Archive | April, 2013

AUTISM and 6 reasons I might be MENTALLY punching you in the face!

23 Apr

(Warning, this could post could offend you. WARNING, you might disagree.  WARNING, I’m a teensy bit FIRED UP, I’ve had one of my hubby famous margaritas, and my default emotion is sarcasm with a side bluntness!!)

It’s April.  And it’s ASD awareness month, so let me drop a little “awareness” on you.

This kid.

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This kid, who has my eyes, his Daddy face and a smile all his own.

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This handsome, funny, and tender-hearted kid has

AUTISM.

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Don’t feel sorry for us, he’s awesome.  In fact, your pity, really offends me.  You WISH you were as cool as my kid! So take your pity and your “sympathy” and shove it!  Yes, I get a little aggressive when it comes to my kid.  If you have kids, you’ll understand.  (And if you don’t have kids, imagine a little mini-you combined with a little mini version of the person you’re in love with, and then make them innocent.  Make them need you in the way that grass needs water.  Make them so profoundly amazing that it’ll bring you closer to God.  Make the thought of someone hurting that little mini-you, send you into a rage that is BIBLICAL.  Like raining fire and brimstone.  Oh, you just stepped on his toe?  Sorry about the whole brimstone stuff.  I’ve been known to overreact.)

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If you don’t know how to act when you’re around us, I am here to help you become “aware.”   I didn’t accidentally name my blog, “Mrs.Not.So.Perfect.”  I am the FARTHEST thing from perfect, and you can’t be my friend if you are perfect.  So here is a list of things NOT to do, because it’s WAAY beyond me to tell anyone how they SHOULD act.  LOL.

I’m not bossy, I am “aggressively HELPFUL!” ( Thanks JB.)

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So if you see me and my kiddo out at the park, here’s a list of things NOT TO DO, or else you’ll know without a shadow of a doubt, that I am punching you in the face… mentally that is.

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1. When you find out he has ASD, say something like, “Really?  I don’t see it!”

Are you a Neurologist?  Are you in ANY WAY qualified to say what makes a kid have ASD or not?  I don’t care if you are a therapist (qualified for therapy), a teacher (qualified for teaching), a mother/father of 25 children (qualified for the loony bin or the medal of honor), a scientist (debatable what you could be qualified as), a grandparent (qualified for spoiling) or a preacher (qualified for spiritual support).  Unless you are QUALIFIED to diagnosis my kid, don’t question me.  I prayed for months, asking for the  ASD signs to go away and they didn’t.  Then I woke up one day and realized that he was still awesome.  He was still everything I ever dreamed of and hoped for.  And most importantly, he was still the child God gave me to raise up and help become a wonderful man. Maybe you meant to flatter me, but you’re not.  Because I know, you don’t know jack about it when you say something like that.

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2. Talk to me about people who have “healed” their kids.

You can’t CURE ASD.  Not yet.  When most research doesn’t indicate what causes it, how can there possibly be a cure? You can teach coping skills, social tools, communication skills and reduce behaviors, but if you “know of someone-who knows someone-who’s child has ASD”,  that went off gluten and is SURPRISE!!!!! 100 % CURED, chances are they had gluten allergies.  Show me something published by someone REPUTABLE, not an ex-playboy bunny who got airtime on Oprah, then had to come on again to apologize for starting a movement that was based on crap.

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3. Talk to my kid like he’s stupid.

He’s not stupid.  In fact, he’s probably smarter than you.  He might not look you in the eyes or communicate with you the way you’d like him to.  In fact, you might not even be sure that he’s heard you, because he’s covering his ears.  But chances are, when we get home, he’ll repeat word for word what you said, in the bathtub while he’s pretending to be an alligator.  IMG_1542

4. Be a school that tells me what my kid CAN or CANNOT DO.

Here’s the thing.  You don’t know.  So just TEACH him please.  He might frustrate you, he might disrupt your classroom, but he’s IN THE “Special” kid program for a REASON!!!  He’s tough, you don’t have to tell me.  One minute, he’s got you walking on cloud nine because he said that he thinks you’re, “PERFECT” and another minute, you’re having to take yoga breaths because he starting screaming nonstop.  But my kid CAN be taught and he CAN learn, just don’t give up on him.  Help me help you.  Tell me what is going on at school so we can work on it at home.  Of course there are some instances where you are just going to have to PROVE yourself to my son.  Today in car line, the substitute teacher said he had a H-O-R-R-I-B-L-E (she spelled it out) day and needed a talking to.  What happened?  Did he bite someone?  Did he scream until he made OTHER kids throw up?  Did he take off on you in the lunch room and made you chase him like a greyhound after the electric bunny?

Nope.  He saw a puddle and jumped in it.

Seriously? Seriously???????  Geez Lady.  You are in the wrong classroom if that is what a horrible day looks like.

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5.  Undermine our routine.

Do you have pictures of a cartoon character brushing his teeth, his hair, going potty and getting dressed on a laminated schedule on your wall?  Well, I do.  Routine makes and breaks us around here. It is one of the ONLY ways my son copes with the torrential amount of information forcing its way into his little brain.  Respect the routine.  You aren’t doing him any favors by letting him stay up late, he’ll be miserable in the morning because he ALWAYS wakes up at the same time.  You aren’t being nice by letting him play cars instead of reading two books before bed, he’ll wake up at 3am screaming that he didn’t get his books.

