain about her arm, although she wasn't crying much. She held it close to her body and declined to return to the jump house for a final romp before swimming.
Me,"Where does it hurt?"
Ki pointed to her lower arm.
Pops, who is an athletic trainer and physical therapist, began to look concerned.
Pops, "Ki, can you straighten your arm?"
No go.
Pops, "Can you turn your arm and have your palm face up?"
No go.
Pops, "Can you open and close your hand?"
No go.
By now we have moved and are sitting on a bench next to the pool and AJ is swimming. Pops tells me he thinks she has broken her arm. She keeps pointing the "radial head" in her lower arm as the place where it hurts.
That is when "the feeling" starts to overcome me. That I-can't-catch-a-fucking-break feeling. Thoughts churning in my head:
Pain for Ki...
AJ will have a howling, earth-shaking fit when we tell him we have to leave.
There will be staring, his "cover" will be blown...
My Mom...ahhhhh...
It's Sunday, it'll be hours in the ER...
Are we going to be reported by the ER to Child Protective Services?
Last year AJ was in the ER when he broke his arm. A few months ago he broke a
finger. Now Ki with a broken arm.
Ki has camp tomorrow. No sports camp with a broken arm.
Fight-or-flight shallow breathing. I just need to cry for a little bit. I know the drill. I cry, but don't let the kids see. Pops comforts me. I'll feel okay and then be ready to take this on. But first I need to reach out and touch the icy burn of this feeling of being totally overwhelmed. And then I start to feel better. I am ready to take this on. In fact, I'm good. I'm always good in an emergency. Pops and I strategize. Eat lunch first, Ki is not in a great deal of pain. She needs to eat. Break the news to AJ. Head home, drop off AJ. Pack for the ER stay.
I run into Brian's Dad. Brian is the boy AJ had the play date with 2 weeks ago. He is also one of the coaches. I explain our situation. He offers to keep AJ. I explain to Brian and AJ and they are both thrilled. I am happy for AJ.
We drop by home and I change into pants, closed shoes and grab a sweater (the ER is always cold). I pack books for the 3 of us and a deck of cards. Ki is quiet on the way over. We know where to park, and that the guard at the door will want to look in the bag I packed. I am dreading the hours ahead. The ER is almost standing room only. I laugh to see that the TV is showing a competitive pool game. Who the hell would want to watch that? We fill out a form and sit down.
Ki entertains herself by putting her palms flat and elevating her torso up and down in the chair. I eye Pops and point to Ki. That doesn't look like an activity for a sore arm.
"Ki, how is your arm now?"
"Lots better now, Mommy."
"Can you straighten it?"
"Can you turn your hand and make your palm look toward the ceiling?"
"Can you shake my hand?"
Pops does a strength test and compares her right and left arms and wrist.
Yep-they look the same.
"Can you wave?"
"Ki, I think we can go now."
"Why? We didn't have our turn yet."
"I don't think you need a turn. And if you do, we'll come right back. How about if we go to Jamba Juice?"
"Great - there's also a Peet's there. Mommy and Daddy are feeling a little tired and need a cup of coffee."
That is when I get the other "feeling". That sometimes-I-can-catch-a-fucking-break feeling.

Yummy Corn Salad

I made a yummy side dish salad today:

Yummy Corn Salad

3 ears corn-cut off cob
3 small to medium tomatoes-chopped
1/2 large vidalia or sweet onion-chopped
1 avocado-diced
4-5 leaves basil-chopped
2 gloves garlic-minced
olive oil
2-3T seasonded rice vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

1. Saute corn, garlic and onion in olive oil until corn is somewhat browned
2. cool corn mixture
3. stir in avocado, tomatoe, basil
4. add salt and pepper

It tasted great at room temperature

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Ki as God

Last Sunday we celebrate fathers day and Aunt Marilyn's 97th birhtday. The VERY Catholic Aunt said the obligatory Catholic grace. Then Ki wanted a turn. I asked her to tell us what she was grateful for. She did and AL did. Very sweet.
On our beach trip here on the 1st night, the kids, Granny and I sat down to dinner. Suddenly Ki says, "I wanna be God."
"OH! Do you mean you want to say what you are grateful for?"

Her slips of the tongue are a lttle scarey.

