Tag Archives: Life lessons

Excited to be part of a FREE VIRTUAL Parenting Event and you can be a part too… and um once again it’s FREE!!!

22 Apr

Practical parenting tips big pic

freeLet me start off by saying I am not selling you anything…just the opposite I am GIVING you something for FREE!!! And before you shake your head and say like I need more parenting advice like I need a hole in the head… read on cause this virtual event is going to be way cool and um… its virtual so you can participate while the kids are at school, napping, playing Xbox whatever and you can even be in your PJs and no one will care cause they won’t see you. (I told you it was COOL!)

So the other day I got this email from Sabrina  Marasovich, the host of this free online event which is called: Practical Parenting Help: Discover Solutions and Strategies to Improve Your Child’s Behavior Today, telling me about this project and asking if I wanted to be a part of it. I admit it, at first I was like what is the catch, cause well isn’t there always some catch? But there is no catch. This is just a great way for parents like you and me to get to hear about different parenting techniques and strategies and then you can decide for yourself what might work and try it out. And then Sabrina told me that Danny and Hayden otherwise known as the Asperger Experts were going to be a part of it and I was like SIGN ME UP! Um you guys… you have to hear these dudes. They are awesome aspies who are in college and well share some incredible insight. I bet they mention there funnel analogy which is this concept about how if you want to get an aspie kid to learn and function better you have to deal with all the sensory stuff first and they use this funnel visual that just makes so much sense! You gotta see it!

There will be all sorts of other experts too including… YOURS TRULY! I know how cool? But you need to sign up for the event so that the video interviews which are all done by Skype (cool huh) are sent directly to your inbox. One interview a day starting April 26th (and by the way my amazing co-author Neil McNerney is the first interview you will get and he is AWESOME) and runs through May 15th. Not sure what day my interview will be yet… will get back to you on that one.

As special needs parents we can always use new tools as well as the reminder to put the oxygen mask on ourselves before placing it on our kiddos. This event will do just that…bring you practical parenting help, some much-needed oxygen and lots of encouragement. AND UM… it’s FREE!!!! So Click HERE and register so you don’t miss out because it starts next week!!!! Feel free to share the link with other parents too!

P.S. I am not getting paid anything to do this event or promote it. I am just doing so because I am a real believer in adding to my parenting tool box and to others and this event can do just that! So seriously folks sign up and listen to the experts you think might be interesting (like me.. ha ha) and the others well you know the routine. You got nothing to lose and everything to gain. I am making it so easy for you by even putting the link HERE again. (Cause I know you won’t scroll back up! LOL)

 

The More I Learn the Less I Know; and that’s ok!

21 Apr

The-Less-You-Know

The older I get, the more experienced, learned, aged to perfection whatever you want to call it… the more aware I become of just how little I really know. It is humbling really. Seriously I write, I speak to folks all over the place, I think I have it all figured out and then wham, bam, slam…I realize I don’t know as much as I think I do. And you know what… that’s okay. It is more than okay because it keeps me moving forward, searching, asking my own questions whose answers once found I can come here and share with you. It is one of those answers I am excited to share with you today. And it came directly out of an experts mouth… my JAY!

Last week I had the great pleasure of doing a book signing and presentation in Florida. Since it was spring break my family came with me. It was great to have my biggest support group with me but at the same time a little strange as it was the first time I did a speaking engagement with them there. While I always get permission to share with you what I do, having my boy actually there as I spoke mostly about him and our journey was well, DIFFERENT. I was nervous, not really sure what to expect honestly. But once again my boy schooled me, heck he schooled us all.

At the end of the presentation I opened up the floor to questions, like I always do. An older gentleman raised his hand and asked a question about how he could connect with his grandson better. The actually question went something like this, “My grandson gets stuck. He has certain interest and that’s great, but I would love to expose him to other things, especially things I like and I love. But every time I suggest something he gets upset. How do I go about it.”

I was about to answer when I saw Jay raise his hand. I looked at him and it clicked. I’m not the expert. Sure I know a few things but guess what… I am merely an observer with a gift from God to be able to write what I see and what I am learning every day from the real expert… my son. So with that in mind I told this gentleman that I would turn over the floor to the real expert who I knew would enlighten us all… and he did.

