Monday, November 18, 2013

This is Autism....

For those that may not know:

 Last Monday, Autism Speaks told the world that autism is:

 . . . living in despair

 . . . fear of the future

 . . .exhausted, broken parents

. . . lost, helpless, burdensome children

. . .  a national emergency



    That isn't 

    what Autism

     is to us?

     THIS is Autism, 

          OUR Autism:

 This is Liam. He is autistic. He isn't a burden. He isn't a tragedy. In fact, he is the OPPOSITE! Liam is a miracle! He is the baby I was told I would never have, and yet here he is.

 He is happy. He makes us all happy. He is loving. He is smart. He is kind. He is caring. I could list things all day of what he IS, and NONE of them are what Autism Speaks says he is.

 To know my son is to love him. I am guessing the folks at Autism Speaks don't really KNOW autistic individuals because if they did, they wouldn't have said such atrocities about my son and his peers.

 I won't sit here, and act like our life is all peaches and cream, because it isn't. Just like all other people living their lives, we too have rough days. Liam tries his hardest to overcome any and all obstacles that being autistic presents him. He's NOT lost, burdensome, or helpless. He's a fighter. Look out world, because he will take you by storm!

 We don't live in "despair." We live in HAPPINESS! Our lives are greater BECAUSE of Liam. He is our life and we wouldn't have it any other way. 

 So, Autism Speaks, you lost a family that supported you. A family that thought you supported us. Do you even really care about our kids? Or do you care more about the money they raise for you in their names?

Friday, November 8, 2013

Christmas Creeper

  I love Christmas A LOT! I annoy the crap out of PITA with my Christmas cheer, my carols, and my baking. Well, maybe not the baking so much, because he enjoys sampling that. Liam also loves Christmas. Maybe even more than I do. So in the spirit, he is already watching holiday movies, and downloading apps on my phone. One in particular made me nervous, angry and sad at the same time....
pic courtesy of iTunes app: Sleeps to Christmas Lite

   47 SLEEPS TO 


 Now I am freaking out!  Liam keeps showing me this countdown. The "Christmas Creeper" as I call it! What are we going to do???  Not long ago I blogged out the realization of just how broke we are, (If ya missed that, and wanna know, check it out here.) and Christmas just keeps creeping up on us! 

 Some suggested local churches. Well, around here, one church gets the others together and they sponsor families. Not this year. Everyone has it rough and they told us they can't help us. A slap of reality in the face when you count on that for your child's Christmas. (I know, never count on anything, but what else are we to do. And I am not upset with them, I get it, I do.)

I have extra to spare... 

So now what? I have offered to sell my body for extra money, but no one wants any of this shiz.....

 I really am freaking out. I am hiding behind humor because frankly, that is how I get by.  But, every day my son works on his Amazon wish list. Adding, adding, obsessing, and adding some more. Last year he was at odds with the idea of Santa, and though I don't lie to my child, I did. I didn't want to lose the magic, not yet. 

 What now? How do I tell him Santa can't come this year? He has already sent his list to him via his "Magic Mailbox." I over heard him telling my mother last night, "Santa came last night Nana. He took my list, and he kissed me on the forehead. I can't wait til Christmas morning!"

 The only thing I can figure is letting some bills go, because I won't see my child sad on Christmas morning. I know it's not about the gifts. I know it's about family, and friends, and being together. But try telling that to a 7 year old. An autistic one at that.... So, if you don't hear from me in January... it's because I didn't pay for the internet... Have no fear, we will survive..... Well, they will, I may not :P

                                                                     <3 <3 <3 <3

Monday, November 4, 2013

Words I don't want to hear

 "Age Appropriate" and "High Functioning." The next person that utters those words to me, may very well walk away with 5 across the eyes. I am serious!!!!

 What is age appropriate? Is that what people use to classify NT kids? I ask because my son has NEVER been age appropriate. In good ways, and in "bad".

 He hit most of his milestones early to be honest. Beyond that though, emotionally he has never behaved "age appropriate." He still to this day puts everything in his damn mouth. Not to taste it, but to feel it. I can NOT believe he hasn't choked on something or swallowed a penny or some shit. (*knocking on wood here*) He is super emotional. More so than "typical" kids his age I know. He is dangerous in that he has no clue as to personal safety. He has NO CLUE as to personal awareness, and walks on everyone, pushes into everything, and is basically like a bull in a china closet.  That is fine with me, I can handle that. We have grown together and we have learned to adapt.

 What I can't handle however, is thinking I have a 7 and a half year old child that I can trust be alone for even 5 minutes. I just can't leave him in a room alone, and expect to come back and find everything okay. I CAN'T.... Sometimes even I forget this....

 Just this morning, I was in the kitchen, de-fatting a roast for dinner. Liam was in the other room. I could see and hear him. However, because I was using a super sharp knife, my spidey senses were focused on that. When I set the knife down (after a mere 5 MINUTES)

 I look up to find Liam standing on the BACK of a chair. Sharp, broken cap gun in hand, and teetering dangerously as he was reaching for a knick knack on the high shelf.

 I snatched him up and I yelled. I won't lie. I YELLED. Probably ALL of my neighbors heard me. He scared the living shit out of me. (Seriously, Pita and I can't believe he hasn't broken or severely maimed himself in his short 7 years. He is that dangerous in regards to himself.)

