Thursday, May 28, 2009

Let's see... Psycho number 5?

When does it get easier? When does a simple visit to the pediatrician, with a simple problem, end in a simple solution? Definitely not today...

How many children in America are on ADD/ADHD medicine? How many get diagnosed in a given day? Tons, right? So you would think a trip to the pediatrician with a pretty indicative Connors Rating Scale would result in a diagnosis and treatment of ADD. Nope, not in our world.

Dr. Perez looks at Zach's Connors and says, "Wow! He's really high in most areas."

Hmmm... ask his teachers - they will tell you he is off the charts.

Then Dr. Perez says, "I want you to go to Dr. So-and-so. He is the best neuropsycholgist around. Or wait, maybe you should go to Dr. Tridas the best developmental pediatrician around. Maybe he can get to the bottom of this."

Ugh. I just wanted some Ritalin. What's so tough about that?

Zach, at the ripe old age of 7 has seen 2 school psychologists. One of them told me his IQ was 42. Uh-huh, sure. Zach has been to 2 behaviorial pediatricians. Both of whom are well regarded in the field. One was unable to get anywhere with Zach and the other died. So is this new guy going to really tell me something? Figure something out? I am not feeling to positive about this.

Like I said, I just want some Ritalin so the child can focus enough to write his name! The med is given in Pez dispensers at school... Why is this so difficult?

So now I begin the hurry-up-and-wait game with another specialist. Hurry and call for the appointment. Wait 6 months until you can get in. Hurry and get there. Wait for the results. Hurry and get there. Find out nothing new. Hear the standard, "I dunno."

We have seen the following doctors and gotten nowhere: 2 geneticists, 2 neurologists, 1 cardiologist, 1 pulmonologist, 2 psychiatrists/developmental pediatrician, 3 opthamologists, numerous MRI's and EEGs, and I know I am missing a few. These people get seen at least once a year and they are all in Tampa. But no one knows what is up with the kids.

I am getting frustrated, really, really frustrated. And that is why my tone is quite sarcastic. All I want (for now) is some ritalin. Because each day that passes that Zach is not able to focus, he gets further behind. He can't afford to get anymore behind!

Oh and then - I go to pick up Ryan afterschool and Zach is with me. We are walking up the sidewalk to the building and some kid says to the group of kids standing around, "Oh, here he comes. Yuck. It's Zach." I glare at this child. The other kids just ignore the comments. So the kid goes on, "He drools. Gross." I glared even harder. I wanted to chew him out, but knew I was not going to say what I wanted to say very well, so I ratted him out to a teacher at school. The worst part, the kid is the son of the ESE Liason. The person who is supposed to champion special needs kids. Hmmm... When does it get easier?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I understand hamsters a little bit better...

What a morning... Somedays, I just don't know why God gave me two special needs children. I don't think that I am the best choice for this much repsonsiblity. I seriously blew it this morning...

Today was one of those mornings where I had a million things to do before I got the kids out the door. When Mark is gone, it is always a race to get out the door and today was no different... [I will spare you the details, but I think you can get a pretty good idea of what I'm talking about...] As I am ready to leave, Zach has an accident. Actually, an accident is being kind - he KNEW what he was doing was wrong - that's why he was hiding from me... But it wasn't any tiny problem - he had eaten about half a watermelon the day before. So I had to quickly get him a shower and get out the door. We made it, barely, but it made me REALLY grumpy. He is almost 8 years old and I am still battling the potty...

You can imagine my mood when we are driving to school. Zach is whimpering because I did not help him get his shoes on and he thinks this task is too hard for him. (It's not, he does it all the time.) So again, you can imagine my mood spiraling down even more.

I snapped. I yelled. I handled it like a pro.

I just want to know when Zach will get control of his bowels. (Am I really blogging this??) I am so tired of the constant wondering if he will ever learn! So when a friend complained that it took 6 months to get her son trained, I told her to see me when it takes 5 years I sympathized.

But I do understand hamsters a bit better... (see if you can figure out why!)

Obviously, this potty training technique is not working. Any suggestions on potty training a mentally handicapped child with low muscle tone? Because I have two of them and my method is clearly not working... In the meantime, I better spend more time in prayer so that I can get a handle on my lack of patience and control my tongue a bit better! Not to mention, apologize for losing it.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Anyone have a deserted island we can live on?

Saturday night was the last Challenger baseball game of the season and my guys thoroughly enjoyed themselves in the dug out. Yep, they had two Sarasota Reds players at their beckon call and what did they do? Hang out in the dug out and play with an old fashioned phone. Just because they have some almost major league player helping them, why should they do anything different than usual?