Routine.  We need it.  Respect or die.  (just kidding on the death part.)

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6. Act like ASD is a death sentence.

Autism is hard to deal with, hard to parent, and even harder to understand.  Some parents have children whose ASD symptoms are so severe that getting through each day is a miracle.  Some kids have ASD and seem pretty normal, until you mess up their routine, or try to feed them anything that’s not crunchy, or talk too loud, or wash their sheets in a different laundry detergent, or tell them no, or so on. But as far ASD in the scheme of terrible things that can be wrong with your child, it’s not the end all.  So DON’T gasp in horror. DON’T shield your child from my child like they can catch it like a cold.  DON’T ignore  your child if they have several signs and symptoms, because you’re afraid of a label.  DON’T pigeon-hole him.  DON’T force your idea of what he should be doing on him.  DON’T act like my kid is less than.  DON’T say that we did something to cause this.  DO NOT FEEL SORRY FOR US!  We have love, we have a purpose, and we have support.  DON’T tell me he needs medication, DON’T tell me he doesn’t.

***************************DON’T tell me that ASD is the trendy excuse for badly behaved kids-I might ACTUALLY punch you then. HARD. IN THE FACE.*******************************

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Here are somethings you can do (I’m totally contradicting myself when I said I wouldn’t do this, I know.):

Pray for my family.

Send me info on doctors, support groups, lectures, programs, therapists, or services you’ve heard are good.

If you’ve come across some research or articles written by someone notable and reputable, send them to me. I am an animal when it comes to reading up on new developments!

If you see my kid doing good.  TELL HIM!  If you see my kid messing up,  tell ME!

Pray for my family.

Respect that we are struggling.  Everyday.

Say something like this:”Thinking of you and totally understand. Call me if you want to talk about anything – OK? Danny is going to do great and he is going to be every bit of the amazing, wonderful boy you always knew he would be.”  A woman whom I had met for 20 mins, whose son also has ASD said this to me on Facebook.  Thank you Jen M.  I cried like a baby when I read that because it was the only thing anyone had said that seemed REAL.  Thank you so VERY VERY VERY much.  I hope that I can say the EXACT right thing to someone someday, and it will totally lift their spirits, like your words did for me.  Thanks so much.

Here is our Autism:Image

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Boundaries. GET SOME!

1 Apr

So, I am learning a lot lately on the concept of BOUNDARIES.  And so far, I’ve learned two important aspects that I need to implement now.  Like YESTERDAY.  More like, “WHY in the HECK didn’t I think of this before?”  I feel like if I had done something like this earlier, I could have saved myself a CRAP TON of heartache.  Ugh, don’t you hate that?!  Learning something after the fact, after it really could’ve come in handy.  Argh!  Life can really aggravate me sometimes!  Well, to be more honest, I aggravated myself by the way I lead my life sometimes………..

Boundaries.  For me.  For you.  For everyone.  Jump on my new Bandwagon with me. We’ll have fun.

Aspecto Numero Uno – To protect other people from you:

I need someone to tell me when to stop.  I can be too forceful.  Too opinionated (thanks goodness for blogs right?!). Too BOSSY.  Too quick to make up my mind.  I NEED someone to shake me by the shoulders and say, “Enough already!!!!!” I am learning that most times, NO ONE in my life really wants to hear what I THINK they should do.  If you’re bossy like me you KNOW it’s true!! PEOPLE ARE GOING TO DO WHAT THEY WANT TO DO.   I think they just ask for advice to make themselves feel better about the choice they’ve already made in their head.  How would they feel better?  Because now, they can give themselves reassurance that indeed, they asked for advice!  Whatever decision is made, it’s not impulsive!  So WHY, WHY, WHY do I keep telling people what to do???  Who made me Queen of the world? No one. But I do think I would make a great Queen if there are any countries looking. I’ll need a clothing allowance.  Just sayin’.

It stinks when people ask and don’t take your advice doesn’t it?  That phrase, “I told you so.”  It sucks.  It sucks to hear and it sucks to see someone struggle when, IF they had ONLY JUST LISTENED, it could have been avoided!!! If you like saying, “I told you so” I would like to know why, because I HATE IT!

Example: “Cecilia, my husband and I are fighting a lot over _______.”  (Money, kids, sex, religion, in-laws, ex’s, you name it)

The old me: “Well, you should get it together and stop doing _______.  That’s why you guys are fighting and if you don’t do _____ it’s just gonna get worse and then ______ will happen and it be worse and then you’ll get divorced.”  That’s a summed up version, because basically, I can talk for muuuuuch longer than that.

The ideal me: “Man, I am really sorry to hear that.  How can I help?  I will pray for you guys.  I can watch your kids when you’re in marriage counseling.  I can make you dinner to take the pressure off for a night. Is there anything in the BIBLE about that, it’s pretty much the bomb diggity as far as life lessons go. Let me clarify, are you wanting an opinion or are you just wanting to vent?”

