Jsack's Mom's Blog

Welcome to my blog where I share my special needs parenting journey with my heart, truth, and love, one story at a time. ❤️

Open 

Trigger alert: If you’re suffering from any mental health issues pertaining to cutting or suicide. Proceed to read with caution. I discuss both in text openly. 

My life is an open book I’ve acted like I’ve had together but I really don’t. I’ve found out it takes a village to raise a child. And how lonely life can be when you don’t have a village. I’ve been open about not feeling like an adequate parent, good wife, or being a lousy friend. I have retreated into my world of words and writing, and have tried to make sense of the chaos before me. I’ve advocated for mine and my children’s mental health and have been told to hurry up and wait. Last week after an epic blow up between my oldest son and I, I put all my fears aside and phoned the mental office office. I was told to come down between the hours of 11 am to 3 pm and someone would have a meet and greet with me. 

This is how mental health is dealt with in my province. You’re set up to meet with someone who greets you and sees if you meet the criteria for obtaining services. So I went down there last Friday only to be told the Doctors aren’t seeing anymore walk ins today. That’s the worst lunch bag let down for the week. After talking my son into agreeing he does need help I leave empty handed. Today after battling with him to get up and go to school he decides not to go. I can’t deal with it after being up late myself with his brother having nightmares. I go back to bed, only to be woken up and blamed by my oldest for not going to school.

 I tell him just go eat and get dressed you’ll only be a little late. Then the fight begins that I failed him yet again, and he’s not walking into school late! I get a much anticipated call from my respite worker and I end up telling her everything that I didn’t get to tell her yesterday, with both of my children being home. My Captain (my oldest son, if you’re new to my blog) has been off for a week of school. This has been due to a teachers convention and after eight days of constant battling I NEED A BREAK. Yesterday I drive around in a new neighbourhood looking for a birthday party he was supposed to attend. I couldn’t find the location and my GPS was zero help.

 So I only had respite for a short amount of time as I had my youngest at home. I came home feeling defeated and tried to throw myself into busy ness of housekeeping so as to not start yet another arguement. There’s always something brewing on the horizon and then it came time to get ready for hockey practice. I asked my Captain to get his gear ready, while I quietly and quickly got his brother and I ready to go. We were set to leave when the comments started we’re going to be late, I wish Dad was here, I don’t want to go to hockey. I’ve been walking the thin parenting line between crazy and sane and I blew up and said get out and get your gear in the truck. He refused so I threw his bag on the lawn. Then I proceed to chase my youngest son down the block as he just wants to run away from all the noise. In the midst of my incessant parenting tantrum I lose my keys so I’m frantically looking for them.  

I find my back up set but it doesn’t allow me to lock my door with the key. Useless I know but key fobs are expensive to replace. So my crazy train is loaded up and we arrive at practice. Yes we’re five minutes late, and I just want to run away and hide somewhere. On the way home after practice I encounter a near accident as a racing truck passes five vehicles and is on coming into my lane!  I’ve got my music cranked and I’m singing Paradise by the Dashboard light. When the part of the song sung by the female lead Patti Russo comes on and says Stop right there, a voice inside my head screams the same. So I slow down and head towards the ditch just in time to see this truck fly past me and into the other lane. 

I’m literally shaking as I get home and start preparing dinner for my kids. I listen to them outside chatting while they gaze at the stars. Soon it’s bedtime and I settle in trying to process my day.  Thinking about everything crammed in my brain, it took me a long time to stop shaking and fall asleep last night. Hearing the alarm go off at 7 am after maybe four hours of sleep is like a jackhammer in my head. This morning when my son refused to go to school I said fine you don’t go to school then you go talk to a therapist. I arrive at the office only to be told they are full with walk ins. I don’t take this well at all, I complain you told me this last week and now you just opened up and your full? I have and will always be the squeaky wheel who gets the grease so I continue to triade. The receptionist sees I’m not leaving so she phones the office down the hallway to let them know I’m there.  