So what does this have to do with moving to a deserted island? Well, after the game, we headed to Bayfront Park and looked at boats and eventually ended up on a very crowded playground.

Zach and Ryan immediately started climbing and having a grand 'ole time. At one point, Zach stopped near this climbing thing-a-ma-jig (really, that's what it is called) and this kid pushed past him. Zach stopped, stared at him and then kept playing. I looked at Mark and asked him, "Do you think Zach knows he is different and do you think he cares?"

Mark and I decided that yes he probably knows he is different but probably doesn't care yet. But at some point, he is going to care and his feelings are going to be hurt and this crushes me. I know every child gets teased and made fun of, for some reason this really bothered me and made me want to cry.

So here I am at this crowded playground getting all upset about something that has happened yet, but is bound to happen. Not to mention, happen to every child on the face of the earth. I worry that is going to happen more often and more meanly to Zach and Ryan. I pray that it doesn't, but how do you explain that to your kids - especially when they are going to live with their disabilities forever? How do you reassure them when you want to go after the kid who said it?

Even grown ups tease them. Just yesterday at church someone saw Ryan in the goober hat and said some comment about being in the militia. I took the high road and ignored it, but I wanted to go up to him and have a few words. I know they would not have come out in love, so I pretended not hear it. I know he was trying to be funny, but it wasn't...

I think the hardest part of having two "special needs" kids is not being able to protect them from the extra teasing, stares, and thoughtless comments they will certainly endure. I can live with the not talking, the eating 3 things only, the poor walking, the falling all the time, the seizures, and autistic like actions. But I can't live with people being mean to my kids and "not getting it." It's like I told a bunch of kids at church, I don't expect you to be best friends with Zach and Ryan, but I expect you to be kind.

Since I can't bring civility to everyone my kids encounter, I've come up with a fool-proof plan... My solution is this... move to a deserted island. Anyone have one we can borrow?

Thursday, May 21, 2009


Music really speaks to me and I almost always have the radio playing in the car, in my office, and anywhere I can. I am always amazed how the right song will play at the right time. I know it is more than a coincidence - it's a God-cidence.

This morning driving into work, "Enough" by Barlow Girl was blaring out of my rocking loud minivan.

[Written by Chris Tomlin and Louie Giglio]
All of You is more than enough for
All of me for every thirst and every need
You satisfy me with Your love
And all I have in You
Is more than enough
You are my supply
My breath of life
Still more awesome than I know
You are my reward
Worth living for
Still more awesome than I know
You're my sacrifice of greatest price
Still more awesome than I know
You're my coming King You're everything
Still more awesome than I know
I'm not sure what it was about this song at this moment, but it was I needed to hear. I guess because I'm trying to figure some things out in my head about life in general. And hearing God tell me that He is enough was the reassurance that I needed. Wait, that didn't come out right. I have known that God is enough, but my thoughts and actions might not have indicated that.
So what I heard this morning was to just hang on, enjoy this "slow" time in the family and just worship. That's all I have to do. Enjoy the blessings and worship the One who is enough! But why is it so hard to sit still, enjoy and just worship. Why do I always feel like I have to DO more?
Hmmm... so today, I am going to learn how to just "be" and not try to find things to "do". Perhaps if I just "be" then the "do" will be from God and not from me.
I hope that today, you realize that God is "more than enough"!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Not Me Monday!

Hello! It's Monday... That means it's time for a riveting post about things that most certainly did NOT happen this week despite witnesses or photographic proof. This is blog carnival started by MckMama over at So when you are done with my post, hop over there and see what a bunch of other people most certainly did NOT do this week...

My husband does NOT eat peanuts IN THE SHELL and he most certainly did NOT teach Ryan to do the same thing. No one in their right mind needs that much fiber.

I do not have so much pent up energy from not running much that I scrubbed my kitchen floor, on my hands and knees, Friday night. I have such a social life that even being home on a Friday night is an impossibility. Furthermore, I am NOT so out of shape now that running 3 miles this morning was tough!! I mean seriously, I just did a marathon, how can I get so huffy and puffy with only three miles?? What's next? Being winded as I walk to the mailbox?

I did NOT bring a fart machine to work so that a friend could set up a practical joke on a notorious jokester. Only for the jokester to turn around and get my friend. And the jokester did NOT take the fart machine all around school and interrupt many classes. He did NOT take it home for the weekend and use it at WalMart. Surely a grown man would have better things to do with his time...
I did NOT help my kids build block walls only for me to throw stuffed animals at them. I did NOT keep this up trying to get the picture of the stuffed animal making impact with the wall. This did NOT upset my children. What kind of mean mom do you think I am? Hmm, on second thought, don't answer that...

