Tag Archives: community

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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How to make FRIENDS – part one.

13 Nov

For some reason, when I was ages 0-19, I was terribly lonely.  As a kid, my parents were constantly trying to find the “better” education (really the problem was me) and so I was in and out of schools all through my childhood.

4 schools in elementary, 3 schools for middle school, and 2 schools for high school.  Needless to say, I was pretty lonely.  Not quite “imaginary friend” lonely, but close. I invented imaginary lives so if anyone did approach me, I would have this cool life to wow them into being my BFF.  I know, I know.  I’ll cover that stuff in therapy as soon as we get closure on my shopping issues.  🙂

Then I joined the military. (GO NAVY!) Something about ACTUALLY getting through boot camp gave me so much confidence, that I ACTUALLY started to believe that people would WANT to be my friend. I became determined to never be lonely again.  I still moved around a bunch, that didn’t change.  The thing I changed the most about being able to make friends, was my actions.

Now, wherever I go, I ACTIVELY seek out groups with similar interests.

Example #1: When I was stationed in Jacksonville, I joined the “Multi-Cultural” committee.  I am not sure WHY we need a committee dedicated to promoting other cultures, the military is a culture in itself, race was hardly an issue. However, I wasn’t in touch with my “culture” and I figured SOMEONE must know what it’s like to be a lonely Mexican-Italian woman in a strange world. NOPE!!! I was wrong.  Turns out, there aren’t that many people out there with my special “cultural blend” that genetically and historically causes me to be addicted to carbs. BUT!!! I made two friends!   Suddenly the challenge of finding a friend in 4000 people – YIKES – became easier when I chose a group of 10.

Example #2: When I was stationed in Norfolk, VA, I joined a command led beach running group.  Again, the command size was about 500, but the running group had 12 members.  I sucked at running, still do, but it was a great way to meet people who cared about being outside, being healthy and having fun!

Example #3: When I was stationed in Oak Harbor, WA, I went religiously to the dog park. Dog park people love the outdoors and taking care of their animals similar to children!  (Caution: Sometimes it can be a teensy bit weird to see people making out with their dogs.) Think “play dates” for pets!  The people I met there turned me on to a local dinning and wine club and poof!  I had friends!!!!!!

See the pattern?  Gosh, I hope so because I am running the risk of losing you at this point…

Narrow your focus wherever you are!  Don’t move to a new city or new job and spend time feeling lonely. Feeling lonely is a WASTE of time!

YOU ARE COOL ENOUGH TO BE SOMEONE’S FRIEND!!!

I currently live in Stuart, FL.  It’s a smallish city,  CHOCK-full of people who have grown up here.  That was REALLY intimidating to me at first.  Doubt started to creep in…… I began to ask myself why in a city full of people who had the same friends since high school, would they want to get to know little ‘ole me?!  But because I had an infant son and became a SAHM, (stay-at-home-mom) I was going to go crazy without some adult interaction!!!!! So I joined a little group known as Stroller Strides, and that lead me to another little group called MOPS and that led to me joining Junior League of Martin County! Before long, I discovered that I had a CORE group of friends that I could trust with the REAL ME!!!

So, think about what you’re into and google a group in your city.  Reading? Search for book clubs. Excercise? Search for groups like Stroller Strides. Food and Wine? Search for a local wine shop and start going to tastings! Volunteering? Seek out a Junior League! Love Jesus? Find a church and join a small group!

BE BRAVE!

BELIEVE THAT GOD MADE YOU AWESOME… JUST AS YOU ARE!! 

THERE IS SOMEONE OUT THERE WAITING TO MEET YOU!

In part two we’ll cover the dreaded, “Saying Hi.” 🙂

Good luck!

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