Autism: A day in the life

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At almost 1 am last night I had just fallen asleep when I felt a hand grab my shoulder. I was momentarily scared out of my wits until I realized it was my 10 year old, J-man.

“Mom, I can’t sleep.”

“Okay buddy, go pee & I’ll get you another melatonin.” (Because any time I can remind him to pee at night may save me some laundry tomorrow).

I got him situated back in bed, gave him a sleepytime pep talk, went back to bed and promptly fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow.

At 6:50 am I kept hearing movement in J-man’s room, across the hall. He is usually a late sleeper so I immediately realized what happened.

“J-man, come here.”

He came in, fully dressed with shoes & a hat on, holding a piece of paper and pen.

“Mom, look, I made a to-do list for today! And guess what? I lost another tooth!”

“J-man, did you sleep?”

“Nope! I stayed up all night! And the first thing on my list is to paint a Pacman on a ball!”

“What’s the second thing on your list?”

“Play Minecraft.”

“Okay, go do that so mommy can go back to sleep. No painting until mommy wakes up, ok?”

“Okay!”

And off he ran, like a shot from a cannon.

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7:30 pm and he’s still going strong. Mommy could use a nap though.

Sometimes it’s hard but, I have to say, I’m grateful for his Autism. He makes the world a better place by being so real, without artifice, and he makes me a better mom because that’s what he needs from me.

XOXO,

Stef

The Honey Badger

The subconscious remembers things that we would rather forget. You know those dreams where you wake up and think, my goodness, that was so real? Some memories are so buried that, driving down the street, I’d have a hard time recalling them. It’s only in your sleep, when the sentries who keep guard over your thoughts are at rest, can your mind conjure up the deepest, hardest, fondest & most painful memories.

Your subconscious don’t care.

Your subconscious will whammy you when you least expect it. Recalling feelings, touches, a remembrance of a time or person, but maybe in a new setting or experience. Because that’s what dreams so; they marry your memories with your wants, your desires and even with your fears. You may wake up smiling or crying, or a little of both.

Your subconscious don’t care.

It’s times like these when I remind my conscious sentries of two things:

1. A lesson or a blessing? Which was that memory? And the dream?

2. A reason, season or lifetime? Where does that person or experience land in my lifetime? Was it a learning experience? A long-term, but inherently finite experience? Or is this for my lifetime?

Those two things help me to sort through the emotions & categorize the experiences in a way that makes sense to me.

Consciously I’ll categorize and put those memories away. I’ll push them back in their file, like an old jack-in-the-box.

But … it will pop up again, you see .…

Your subconscious don’t care.

Try to embrace the memories, even the painful ones. They teach us something.

XOXO,
Stef

I’m bringing booty back

You can’t go through life without knowing this song. You’re welcome.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PCkvCPvDXk

Thank you, Meghan Trainor.

Love & value yourself. We absolutely must.

XOXO,

Stef

 

ETA: I’m getting a ton of weird click-throughs so I decided to remove the embedded vid and replace with a link.

For I am just human

For I am human,
She said, with sadness.
Hands twisting hands,
Confused, mad mess.

What do I know of this?
Tumbling, falling blindly;
Is it a swing and miss?
Broken, hands hang idly.

I was slow, she said,
I was unsure, scared.
It took time, she said,
With a push, I dared.

You’re human too;
Mistakes are made.
Forgive in lieu,
Of anger & pain.

But I need love, she said,
And you are a true man.
Attention, touch, she said,
For I am just human.

I have something to say and you may not like it

A couple years ago I went to the gynecologist for the first time in 5 years. There were two reasons (TMI alert!):

  1. My periods had become heavier, longer, and I sometimes had debilitating cramps that radiated throughout my mid-section and caused digestion distress as well;
  2. I wanted to get cancer screened.

My doctor recommended putting me on birth control pills (BCP). Hmmm. I hadn’t taken those in 10-11 years, but if it helped I figured I’d try it out.

Tangent: calling them birth control pills is a bit of a misnomer because they actually help with so many other medical issues. Maybe if we called them them something like “hormone therapy,” regardless of the reproductive side effect, then we wouldn’t be in the situation we are in today.

Can I just tell you what a Godsend those pills have been? No cramps. None. Lighter periods. No IBS-type of distress at the same time as having a heavy flow and awful mid-section pain. I can’t tell you how much those pills improved my quality of life one week a month. (That’s huge! 25% of my time?? Incredible!)

The added bonus was improving my skin significantly. I used to get a cystic pimple every month around my cycle. I haven’t had a single one since I started the pill. Lifesaver!!

From a pharmacy perspective, I pick up 5 prescriptions a month for my kiddos. My pharmacist’s assistant knows me, my name, my kids’ names and even has a nickname for me. Prescriptions are a budgeted expense at my house. Imagine my surprise when I picked up my first month of pills and the ‘script was FREE!! Free, free, free. The only ‘script I’ve ever gotten for free. Thank goodness for insurance.

(Of course, it’s not really free – a buttload of cashola comes out of my paycheck every month for my insurance premiums, and I’m fully cognizant of that offset).

But you know what’s weird? I felt guilty. Because I could pay for them. I could cover that co-pay … but I know there are a lot of women out there who can’t afford it – either because they don’t have insurance or their insurance doesn’t cover BCP. I felt guilty.

