Wednesday, January 30, 2013

101 Things about me

Today is my Birthday.  I was born 41 years ago, on a Sunday. Bloody Sunday, to be exact. Recently I came across a list that I created in December of 2005...101 things about me. I figured what better day than today to share it. (again). Very little has changed. Maybe some things...but mostly I'm pretty much the same 7 years and 1 month later. In reading through it, I remembered the exact state of mind I was in when I wrote it. I wasn't sad, or depressed, or anxious. I was "not ashamed". I guess you could say proud...but not ashamed seems more accurate. There are many things on this list that make me hard to love, I suppose, and in turn, that can sometimes make me hate myself. But the fact is...this is me...and I'm going to try really hard to be okay with that, even if no one else is. 

So...with only some minor changes and tweaking...

101 Things about me...

It wasn't easy but I did it. More than you ever wanted to know...

1. I'm sarcastic. AKA a wise ass.

2. Both my index fingers are double jointed. (My elbows as well.)

3. I only have one fallopian tube left :) (and also only one ovary since Jan of 2012) Both on the same side so I'm completely unbalanced.

4. I say very very bad words. Often. Yup, I'm a potty mouth. You name it, I've said it and I'm sure I'll say it again. (not in front of the children, of course.)

5. I'm almost always right. Really, I am. Don't argue with me.

6. When I was young I cried often and easily. I very rarely cry now. I cry often and easily again. A lot.

7. I have control issues. I have trust issues. I bruise easily.

8. I LOVE change, as long as I am the one initiating the change. See Above.

9. I LOVE Marilyn Monroe, James Taylor, and Chocolate.

10. I'm afraid of heights, closed in spaces, and driving over bridges. (You can add the highway to this as well now)

11. When I'm drunk I'm not afraid of anything much.

12. I try very hard to be honest at all times.

13. I love Dr. Demento   I don't really love any doctors anymore.

14. I can't spell for shit. I don't care.

15. I'm a huge Howard Stern fan.  Used to be, but I only have an old fashioned music player in my car, called a radio (remember those?) Howard for me.

16. When I'm sleeping, like really going to sleep, I don't like to be touched.( I also don't like my stomach touched anymore. I don't know if it's the scars or the numb feeling, but I hate it. Every muscle in my body tenses up.)

17. I eat one food at a time. For example, I'll eat a potato, then the veggies, and then the steak.

18. As a child I couldn't even let my food touch.

19. I get bored easily.

20. I'm into Art and creating anything that remotely resembles it.

21. I either have an over abundance of energy or I have none.

22. I lost my virginity to a 10 speed.

23. I like to swing. On actual swings.  I now get motion sickness when I swing on swings. Welcome to old age.

24. I've kissed a girl. (two)

25. I've lived in six states.

26. I've been to Paris.

27. I've driven cross country twice.

28. I lived in Las Vegas for three years.

29. I once saw M.C. Hammer at a UNLV Basketball game, back when it was still cool to see M.C. Hammer anywhere.

30. I've been pregnant 4 times.

31. I'm a Dreamer. But I'm not the only one.

32. I'd love to be a Flipper. My dream job.   I don't care anymore. I'm just going to keep writing.

33. I used to clean up operating rooms after C-sections were performed.

34. I love to organize things. All things. Anything.

35. I LOVE Lobster and any Fried Seafood.

36. I Love the beach.

37. I was born in Florida.

38. I once married a man I wasn't in love with (#1)

39. I've been skinning dipping in Jamaica and walked back to my room in the buff.

40. I once rode in an elevator with Larry Manetti (the guy who played Rick on Magnum P.I.)

41. I have bouts of anxiety I have chronic anxiety.

42. I'm the Adult Child of an Alcoholic.

43. I'm the Adult Grand-child of an Alcoholic.

44. I've read both above books more times than I care to admit and still don't know what the fuck they are talking about.