Jay stood up, cleared his throat and then using the visual images that help him understand things better he said to this man, “You wouldn’t just take a goldfish out of one tank and just dump him into another would you? No, you have to scoop him up along with his old tank water and then gradually put that bag into the new tank and let him get used to the temperature there. Then after a while you can set him free.” Then he sat down and started reading his book again, leaving everyone in that room with their mouth wide open to just how profound his words were.

Once again my boy proved to me that the more I learn, the more I realize just how little I know. But that is okay, because I have a wonderful teacher more than willing to enlighten me and answer my questions. I just have to ask! I don’t have to have all the answers. That realization is a bit of a relief actually! Think about it.

Free Chapter of my New book The Don’t Freak Out Guide to Parenting Kids with Asperger’s Syndrome

12 Apr

DFO-Logo-Purple-196x300

DFO-Logo-Purple-196x300There is a very good reason why I have not blogged consistently lately. I have been busy writing my book! I am so happy with the way it is coming out and cannot wait for it to be done, edited and finally released. As of now we are thinking that release should be around August 2013.

I have shared the introduction and first chapter with some folks already and here is what one said…

I loved it! I’ll admit the introduction alone made me cry. Sometimes just knowing someone out there totally gets our situation is just awesome. And I love the tip about thinking how you react. For me physically i get this metal taste in my mouth and I know I’m about to lose it, but I never thought to make that connection to “Hey silly, you feel that, take a second and cool off and then open your big fat mommy mouth.” I cant wait to read the rest!

And this is how I responded to that comment:

Awwww thank you so much for this comment. I am glad I was able to connect with you. That is exactly what I wanted to do. My purpose of this book is to show that we cannot change our kiddos but we CAN change how we react to them.

And that my dear readers is what my book is all about. But go see for yourselves. I want to know what you all think. So I am going to share with you the introduction and first chapter as well. Click HERE to access the text!

Happy reading and don’t forget to come back here, visit me on Facebook or email me at mamasturnnow@hotmail.com with what you thought about the book so far!

 

Why the phrase “PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT” is now banned in our house!

8 Jan

If practice

If practiceI don’t know why it has taken me so long to figure this out, idioms have always been something that have given my boy trouble in the past. When he was little I once found him sitting in the closet crying because he thought he had really injured me because I told him “He cracked me up”.  So why then, why did it never don on me that using the stupid phrase Practice makes perfect would mean so much more to my boy than to others?

This stupid cliché that has some how become the parent go to has created havoc in my boy. Your child will come to you saying they don’t want to play the piano because they keep making mistakes and what do you say, “Practice makes perfect!” We think we are helping them. Letting them know that no one does things automatically, but with repetition they will get it. We have good intentions, we always have good intentions.

But to an Aspie, at least my aspie, this is just setting him up for frustration. My boy sees the world in only two colors: black or white. He is either good at something or he isn’t; and if he isn’t good at something well of course why would he want to do it! The concept of having to practice something is foreign to him. And if he does practice and now he still is not perfect… well you can see where this is going.

And then there was the whole, “If practice makes perfect and you say there is no such thing as perfect, why practice?” discussion to which I had nothing. Seriously I had no response to that one. He stumped me so I went with the whole ignore the question route.

I don’t want my child to give up because well in life there always going to be things that don’t come easy to him at first. But I don’t want him to be frustrated either. So I discovered that I have to use different words, be honest and straightforward with him now.

“Jay, I know playing the bass is hard, that is why so few people choose to play it. But you love challenges it seems because that is why you chose to learn to do it. And that is what you are doing… learning. That means sometimes you will be able to pick up and play something right away and other times, well you might have to play it lots of times and even then it may not sound like when you teacher plays it. And that is okay because you are learning and trying. And learning and trying is what really matters. Each time you play it again you are tweaking your form, making it a little better. The more you tweak, the better your form, the easier it is, the better it sounds.”

So in our house we don’t practice… we TWEAK!