When Obamacare went through I was so pleased to know that other women will have the ability to get on the pill regardless of finances – whether for medical reasons or birth control. It felt like the right to control & fix our bodies was in our hands again, something to be discussed with our doctors rather than bureaucrats. Every woman should have access to the relief I felt from taking those pills. Every woman should also be able to prevent pregnancy through whichever type of birth control they and their doctor agree is best for their bodies.

Every person, man or woman, should be deeply disturbed by the SCOTUS ruling allowing employers to pick & choose their medical coverage due to their religious leanings. Everyone. If we opt-in for insurance – through private pay or working for an employer who offers health benefits – then we should be able to have the medical coverage we need. Period. Regardless of your opinion, or yours, or yours, or yours.

I need allergy medicine so I can breathe, I need prescription eyeglasses (and sunglasses) so I can see, I need prescription cream so my Herpes Simplex 1 sores go away more quickly (cold sores, if you didn’t know), and I need hormone therapy (BCP) for my menstruation. These are my medical needs. Why would medical insurance only cover 3 out of 4 of my medical needs?

I’m so sorry that we, as a country, cannot pull our heads out of our asses long enough to figure out when we do or do not want big government dictating our lives. It seems that both the left & right use big government to suit their needs – regulating guns, abortions, birth control, marriage, etc – but then other times we get on our lofty high-horse and eschew big government in favor of self-autonomy. At some point we need to agree when and where big government is relevant and where it’s not. Hint: it’s not welcome in my vagina!

Bye bye Hobby Lobby.  I have to do my small part to protest your hypocrisy. If you’re willing to let your employees suffer over your claimed beliefs then I’m willing to stop buying your made in China (a country who sanctions, nay, dictates, abortions) crafty, knick-knacky crap.

I am just livid.

-Stef

It’s Independence Day, indeed

Warning: I wrote the poem below a few months ago when I was feeling particularly saucy and there is excessive use of foul language. I just don’t think the point would have been quite as punctuated without it! If you don’t think you’ll like it then, please, don’t read it!

So, in honor if Independence Day, I’m sharing the sassiest, most assertive poem that I’ve ever written:

Stronger

Stronger, wiser, tougher.
You bet your ass, sir;
I’m like fucking alabaster.

Stronger, like titanium.
I can withstand any blast;
Don’t think I can’t fucking last.

Stronger, I’ll survive longer.
Don’t you even doubt;
I’m too fucking smart to pout.

Stronger, just watch me rise.
I’ll double-time up that ladder;
See how much you don’t fucking matter?

Stronger, I’m not going to cry.
You go find your own corner;
I’m so fucking done being a mourner.

Stronger, wiser, tougher.
You can kiss my ass, sir.
You’re no longer my master.

Happy Independence Day!

XOXO,

Stef

I’m bringing sassy back

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I am sick & tired of feeling sad, bad & mad! I’m not going to do it anymore. I’m not.

I tried so hard but things just didn’t work out as I thought and hoped they would. Acceptance comes in waves, but I’m tired of waiting for it, dammit. At some point you just have to say, hey, this is my life now and it’s not that bad, comparatively, and I’m going to survive & thrive. Even be abso-fucking-lutely happy. Because it’s my life, and I have the ability to choose my state of mind.

Man, seriously, what have I got to be sad about? We’re healthy, I have a great job that’s moving along on a good trajectory, I have a house, a car, and all those little material things we get to make our lives more comfy. So I think it’s time I stopped bitchin’ & cryin’ and started accepting and living!

I was recently told that I was “the whole package” and when I jokingly responded with, “you mean I’m a catch?” The response I got was, “no, Stef, you’re the catch.” My goodness, do you know how that feels? Do you know how that feels . . . after seeing your estranged husband driving around with his girlfriend? Well, if you don’t, it feels damn good. For my worth to not only be recognized but valued as well. Isn’t that incredible?

And, dammit, I am a catch. First and foremost, I’m a warm, loving, touchy-feely mom. I like to do things with my kids. Explore. Go on adventures. Or just have our Friday night movie nights. Second, I like to cook & take care of my people. I’m a nurturer. Maybe too much so, but it’s just because I care. Third, I kick-ass at my job. I manage a team and I’ve found I like nurturing my team members but in a way that will help them grow. Fourth, and completely unrelated to the third, I like sex! (Please, God, don’t let my dad read this).

Plus, the other minor shit that I think are pluses – I bathe (mostly) daily, I don’t wear patchouli, I keep a somewhat tidy house (no white gloves, please) that I think has a bit of charm to it, I pay most of my bills on time, I know how to laugh & cry mostly at appropriate times & I’m a pretty strong, independent woman. I travel by myself regularly. Dine by myself. I don’t feel the need to hide my aloneness from others because being alone does not equate to being lonely.

Maybe I AM a catch!?!? Damn right, I am! For the right person and at the right point in time.

I believe in intersections of time & growth & space. What may have been right at one time possibly isn’t right down the road – where there’s been an element of growth & space that’s shifted things.

So this is the thing – it’s time to get off the mat. It’s time to get up and be happy and proud and thankful for all that I do have. It’s time to forgive those who have hurt me because, though I thought so at the time, those people aren’t my destiny. They aren’t where I belong right now, at this time. They served their purpose in my life and for that I want to just be grateful.

Stop the badness, madness & sadness. It’s time to embrace love and laughter and life again. It’s time to be me! To bring sassy, smart, sexy, shy/not shy, smiley ME back. And I will!!

All my love,

Stef