motherhood, special needs kids and experts (know it alls)

A child of mine has lived with me since she was 4 days old.

She has numerous special needs.  That’s an umbrella term for ‘lots of stuff that isn’t like other kids’  or ‘m.m.r.  / non verbal (though this doesn’t stop her from telling you what she wants ) adhd symptoms/ impulsive/compulsive/ sometimes real pain in the ass/ ‘

What she lacks in social skills, or IQ or common sense, she makes up for in teenage hormonal behavior, along with that, a 3 year old’s attitude of what the world owes them.    So, if there is a behavioral meltdown, it’s teenager X toddler…..It’s overwhelming.

Nevermind that.

I have taught (or she taught herself, if she was interested enough in something) her all through her life. When I discovered there were so many ‘issues’ I made sure that she had a wide variety of experiences, books, animal interactions, and a lot of other things that folks originally shook their heads at and said ‘oh, she doesn’t understand that’….. ‘she will never be able to do ________  (fill in the blank)    She has shown them all, on many things.

She has people who help her socialize and learn behavior in the community.   She works with them a few days a week, and it is good.  She listens to other people, who aren’t her mom…..  She also learns best about responsibility from them. 

Everything good that has happened for her is because I made the effort for her- even when there were people in the school systems that didn’t want to pay for it, or were sure it wasn’t going to work, or thought she wasn’t intelligent enough etc etc.  This isn’t to say that I taught her all wonderful stuff;  I taught some, and because of some fine and dedicated folks, she learned a bunch more from/because of them.   I was the one at the very beginning, who knew she had a spark in her.  It might not have been like the spark of some future rocket scientist, or the future geologist.    I saw, in the beginning, through the sometimes murky depths of her issues, that she had a brain and was capable of learning.      Especially if she was interested in it. 

The school system she is in now understands that she has capabilities.  They see her as an individual, who has some issues and may or may not succeed in everything, but at least they will give their all to provide her with the opportunities!

One of the behavioral workers (the ones who help her with learnng social behaviors) is very new.  She’s enthusiastic, and I like her.  I have talked, talked, talked about my kid, sometimes I am sure way too much!  She probably was filled up by my speeches about my kid, like a sponge, and then, when saturated, couldn’t remember the rest…. I dont blame her.  

Today, she seriously wanted to tell me that I was wrong about my kid’s reading ability.  She misunderstood soomething I said once before. (my kid has the capability to read at her grade level.  She retains it, and understands it.  Is she interested in it? NO! )She wants to read at p.b.s kids level.  She wants Disney jr books, about Doc McStuffins!  This is where her interests lie.  If you dont know, that is about a three to five year old level.  She doesn’t want to read high school level stories.  She wants Arthur! She wants Dora!  Diego!  …    This doesn’t mean she doesn’t comprehend what she has to study in school. 

Yes, she gets high school reading assignments in doses that she can absorb.  The point is, that she CAN and DOES understand her level of reading.  She is just not interested in it.  She does pretty good at her special classes, and alot of it is because of the hard working educational technicians and her wonderful, dedicated teacher, Mrs Bowden.

When she comes home, my kid wants to read at the little kid level.  There are some books she likes that are a few years older, like, ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ series, and ‘Nate the Great’.  She also likes “Magic Treehouse’    another series of books for 8 to 10 year olds, I think.

So, I tried not to get annoyed when yet another ‘expert’ politely informed me that my kid isn’t interested in 11th grade reading.  PUH LEEEEZ……  She STILL can comprehend it.   I dont care if you believe me or not….. perhaps you have a degree in ‘special population’ and perhaps you are very enthusiastic.  You might think you walk the walk, but honey you dont know much, yet.


By the way; we dont have tv anymore, because it affected my kid’s behavior.  So a few years ago, got rid of it.  She still uses a computer (yes, quite computer savvy) and probably watches some tv on it. She has an hour of computer time when she gets home.   I am slowly, gradually, leading her away from PBSkids and Disney, not just because of the consumeristic crap, but it is not ‘real’ story telling,  and I want her to have as broad a spectrum to read from as possible. 