I was feeling pretty bad about not figuring out this whole idiom thing, but I guess even in parenting Practice makes perfect… Oops… I am not practicing…

I AM TWEAKING MY PARENTING FORM!!!

What I was Going To Tell YOU…

12 Oct

It has been so long since I have posted and so many things have been going on that I am almost too overwhelmed to do this. I guess this is my editors note to you all. My warning so to speak that this post will be filled with lots of run on sentences and will skip around and will most likely be very long. So pour a cup of coffee and sit down and stay with me here if you dare.

Glad to see that I did not scare some of you away! LOL Anyway I was already to start telling you about meeting with Jay’s principle and how awesome he is and how I left the room almost dancing but didn’t dare because well you know I had the principle there watching me and all. I left the meeting and immediately typed this status update to my Facebook peeps:

So how awesome is this… Met with Jay’s middle school principal today about the possibility of the school helping us raise money for the Autism Speaks Walk. Not only was the man full of wonderful ideas and willing to help… he said to me, “What I would really like though is for Jay to meet with me and tell me why he wants to raise money. You know advocate for himself. That is of course if you think it would not be too much stress on him. But I would really like him to do it because I think it would be good for him!” OMG Where do I begin with how awesome that is? The fact that this man cares about my boy like that? AWESOME!!!!

Awesome indeed. I don’t think this man has a clue as to how much him saying he wanted Jay to come in and talk to him meant to me. I say all the time the one thing, the real reason that I write this blog and talk about autism to anyone who will listen and to those who are not so willing to listen but have the misfortune of being trapped in a room with me, that all I really want is for people to really SEE my boy. To SEE HIM, not a diagnosis or label… but HIM! By this man saying what he said it showed me how not only does he SEE my Jay, he wants to TALK with him and more importantly LISTEN to him and well that is just too huge for words!

I was then going to tell you how that meeting lead to another meeting with a business owner whom has a heart of gold. A man who in a whim I reached out to and who not only reached back, he threw me a lifesaver, jacket and rope. A gentleman who has never met my boy but is willing to not only help us, but to give up his own profits so that my Jay can reach his fundraising goals for the Autism Walk.  As I listened to this man talk passionately about how much he wanted to help, I had to fight back tears because you know I was supposed to be  all business like and all but I could not help it because what I really am is just a mom trying to do whatever she can for her kids.

Then I was going to tell you about how after the meeting I came home and got busy making flyers and trying to put together stuff and well I forgot all about making dinner and how my awesome husband was  like, “no biggie we will just go out.” And how Jay whom does not like unexpected last-minute changes, especially when it comes to food, was like, “Sure let’s go!”. So we went to Red Robin (YUMMMMM) and were eating our juicy hamburgers when all the sudden the entire place busted into cheers because the local baseball team did something well I guess basebally and everyone was happy and shouting and how my husband and I immediately  with panic on our faces turned towards Jay to see how he was going to react to the loud sudden noise and how he just shrugged his shoulders and kept eating his juicy burger.

Then I was going to tell you about how when we got home and I was taking out the kids clothes for the next day, something we do to save time in the morning, I realized that not only did I forget to make dinner, I forgot to wash the clothes and how now Jay did not have any clean pants with elastic waist bands and only had a pair of jeans and khakis hanging in his closest. I was then going to tell you how in a moment of forgetfulness I took out the jeans thinking it wouldn’t be a big deal and how Jay freaked out because he had PE the next day and was worried about how he was going to change because you see even though he is 11 and in middle school buttons and snaps can still be an issue. I was going to tell how in the middle of doing laundry at 11pm after an hour of trying to calm my boy down how much I hated AUTISM and how once again that feeling of HATING AUTISM left me feeling guilty because I know that is part of who my boy is but I could not help it.

And then I was going to tell you about how my boy innocently said to me as I apologized about not remembering to do his pants, “Sometimes I think you care  more about the other kids with autism then the one Aspie you have at home. ” and how this comment which I know he did not say maliciously cut me to the core. And then after he saw that he had accidentally hurt me how he got angry with himself and well that made me feel worse but of course I did not let him know it because well… you know I was trying to calm him down.