Somewhere between the ideal me and the old me, is where I am right now.  Where are you?  You might not be bossy.  Maybe you’re smug.  Maybe you’re judgemental.  Maybe you’re an emotional roller coaster. Maybe you give and give until you’re empty. Maybe you gossip. Maybe you’re a narcissist.  We’ve all got our flaws.  You know in your heart of hearts what yours are.  Pray about it and ask God for a solution to save your relationships.  I did and boy, we came up with an answer!!  For whatever reason, God made me exactly the way I am.  It’s my challenge to find a way to channel that into something that reflects LOVE.  One of my son’s favorite books says this phrase, “I’d rather be helpful than hurtful.”  I had to start asking if I was helping or hurting with my opinions.  Here’s what I figured out with a little help from praying about it:  Ask people for a boundary and respect them.  I actually did that just today, and I really think it’s going to ease some tension in my friendship.  I asked my friend to tell me whether or not she wants my opinion and I promised to stick to it.

A woman I know offered a little advice on boundaries, “If we start out our relationships with boundaries, we stay in control. It takes more work, more effort and carries more risk to create boundaries after things go awry than if we do it ahead of time.”

Aspecto Numero Dos – To protect yourself from others:

Who takes advantage of you? (One friend had a person stay for five days when they only agreed on three!)  Who hurts your feelings?  Who makes you feel less than the super cool person you are?  I am hoping that it’s not someone you call a friend.  Read my blog on Friendship, and release that person into the ACQUAINTANCE ZONE.  I’m guessing it’s the people you can’t get rid of.

Um, not that you’d want to….

Your parents, your siblings, your boss, or maybe even your spouse?  LISTEN TO ME.

wait.  Ah shucks, there I go again, telling you what to do. BUT!  You’re reading this blog so you’ve basically signed up for my opinion.

So, LISTEN TO ME MY FRIENDS.  We are getting hurt because we have no boundaries. END OF STORY.

Remember Dr. Phil?  For some reason in my early twenties I was kinda obsessed with him.  Don’t ask.  He said something that I will NEVER forget.

“YOU TRAIN PEOPLE HOW TO TREAT YOU.”

What?

Lemme break it down for you:  I know you love your Momma.  And I know your Momma loves you.  And I also KNOW that it drives you bat guano crazy when she criticizes your spouse/kids/job/life/finances/muffin top/ and so forth.  I hope you like your Boss. Or at least you NEED this job.   And I hope he (or SHE!) values you.  But I KNOW it drives you bat guano crazy when he (or SHE!) gives you work at the last-minute/micro-manages/gossips about your co-workers and so forth.  So set a boundary.  And reset. And reset again.  Set a boundary until that other person knows how you want to be treated!!

For your Momma: “Mom, I love and appreciate that you have some great advice to offer, but I really NEED to figure out what works best for ME right now.  Please give me a chance to do that.  I could really use your support, not your critiques.  I’m not in a place where I can hear that with love, no matter how constructive you mean them to be.”  Something to that effect I think would really go a long way.  She doesn’t stop?  Sometimes Mommas can be persistent.  “Mom, remember when I said I would rather have your support than your judgements?  I’m not sure you heard how seriously I feel about that.  From now on, let’s put this topic on the shelf.  I’ll ask for your advice when I think it’ll come in handy.  How’s the weather?”   Sometimes Mommas can be persistent AND carry boundary-knocking sledgehammers. “Mom, I love you and I know you love me.  Please give my requests some respect.  If you can’t withhold your judgements, which really hurt me, we aren’t going to be able to talk until you can.”  Hardcore?  I know. I am not suggesting that you cut ties with your family without provocation.  But man!!  They can hurt you.  They know how.  And you can still be honorable and respectful and refuse to sign yourself up for abuse.  TRAIN YOUR LOVED ONES on the way you want to be treated.

For your Boss: “Thanks Mr. Miyagi for trusting me with all this responsibility. How am I supposed to wax on AND off, on top all this other work?  I am grateful and excited for the opportunity to show you that I can handle it.  I am going to need to prioritize to get these things to get them done in a timely manner.  Can you show me what you want done right now, and which tasks can wait until the end of the week/month/quarter?”  DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT get fired over this blog.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG.  DO NOT!!!  If your boss takes advantage of you and you need the income to feed your children, DO NOT make demands of them.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!!!!!!!!!!!  Be persistent but not INSISTENT!  Roger that? And look for another job, WHILE YOU HAVE THAT ONE.  DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!!  Ask for a plan that he (or SHE!) approves of.  If they can’t give that to you, make one yourself and then make sure you’re on the right track to complete the assignments the way they want them.  Should I say it again?  Just in case? DO NOT GET FIRED OVER THIS BLOG!

Boundaries.  They’re like well-tailored trouser pants.  Everyone needs them.  They aren’t easy to find.  And sometimes you’ll have to sacrifice something to get them.  But once you find some that work for you, you’ll never buy cheap pants again.

I hope you can be successful.  Be helpful, not hurtful. Be respectful but not a whipping post.  Train others how to treat you. DON’T GET FIRED!  

Reflect God’s LOVE. 

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