45. I can remember faces ...names, not so much.

46. I care what people think, but wish I didn't.

47. I'm a shape shifter and I think in pictures.

48. I've been abducted by aliens. No, wait. That wasn't me.

49. I wanna be rich...I want money...lots and lots of money...

50. I hate working. (see above) Well I hate being under pressure is more like it. There are plently of things I like working on.

51. I almost always remember my dreams.

52. I dream in color.

53. I can remember my second birthday.

54. I want to be heard, damn it. (I think what I meant was I wanted someone to listen.)

55. I tend to lose my mind when I spend too much time alone.

56. I tend to lose my mind when I spend too much time with other people.

57. I wish percocet was sold over the counter and had no adverse side effects...and was basically good for you.

58. I am NOT a drug addict or alcoholic.

59. I sing really loud when no one is listening. I suck.

60. I love all music except classical. Everything from eminem to Dan Folgerberg. ( I've recently figured out that classical music has a very calming effect.)

61. I've only cried once because I was happy. (although I have been happy more than once)

62. I feel at home in bars and around people that don't fit in.

63. I've watched GH since I was about 4 years old. I'm not sure how would cope if were ever cancelled.

64. I Still want to do everything and live everywhere  someplace warm.

65. I can see myself living an alternate life in NYC and never owning a car even though it's not warm. (I might be getting too old for this now...)

66. I would totally dive into the fountain of youth, if one existed. BUT, I am not freaked out about aging and would never have plastic surgery.

67. I'm pro choice.

68. I'm a Liberal. And yes I think MJ should be legal, though I don't smoke it.

69. Most drugs, including the above (except percs) have an adverse effect on me. I was once on Morphine after surgery and had an anxiety attack and was up all night.

70. I've developed an allergy to latex.

71. I could be a vegan. I don't know why I'm not, except for the fact that I love meat.

72. I'm pretty good at car racing games. It used to be that no one could beat me until I married #2. Now he beats me all the time. (at racing, not literally) #2 and I are now divorced. No one is beating anyone anymore.

73. I'm also good at fighting games.

74. I once bleed internally for a week, before being rushed into surgery, where Dr. Merlin (the magician) saved my life.

75. I have a pretty high tolerance for physical pain.

76. I haven't truly loved that many people.

77. However, I never really let go when I do. If I loved you once, chances are I still do in one way or another.

78. I love my son more than I ever thought I was capable of loving anyone.

79. I wish I could "summer" on Martha's Vineyard.

80. I don't eat fast food,  Anymore. Often...

81. Broccoli and Cauliflower give me gas unless I eat them raw.

82. And yes, I do fart, just not often.

83. I can belch louder and longer than most men.

84. I love to kiss, but sadly, I rarely do. I kiss more now.

85. I've cheated, been cheated on and been the other woman. (Simultaneously.)

86. I once puked in a party hat on New Years Even in Boston.

87. I once puked out a car window, while the car was moving.

88. I see the calendar in 3D. (synesthesia)

89. My biggest fear, thus far, in raising my son has been, that he would choke and I wouldn't be able to save him. That was then. This is now. His anxiety scares me now. It makes me scared for him.

90. I'm a compulsive list maker, so yes, this is fun.

91. I have a few major regrets, but am doing my best not to add to that list. (I've added a few)

92. I Laugh my ass off every time I watch Anchor Man.

93. I actually enjoy(ed) Mrs. Spiders Sunny Patch Friends. Bounce rocks!

94. I am having a drink right now. It's my birthday so I probably will at some point.

95. I assign gender to numbers and letters. Names taste juicy or dry.

96. I suffer from road rage on occasion.

97. I was in labor for 17 hours.

98. I'm a little bit country...a little bit rock and roll.

99. I love leather.

100. I'm that kind of girl.

101. And..I'm done.

Hope, who is pretty much who she is, I guess. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

An Ode to all the fucking eye rolls.

