Yesterday... sigh... it was a chaotic mess.
First was our dental appointments and Annabeth's therapy appt. I thought i was getting a crown placed but it turns out the plan was to both place the crown on my lower left and do the fillings on my upper right side. Yowza. I'm one who doesn't get numb easily so they -caine me half to death, and usually i still am not entirely numb, which was the case this time, but i just wanted to get DONE with it, so i let it go. I'm a warrior mama after all right? i had 3 babies at home, no meds, one was 10 lbs 8 oz. I can do a little tooth pain! Well, the real issue with the dentist is i have a HUGE amount of dental anxiety, so that's the real problem and the reason getting it all done on one day was a really good thing. I thought it was funny how puffy and crooked smiley i looked. see-
Hahaha! i drew the line at taking a picture of me trying to drink my smoothie from a straw, that was extremely comical. the non-numb corners of my mouth wrapped around the straw properly and the numb sides did nothing. Yeah, i'm easily amused and prone to self-portraits. Even post-dental ones.
Its SO hard to get out of the house!!! we were late meeting my dad, we went to Salty's for lunch at Redondo Beach on the waterfront, which was nice.. but totally lost track of time and didn't get to play on the beach because it was like, "Oh crap, Birthday party in an HOUR!" and we had to split. it was pretty gray out anyway, our picnic went well thankfully, we narrowly missed a rain squall before hand, but not bad.
|The cute portion of the fam at Salty's|
|The almost birthday girl and grandpa <3|
So after the beach was Chloe's BD party! She'll be 12 on the 19th. She decided to have her party early so that Grandpa could be there and this was the ONLY day that worked out.
Wow. i have a 12 yr old daughter! how did that happen! i still remember clear as day the night she was born... maybe i'll do a special Chloe birthday post with my birth story. Anyway, I'm old. I suppose maybe its time i start wearing makeup like a grownup? or not. Speaking of GROWN up i'm still a bit in denial about Alex turning 18 next month and realizing he's only about a year away from the age i was when i had HIM. Wow. hard to imagine. My life before we moved here still seems like someone else's life, though certain things tend to bring it back... I am a new person now, so different than who I was before. I still struggle with the memory loss- most of my life is hidden from me, as a defense mechanism, not just the bad stuff though which is a bummer. I think there's some neurological connection between PTSD memory loss and general memory loss. Because i swear i have half a brain! i've started using a calendar and writing stuff down in a little notebook, stuff i used to be able to just remember! Maybe much of it is just growing old.
Yesterday evening though was the best part. I got to hang out with my friends Lina and Leiloni at the special needs meeting and chit chat and giggle, make a date for a girl night with Leiloni on saturday! WOOT! will be posting about that! AND got to hear a fantastic speaker- Hunter who is an adult living with autism. I was SO eager to hear this speaker because he's just about 7 years ahead of Alex in age, and i SO want to help him avoid some of the pitfalls of being a first child AND a first child being an autism adult. I did get some valuable info and i plan to email Hunter as well as see if he wants to meet up with Andy and I for a starbucks date! (in all my massive free time <eyeroll>)
What really surprised me about the meeting was I expected to identify a lot with Alex being a lot like Hunter, but in reality i found myself seeing so many similarities to ME. In fact i kind of laughed to myself thinking about how opposite of Alex the young gentleman speaking was... too funny. Alex is an introvert, an extreme introvert. His favorite place to be is in front of his computer programming something or doing math. Andy and i are basically his best friends and he prefers quiet and being home. He is so brave though and is doing so well in college, he's joined CRU, campus crusade for Christ, and Engineering club, and is super active in those, as well as being in the prestigious math society, was it Phi Beta Kappa? i can't remember its greek name. Anyhoo, he's awesome. I hope he finds a wife worthy of his awesomeness.
So anyway, Looking back through our family history the autism thing shouldn't come as a shock at all, my dad has almost all the classic symptoms of aspergers, so does my uncle on my mom's side. And on Andy's side, he has a nephew from each sibling (2) one with autism, one with aspergers, so we are like a perfect storm of autism :) of course that's not a bad thing. of the two who we know have aspergers, Alex and Chloe, they are basically just quirky, extra smart, and unique. They have challenges, sensory stuff, adaptations that need to be made, but you deal with that, talk out issues, and everything is fine. Anna and Leif we are watching and trying to decide if we want to pursue a formal diagnosis if that's the case, Anna we might need to just so she can get the therapies she needs, she's the second most affected in that she has really slow processing, extreme auditory processing, and sensory issues that impede her life significantly. Leif is just VERY literal, very serious, and has temper issues and a short attention span. Asher, of course is the most seriously affected of the bunch, but even he is starting to use words, not all that communicatively but a bit, and he's showing improvement since we pulled him out of school- that was a GOOD choice, even though its made life really really hard. We are still trying to adapt as a family... someday!
Elliott is super smart too, but is in all likelyhood NOT autistic in any way. That's fine too. Andy shows certain signs, like a FREAKISH knowledge of music history and the ability to never forget a street address (both annoying!!), and not knowing when to stop talking in public, but i have more signs. The quirky thing, (got that in spades) Some sensory issues, but not severe. the "Mind vortex" that Hunter described. SO got that one! the inability to shut my brain down... i have a hard time getting to sleep, i usually read blogs, read books on my ipod, or play solitaire or sudoku on my ipod till i crash out- every night. and i also have a constant fidget... usually my left leg. always moving. Oh and coffee doesn't work on me! i had just suspected it didn't affect me at all, but Hunter says it calms him down, and come to think of it, i'll quite often have a cup of coffee and then go take a nap. Maybe that's related? Anyhoo, he hated being on meds, and while i'm considering getting diagnosed so that i can get meds to help me focus better, i'm wondering if i'd hate them too. Anyone out there who had ADHD meds as a kid and hated them feel free to chime in if you'd like ;-) Maybe they are easier to not hate when you are grown up? maybe not. i don't know.
So much to learn, and yet so much new self awareness. I definitely am feeling like i "get" myself a lot more each day. I have accepted that there is NO room in my parking lot for cars that are overly sensitive and who cause me to constantly wonder if i'm offending them. My parking lot is certainly not full, but its also not empty. I have such a great variety of cars in my lot. I am blessed to have each of them. (Great analogy- thanks D!) I'm going to focus on that instead of the missing ones.
Hope you all have a wonderful blessed weekend.