Monday, September 29, 2008

Indulge Me if You Will...Part Trois (that's 3 in fancy French) A Sister's Perspective

Here we go again. An actual account of the miracle of birth as seen through the eyes of a loving, humble, and sweet older sister. She has a filthy potty mouth and tells it like it is, so consider yourself warned. Some words even had to be "edited" to protect some of my really good Christian friends from being too offended. If you think Bill's contribution was gross and hardcore, then get ready for this beauty! She of course supplied the photo because it's a good one of her, so I included it! Go ahead Sue.....

O.K. since Bill put on his "Guy" hat to share his thoughts of that long night, I am putting on my "Sister" hat to share with you the pain that Bonnie endured for 24 horrible hours. I am not a writer or an editor like some of us in the family but I am damn funny so hopefully you will enjoy my recollection of that long night.

The day started out comfortable for everyone, somewhat joking a little amongst the three of us and talking nicely with the nurses and doctors who at the time seemed like nice people who would give you anything you wanted if you would just ask for it. The first few hours went by pretty quickly, Bill and I taking turns sitting in the old, leather chair that squeaked very loudly each time you sat in it. We thought Bonnie might let one of us lay on the bed since we ended up being there for 24 hours and we were somewhat tired of talking positive to her ass all night, but no she never offered.

The hours went by and each hour she grew more and more uncomfortable so I spent a lot of time in front of the nurses station demanding that they give her something or come rub her feet, or back etc. I think at one point, I heard the nurses bad mouthing me as they smiled when I walked away. Hey, she's my little sister and I don't want to see her in pain,,,,,although better her than me, I'm not the one who went and got knocked up.

Anyway, the next morning she finally started to dilate and there was hope that we were going to see this little miracle sometime soon. Well, not so fast. You know how you hear of these women popping the baby right out within an hour of their arrival to the hospital, well that's a bunch of bull and those women are not real women. I think all women should go through 24 hours of pure misery, makes you appreciate the whole process more.

From 6:00AM to about 11:00AM Bill and I stood at the side of the bed looking at a little round mirror that encompassed a t#$* and a tiny little crown of a head, maybe two inches. The funniest comment of the day was when Bonnie said to me, "OK, you can look at my crotch to see if he is coming out", well OK thanks Bonnie, I've been looking at your damn crotch for about three hours now and I don't see a baby just yet. Even though there are four girls in our family, we are all very modest so this crotch thing was a little uncomfortable at first for both Bonnie and I however, when there is a baby involved you seem to forget that you are looking at your sister's t&*^.

If I could just back up for a second, I promised my "little" sister that when the time came I would make sure she got her epidural. Well, the time had come and she was in so much pain which was breaking my heart. What do big sisters do? Well, they go find any nurse or doctor and scream at them until they bring the epidural.
Unfortunately as Bill mentioned, there was a C-section going on in the room next to us but who gives a shit, my sister is in pain. I ran out in the hallway (well, I actually walked) and I saw a gurney covered in blood and the doctor was in the room with a team of people. I yelled, MY SISTER NEEDS AN EPIDURAL! Almost like an outburst like Casey does when he really wants something.
The doctor came out and yelled ma'am, we have an emergency in the other room!
" I don't give a shit, my sister needs an epidural! Besides, I promised her and when you make a promise to your little sister you can't let her down.
Well, no one came in to give her the epidural and she had already dilated to the point where she could not have one anyway. WOW, I felt like such a failure.
So, Bill and I became cheerleaders and heavy breathers and continued to watch the little mirror that finally started to change and then low and behold out came ET!
The longest little body with long skinny fingers and long toes, but the cutest most precious baby in the whole world. As they cleaned him off and we got a closer look, it was BONNIE! The I looked again and it was BILL! A little of both of the proud parents, he was adorable!
Well, my duties did not end there. My Mom and sister were on their way up from Indiana and had just about arrived to the hospital when I noticed that there was a lot of blood all over the floor of Bonnie's room. My mom is a big wimp and cannot handle seeing her kids in pain or give birth for that matter so ole sister Sue begins mopping up the blood so my Mom doesn't have to see it when she enters the room. Cause you know when women give birth there is no blood or pain, right?
So, that is my story of the day when Casey was born and I would not have missed it for the world.