I walk over there with my shrieking sensory child who just wants to go home and explain I want to see someone. I’m once again told I can’t and to come back tomorrow. Well the quickest way to ignite the Irish fire inside of me is to tell me I can’t do something. This is unacceptable for urgent care should I be a cutter or slit my wrists would that get me seen faster? That line of questioning and behaviour got me seen faster than taking no for an answer. I have a therapist come to meet me who says I have a few minutes of her time. So I proceed to get my kids in the office while they play with Lego. So I tell her the quickest way to get help is to act crazy. She appears taken back at my honesty, so I spew on and say I’m an open book what do you want to know? I introduce her to my kids and proceed to tell her of the life we’re living.

 I’m told I’ve come to the right place, I’m very well versed, and educated. In another time and place had I known if I’d be walking this path to mental health, I would’ve studied to be an neurologist. Anything to do with the brain fascinates me, neurological disorders, psychiatric illness, all the labels and letters associated with mental illness.  I research about them all and I just want to know more. Being educated, articulate, well versed, helps me as an advocate for mine and my children’s mental health helps everyone. Now I walk a different journey to allowing this help to transform my family. From chaos to calm, from anger to happiness, from power struggles to peace. I’ve found the quickest way to get help is to stop acting like I have it altogether. So why do I tell you all this today? Well it’s simple I live my life like a open book, I can’t hide away from it anymore welcome to my book of life. Today I start to write a new chapter of hope, help, and resolution. I really think my guardian angel drinks if I was her I would too. Cheers to you Mom and thank you for saving our lives. ❤️

This has been my submission to Ash’s Sunday Confessions on http://www.morethancheeseandbeer.com. Please check out her story, the anonymous confessions, and all the other talent who link up. Thank you for following along on my journey. 💓

Today I’m linking up with http://silverliningmama.com for her conquer challenge for the month of February. 

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Friday’s Feats and Fails

Wahoo it’s the weekend! It’s my favorite day of the week as it’s also my Captain’s best day as he’s much more relaxed when he comes home from school. It’s been a long week that’s felt like more than a month! So I’ll do my best to give you hi-lights and the low lights.

FEAT

As a family we start every Friday out with a movie, popcorn and cuddles. Can you see why it’s my favorite day? I love to hear my kids chatting, making each other laugh, and the things that they come up with to entertain me and each other. I managed to get through a movie without falling asleep and getting both kids to bed. And we were all organized because the Captain had his hockey bag packed and ready to go at the front door. I love that he’s so excited to go play instead of fighting me just to leave the house. 😊

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FAIL

Hockey was a smooth day minus one hiccup. My Mad dog doesn’t want to sit still and with his sensory condition he just can’t unless there’s a IPad game, or something vibrating and flashing to keep his interest. We were sitting in the arena and he was getting antsy and didn’t want anything to do with the bag of toys I brought him. So he was bored and stimming (seeking sensory input). This is when he gets mouthing and biting so as to get instant input. Well he started licking the hand rail and a young girl walked by. I went to grab his hands and lead him away, but that’s no possible when he’s screaming. This girl came up to me and said “he’s licking the pole, I replied yes I know. ” Her response was what’s wrong with your kid?” This stung me right to the core, so I replied “he has a sensory condition, no big deal.” She began to laugh and I told her keep on walking. I didn’t handle it calmly, I tried but it just hit me in the heart.

FEAT

We had a successful hockey weekend, but traveling together always seems to make my kids even more sensory. So I have the laptop charged playing movies, iPad and the V-tab when sharing the laptop isn’t feasible. Mad dog was very successful with his potty training and I’m so proud of his accomplishment. The Captain won both his games and we ended up running into my brother in-law and sister in-law before left a hockey game. It was such an amazing reunion as we hadn’t seen them in seventeen years. Living at the other ends of each province will do that. As well as being hockey parents that will bring you together for the sport, or keep you on the road every weekend away from everyone.

FAIL

Monday was a difficult day I had Dr’s appointments for my kids with a new Pediatrician. Since it was an assessment the visits were lengthy while I answered questionnaires. My husband came with the Captain while I went in with the Mad dog. He was very agitated and didn’t want to have anything to do with the Dr. I had prepared him with a social story and did his OT exercises beforehand. But when he’s uncomfortable it doesn’t matter what I do to accommodate him. He started to get antsy and my husband and I tag teamed off and he took him home, and I took the Captain. This is where it got difficult as the Pediatrician was very thorough and wants Maddox assessed for ASD and OCD. Hearing those letters made my head swim as she read out her report. It was hard to hear and even harder to talk about my Captain and his anger and anxiety issues. He was bored, angry, and disrespectful. And I understood why, it was difficult for both of us. He will be assessed for ADHD and ODD. My heart breaks for my sons having to struggle, but labels and letters equal help for them so I’m accepting that one day at a time. ❤️