First, let me say this... It confuses me, angers me, saddens me, and hurts me deeper than I can even explain, when strangers can offer you you more comfort, communication, and understanding than the people in your life. People that are supposed to care about you. I don't understand it, and all I can do is pull back, as I realise I'm truly alone. Maybe we all are.

I've done a shit load of reading and research over the last few weeks, absorbing every bit of information that would possibly fit into my already overcrowded brain. I've gone from feeling like Leeloo in The Fifth Element when she's overloaded with all the horrific details of feeling how we all felt at the end of The Sixth Sense, when all the pieces of the puzzle, the ones that were staring us right in the face, fall together.

And here I am, again, dumping my fear and frustration here, because there is nowhere else for it to go. No one wants to hear it. The words "Can we talk." Or "I need you" produce less than desirable results. In fact, they usually end up being the gateway to less communication and support. Again, I don't understand, and to be honest I'm not even sure I have the energy to keep trying to.

I won't apologize for that, any more than I will apologize for wanting to find answers to my questions, or my obsessive way of seeking out information. Because it is MY way. And, after everything I've read, I won't apologize for my anxiety anymore either, any more than a diabetic would apologize for their diabetes.

I won't let other people make my son or myself feel less because there are things we don't want to do. I never really understood that either. I don't force my interests on other people. I don't know why the rest of the world feels the need to get you to do what they're doing. Like it's better

I guess if you haven't been there you wouldn't understand, but I'm also starting to learn that that's not my problem. You can't FORCE understanding. All you can do is ask for it. Chance are, you will get it eventually, just not from where you expected it, or so desperately thought you needed it.

Hope, who now understands why some change is inevitable.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Day After.

After a long drive this morning and an even longer cry, I'm back to doing the only thing I've ever really known how to do to deal with my feelings.

If there's anything that will make an already Anxious Mama more anxious, it's the thought that her child might not be "okay".  Today is going to be one of those days that's hard to get through because everyone is gone and I'm left here alone with my own thoughts. But there's a difference between yesterday and today. Yesterday I was alone with everything. Today I know that there are so many people who are dealing with the same issues. People, I never even suspected.

After sharing my post about Jack, I was in shock at how many people "came out of the woodwork" to either share similiar experiences or offer support. Strangers and friends alike. It was almost overwhelming, and a bit scary, but at the same time I think I breathed a small sigh of relief. (If that makes any sense.)  I just want to thank everyone for, not only your offers of help and contact information, but for sharing your own experiences with your children or children you know. Coming from someone who's been living quietly with these thoughts for so long, it is an amazing  help to hear similiar stories and know that even though things are "different" they are still going to be okay. (I'm not sure I fully know that yet, but I will.) It's also been an amazing help to hear some of my own suspicions confirmed. It's been very difficult to have my legitimate concerns for my child blamed on my own Anxiety, when in the back of my mind, that little voice has been telling my otherwise. I feel as though now his father and I have a starting point. So thank you!

Although very little has changed since yesterday, in a way, it feels like everything has. Everything, except Jack. He's still the same loving, caring, funny, smart, creative, sensitive and truly unique little boy he's always been. My only hope now, is for us to find the loving, caring, funny, smart, creative, sensitive and unique tools we need to help him be the happiest he can be.

Hope, who feels like she's now seeing everything through different eyes.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Let's talk about Jack...

***(no time for proof reading. forgive the spelling mistakes. or don't. doesn't matter.)

I really liked that title at first and thought it could be a good name for a book, until I remembered "We need to talk about Kevin"...and I quickly changed my mind. Still a good name for this post though.

Jack isn't like other kids. You could call it a mothers instinct but I really don't think it was.  I, myself, wasn't fully aware of it until he was about 19 months old and we'd started joining "play groups" to "socialize" him. It was then that I really got to see the differences. How he didn't seem to notice the other kids were there and preferred to play off to the side by himself by spinning the wheels of a toy car. Over the years when I've voiced this I've gotten..."well he just had you and Jason for so long." (19 months really isn't that long is it?) Or..."he's just were quirky.  He's a smart kid, he does well in schoool, he's fine!"