 I know what you're probably thinking...... YES, I know it's my fault. I often forget that my son isn't "typical." I forget that unlike NT children I can't just let him be for a few minutes without my eagle eye. Many people have called me a helicopter mother, and you know what, I OWN THAT SHIT! This is the reason he is still alive. Christ if it weren't for my eagle eye, God only knows what would have happened to him by now.

 Even with my hovering parenting style, I have been trying to loosen the motherly leash and let him be a boy. So many keep telling me, "he needs to be a boy." Just when I loosen that grip, he does something like this that slaps reality in my face. He ISN'T just a "boy" he is an AUTISTIC BOY. Therefore, what is right for your NT boy is NOT right for my autistic one, so BACK OFF!!!!

 I have also been told, "You're so lucky he's higher functioning. It must be much easier." That frosts my ass too. I really dislike the labels of high/low functioning. All of our kids struggle with things in their own way. What may be easy for my kid, may be hard for yours, and vice versa. Besides, it's not a competition. (and for the record, my child is only labeled higher functioning educationally, NOT clinically.) So stop saying that shit!!!! Your kid is your kid, and my kid is mine. If I ask you for advice, by all means, give it. But STOP saying offensive shit.

                     Stop comparing our kids!!!

 Also, I am going to continue hovering because if I don't my child may break his neck and then whose fault would that be????? I'm gonna say you, because you told me to loosen my grip!!  (Just kidding) MAYBE....
                                                                    <3 <3 <3 <3

Saturday, November 2, 2013

I'm NOT Perfect....

per·fect  (pûrfkt)
1. Lacking nothing essential to the whole; complete of its nature or kind.
2. Being without defect or blemish: a perfect specimen.
3. Thoroughly skilled or talented in a certain field or area; proficient.
4. Completely suited for a particular purpose or situation.

Above is the definition of perfect.... so what is perfect? Am I? HELL NO! Is my life??? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA.... And yet, I go on. I smile, and I trudge through the shit that flows my way. I don't sit behind my computer and whine. I don't sit on my high horse and tear others down. I pull up my big girl panties, and I friggin' deal. Don't most of us?????

You can't read that above definition and tell me YOUR life is perfect. Or that YOU are perfect, because NEWS FLASH, NONE OF US ARE PERFECT. We are all flawed in some way, our own way. Now own it! You are who you are.

In owning it, here are the ways I am NOT perfect: I am over weight. I am bitchy. I am sick and I am tired. I am often miserable. I have numerous health problems that have become too many to list. I am a good mom, but by no means perfect. There are days I can't get out of my chair to play with Liam and it rips my heart out. BUT, I try. I put a smile on my face. I ignore all the reasons I am not perfect, and I move on. 

My marriage??? Wow! So far from perfect it's scary. We deal. Simple as that. We took vows to one another and stick by them. We have had so many downs in our life, it's a wonder we are still together. But we are. We could have both thrown in the towel so many times, and yet we didn't. We become stronger. For us, for Liam. 

My life? We are broke. When I say broke, I mean BROKE! We are so far BELOW poverty limit, the people at Social Services ask us how we pay our bills. SERIOUSLY!!!! Well, thanks to family, we get by. Our bills are paid, but always late. We rob Peter to pay Paul and there is no room for extra. I can't even think about how we are going to pull Christmas off without breaking down into tears.

You know what else, we get food stamps. We are one of those families that has to have them or my child would starve. My husband has been unemployed due to work injuries since Liam was an infant. He has been fighting for disability since then. He has lost every time. Every doctor, and every surgeon he has seen can't believe the courts are fighting their signed affidavits that say he is disabled in every sense of the term. And yet we fight. Per our social workers request from the state, we filed for Liam. We were told because he is autistic and can't even attend regular school he would NOT be turned down. Guess what??? He was. Not once, but twice! So we are still fighting for that. Mean while there are people out there milking the system. They get disability when they can most certainly work. They get it for their kids with lesser diagnoses than my son, and their kids attend school. Why the hell is everything in our life so damn hard? My doctor has asked me when I will file because my list of illnesses is a mile long and I can't work either. I haven't yet. I can't be let down by the system again, I can't.

Something else you don't know about me? I am one of those people with food stamps that has an iPhone. I don't flaunt it. Matter of fact, I won't use it in the grocery store because I don't want people giving me nasty looks because I am on welfare and have a smart phone. I wouldn't have that phone if it weren't for my inlaws. They bought us the phone, and they added us to their plan. They pay the monthly fees, and we give them our recyclables and my parents to try and offset the cost. Do you know how bad it hurts when I see those comments about people who can't feed their kids and have a phone. It hurts like hell.

So you see, when you are down on your ass, and feeling sorry for yourself, you're not the only one. Look around. Some have it worse than you. Instead of lolling in your pity, stand up and move on. Such is life. It sucks. It's hard. It's not all sunshine and rainbows. But it is what you make of it.

I could fill a book with all of the shitty things that have happened in our lives in the past 9 years. People would be amazed that A) Pita and I haven't killed anyone yet, and B) Pita and I are still married. I could also sit here every day in my pain and be a rotten bitch to the world, but do I?  No. Because I CHOOSE not too. What good does that do me? Or anyone else for that matter? 

Life isn't a competition. It's life. If you ooze unhappiness, the people around you will be miserable too. Have enough compassion for the rest of the world to not be that asshole. Put a smile on your face, suck it up and TRY to be happy. 
                                                                    <3 <3 <3 <3