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*Image used with permission from http://www.sharingwithshari.com*

FEAT

I heard a brilliant guest speaker at my support group and he talked about the risk factors of addiction. And also how they correlate to an an ADHD diagnosis. This psychologist was so amazing, thorough, and interesting with his approach I was able to see everything I had encountered in my life in the past six years more clearly. My Captain was also able to articulate how he was feeling when I talked to him about getting help for his anger and anxiety. He doesn’t want to be bullied anymore so he won’t wear headphones in the classroom. But he said he’d try them at home, and he wishes he could stop his brain from saying stupid things. I reassured him it’s never his fault, and we all need to be kinder in our family. 💖

FAIL

With all the changes with Dr’s appointments and my stress levels my Mad dog has slipped in his potty training. I blame myself as I’ve been preoccupied with scheduling more appointments, applying for funding, and researching. Life has been topsy turvy with Mercury in retrograde so there’s always a few more curveballs to dodge. I found out I didn’t have health insurance from either province and I was just sick when I was told my Ped Dr visits were $300!!! Of course I had a few family Dr’s visits as well so color me embarrassed. 😳 I also had to apologize for getting frustrated and letting my feelings get the best of me. Luckily the receptionist could see a tired, overwhelmed Mom and they didn’t charge me a cancellation fee. I really appreciated that and assured them I’d be back with my Health insurance.

FEAT

After applying for health insurance for the third time our claim was processed and we got our Heath care numbers to use immediately. And our coverage will be retroactive from October 1 st. All it took was a trip into the city, an understanding insurance agent, and ID and boom problem solved. 😃
So now here we are going into the weekend and it’s hockey time again. I’m way ahead of the game as laundry is all caught up with one load in the dryer to be folded tomorrow. Ha take that laundry you’re my bitch this week. 😉 The Captain’s hockey bag is organized and ready, dishes are washed and floors are vacuumed. Tomorrow I tackle the bathrooms and mopping and fold and put away laundry. It’s amazing what happens when I get an hour or two of extra sleep. I’ve also been taking am electrolyte supplement and drinking two liters of water daily. As well as taking my vitamins, walking, and doing cardio on the treadmill.

So here we are heading into the weekend so we’ll see what adventures are in store for my family and I then. Until next weekend, blessings to you with whatever you’re doing and wherever you’re doing it. 💓

This has been my submission to Ash’s Friday’s Feats and Fails at http://www.morethancheeseandbeer.com Please check out how her week went and all the other talent who link up. Smooches to you for being here on my journey. 😘

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Living, Loving, and Surviving

There’s a story I’ve never told, well I’ve touched on it in previous blogs but I’ve never told the whole truth of it. I read a blog last night that hit me with glaring, beautiful, inspiration, and acceptance. This blog at http://heysweetlittlething.wordpress.com reached into my heart and held it in the palm of her hand. She wrote a beautiful, brave,poignant, story about her survival with Post Partum Depression (PPD).

It was liked she walked inside my head went into a filing cabinet and pulled out my memories. I had a beautiful pregnancy with my first child. I ate healthy, exercised, rested, worked retail, taught yoga, and rested some more. Everything was on schedule and I was due on Halloween. What you don’t know about me is I’m short, like 5″1 and by the time I got into my eighth month I was all baby. My Dr asked me how I was feeling and how I was eating. I was starting to slow down walk less, and waddle more. I could only eat small portions because there was just no room. I felt like a whale even though I was told I looked six months along then full term. This should’ve been my cue to my first guilt trip entering parenthood.

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Stock Photo found on Pic Collage

So there I was ready to pop and my baby came into the world two days later. He was a very healthy 7 lbs, 10 oz baby boy and I fell in love the moment I laid eyes on him. He was so long, 21 inches, lean and had a purple cone head. Oh wow he was beautiful to me, as I gazed into his eyes and held him in my loving embrace. He was delivered after eleven hours of labour via emergency Caesarean section. He was only in the NICU for a short amount of time until my IV came out the next day. He had a healthy cry and was very resistant to being swaddled, and had to have his hands and feet sticking out. I called him my baby burrito and little jack rabbit, because he had the biggest feet I’d ever seen on a baby. My dear husband and I took him home and became parents, even though we didn’t have a clue what we were doing. He didn’t sleep much and seemed to be clustered feeding all the time!