Very good Sue! Well done for your first blogging attempt! I hope you liked it too and please feel free to comment so she can see what people think about her style! ....I may have to change my policy on guest bloggers, geez.....

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Indulge Me if You Will...Part Deux (that's 2 in fancy French) A Husband's Perspective

I know all 3 of my readers are sitting on pins and needles waiting to read the follow up to "Indulge Me if You Will". Well, I have enlisted the talents of a fantastic writer (and a professinal writer no less), and novice blogger, my husband Bill, to regale you with his memories of that horrific but ultimately bountiful night. Here Bill opens up about the ups and downs of the hours that followed my initial arrival at the hospital. Get out your hankies out, this is a tear jerker.

Bill...husband here...with my recollections of the big day...

If I can put my guy hat for a was the Michigan/Michigan State game...round about kickoff...when Bonnie, after a call to a friend for confirmation, calmly announced that her water broke.

LIke any rational thinking man, I lined the vehicle with trash bags, and we headed out for the hospital...After being greeting by a squadron of nurses....and a brief visit from our guest gyno (the regular doc out on a planned vacation)...we hunkered down for what ended up to be hours upon hours of Bonnie feeling miserable...and me and loyal sis-in-law Sue feeling bad for her feeling bad...

Of course, as night turned into deep night...and Bonnie's misery increased (as well as her dislike for the tall, dashing fella who got her in that condition), we all took great solace in the many breathing exercises we learned in Lamaze classes...(Breath deep...Focus...Get out of my face!)...Sue and I also challenged each other to see who could stay awake the longest...(I fell to fifteen minutes of slumber about 4-ish in the a.m.)

The proverbial light at the end of the tunnel was the epideral...but as the time grew near and pain ratcheted up a few hundred notches...nary an anethesiologist was to be found....(Seems a couple of C-sections were occupying these specialists)...Even Sue's early-morning screams into an empty hallway made little difference...and by the time a doc became was too late for anything but straight-on natural baby-birthing...

But the fun had just we stared at what was to be Casey's noggin' trying to push its way out...(Progress was slow, to say the least)...The word surreal is often overused, but fit well here...I actually, for a few brief moments, was able to step out of the personal mode to subjectively marvel at the magic of the whole birthing process. Of course, the moanings of my wife jolted me back to the here and now, and I quickly assumed my role as primarly focal point and rooting section.

When Casey finally made his arrival at 12:16 p.m....with the aid of jelly-filled forceps...his purple, screeching presence marked a new chapter in our that to this day keeps us enthralled with what will come next.

So sweet, so beautifully written. Thank you Bill, and the image of "jelly-filled forceps" would make anyone woman considering getting pregnant jump in the sack with her man immediately I think!!!!

Up next, my other and probably more aggressive coach and dear sister, Sue, will be sharing her recollections as well.....boy, I'm really turning this into an epic!


I have so much to blog about, but considering I'm waiting for an entry by a guest blogger and I have to really get my shit together, I would like to share with you a photo of a spider I found in my garden this morn as I was watering. I subsequently watered his beautiful web, so it's a wonder he let me photograph him without attacking me. Enjoy and more to come! If anyone could offer information as to what sort of spider this might be, that would be cool. Also, could you let me know if they come into houses? If so, I may have to go out and do some smashing!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Indulge Me if You Will...

I like to recollect back to the birth of Casey around his birthday each year. You know, kinda thinking, what was I doing the day before, how fat I was, how swollen? So, this being the day before his 10th birthday, I was doing just that as I drove home from buying him some b-day gifts (yes, I did find some).

So indulge me if you will as I share what was happening at this point in my life 10 years ago. I promise it won't be long, I have a pretty bad memory.

The week prior to this, I had been in the hospital to be induced even though I wasn't due until October. They had determined through ultrasound that the placenta was "looking old" what ever that meant so on top of the fact that I had off the scale blood pressure and had been home for a month with my feet up eating salt free foods, they wanted that baby out!