She recently brought home a paper she’d  researched on the computer, and written (on the computer) on Africa, and some of the animals, poachers, etc…..  She may be retarded, but she’s not a dumb ass. 

No more than any other teen I know.


relationship ‘stuff’ from a middle aged widow

I lost my husband to cancer in 2009, a month before his 67th birthday.   I had just turned 52 then – he left behind two teens as well.

About a year later I was ready to date.

I met up with some nice folks, strange folks, mean folks.  It’s ok. That’s life.   Negotiating that whole dating scene when you’ve been absent from it for so long is a whole ‘nother page.

Today, over 4 years later, a very nice man lives with me.    He is also widowed, his wife from cancer also.

Sweet man, talented (musical) frugal, great.

He has so many damned health issues!  He also suffered from depression in the past. (it’s the specter that I see haunting him now and then, and it is wearying)

  I cared for someone who was dying; my husband was not diagnosed correctly for so long, that by the time he was dx’d correctly, it was too late. 

Anyway, this sweet man has many good qualities.  Due to health issues ( twice pneumonia, blood infection, hand surgery twice, the list goes on– he cant help it, I dont blame him for it) he can’t work (landscaper) or even play in gigs that he uses to supplement his seasonal salary.    He has begun (huh– what do I mean? Begun!  He has been experiencing) a form of inertia and passive aggressive bullshit, since he can’t work, or make any money.

I am beginning to tire of him.    I sympathise with his issues; I just need some fresh air.

We don’t go out. (he can’t afford it, and I dont always want to pay, which I do alot)  If he gets the ‘hint’ every now and then that I am sick of his laying around, then he becomes an obediant child who asks if he ‘should’ do this or that….what?  WTF?  What do you think, Einstein?  Look around you!!! I am not your fucking mommy!!!

I have a special kid, and have finally lucked on to an organization that helps people like me with respite on a regular basis.  After all of these years with a challenging child, I finally have the free time once in a while to kick up my heels, wheeee!!!!  The point is, I dont know what to do– I’d love a partner to have fun with or do stuff with.   He doesn’t have the money.  It isn’t expensive, what I want every now and then, but ‘stuff’ does cost a bit of cash.

My kid likes this sweet man; he is nice to her, and they like to joke around.  He was a teacher for almost 20 years. (that’s a lifetime ago for him)

The thing is, I dont want to care for any other sick people!!!  No, he is not terminally ill.   I just dont want to be around depression, self pity, aching muscles, recovering from  A., B., or C, or whatever.   If there is another adult in the household, I want him to act the part!

I like him.   Right now, he feels pretty worthless to himself. Acts that way, too.

I wish he would move out.  He and I have had this talk once before, when he had some kind of attitude about something else.  I guess I might do it again soon.  It caused a massive change in attitude the last time, and I wasn’t some mean bitch, I just didn’t like the way I was being treated, when he slept with me, lived with me and ate my food (when he was working he kicked in for groceries)

What made me so angry, was my kid had all 4 wisdom teeth taken out the other day. (No, that didn’t make me angry)  Ever cared for a kid who’s a teen, but thinks/acts like a 3 or 4 year old?  With all 4 teeth out? And teen hormonal energy?  Fun!!!     No, not fun.  Exhausting, the whole first day of the surgery.   The next day, better, the day after that, snowstorm, school closed.  That’s ok, she was doing fine by then.    I have been feeling a real need to get away from her (yes, I love her dearly, but such intensity, and so overwhelming) 

I happened upon a notice that a certain singer is coming here.  Not cheap; no I shouldn’t spend the money, but cheapest I have seen in a while. $48 for a seat.   Would LOVE to go.  It’s at night. Got respite. My friend said ‘oh I dont want to go. Too expensive’    ………I almost bought him a ticket.  Did it before, and it didn’t work out; he got sick, I lost the money I spent.    I haven’t bought my own ticket yet, but I know I can go by myself.   I just hate driving in the dark.  My vision is poor, I dont know that area where the concert is well.