My Dr noticed at my six week post partum checkup I was struggling and said I could supplement him. I persevered as I wanted to breastfeed, so I survived on very little sleep, and whatever the nutrition had was gone in one feeding. I couldn’t put my baby down for ten minutes without him shrieking like he was dying. I knew of course he wasn’t, so I took to wearing him in my baby Bjorn carrier so I could get laundry and dishes done. He loved it with being so close to my heart, as I did. My husband had gone back to work after two weeks so I had started a routine to be that stay at home Mom. I started to notice things like how emotional I was and every cry would set me off into panic mode. I knew hormones played a huge role but something was off…

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I remember walking the floor up and down my hallway and around the upstairs and down again trying to get my son to stop crying. I loved him so much and he’d screw up his face and cry until he turned purple. I felt like a huge failure and my heart was breaking with each crying jag. And my sanity was shattering as I was surviving on vapors of sleep. I didn’t know what else to do so I did baby yoga to relief his gas, gave him medicine and rocked him till my body was numb and my ass was square. I then began to lock the doors and check the windows one by one and I was terrified someone was going to break in and kidnap my precious son.

At first I thought this was odd behavior but I rationalized and thought I was sleep deprived and that could make anyone connect with their inner psycho! Then I became possessive and hovered if anyone else held him and I just chalked it up to being a first time Mom. And that could make anyone protective of their first born. Then the day came when my son was three months old and my body was aching from one to many nights in the rocking chair. So I decided to take a bubble bath, I pulled back the curtain and saw this disgusting soap scum bath tub ring and I just lost it! I put my baby in his swing and scrubbed the ring and cried and scrubbed until my bath tub shone, and my hands were raw. I stepped into the tub letting the hot warm envelop and cleanse me from my sins. I loved my baby so much but I couldn’t take anymore sleepless nights. I laid in the tub bawling as my son watched me and rocked back and forth.

Later that evening I was doing my nightly shuffle around the house so my husband could be rested for work. Feed my baby, burp him, change him and try to put him to sleep. He would cry the minute I laid him down and the routine would start all over again. He would eat until I was completely drained, he was like a vampire and could never be full for more than forty-five minutes to an hour. I remember walking past the stairs and thinking if I just fell down them then I wouldn’t have to go through this torture! I never wanted to hurt my baby EVER, I just wanted all the insanity to stop and to finally rest.

I feel such shame and self loathing as I re-read that last sentence. It’s not something I’ve ever forgiven myself for and its been eight years! The next morning I was up when my husband went to work. I told him how I felt and what I was thinking last night. I told him I put our baby to bed in his crib and laid on the floor and cried until I was just an empty shell of a Mom. So my husband called my Uncle and he came over to stay with me so I could get some rest. I called my Dr that day but wasn’t able to get an appointment till the following week so I slept off and on all day, feeding my baby, changing him, till my husband came home. God bless my uncle for being there for me, he saved me that day. As I just wanted to walk out the door and walk away.

The next day my friend and her son’s came over and she took one look at me and said go to bed. And they looked after my baby and brought him to me to feed. She decided to call my husband and tell him I needed a night out and she was concerned about me. I told her how I felt and I couldn’t understand this craziness inside my head. So my husband came home from work, and I was showered and dressed up and ready for a night out. I felt like their was an ice pick plunging into my heart to leave my sweet boy. It had been three months and I never left the house without him. I’m the end I knew it was the best thing for both of us. As I pumped a lot that day, and I knew my friend was an amazing Mom, and my son was in the best of care.

We had a wonderful date night and I felt so relaxed and refreshed. Later that night my husband got up to the what he dubbed the “hockey glide walk” rock, rock, glide, glide, walk around the house. I fed the baby put him back to bed and we all fell asleep! It was miraculous moment in time, later that night I woke up in a panic because I thought my son was in our bed and I was going to suffocate him! I looked at my blankets and I could’ve sworn he was really there and I was going to hurt him. So I sprang out of bed crying turning on lights and looking for him. My husband woke up startled and went to check on our baby and there he was safe and sound, sleeping in his crib.