So we eagerly got to the hospital early one morning and they started IV pitocin and sticking little capsules of some inducement drug up where the sun don't shine all that day and night. Needless to say, nothing happened. Let down and sore, we went back home, to wait some more.

That following Saturday, I didn't feel good at all. It was hot out, I was still swollen. I was laying in bed sorta dozing when I literally heard a POP and had to suddenly rush to the bathroom.

I was told that most women's water never broke, so I never imagined mine would. But as I sat on the toilet, and pee'd, and pee'd some more, and then felt I had stopped peeing, but it was still coming out, I surmised that my water had indeed broken! I called my friend Paulette to confirm, and she did, and told me to get to the hospital. I wasn't really having contractions or any pain so I wasn't too concerned at that point.

Bill laid trash bags across my seat in the car (he's a little anal) and we grabbed my suitcase and made a mad dash for the hospital. There they got me all comfy, hooked me up to an IV, my sister arrived to help Bill coach me on, AND THE REST IS A FRICKIN NIGHTMARE!


Thursday, September 25, 2008

Fun Run?

Today Casey's school had it's annual Fun Run to raise money for the school. Bascially, it's fundraiser where you were supposed to get at least $50 in "pledges". I didn't do this because a)I sorta forgot about it, and b)why would I ask people to give money to a public school and get nothing in return? So I sent in 20 bucks and that was that.

The flyer sent home encouraged parents to come and cheer on their students as they did the 45 minute run (or walk if they choose). I always feel tremendously guilty if I don't go to things like this because I have this fear that Casey will see the other parents and wonder where the hell I was.

So, I sorta scrambled the work schedule and made my way over. It was a cute little program, and there were flags and teams and leaders and some sort of cheetah like freaky thing walking around (see above pic). It sorta cracked me up because they made a track going around this tent that was playing music, and that was what they had to walk around (or run) for 45 minutes!? I was picturing this great hike throughout the surrounding neighborhoods, people lining the streets cheering the children on! But, that wasn't how it was at all.

Somehow, not only did I come to see him off and cheer him on while he made his way around this kinda dumb loop, I ended up walking around that dumb loop with him. His lovely teacher walked with us for awhile and then had to see about another kiddo, so I just kept walking with him. I felt really queer every time I passed the other parents who had come to cheer their kids on, because they were just standing on the sidelines talking and waving pom poms, and here I am out walking with 100 little 5th and 6th graders. How did this happen? I'm a nerd.

Casey was cool with it for awhile, although he said at one point he just needed to sit down (I'm with ya brotha!).

Anyway, the run ended with all the kids getting a popsicle and a bracelet (which I just realized was no longer on his wrist, not a surprise!). It was hot but fun. Here's the Red Team!

I didn't get a bracelet, or a popsicle, nor was I featured in the picture! But I walked darn't!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Birthday Quandry

It hit me today that Joe Cool up above there has a birthday coming this Saturday, and I have nothing planned for it really, and no gifts bought or even waiting to be bought! Now, before you go and call social services on me, I need to explain!

It's his big 10Th birthday, it should be spectacular, or at least a little more special this year since he's getting into the double digits now. But, at this point in time, the child's only interests are Pee Wee's Playhouse, Arthur and Wiggle videos and the computer. Oh, and Toy Story. Well, these were the same interests he had in past years, so he has all the sundry toys that go with those themes, and lots of them. And he doesn't play with a one. Oh, and there's the little issue that has come up lately about how "toys are for babies" and "I don't have to play with toys, I just play on the computer" or so he says. He doesn't really like any hand held games, we get videos from the library, and the ones he loves we have. So, when friends and family ask me what he wants, I'm at a loss. I know what I want...for him to branch out!

When I broached the whole gift thing with him, he thought a lot about it. He mentioned a few characters from Toy Story that he wanted. I took to the Internet to find them, and didn't. Then he decided he wanted a Pee Wee doll. Ok, well, they haven't made those in 20 years, or so I found out, so they are now considered a COLLECTOR'S ITEM, and if they aren't in good condition, then they really aren't and really aren't worth spending way too much on from Ebay. So, there goes that idea. Oh, and he mentioned he wanted car insurance.....