And lastly I was going to tell you about the breakfast conversation with my daughter this morning. About how hard it was to find the right words. You see there is a little boy in second grade at Grace’s school who has Cancer and is very ill. Many families have joined behind this boy’s family to help raise money just to cover all the co payments of treatments and such and to help them out. We were talking about this little boy when Grace asked me about Tucker. Ever since Grace interviewed  a diary of a mom Jess’ daughter Katie for Grace’s new online magazine well she has been following along. You see Katie did a fundraiser for Tucker.

Tucker passed away earlier this week. The news devastated me. Honestly it broke my heart. I had never met this boy but his story and his courage and his strength well it moved me in ways I cannot begin to explain. I ached for this boys family and pray to God that I never know the pain they must be feeling. I had not told my Grace because well… I just did not have the words to do so. But there it was, she had asked me how Tucker was doing. And so I told her. But as I was telling her my phone beeped letting me know I had a new message. Usually I do not check my messages until after the kids are at school, but for some reason I checked. It was letting me know that Jess had a new post on her blog. The name of the post grabbed my attention so I clicked on it! I got goose bumps when I read it and saw the picture. Click HERE and you will see what I mean. I showed my Grace the picture and without me saying anything she said, “MAMA that is Tucker. That shooting star was Tucker wasn’t mama?”  And with tears in my eyes I said yes. And the words that had been lost for several days suddenly came and we sat at the table and talked about how yes sometimes Bad things happen to Good people. We talked about how important it is to be kind to each other and make every day count. We talked about being bucket fillers instead of dumpers. And then we danced. I put on the music as loud as it would go and we danced in the kitchen. Because you see she needed to know, I NEEDED TO REMEMBER, that life goes on.

We laugh, We cry, We hurt, We Love and yes bad things do happen to Good People… but then you get a text and you read a special post and see a special picture and you cannot help but think perhaps, just perhaps there was something bigger that brought that picture to you and helped give you the words back at that time! And then you dance to music in your kitchen because life does go on!

These are things I was going to tell you…

Jennifer Livingston I APPLAUD YOU and your words to our children:”Do not let your self-worth be defined by bullies…”

3 Oct

It is October and most of you know that it is Breast Cancer Awareness month. I have my pink ribbon and I wear it proudly. But there is another campaign that happens this month that gets much less attention. October is Anti Bullying Month!

For those of you are so busy just trying to get through the day and may not have had a chance to have seen this video of anchor woman Jennifer Livingston who graciously yet very effectively takes a stand against BULLIES… before I go any further with this post…. please take a look! I will wait cause well… it is that important that you watch it! Go on… I promise you it is worth it!

As a woman who well is not as skinny as I used to be. As a mother of a daughter who is BIG for her age. As the mother of a son who has Autism… AS A MOTHER PERIOD… I cannot begin to explain to how much her doing this means to me. Those words, that beautiful message that she put out there should be printed out and placed above our kids mirrors…

“To all of the children out there who feel lost, who are struggling with your weight, with the color of your skin, your sexual preference, your disability, even the acne on your face, listen to me right now…Do not let your self-worth be defined by bullies. Learn from my experience, that the cruel words of one are nothing compared to the shouts of many.” 

I am my children’s biggest cheerleader, but I can shout out kudos until I have no voice left and yet it is the unkind word that a peer will say nonchalantly as they pass my child in the hall that they will hear. Children learn from example. I say it all the time. I said it when I wrote the letter about the woman who rolled her eyes at my son, I say it now. If we want the world to be a compassionate, kind place for our children, well we need to treat each other that way and let them see us doing it!
October is Anti- Bullying Month but shouldn’t every month really be! Just like we live Autism every day besides the month of April… so should we live this message too! Please share this video with all as a reminder that once again our children are watching and listening to all we do.
Jennifer Livingston I will most likely never ever meet you in person. Most likely you will never ever read this post. But if by chance you do one day… please know that your words, your story they are what matter. You my dear beautiful woman matter! Thank you for standing up for what is right, for your daughters, for my children!