I called my best friend the next day that lived far away and she said I needed to get out of the house and be around people. She assured me it would be good for me and the baby. I could detect a hint of worry in her voice so I agreed. I went to health unit and there was a few Moms there I had been getting to know. The topic from the health nurse Erin was Postpartum and Beyond. After listening to the discussion and sharing a little of my experience I finally learned what was wrong with me. That day I swear I would’ve kissed Erin, as she saved my life. I had felt horrible for so long then I realized it was my brain chemistry and hormones wrecking havoc with me. After that I went to the library and took any and all books out pertaining to Post Partum Depression. I shared what I was learning with my husband and he could see I had purpose and drive again. Other than being the best Mom I could be for my son. Who I love so much my heart aches with that longing.

My son was growing well and I would lay there on my bed and stare up at the light and watch the fan go round and round. Those were the best times as he was quiet, content, and happy. I had test weighed him at the clinic and then fed him, and he was taking in two to three ounces so the health nurses weren’t concerned. I had kept a food journal since he was in the hospital. Keeping track of how much he ate, what his diapers were, and how long he fed. I had three journals and scraps of papers everywhere so I didn’t lose track. I was able to record it all and take it into my Dr. She said I was very thorough, loving, Mother and I was suffering from PPD. So she gave me the choice to accept medication, nutrition, and therapy. I chose nutrition and therapy and I started attending a support group close by my house.

I met up with the wonderful facilitator and my new friend A from Baby Talk at the health unit was there as well. We were given a manual to read and follow with homework sections. It was about putting ourselves first with rest, proper nutrition, hydration, and socialization. A and I began to bond our babies never slept, ate all the time, and we were walking Mombie’s before The Walking Dead was created as a television series. We spent a lot of time together and she was the one I prayed to God for to help me through my crisis, and gain some understanding. Every since her baby girl reached back and grabbed my son’s giant feet while we were feeding our babies, we were destined to meet.

She is my sister from another mister and we’ve seen each other through another child in our family’s and deaths in our family tree. She has been my rock through thick and thin and her and her family are my own. Even though we live far apart we’re never to far away with social media or a phone call. Our children still have a bond even though they go months without seeing one another. When they are together it’s like they never were apart. Much the same as for us Moms. We walked a very dark path together and have found the light and survived PPD. A. taught me that I’m human being, a wonderful Mom, a loving wife, and a survivor. I admire her courage, bravery, honesty, and the fact that when she wants to give up she admits it, then jumps right into the ring of life again. The journey we take with our children now is a neurological one and we stand by each other sides brave and true.

I owe my survival of Post Partum depression to her friendship, my husband’s unwavering love and support, and the help of my network of kindness from far away. I will agree with Hey Sweet Little Things blog that PPD and any mental health issue are taboo subjects by many in society. They need to be talked about and shared without shame or ridicule. My beloved Mama always said when times were tough life was always better with red lipstick, rouge, and dark sunglasses. And my sweet Gram said that if you had love, laughter, and a cup of tea you could get through anything. I’ve lived my life on these these very wise philosophies. So each day I live, learn, and forgive myself one day at a time.

This story has been written for my Blogging 101 assignment. Getting to know your neighbours by reading their blog and commenting. After commenting write about why it inspired you. Thank you for reading today, and please check out http://heysweetlittlething.wordpress.com. She has a wonderful blog and I’m so happy I found it to start my healing journey. 💓

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This beautiful art used with permission from Arna Baartz http://www.artofkundalini.com

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The power of the human spirit