Anyway, on top of that, the kid has no close friends. You know, in Autism, social skills aren't a strength and uh....have you said "Who is she tellin'?" yet?....Anyhoot, a big friend party is pretty much not practical or realistic. I mean, I could invite kids of my friends. He knows them, but they don't play together on a regular basis, he doesn't ask about them, or go to school with them. We don't do play dates anymore. So it would be sort of a big farce really. I did do this I have to confess years ago, when I was still struggling with the idea that his life would be different in many ways to "typical" kids. I was in denial, and honestly, he never had that much fun. In fact, when I watched his 6Th birthday video that we took at his McDonald's party, where there were about 10 kids, and lots of parents, and saw him holding his hands over his ears because of the noise level, I knew that was it, no more forced parties. Geez, I think I even recruited a neighborhood kid for that one, what an idiot I was.

Now having said that, I have to report that for the last several years we traditionally get together with our dearest friends and their children at Chuck E. Cheese for any of their birthdays (and this was separate from the dumb forced parties, and the reason why is a whole other story entirely). It's never forced or fake, and he's known their family since he was born, and their kids were born, and it's just sorta, natural. So, we will definitely be doing that this year, as is tradition, and that takes off some of the pressure.

Anyway, we'll probably do the typical family stuff too, and a trip to Indy(where my side presides) is in the works for more fun and frivolity! I think all this will be fine with Case, and I think any issues are my own. As for the gifts, I'm still working on that. He mentioned a laptop of his own, so if we get enough moola instead of gifts we can put it towards that I suppose. What 10 year shouldn't have their own laptop? The Pee Wee Doll and car insurance can wait till he has a job....

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Casey's Awesome Day!

Today around 10am I recieved a call from Casey's school. Either puke has occured or he cussed and has been sent to juvenile detention I figured! When I answered, his teacher Ms. Murray said "Hi Bonnie, it's Jackie!". "What did he do?" I asked not thinking, being "the cup's half empty" girl.

"Oh no, nothings wrong!" she said, probably thinking me a nasty mom. She went on to explain that he had just gotten back to his AI (Autistically Impaired) classroom from being in regular ed. social studies and he had the best time in there since school has started. He was so thrilled about how well he did he was dancing around the room she reported and she and the parapros danced right along with him. Casey told her that he sat really well and listened and wrote what the teacher wanted him to write. His para who goes with him backed up his story, and even popped on the phone to tell me that she was just so thrilled! She said her heart was almost pounding at how excited she was about how well he behaved. At this point, I'm standing outside the gas station I was servicing, almost in tears, and just feeling so happy and proud.

The rest of the day, I called several family members and extreme close friends telling them of the call and Casey's accomplishments. I kept thinking to myself, this is what he's capable of, this is his potential! It's coming out big time. Then of course I had to start hypothesizing on what may have caused him to have this great day!? Was it a better night's sleep? Two Poptarts instead of one this morning? What was it?

Could it be that things are just clicking for him? His comfort level is growing in school. He's growing up, he's more mature. His teacher and the staff are awesome by all accounts. Things are just working together perhaps to cause him to ROCK!

When he got off the bus, he said "So, how was your day at Riley?". I said "Yeah, it was great I heard!" and he answered me and himself with an exuberant "Yes!". And, we celebrated with his chosen treat of fries and a drink from Wendy's.

His teacher called again apologizing for calling so much (yeah, like you have to apologize for taking an interest in my kid! PUH-LEEZ!). She went on to say the rest of his day was wonderful as well, and she is just so excited because he seems to be working really well with incentives that he chooses himself. She went on to explain how she is going crazy with the incentives at this point but will start stretching them out farther as he gets more into the routine. We have always found at home he works well when he's promised something in return, most kids do. I think the difference this teacher has made in the school setting is that he gets to pick his incentive. He has a board that has 6 different ones he can chose from (ie Coke, computer time, gum). I think his being in control is making all the difference.