I’d LOVE to go and socialize, share music, be together with him (without paying for his ticket)   He is broke.  I understand.  He is doing nothing around here.  Lives here, ocassionally he buys some veggies or some pellets for the stove.

Ok, now I have ranted, let off steam.   I am pretty sure I am going to do SOMETHING and it will probably be by myself, because I’ll be goddamned if I buy his company.  All my friends are busy that night, and have jobs and children too, and are poor like me.

There are a couple of other men who’ve asked me out, or nearly asked me out.   I’d love to go with another certain man!  But, I dont want to get entangled into that kind of stuff.  I also dont want to jump from one ship to the next.



walk in the woods/ ‘spring’ in Maine—

today I took 3 of my dogs across the road into the woods, on a typical morning walk.

I love walking there in fall & winter;  before and after the main part of hunting season is done and most of the hunters are satisfied with what they did/didn’t bag, and don’t want to bother anymore for the season. I love walking there because it is the woods, get to see lots of nature and have some peace and quiet, plus, I dont put leashes on them.  No one else usually walks in the woods in winter in this area (unless it’s to hunt, I guess)  Sometimes I take all 6 dogs at once, if my friend comes with me.  Usually, though, it’s 3 the first walk out and then 3 the next.  Sometimes this winter I’ve snowshoed.  Sometimes the snow was too powdery, or something, to really work for the shoes, made it more work, instead of easier.  The dogs walk along happily, get more exercise, I think, than if I leash them and walk straight up and down the road, with cars whizzing by me.

I especially love it when the paths are groomed by the snowmobilers.  Better than walking on a boulevard in some fancy city- wide, smoothed out, beautiful trees as tall as skyscrapers!  The skies can be blue or grey or cloudy- the trees, after the icestorms looked like some beautiful crystal jewels hung on the branches, and they were bowed over, top heavy birches, and even the different pine branches hung down low enough to limbo under.

This morning, we entered the trees, and it seemed a bit quieter than normal.  Last few days, I’ve seen some bear scat and some scrape marks that certainly dont look like dog toenails.   Always watch the dog’s reactions, too, and note if anything seems amiss to them.   We wandered down a path, the snow is really hard packed by now (hey, it’s ‘spring!’) and I noticed something scurrying up a tree. Couldn’t tell what it was- too far from me/just assumed it was a squirrel, bunch of trees in line of vision, anyway.

Suddenly, the dogs all began barking! Usually if there is something to chase, they’ll just do, and I call them back. ) This time, no chase, just loud raucus barking.  Shushed them, ‘no bark!’ they were silent for a moment until we came to that tree  I saw the scurrying action….Then again, they barked, looking upward at the tree top….surprised, I looked up- at a bear, peering out through a clump of pine branches…   Didn’t have the presence of mind to snap a pic on my phone, nor to figure out how big or small; thinking it was a smaller bear. Did know that if it was a young bear, then the mama might be near, and if it were the mama, the babies might be near…… we turned and walked away (or, I walked- the loving protective hounds all dashed ahead of me, returning to me now and then, as if to say ‘hurry up! you still lagging behind?’) on a very long walk back to the road, where I would feel a bit safer.

well, hello

this is the first and (right now) uninspired posting. 

I have wanted a blog for many years, but didn’t understand anything about how to do it.  Still dont.

Thanks WordPress!!!  It was stunningly easy, for a stunningly computer ignorant woman.  I’ll write more as I go along; right now, drinking my 2nd cup of coffee this morning.

My goals for today-  simple ones–

do a bit of yoga – sun salutations  both ‘a’ and ‘b’   (or 1 and 2, if you prefer) for a few minutes.

Get some other kind of exercise for half hour, and finally if the temps rise a bit, walk my dogs through the tree forest across the road……

After that, there’s more to do, right now that’s enough to write.  I broke in my blog.  Now to get better at it.

By the way, this blog will contain stuff  about my special kid, perhaps the animals that inhabit this palatial abode and many other things, including widowhood,  a bit about self sufficiency as a goal.   Other stuff, too.