Friday, June 22, 2007

The unfiltered life

AJ often lacks the social filter that would be expected of a kid his age. This and the impulsivity with the not formally diagnosed ADHD calls up lots of doing-without-thinking events.
Today we hoofed it down to the beach. Perfect weather and the kids and other beach goers were playing in the water and sand. I looked up and there was AJ standing 20 feet in front of me with his bathing suite mid-thigh and his white butt glaring. I yelled, "AJ! AJ!". Nothing. Ah geeze. I jumped up and ran to him. I figured he was trying to get some of the pounds of sticky sand off. Nope. I arrive at his side to find he's taking a wiz. Right there in the middle of the not-empty beach.
"You can't pull down your pants and take a piss on the beach! A.J., You CAN NOT take a piss in the middle of the beach!"
I know I am wasting my breath because what kid can stop a piss once he has started it. And why am I saying "piss" to my 8 year old? So I wait until he has finished the worlds longest watering job and I say it again.
"Mama, I didn't want to go all the way inside to go."

Notes from the beach

It's midnight and I am here at The Dunes with the kids and Granny. We are renting a condo we have rented before.
-the last 2 nights I have put the kids to bed and then climbed onto the couch with pillow and blamket and read until I fell asleep, woke-up, read some more and went back to sleep.
-love having that perky little blonde face smiling in mine at 6 am. Why do they never sleep in? But I am blessed because they get up and watch tv and generally entertain themsleves safely. Generally, I say because they'll eat cookies for breakfast.
-AJ keeps busy outdoors by trying to fill the slough and ocean with rocks and sticks he finds on the shore
-Do not buy and bring BBQ flavored (colored) chips to a rental. Or ones own home for that matter
-I still love the bird the giant white egret
-sand dollars are cool
-Granny drinks an amazing amount of ETOH, no matter how much I water it down
-Aj had a bunch of ragers this afternoon. I am beginning to think that this is more common when he is tired. Even though he doesn't look tired or seem tired. I know he was up early
-Ki has been planning a big birthday party for Tigger Fri am. He is her stuffed toy that has been her favorite for years. She lists off extensive info about him:
he is turning 5, when he gets sick it is only for 1 day, she wants a surprise party for him out in the sand, he likes Power Rangers-but not the blue one,

-how is it that so much sand can get into a kids suite and then stick their butt in buttload amounts
-to the Hot Mama's who have been here. I continue to find such peace and enjoyment in the view from this place. We need to come back.
-it seems the ASD and ASDish kids (my guy) often just love and are so calmed by the ocean and water. That and being able to throw rocks and things in. I feel like their is some water connection going with kids in the tribe. Double Trouble and boys are near the ocean in Florida, we are here in CA, and Leelo is in HA.
-Granny is having a nice time. we all go outside to walk 2 or 3 times a day. Plus she is really enjoying the view.
-little birds are nesting on the porches
- I borrowed 2 books from jennyalice that I really enjoyed:
Comfort Me With Apples, by Ruth Reichl was one of them.
-currently I am just into Saving Fish from Drowning by Amy Tan. It is her more recent work. I like it so far. A very atypical plot and storyline.
-condo somewhat similar to this one is the market for just over $800,000.00
-I remember when going to the beach meant tryig to get tan. Now all I get is spots.
-i am booked tight for work. Lots of new clients. So that keeps rolling aorund in my head despite that fact that I did not let myself bring work related things to read or do.
-it is now 1 am and i should go to sleep...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Yeah, I'm a labrador

There is a theory out there that dog owners often look like their dogs. There are even contests to see who looks most like their dog.
We have a lab, okay 2 of them. It is really hard to look like a lab. Their features are not really unique and they don't possess looks that easily transfer to a human. However, after some thought I've decided that while I don't resemble a lab, I do behave like one.

I appear to be quite happy, smiley even
I like greeting people
I like to eat
I have a tendency to be overweight
I enjoy an afternoon nap in the sun
I am highly tolerant and generally unflappable
I bark, if irritated, but it is really not very fierce
I prefer the company of others
I seek out a good cuddle
I believe all people are good at heart, until they show otherwise
I enjoy being in the kitchen
I am known more for my personality then my looks
I value family

Sure beats behaving like a pit bull.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

What a day for AJ!

AJ lost his glasses. Seemingly, they are lost in the house. But really, who the hell knows. He has to sit close to the tv to see and needed to be moved to the front of the classroom to see the board. But on Saturday at his baseball game he hit a single, double and TRIPLE!!! Oh YA! People were asking us if he had contacts in!
He looked so "normal" at that game. I basked in the glow. THEN-he got asked for a playdate. Yeah, it just keeps getting better. Mom reported he and Brian had a great time and she was talking about what they could do next time he was over!

A good day in the life a speech therapist

The little girl who says "t" for "s" said her first "s" word today. "Sally", her first name.

Saturday, June 02, 2007

The end of the school year

I cry at the end of the school year. For the last 3 or 4 years I have done it. It happens when I am talking to my son's teacher. When I get to the part when I tell them how grateful I am for how accepting, accommadating and thoughtful they have been in teaching him. We have been blessed with good fortune.