It's just so wonderful to get good reports, and to have a teacher so interested and better yet, excited about his doing well. We are hoping that it continues and grows, but even if it doesn't, as mentioned before, I know what his potential is. It's there, it will come out, it already has!

I asked Casey to show me how he looks when he feels proud......

Sunday, September 14, 2008

A Reason for Everything

My title may be a little too "big for it's britches" concerning the content of this entry, but it seems fitting in the smallest way.

As my last entry reported we had a few problems at school last week, and I'd be lying if I said it didn't put a bit of a dark cloud over things.

Yesterday was a really rainy dreary day. There wasn't much to do. I decided to take him to our local rec center to swim at the indoor pool much to my chagrin. I say that because weekends there are crowded with parties and people who don't come during the week, and people who come only because, as in yesterday's case, it was raining. Yesterday was no different, the pool swarming with children. I just hate it when it's crowded. But he got in right away and was having a grand old time. Suddenly a cute little kid happened by and said "Hi Casey!". Casey of course didn't reply as he was wrapped up in his swimming so I did the PR and said hi and asked how the boy knew him and his name. "He's in my class at Riley. I'm Raymond!" he explained. I rambled off something to the effect of that's great, and thanks for being a friend to him and blah blah. The kid lost interest in me quickly and swam off. A few seconds later a woman swam and said "Hi, I'm Raymond's mom! I got a call from Casey's parapro Friday complimenting Raymond on how well he did with Casey and how he included him during gym class!".

I was dumbstruck!

"Oh, that's really great!" I replied and went to explain how I had been so concerned about the new school and new kids etc.. "Well," she replied "I worked with developmentally disabled (hair rises on the back of my neck) children for over 20 years and I guess some of that rubbed off on Raymond. He's such a wonderful boy blah blah....". The sound of the teacher in the Charlie Brown cartoons started coming out of her mouth, at least to my ears.

Ok, I'm mean....I'll let it go. But his mother's boasting aside, I was really happy to hear that another kid took it upon himself to befriend Casey in some way. I made a point of complimenting him on my own, and told him to keep up the good work!
It gave me hope, and sorta clouded out my visions of "typical" kids pelting him with pebbles shouting racial epitaphs at him....I jest, but it's nice to know there's good kids out there! His mom should be proud.

So I suppose that's why I was steered by a higher power to take him swimming yesterday. If I hadn't taken him, I probably would never had heard about this new "friend"!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Is This Really What's Best for Him?

All was going well this week since school has started (although I did have to call in sick for him on Monday because he had this cold/pukey thing happening, hey it happens!) He started his regular ed time on Wednesday and it went great.

But yesterday, I got a lengthy note home from his teacher telling a sad tale. I knew something was going on when he stepped off the bus and told me right away that he had had an "outburst". After much questioning with no responses given, I rifled through his backpack and found her note. She explained that when he went down to science, he started speaking out very loudly that he didn't like science and that it was too much reading! When his para started to take him out of the room, he let out a curse word (we're not sure which one). Great. Anyway, he came back to his special ed room and calmed down. His teacher made him go back for the last minutes of the regular class, just so he would realize that screaming was not going to get him out of going (I like her way of thinking). I guess he was good from that point on, but had also been threatened with losing his rights to going on a little local field trip they were going on later that day.

This really is a sad tale to me, not because of his behavior so much, that's not surprising. He has a lot of trouble being good and quiet in situations that entail nothing of interest to him. It's more that the "typical" kids saw him behave like that, and that just made him that much more different from them, disconnected from them. Some of them probably even laughed when they heard him cuss. All these thoughts really break my heart. It breaks my heart because all this goes back to things not being done right in these school systems to begin with, which places kids in situations just set up to make them fail.

We, his parents are the ones who push for him to be in regular ed part of the day. We decided it was good for him to see how "typical" kids act in class, and hopefully model that. We don't think he could hang out all day in regular ed the way it's set up right now. At the same time I have to ask myself if we, Bill and I, are setting him up for failure by breaking up his day as such, ripping him out of the comfort of a room with 3 other students only to be thrown in to a room full of kids talking and interacting, not with him, forcing him to try to pay attention to subject matter that probably doesn't really make much sense to him to begin with, and expect him to get something out of all this? Are we the ones making the mistake, doing things wrong?