Look at these happy boys, building walls and houses:

Look at Zach all unsuspecting and smiling as mommy has the camera poised and ready. How quickly that smile changes... See Monster flying through the air? (Oh and my husband is NOT so creatively-challeneged that he has named the stuffed animals things like, Monster, Bear, Alligator, Mr. Giraffe, etc... At least Giraffe is Mr. Giraffe.)

See Zach pounding his foot into the floor thinking, "MOM! I just built that! Why do you keep knocking it down? If Ryan or I did that, we'd be in trouble... but I don't see you in time out!"

I am NOT the type of cruel mom who takes pictures of her kids crying. Well, that's because my children NEVER cry. They are always happy with the choices I make for them... They love that we don't live in an autocracy; they are very happy with mommunism (this term was stolen from my college buddy and dear friend, Alison).

Later, Zach was NOT comforting Ryan saying, "It's gonna be ok... It's gonna be ok..." I did NOT think this was the cutest thing in the world! For kids who can't really talk, they sure say some funny stuff!

I did NOT have a whole list of things to deny, only to throw it away... That's what I get for NOT trying to tame the paper mess!! Speaking of taming the mess, my parents are NOT coming next month, so I am NOT starting the annual fix-all-the-problems-so-it-looks-like-I'm-an-immaculate-housekeeper-supermom. This year, this does NOT involve painting over sharpie on the walls, doors, and floorboards! I was NOT going to have my mom help me paint - only to find out my dad is coming too. I am NOT really happy that my dad is coming - it usually takes a wedding, baby or major arm-twisting. This year, he is NOT coming just to see his wonderful daughter and family.

Well, I am NOT estatic to say that this is my FINAL MONDAY of the school year. That's right folks, I have 9 days left until summer vacation! Yee haw!!


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Isn't it a good thing God is a better parent than we are?

Boy, I'm grumpy. Every little thing is getting on my nerves! My husband left a tea bag in the sink drain. I'm grumpy. There is dried cereal on the floor. I'm grumpy. The bed is unmade. I'm grumpy. My throat is sore for three weeks now. I'm grumpy. I need to get Ryan's seizure medicine. I'm grumpy. You get the idea... The little "normal" things are annoying me and making me grumpy.

A few minutes ago, the boys were out in the pool and I was working on dinner... I just put the diced chicken in the skillet and Mark calls for me. I know what this is... Zach pooped in the pool, again. So being the great parent that I am, I clean up the mess and then send Zach to his room until dinner - which is not the way I usually discipline. But, I am so over this potty training and I'm already grumpy... It's only year four of this charade!! No, he's not four years old, we've been potty training since he was three - he's seven, almost eight.

So knowing that I'm grumpy and faced with this frustrating situation, what do I do? I overreact. And in the middle of my overreacting, I think, "Wow, it's a good thing God doesn't treat me like this." Do I change my overreacting ways, nope.

I realize that I do so many things that must annoy God. Gossip, ignore others' needs, be mean to my husband, laziness, not treating others well, lie, the list goes on... Sure I have consequences for my sins, but He doesn't overreact. I am so overwhelmed when I think about all that God forgives. Just like that. He doesn't smite me because I looked the other way (for the 400th time) when there was a need. But yet I don't always reciprocate that love to my children. It reminds me why I need to stay connected to God - so I can draw from HIS strength, not my frustration.

But this also makes me wonder how God would handle Zach pooping in the pool. I bet He would have healed him of the mental handicap/low muscle tone that makes him difficult to potty train! Or at least have a miracle of Biblical proportions and get this kid pooping in the potty on a regular basis!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Not Me Monday (updated!!)

It is NOT Monday somewhere in the world... I do NOT have a few minutes and I thought if I did this at home, I would NOT be able to add some photos... Not Me! Monday is a game started by MckMama at This is like free therapy where we can deny a few things that we most certainly did NOT do!

I did NOT ask for an afternoon to myself as my mother's day gift. I mean isn't the purpose of Mother's Day to spend time with the family? I did NOT go to the beach with two magazines and a book. Later I did NOT go to my favorite location... BARGIN BARN to find things to resell. I did NOT find a pair of Crocs in my size!! You're right, I didn't... I found two pairs!!

I did NOT laugh my head off when my sister in law sent me this video. I KNEW I would make mother of the year.... Click here to see my award announced on the news!!