One day, when he was about 3 years old, I saw that T.V. special with Jenny McCarthy speaking about her sons autism. I was folding laundry in the living room and my jaw literally dropped, and I had to sit, while listening intently, as she fully and completely sat there describing my son. At that point I  went on a rampid search for information and became obssessed with finding out as much as I could about this particular disorder/syndrome or whatever it was. I approached his preschool teachers with my concerns.  They admitted to noticing what they referred to as "autistic tendencies"  ie...toe walking...arm/hand flapping, singular/obssesive play with one object.  They also admitted he was extremely sensitive/emotional. However, he DID seem able to play with the other children, he was bright and communicated right on target.  There didn't seem to be any "delays" so to speak.  Their advice was just wait, watch him, and not be too quick to "label" him. 

At that time, I have to admit, I felt a sense of relief. If they said he was "okay" then he was okay. It was in the back of mind, but being obssesive and anxiety prone myself, I tried to tell myself it was just me. I was just prone to worrying.

Shortly after that, my husband and I divorced, and Jack and I moved to Central Massachusetts. A new life, a new place to live, a new pre-school, and no Daddy.  His new pre-school expressed concern with his over emotional behavior. I may have been pre-conditioned to resist them as it was a religious pre-school and already I didn't agree with a lot of their ways of teaching. I finally agreed to let him be evaluated. (in fact I'm going to find those papers just to refresh my memory). They recommended counciling for him to deal with the divorce and pretty much attached all of his quirky ways to the seperation anxiety of it all. I tried to tell them that wasn't the case. That this was Jack. This had always been Jack even before the seperation. You can't really argue with the professionals though. From that point on I stuck with the original thought of...well he's not behind  and he will grow out of the daily crying.

By Kindergarten he did actually grow out of some of the the walking on his toes and flapping his arms. He was still very sensitive and emotional. Since then he's just kept progressing and none of his teachers have had any real concerns that they have brought up to me. "Jack is bright, writes wonderful detailed stories and draws wonderful detailed pictures. He's kind and helpful and always follows the rules. He does however get lost in his own thoughts from time to time and I have to call him back." 

Nothing out of the ordinary, I suppose, but recently he's been having a lot of anxiety about to school. (Something I can understand) One reason in particular raised a red flag for me and has sent me back on this mad quest for information once again. It was silly or would seem silly to a normal person but for him it caused a lot of confusion and anxiety.  He was supposed to run laps in Gym class and he had to be the leader (meaning he had to know what he was doing rather than just imitate everyone else) They apparently run three laps and walk the fourth. He didn't know what that meant. Does he start counting one when he starts running?  When is the lap over? People will blame me if I mess up!  I took a book off his night table and pretended it was the Gym floor. You start here, okay?  In your head, when you start...say start!  Once you run around one time you then say one! then when you run around again... say two!  and again say three!  After you say three you know it's time to walk and once your are done're done!  "OHHHH!" he says..."Okay...I didn't get that at all."  Silly?  Simple?  Not for everybody.  Given that I'd recently read..."Children and Adults with Aspergers Syndrome will have trouble copying dance steps, aerobic moves, or direction in Gym Class."...yes, a little red flag.  The bigger red flag was remembering back when I had to "teach" him how to play with cars/toys rather than letting him line them all up in neat little rows. "Children with Aspergers have to learn things that come instinctively to others."

Of course one memory lead to another and before you know it I'm watching old videos and youtubing asperger syndrome and reading blogs. Obssesive? Slightly. On one hand I want answers and on the other I do find the research interesting. The biggest driving force, however, is the one coming from my gut. The one that I've let other people convince me to ignore. I'm still not sure that I'd want to label him, if in fact, he does have Aspergers, BUT, at the same time he is getting older and is around other people more than me. People who won't be able to understand his inability to understand.  The reason I understand is still to be determined, but given my own unique behavior, I have my suspicions.