And so having said all this, it makes it very difficult for me to punish him for his behavior. It's almost equivalent I think to a baby crying, trying to get it's mom's attention the only way it knows how, trying to tell her that something is wrong. Maybe Casey is acting out in an unconscious effort to do the same. Maybe this situation isn't right for him.

I guess I need to give it some time. We'll see how it goes, but something tells me we may need to rethink our ideas about what's good for him, and try to figure moreso, what he wants to be good in!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

What Were You Doing that Dreadful Morning?

I guess everyone can pretty much remember what they were doing at 8:46am September 11, 2001. My good friend reminisced today that she actually was on her way to the airport for a flight to New Jersey that morning! Most people were probably on their way to work or already there. Here in Michigan, just like in New York that day, the weather was beautiful. A cool September morning, not a cloud in an extremely blue sky. I was on my way to work at one of the grocery stores I called on at the time. I had just dropped Casey off at his preschool program. I was listening to Howard Stern when news broke of the first plane. Odd that I would hear the news of a plane going into the World Trade Center on such a program. I recall that they had thought it a joke at first. Howard was confused I remember, at a loss for words and not sure what was going on. That was when I knew something was not right, it wasn't an accident.

I went into my store call, not really thinking too much about what happened, figuring I would go back out and listen to a real news station after I was done. I had been standing and checking some of my items when I overheard someone say "They've hit the Pentagon!". My heart sank, and at that moment, I ran out to my car, thinking the Apocalypse or something had started. I had about a 35 minute ride to my son's school, because that's where I felt I needed to go, despite being told when I called that they weren't going to release the children and felt that they were in no immediate danger. I called my husband, I listened to the radio and kept hearing horror after horror. The sky was so blue, and it was so sunny, and everything seemed so surreal.

When I arrived at Casey's little preschool, I decided that it would be silly to go in and upset his routine. So, I sat out in the parking lot for around 2 hours and waited for him to get out. It felt right at the time. I was near if something occurred, I didn't know what that something was, but I was there for him.

Not to overuse "surreal" but that is the only way I can describe that day. Things sorta went on as usual, we did a lot of the usual stuff, but our hearts were heavy, and I personally felt anxiety I had never had before. Nothing seemed right.

I walked Casey to the park that night, and noticed how there were no planes in the sky, how quiet it was. Again, surreal. We watched the news, talked, and I ached inside for what had happened to all those people, and what could happen to others in the future.

What were you doing that dreadful morning?

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Crazy? Maybe but I don't Care!

The room is quiet, a church basement somewhere in Michigan, people sit in a cirlce looking embarrassed, quiet, reserved. They know why they are there, but dread talking of it. The leader of the group points to an almost middle-aged woman, whose chair is purposely pushed back farther from the circle, in the hopes of not being noticed. She doesn't want to be there, but there was an intervention, her husband insisted.

"Why don't we start with you!" the caring person in charge says.

She begins to feel warmth flow over her face, she doesn't want to do this, but for the families sake, she takes a deep breath and begins,

"Hi, my name is Bonnie, and I'm a Betta Fishaholic..."

"Hi Bonnie!" the other group members reply in a show of support......

I recently wrote about the acquisition of a new pet pictured below, who Casey named Gilbert.

As you can see, he's a striking specimen of Betta fish. I really enjoyed his little wiggly presence in my kitchen. It all started out so innocently....

Someone mentioned how soothing the sound of an aquarium was so I thought perhaps I would get a little one and put Gil in it (I was calling him "Gil" by then) and let him live in Casey's room. But, I didn't want to have Gil so far away, so I reasoned that Casey needed his own Betta in an aquarium, so along came Woody, so named by Casey in honor of his favorite movie character of late.