Yesterday was a really long day, I had my pupils dilated and I had both my sons home and my husband at work. At my last appointment my optometrist found a cataract, and wanted to examine my eye health further. My appointment was at 9:30 am and my drops were in by 10 am. I stayed there for a 45 minute appointment while the optometrist checked out my eyes. Everything seemed fine is what I was told, except for that pesky cataract. And the fact my prescription changed, and my visions worsened since having my second son. The cataract isn’t affecting my vision is what I’m told, and has been there for awhile. Although at my last eye exam it wasn’t found. I felt very old and vulnerable when it was discovered. And I tried not to cry in front of my 3 year old when I was told…I know I’m classified as an “older Mom” at 41 but I can still pass for being in my 20’s at least I think so anyways. Yesterday while I was home with my dark big sunglasses I resembled Jackie Onassis, but much more vision impaired. I laid on the couch for awhile while my kids watched a movie. I was feeling quite sorry for myself since I couldn’t read, write, or blog and I’m not used to laying around. I returned some texts and messages via auto text and occupied my time by trying to fold laundry. That took me about 2 hours to do since my pupils were the size of coasters! My kids were absolute angels looking after me, my oldest making me a bed on my couch, and my youngest feeding me candy. My husband came home and started making dinner and entertained the kids. He took the Captain to hockey practice while I tried to finish the laundry. After successfully washing and drying a load, I settled down to cuddle and have my little Mad dog read to me. Every story starts and ends the same Once upon a time there was a Mommy and she loved to build Lego with her little boy, the end. It warms my heart that he retains so much, and is so loving in sharing the joy of books with me. I feel so grateful that my whole family helped to pitch in when I wasn’t feeling up to par. It took 9 hours for my vision to return to normal, so by the time I could take of my sunglasses I was celebrating. Later that night I was skimming through my Facebook and saw a friend had posted that her brother needed help so I messaged her back saying I knew someone that could. So I contacted my kindhearted, giving, friend Mel and told her what I needed help with. Mel runs a wonderful organization called Life after Laundry Club. She with a wonderful group of women came up with the concept nearly two years ago this January. I’ve known Mel for a long time and have always appreciated her kindness, her generous heart, and her beautiful smile. She has been my creative church buddy, and my shoulder to cry on when we went through a grief recovery program together. Being empathic I knew I would see great things happen in her life and the lives of others she’s touched. And wow has she ever, along with her team they’ve organized charity events in their community with the Heart and Stroke Foundation, raising funds for their local food bank, and helping out single parent families, or a hard working Mom that needs an extra boost of encouragement with donations of money, gift cards, clothing, and toys. These incredible group of women joined together to give support to each other by organizing community events and giving the proceeds to a willing candidate. And I know if I was still living there I’d be right along beside them helping. I knew that helping out my friend and her family member would be just what these lovely ladies would love to do. So between my friend, Mel, and myself we devised a plan of how to help and the Secret Santa Project was born! Through emails and happy tears everything has been set up and donations will be collected, items bought, and a very grateful man will receive the best Christmas present ever. So after a long day being without proper vision I saw what my day was really all about. It was for me to open up eyes and my heart, and to really see what matters. I’m so grateful to God and my family for the blessings bestowed on us. And my parents have always raised me to give more and receive less, and never miss out on an opportunity to pay it forward. So I ask you dear readers how can you help someone in need? Is it through a donation to a Salvation Army Christmas kettle? Buying an extra bag of groceries for someone in need? Adopting a single parent family and being their Secret Santa? Or buying extra blankets and passing them out to the homeless on a cold winters night? Whatever you can do, it all matters, it all makes a difference. Today I woke up feeling joyful and happy and I could see!!! I’m grateful that I have my precious children, my loving, hard working husband, a beautiful home, and food in my pantry and fridge. There’s so many throughout the world who don’t. So if you can buy a coffee and cookie for someone who needs it, please do. Our hearts grow with each good deed we do. This is how I see the world through my eyes, and I feel blessed by the power of the human spirit.

I want to thank Mel for her kindness and generosity. And her Life after Laundry Club for uniting their hearts and minds towards a common goal of helping others. And for inspiring me to do better, act better, and be better. ❤️

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An Angel in Wendy’s

I read a blog tonight that reminded me of an experience I had with a server at a fast food restaurant. I thank you for the inspiration http://blessedwithastarontheforehead.wordpress.com. Reading what you wrote tonight made me remember my story. So here I am to tell it, I went away for the long weekend with my kids and we were out of our routine. With my youngest son having SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder) too many transitions, lack of self regulation, and the busy noise of the world can be a lot for him to handle. I try my best to keep us on routine with his sensory “diet” but all the newness of people, places, things, can cause issues for him. We had gone out for lunch to Wendy’s and it was very busy. I was with my brothers so I went up with my kids to order. There was a long line up and I was praying we’d be served quickly. My oldest son was doing his best to keep his brother occupied, by singing and making silly faces. That’s when it all started as my son threw himself on the floor. I felt the judgmental looks, heard the angry whispers, instantly as my out of control child started reacting to his environment. I picked him up and held him the best I could. Holding my toddler is like holding a bag of snakes! Then he started shrieking which starts out as singing, yelling, and then full blown “stimming” as he seeks out sensory input. A sensory meltdown is what ensues if I can’t help regulate and calm him. It’s hard for me not to be embarrassed even though I’ve been through it before. I avoid restaurants for this very reason, as well as all the judgement that follows.