Why We Walk For Autism Speaks and Our Encounter With a Protester!

20 Sep

NOTE: The following was posted last October after we completed the Autism Speaks Walk. It is that time of year again and we are forming our team to do it again. I often feel a bit guilty telling folks that we are walking for Autism Speaks because part of me does not care for the way they do things. But I believe they are changing. The Autism Speaks VOTE video is incredible and actually features many Autistic individuals in it! I think they heard us and they get it. Either way we do the walk because JAY wants to do it! I have so many new readers since last year, so I thought I would repost this so you can see why we walk and JUST HOW INCREDIBLE MY KID IS!!! If you live in Northern VA we would love for you to join our team and walk with us. If you don’t live here you can still support us by clicking on that icon over to the right and donating what you can. We have a long way to go to reach out $1,000 goal! Help us get there! Thanks.

Image you are walking along, surrounded by thousands of other families but really lost in the magic of your own. You are on a high. Watching your boy, relaxed among his own is just too incredible a feeling to describe. Your boy is chatting away, spitting out facts about the types of rocks that make up the Washington Monument, the World War II Memorial, the path we are walking on. Your smile broadens as passerby’s comment on how brilliant your boy is. They laugh, they smile, they shake their head in understanding. No judgements, no whispering behind our backs about how loud he is being. No snippet remarks when he stops in the middle of the road to pick up rocks causing masses of people to scatter away and around him.

They laugh, they smile, they shake their head in understanding.

And then it stopped. Jay spotted their signs before I did. I immediately knew who they were. My heart reached out to this group. I understand them, really I do. You see part of me agrees with everything they stand for. I agree that Autism Speaks does not, nor should it, speak for everyone. I get their anger over funds that are raised locally, at this very walk, will not stay local. I get their disdain for the way they feel Autism Speaks tends to play on people’s fear and emotions for fundraising. (But doesn’t every charity do that?) These autistic adults feel that Autism Speaks is representing autism as a disease instead of a disorder, that needs to be cure. They stress that they don’t have cancer or AIDS… they don’t need nor do they want to be cured. I get this, I too have talked many times about how I feel the same way. My boy does not need to be fixed.

I watched my boy walk over to these gentleman and accept their flyers. He stood there reading them. He pondered over what they said to him. Then he looked at the crowd of people walking by and then back at the small group of protesters. He handed them back the flyer and then my 10-year-old Autistic son said this…

“You’re right… I don’t need to be fixed, but I would like to find out why people get autism. I also want to make people aware of what it really is like to have it… that is why I am walking.” And with that he grabbed my hand and together we walked on.

My boy, like a butterfly, awakened that day! And I am proud to be able to say that I was there to see it happen!

“Being autistic means that you get to be incredibly happy!” Guest Post by Kasey Smith

13 Sep

EDITORS NOTE: The incredible thing about the internet is the ability to meet all sorts of people from all over the world. I love the community page I have on Facebook. It is a positive place where everyone shares what they feel and knows that others will not jump all over them, even if they differ in opinion. The fact that it is a safe place is why I believe I have been fortunate to have so many grownups with Aspergers join us. I love this more than I can explain! These incredible folks are able to share their first hand insight with us and make me understand things that I just never would have gotten without them. One of those folks who enlightened me was Kasey Smith. Kasey is 24 years old and has Aspergers. he posted the following on my page and gave me permission to share here on my blog. Read it and you will understand why I had to share it with you all!

I am autistic. I can talk; I talked to myself for a long time before I would talk to anyone else. My sensory system is a painful mess, my grasp on language isn’t always the best, and it takes me quite some time to process social situations. I cannot yet live on my own or manage college or relationships successfully. I can explain, bemoan, and wish away a lot of things about me and my autism: my troubles finding the right words to say what I really mean, my social processing lag and limits, my rubbery facial expressions, my anxiety, my sensory system’s dysfunctions, my brain’s tendency to get stuck in physical self-destruct mode and land me in the ER. I can complain about the suckiness of being socialized and educated as an autistic and as an outsider, about lack of supports and understanding and always needing to educate.