He's a beautiful specimen as well and this photo which was very hard to get just doesn't do him justice. He is gorgeous and his color reminds me of the dress Scarlett O' Hara wore when she had been caught with Ashley and Rhett made her go to Melanie's party anyway!.... Yes, you can see where the sickness is starting to take shape.

So, I find myself at a local pet store buying kitty litter, when I just happen to make my way over to the fish department. I don't know why, oh yeah, I wanted to get a plant for Gilbert (he didn't have one at the time). I happened upon the little section where they so coldly keep the Betta's in little plastic jars in gross blue water, separated from all the other fish (sorta like special ed sometimes-whoops I didn't say that). Lo and behold, I found this guy!

An orange Betta? I never knew such a thing existed! "He must be a lucky Betta!" I thought to myself! He could be a good friend to Gil! Well, not really because Betta's are also known as Fighting Fish, and they don't really like, well, anyone. But still, he's orange! I'll take him! And thus, Paco found his place in our home, right near Gil, but not too close. Parallel play if you will!

So, I had 3 Bettas. No biggie.

But then I found myself going to the pet store, under the guise that I was buying my cat Simba special food that I could only get there, and instead making my way over to the fish section again the next week (and by the way, Simba isn't suffering, I already had some of the food at home).

On this trip, I found this fabulous fella!

He looks like a pearl, and he seemed to have some personality as you can see clearly in the photo, seriously. So, feeling a little weird and guilty, I went up to the register with my new fishy acquisition. Part of the fun is naming, and he sorta reminded me of this Albino musician, Edgar Winter, who we just saw perform with Ringo Starr. So, Edgar it was.

Four biggie.....

So mom was coming to visit the next week. Wouldn't it be cute to have a fish in her room where she slept, especially after she specifically asked that there not be. Oh, I suppose I could have put Edgar, or Paco in there. But what fun was that? Off to the pet store again.....

This is Freddie, so named by Bill. I gave him this responsibility thinking it would make him like the fish more, feel more connected. It hasn't...but isn't he cute? All green and red and perty! He's very active. My mom actually liked him and found his presence calming by her bedside.

Ok, after Edgar, my friends were even commenting that perhaps I had a problem. Our friend Don came up with a rather humorous scenario that I would eventually be on the news when it's discovered that over 300 fish were found in my home. Bill's only comment to the reporter would be "I only thought she had 5!".

I was back at the pet shop again getting more litter (cats poop a lot) and some cat food that was really needed this time. I told myself ENOUGH! I wasn't going to do it but, I strolled over anyway, just to have a look, and I found this beauty!

So purple, and just the cutest little fish face ever! I chose white rocks and a white plant to put in his container to accentuate his beauty.(This should have been a sign that things were going terribly wrong) His name is Basil. I was feeling British that day. He is really bright colored in person.

That was a week ago, and since then.....since then, I did buy another but I haven't revealed it to Bill yet because, well, I think he will probably institutionalize me and run away with Casey, after giving all the fish away. But he was yellow and white and blue, and he looked at me like "Take me home!" and I named him Javier.....I don't have a picture right now, as I am trying not to draw to much attention to the fact that I bought a seventh.

I fear that by revealing my Betta obsession like this, some may stop reading, and any of my close friends who do might stop calling. But I just enjoy them so much! Can't I have a hobby other than Autism, and Autism blogging? Is it so wrong to have 7 fish in separate little bowls? They're well cared for and they don't make noise or disturb the neighbors. They don't bite, and well, they smell a little if I don't change their water frequently! Whatever, call me crazy Betta lady, I don't care!

All I have to say is BETTA FISH ROCK!

What's happened to me?........

Friday, September 5, 2008

Week in Review

First day of school photo 2008

Well, what a week it's been, and it's over almost. As I reported here and here, school started off with it's bad and good points.

Yesterday, his second full day, seemed to go off without a hitch, especially since I canceled bussing in the morning, makes like so much easier. It was even reported that he ate his lunch at school! Chicken nuggets, a hash brown and juice! A breakthrough!