For now, I just had to get this out as I've been living with it in my head for a few weeks (years) now. In my research I was able to pinpoint so many behaviors/character traits that my son has exhibited over the years that line up with this Syndrome. Some of which I (and quite possibly his Father) share as well. 

Jack as a Baby:

Little eye contact over the age of 6 months

Rarely responded to name

Would cry/arch back when picked up, held, rocked, etc...

Would cry when changed, bathed, did NOT like water

Hands were in constant motion, which later turned in arm/hand flapping

Rarely smiled and people would comment that he was an "old soul"

Wouldn't wave

Screamed and wouldn't sit in the cart at the Grocery Store

Screamed at all Doctors appts

Screamed when brought in water

Sat up, crawled, walked late

Learned to walk on toes

Always had to have something in his hand (a large blue lego was his favorite choice) and still does

Jack as a Toddler:

Continued to walk on toes

Flapped arms/hands

Talked on schedule but mostly repeated things like a parrot and recited T.V show, commercials or songs

Was very polite...repeating the pleases and thank you's.

Memorized things easily

Wrote Backwards

Knew exactly how to get places in the car and what road went where

Very sensitive to clothes, food textures (would vomit)

Wouldn't walk barefoot on grass

Wouldn't walk in snow at all.

Still screamed when brought in water

Developed an obsession with Telephone poles

Developed and obsession with Vacuum Cleaners. (we had to look at them every time we went in the store.)

At Gymboree he would wander away from the group and do his own thing without following direction

At play groups he would ignore other children and play alone with one object

He would scream when other children tried to touch/hug him

At the playground he rarely played on the slide/swings but would wander off collecting sticks or rocks with me following behind

If he did swing, he'd rarely smile

Would snuggle a little more than as a baby but not for long unless falling asleep

Stayed clear of the kiddie pool!!

Didn't know not to touch strangers and would often follow around other adults at the park instead of kids.

At home, he lined up his bath toys/cars/trains/socks. Only "pretended when he was mimicking a T.V show or movie.

At three would decide not to go to the park when we got there saying there were too many kids.

Jack Today:

Keeps a select interest or toy for a year or more...from trains to cars to legos and video games.

Still has food issues but is now more willing to try. Rarely gags or vomits.

Toe walking only returns on occasion. No more arm flapping

He's not a nail biter but rather a nail picker/peeler

Constantly singing and humming movie theme songs or T.V. jingles or making sound effects. Constantly. Did I mention it was Constantly?

When he draws it's not just one picture...he goes through 10 or more pages making one after the other

Prefers video games and electronics and legos to playing outside or with other people

If he's not playing a video game he has legos in hands (constantly) making sound effects.

Doesn't like to have to go anywhere. Would rather stay home

Rarely has to be diciplined. Once he knows the rules he sticks to them and would like for everyone else to as well.

Is heartbroken if he does happen to do something wrong.

Is having anxiety about going to school which is mostly centered around not being sure he knows the rules or what he is supposed to do.

Hates to make mistakes on homework, or drums, or video games and is very hard on himself when he does, occasionally hitting himself in the head and crying. Wants it to be perfect.

Has develped the fear of dying

Seems to have a lot of empathy/sympathy and cries easily

Has the end of the world syndrome when he knows he's done something wrong

Is very honest!

Loves knock knock jokes but often has trouble recognizing when someone is joking with him.

Very sensitive to teasing even when it's in fun

Can be very literal and often looks to me for clarification. (was he joking?)

Is easily scared by unexpected motion/loud noises (BOO!)

Has strabismus...little to no depth perception and appears to be color blind...on and off?

Expresses his love for his immediate family often and easily. ('re the best son in the world're the best mommy in the world.)

Enjoys other children, laughs, is silly, but will often just watch them play and only engage in his own personal interests.

Doesn't like sports. Doesn't want to be blamed for doing something wrong. Is only competitive against himself.