One of the things about autism is that a lot of things can make you terribly unhappy while barely affecting others. A lot of things are harder.

But some things? Some things are so much easier. Sometimes being autistic means that you get to be incredibly happy. And then you get to flap. You get to perseverate. You get to have just about the coolest obsessions. (Mine are: sudoku and Glee. I am not ashamed.)

Now, maybe you do not understand. Because “obsession” and even “perseveration” have specific dictionary and colloquial meanings which everyone uses and understands and which do not even come CLOSE to describing my relationship with whatever I’m obsessing on now. It’s not just that I am sitting in my room and my heart is racing and all I can think about is Glee and all I want to do is read about it and talk about it and never go to sleep because that would take time away from this and that has been my life for the past few days. It’s not just that I am doing sudokus in my head or that I find ways to talk about either numbers or Glee in any conversation, including ones about needing to give a student a sensory break so he’ll stop screaming and throwing things.

(It’s not just the association and pressure of shame, because when ever an autistic person gets autistically excited about something, there will be people there to shame and bully them, and some of us will internalize that shame and lock away our obsessions and believe the bullies and let them take away this unique, untranslatable joy and turn it into something dirty and battered.)

It’s not any of that. Those are all things neurotypicals can understand and process. This goes beyond that. It’s not anything recognized on the continuum of “normal”.

It’s that the experience is so rich. It’s textured, vibrant, and layered. It exudes joy. It is a hug machine for my brain. It makes my heart pump faster and my mouth twitch back into a smile every few minutes. I feel like I’m sparkling. Every inch of me is totally engaged in and powered up by the obsession. Things are clear.

It is beautiful. It is perfect.

I flap a lot when I think about Glee or when I finish a sudoku puzzle. I make funny little sounds. I spin. I rock. I laugh. I am happy. Being autistic, to me, means a lot of different things, but one of the best things is that I can be so happy, so enraptured about things no one else understands and so wrapped up in my own joy that, not only does it not matter that no one else shares it, but it can become contagious.

This is the part about autism I can never explain. This is the part I never want to lose. Without this part autism is not worth having.

Neurotypical people pity autistics. I pity neurotypicals. I pity anyone who cannot feel the way that flapping your hands just so amplifies everything you feel and thrusts it up into the air. I pity anyone who doesn’t understand how beautiful the multiples of seven are, anyone who doesn’t get chills when a shadow falls just so across a solitaire game spread out on the table. I pity anyone who is so restrained by what is considered acceptable happiness that they will never understand when I say that sometimes being autistic in this world means walking through a crowd of silently miserable people and holding your happiness like a secret or a baby, letting it warm you as your mind runs on the familiar tracks of an obsession and lights your way through the day.

It takes a million different forms. A boy pacing by himself, flapping and humming and laughing. An “interest” or obsessions that is “age appropriate”—or maybe one that is not. A shake of the fingers in front of the eyes, a monologue, an echolaliated phrase. All of these things autistic people are supposed to be ashamed of and stop doing? They are how we communicate our joy.

If I could change three things about how the world sees autism, they would be these. That the world would see that we feel joy—sometimes a joy so intense and private and all-encompassing that it eclipses anything the world might feel. That the world would stop punishing us for our joy, stop grabbing flapping hands and eliminating interests that are not “age-appropriate”, stop shaming and gas-lighting us into believing that we are never, and can never be, happy. And that our joy would be valued in and of itself, seen as a necessary and beautiful part of our disability, pursued, and shared.

This is about the obsessive joy of autism. So I guess, if I’m trying to explain what an obsession (and, by necessity, obsessive joy) means to me as an autistic person, I can bring it back to the tired old image of a little professor cornering an unsuspecting passerby and lecturing them for half an hour. All too often this encounter is viewed through the terrified eyes of the unwillingly captive audience. I’d like to invite you to see through the eyes of the lecturer, who is not so much determined to force their knowledge into you as they are opened to a flood of joy which they cannot contain.

And why would you want to contain something like that?

My head hurts from beating myself up over the way I handled a situation…

6 Sep

I am my own worst critic. I judge myself the harshest. This is what I tell myself… but I am thinking that might not be true. I may be my daughter’s worst critic and judge her the harshest and I am so ashamed to admit this.