Today was a little rockier apparantly. His teacher emailed me that he ate one bite lunch today and then commenced to tell everyone how gross it was. I had promised him that if he ate lunch, he would get a little surprise, and I guess long story short, he thought taking a bite would warrant the promised surprise. When his teacher disagreed with him on this matter, he laid an F bomb down as naturally as one at 9 years old shouldn't. He got a time out, what a surprise. His teacher did call and we talked at length about the situation, deciding that I would come up ,with his help, a list of alternative words he could use instead of f%^&. This is something we did not too many months ago, and I really thought we nipped this problem in the butt but apparantly not. Mrs. Murray was extremely understanding and even said she felt bad for him at the instance that he did it, because he was so frustrated about the whole lunch thing. We talked strategies concerning other matters. It made me feel great that she cared enough to call on a Friday afternoon, the first week of school. She rocks so far.

It's funny, but I think my whole attitude has changed over the years and I am not feeling as bewildered and worried and terrified, and freaked out as I used to at the beginning of school. I of course want him to do well most of all and I worry about that more than anything, but there's a little comfort in having done this for so many years and knowing what to expect. I kinda figured he would cuss at school at some point, I kinda figured he wouldn't eat his lunch, I kinda figured he'd eat the erasers off his pencils like she reported to me as well over the phone tonight. I am not surprised anymore at the "odd" or "bad" things that can and do happen. But what I am surprised at was the report that he really wanted recess, that's a new one. I was surprised at him talking about a kid he knew at his other school from regular ed and how he saw him at his new school, and he seemed glad about it. I was surprised when he mentioned out of the blue that they had a "sembly" (that's an assembly to you and me) today. Couldn't get out of him what it was about, but he told me he had one. These are the things that surprise me and thrill me to no end.

Now, ask me how things are in a couple of months!!!...........

Thursday, September 4, 2008

First Day of School Follow -Up

So, I may have painted a bad picture with my
last entry, but all in all, it sounds like the day went fine. It was a half day so he got home around 12:15pm, all smiles off the bus.

The CF (I'm sorry, I'm gonna cuss for a minute because I am a huge potty mouth and use the term "cluster fuck" meaning stupid mixed up situation ALOT so in the future, I'll just use CF so an not to offend) of the day was the stupid bus pick up situation and forgive me if I already mentioned this somewhere else. His pick-up time was to be 7:47am. Why is that a CF? Well, first, we live 2 minutes from school, and secondly, school starts at 8:35, with children needing to be there by 8:30. So, should I go nuts trying to get him out of bed at a good time, rushing him to eat, rushing to get him dressed without pulling my hair out and letting my potty mouth run wild, or, should I just cancel the bus and take him myself? Well, after yesterday, the first day, I did do all those things. And guess what, I canceled today, and life was already much smoother.

Anyhoot, he came home (he'll still be riding home, so many advantages there, and he likes it) and told me several things they did, which surprised me in the short amount of time that he was there. Lo and behold, on his teacher note, she sited all the things they did and he was correct! Pretty cool.

His teacher also provided an very extensive note talking about her teaching history as well as that of the her 2 parapros that will be working in a room with 4
kids! One is even an Occupational Therapist! Again, pretty cool. She also made note that he would start to do his general ed. part of the day starting Monday, which is great considering last year, it took a month for them to start that whole procedure, which sucked.

Mrs. Muwway (Murray, but Muwway is how Casey so cutely pronounces it) also mentioned many field trips that they would be going on to teach lifeskills. That whole concept sorta bums me out in a way, because I don't want to think of him of as a kid that needs that, but he is, and I'm sure that they will teach him better than I do in everyday life. He was very excited about this prospect, asking me this morning when they would be going on the first one. Note to self, don't tell Casey about any event that you don't have a date for!

I'm not jumping to conclusions on this the second and first full day of school but I like the situation already. It all remains to be seen I guess. I'm gonna stay positive, I have to, for his sake, and my sanity!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

My First Almost "Wordless Wednesday"

Since so many fellow bloggers choose to call Wednesday "Wordless Wednesday", perhaps this short video can perfectly describe our morning on this, the first day of school!


I can only hope it gets better...more to come......