Will now only wear comfy pants. No jeans. No buttons. No zippers. Would stay in PJ's forever. :)

Poor balance and coordination

Doesn't like candy or gum or soda.

Likes advance notice for any change of plans

Apprehensive to try anything new


Is very routine without me asking.


Wow. I didn't realize I had noted so much. Much of this I understand and have done/been the same way in my own life. Some may be considered normal. Many things could be attributed to some sort of Sensory Processing Disorder. Mostly though, to me, they've always just been personality traits. What takes you off guard is when you find a list of those exact personality traits being linked with Asperger Syndrome. Which is the case here.

I'm not sure what to do at this point, but for now, at least it's out of my head and I have a hard copy of traits to print out if it's ever needed.

Hope, who, of course, enjoyed writing the list.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Bitch, Bitch, Bitch

The month of January is now half over. So far I'm sucking at my semi non resolution of enjoying myself more. Instead I've been suffering from a whatever I do is not good enough complex. I also need to get laid more I think.

Other than that, nothing much is new. That's part of the problem as well. I tend to get sucked into this rut of doing all the every day mundane tasks. Most of these tasks being done for everyone but myself, and when they're done there is little to mo time for anything else. It's the same shit day in day out, with really nothing to look forward to. All the books and magazine articles, and shrinks would say, "You have to MAKE time." And to that I'd say, "Fuck you. First of all If I could MAKE time I wouldn't have this problem, and second I'd most likely just make time STOP." This getting old thing is pretty sucky, so yeah, I'd stop that shit.

Given that I can't do any of things, I've got what I've got. Gotten? Or I get what I have or something. Simply put...I'm stuck.

I have an intense urge to escape for a night or a weekend or a month. The last option may take some finagling and require the assistance of my very own Cherry 2000 Clone. My significant other doesn't like the idea of me disappearing because he thinks I want to get away from him. Not really. Maybe a little. Maybe if he did his own mundane tasks everyday it would free me up to be a human being here at home for a few hours a day. Maybe. But again, it is what it is. It does piss me off a little that the one thing I'm certain I need that doesn't include him is the one thing he chooses to pay attention and object to, while the other needs that do include him are sitting over in the corner hiding under the dust bunnies.

Apparently I needed to vent a little? Who knew?

Hope, who also has not slept in my own bed for three day due to a snoring issue and could possibly be a little cranky and sleep deprived.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


The Holidays have come and gone and I'm still mostly in one piece. They went as well as I could hope for with only a minor set back. Or a reoccurring set back would be more accurate. Trust is a funny thing. Those who want it usually don't deserve it and those that would like to do it, well, we're just fucked up.

Anyway, it's a new year once again, which means what? A time for change? Possibilities? Hope? A chance to re-write ourselves and our stories? Maybe.

I was all set to jump back into work mode today but felt the sudden urge to throw things away instead. So that's what I did. I know that my need for a clutter free, clean and organized outer world has absolutely nothing to do with my outer world. I don't care. It's one of those things I need to do. A sort of cleansing ritual that helps to clear my head and all the nasty little demons inside it. It feels good and I need to feel good sometimes.

Anxiety wise, I'm about the same as before. I can go places without too much worry, although I do have to still consider where I'm going and if celexa alone will do the trick. I'm getting pretty good at it. My life, however, doesn't always allow for the same type of planning as errands do. Occasionally I'm thrown a curve ball and I have yet to find a pill that helps me deal with that. I guess that is where coping skills would come in handy. I'm putting those on my "to get" list.

As for resolutions...who the hell knows. I mean, I know what I should do, but really, don't we all? This year I'm leaning more towards what I want instead. When I figure out what that is I will be sure to write an insightful and sarcastic blog about it. For now I'm sticking with a monthly theme. This month is out with the old. Every day I will throw shit away. With any luck, by the end of the month, my head will be clear enough to dive head first into February.

Hope, who wishes you all an Enthusiastic New Year.