And then our server appeared and she smiled and said “you look like you could use some help Mom.” I smiled and said “you have no idea how much I’d appreciate that.” She took our order and talked to my son like he was the most fascinating person she’d had ever seen. She also gave him a cup to play with. He just beamed at her with his sweet smile and stopped shrieking. I breathed a sigh of relief and I felt everyone around me did as well. I got my food and sat down to eat and my brother said “I don’t know how you do it.” I replied “I don’t think about it, I just get it done.” After we ate I went up to say thank you, and my server said she had been there before, and remembered what it was like. I smiled and said it was a blessing all the same and she was making a difference in the world. I left the restaurant and buckled my kids in their seats, and I heard someone calling my name. I turned around and it was wonderful her, she came up to thank me. She asked me if I’d fill out a comment card, as her boss said she needed to be recognized. I agreed not only for her excellent customer service, but her compassion as well. I looked at her name tag after introducing myself and saw her name was Angel. I gave her a big hug and went on my way hopeful that I could get through another tough day. When I wanted to cry and run away and hide my son from all that negativity. It takes seconds to return a smile, and a lifetime to forget ones never given. Thank you Angel for being an angel that day, and your cup of kindness. ❤️

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Life in a pink shirt

Tonight I’m writing an update to my son being bullied. I still believe bullies suck, and I was able to talk to the teacher this morning and she said she’d deal with it. I don’t know her, and she doesn’t know me, so I’m hoping this issue is resolved. Or I will come down hard on this school. I will not tolerate my son being bullied! Like my dear friend said it stays with you and changes WHO you are!!! And yes the kids were able to talk and work it out. And the boy answered the reason why he picked on my son. He told him that he was bored and had nothing to do. Really, this is what we’ve come to as a society? Kids aren’t entertained with a video game so they have to make their own fun by ridiculing and hurting someone? I’ve taught my son to use his WITS but NO ONE is allowed to lay their hands on you. I’ve been the victim and stood up to bullies over the years. And I have done as my dear friend has done and gone directly to the source of the behaviour. We have to protect our kids, bullying is not like it was back when we were in school. It was horrible then, but now with cyber bullying and social media everywhere, there’s no escape. I shudder to think if the internet was as accessible back then, as it is today. I might not be here to tell my tale, yes it was that bad as I felt powerless. To be stalked, cyber bullied, ridiculed, relentlessly by a mob mentality is devastating. It tears out your heart while it’s left there bleeding on the floor. And everyone watches and waits to see your reaction. Will she cry, will she scream, will she run away and hide? Maybe, but whatever she does she’ll die a little more inside, each time she’s torn down. Bullying changes who YOU are. It makes you so scared to look in the mirror, because you don’t recognize this shell of a human you used to be. I was afraid to cross the street, sit on the bus, use the bathroom, because of my tirade of bullies. I couldn’t take the constant berating any longer. I missed 75 days of school, went into counselling, and started fighting back. My respect for authority was zero, as no one protected me from the endless torment. I got into trouble for fighting, suspended, and still felt my bullies had won. My saving grace was leaving that school but those painful, humiliating memories stay burned into my brain today. And why do I write about it today? It helps me heal a little more each time I help someone else. No one deserves this, and a wise friend told me that the behaviour says more about the bully then the victim. Feeling powerless is an emotional crime. And I want the anti bullying campaign, to mean more than just a pink shirt worn in February. Today my son came home from school and begged me not to send him back there. It broke my heart as yet another incident had occurred. 😠 More on that later, as now parents and principals are involved. I will be speaking with the guidance councillor tomorrow to make sure there’s a plan in place to protect my son. I take bullying very seriously and I will protect my child, and anyone’s child from this torment. Thank you for reading and for your love and support for my son. It’s most appreciated and heartfelt. ❤️

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