There was an incident this morning. A fashion crisis that was so stupid and over the top and well I did not do anything to help the situation. I escalated it with I TOLD YOU SOs and should have’s and shouldn’t halves. I raised my voice and spoke too sternly. I cared too much about what other people would think instead of my own daughter! And I have been beating myself up about it all morning and quite honestly I have a headache from it.

I made a mistake. I was stressed and tired and yes I handled the problem the wrong way… but I am human. Humans make mistakes.

I want my daughter to know, which I am sure she does by now but just in case she really does now, that moms make mistakes. I don’t have all the answers even though I like to think I do. I am not always happy-go-lucky and sweet and nice. I have bad days where I feel bitter and resentful and tired and cranky. A LOT OF THEM! (Just ask my family!) I don’t like having those days or feeling it but you know… it makes the good days that much better.

So I decided to write this… perhaps more for myself than any of you readers. I needed to admit that yes I made a mistake. I feel bad about it.  But it is okay!

Today when my daughter gets home from school I will talk to her about how I handled the situation the wrong way. Heck I will probably let her read this post!  Then I will reassure her that I love her and that this was more my problem than hers. I will try to build up any of the self-confidence I might have stripped down. I will let her know how ashamed I am and then I will let her know that I have decided to not beat myself up any more.

I will tell her that mistakes are okay as long as we learn from them. That just like I tell her, I am responsible for my actions. I will tell her I am sorry if the words I spoke and the way I spoke them stung worst than a slap, and remind her to remember that feeling and to try her hardest to not do it others. I will try to make this bad situation into a good one. I will do that for both of our benefits… because I so desperately need to do that to feel better, less shameful or bad.

I will hug her close and give her extra attention which she will eagerly slop up, because it makes ME feel better! Another thing I am ashamed to admit.

But it is okay that I will do this… because I am not perfect, I make mistakes. (I figure if I write it and say it enough times I am bound to believe it sooner or later! )

It’s My Birthday TODAY and this is what I plan on wishing for when I blow out the candles…

23 Aug

I could wish for this…

or I could wish to go here…

Or at least like I was there by eating this…

then I could wish that even if I ate all that I still was able to do this…

But even though I would love to not have to worry about money, to travel to Italy, to dine and wine like there is no tomorrow and to be THIN… That is not what I will be wishing for when I blow out all 43 of my candles on my homemade cake that my baby girl loving made following the recipe in her cake Boss Cook Book she got for her birthday. No what I will wish for has to do with this…To see that they same smile, that same calmness on Monday when I pick him up after his first day of school. My wish is that he is not bullied or picked on and that he makes friends… good friends who will have his back. My wish is that anxiety and frustration and all the other demons that sometimes come along with a diagnosis of autism… may they not rear their ugly head. May they not knock on his bedroom door and keep him up at night. This is what I wish for!

I will also wish for this…

 That she will remain as sweet as the cupcake painted on her cheek. That she will allow the world to see how Big her heart is. That she will have the strength to be her own person. That she always knows that I do not think of her Secondly or as an after thought. She she is near and dear to my heart and always will be. That just as I love Jay for the perfect person her, I love her for the Perfect GRACE she is! I will also wish that her magazine that launches on Monday will have some success because she needs it… not me! She needs to know that she is not alone!

I will also wish for my husband. that he stays safe when he leaves us and that he will always return home to us in as least the same shape if not better than when he left!  That I will have the chance to grow old with him. That we have the opportunity to watch our children grow up and to see their children one day! That  he knows just how much I love him, appreciate him and not just need him but WANT him in my life and always will.

I would love to have a million dollars, travel to Italy to eat whatever I want and still loose weight. But if there is one thing this journey I am on has taught me, it is to to be careful what you wish for. Like a Jeanie in a bottle… I know I may only get 3 wishes and I choose to use them on the people who matter most to me!

But I still wouldn’t turn down a suitcase filled with money, a plane ticket to Italy or a nice bottle wine. Just saying  :)