I did NOT further enjoy my Mother's Day weekend by sending the kids to Buddy Break on Saturday morning. I did NOT laugh my head off when my son hesitantly particpated in the
talent show. His talent? Sticking his legs in the air. No, he didn't tumble, he didn't stand on his head, he laid on the mat and stuck his legs in the air. I am NOT the proudest mamma in the world.

But once he started showing off his talent, he did NOT want to get off the stage. He even took the mike from the emcee and start talking to everyone. He is NOT just like his mom - he does NOT love to be the center of attention!

I did NOT tell the whole world (virtual and real) about my friend and her game of "I Spy." I did NOT resist the temptation to give her more appropriate equipment to use in her next game. I did NOT want to put a bunch of papertowel tubes all over her office...

I did NOT get great pleasure out of watching my 7 year old play with a remote controlled fart machine. I did NOT think that we have made great strides in his speech/potty training when he walked around and asked everyone if they had to go to the bathroom. I did NOT further laugh at my children when the 4 year old wanted a turn but didn't get what was so funny after he pushed the button a few times. The machine is NOT going to work with me tomorrow!!

There is so much more to deny, but I'm stopping here... Stay tuned to next week!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

You might need to have been there, but...

You can tell I work with middle school aged kids because I found these two incidents to be REALLY funny. I don't know if they will translate well into "blog" but here it goes...


Ok, still reading? The first story requires some background. My school has a separate school on campus for students who are "emotionally handicapped" or "EBD" (I forgot what those letters are for) but basically these kids got sent to this school because they couldn't handle it in the regular school. This school has kids grades k-8.

Our k-2 kids were lined up near the office, waiting on their teacher. My friend, we'll call her Mrs. X, works with these kids as the speech/language therapist. She notices the kids and sees that one of them is peering through what appears to be a rolled up piece of paper. She says, "Oh, let's play I Spy." And proceeds to engage this class of 5 kids in a riveting game of I Spy.

The classroom teacher, we'll call her Mrs. Y, comes out of the clinic and sees this. She asks, "Little Johnny, where did you get that?" And she points to the tube.

Little Johnny (why is he always the one??) starts squirming and says, "I don't know, I just found it."

Mrs. Y questions again, "You don't know where? Did you get it out of the trash?"

Little Johnny keeps squirming and finally says, "Yes."

Mrs. Y takes it from him tells him not take to play with stuff from the trash can. And then turns to Mrs. X and asks, "Do you know that is? It's from a tampon!!"

Yes friends, these kids were playing a riveting game of "I Spy" using the tube from a tampon.

I think this is hilarious - but yes - it is gross too. Oh, and Mrs. X did not have her glasses on, so she could not see exactly what it was - it looked like paper to her...

I will save my other story for another day... It is really not as funny as this!!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Oh no, Not Me!

Hi there! Welcome to my brief list of things that I would NEVER do... This is a blog carnival that was started by MckMamma over at MckMamma is back in action after having a crazy experience with her youngest son and heart issues.

We'll start with MckMamma... I have NOT been following her harrowing adventures with her son Stellan as he struggled with SVT and heart issues. I was NOT praying for baby Stellan and the rest of her family. And her updates did NOT prompt me to pray for the other babies in ICU that she was able to meet. And, ok, I will NOT be honest... I was NOT a little jealous that she has literally thousands and thousands of people praying for her kids. How UNcool would that be to have so many people praying for my boys? Anyway, my boys are NOT in a good spot right now... [I hope I didn't just jinx us... Although I don't believe in jinxes - you know what I mean, right?]

Anyway, I did NOT have a lovely weekend of doing NOTHING! I did NOT finish my 2008 scrapbook on Friday night - ok, so I still do NOT have to update Ryan's scrapbook, do Zach's 2nd grade year and we are 5 months into 2009... During my lovely weekend of NOTHING, I did NOT cut my kid's hair and royally screw up Zachs. I should have taken a picture, but it's awful... I did NOT crop the back too much and I did NOT give him this weird red-neck look at the ears. I am NOT kinda thankful for the goober hat at school - maybe the bad 'do won't be seen??

I did NOT wake up this morning and decide that if I NEVER, EVER, EVER run a marathon again that would be fine. I did NOT realize that training for that stupid thing was a burden and unfun. So I did NOT vow to not even use the marathon word in reference to the future ever again. NOT speaking of marathons... I did NOT have to share my experiences with three groups of students. I did NOT feel weird for not being more proud of myself for even getting out there. I do NOT feel like a loser because I had to walk half of the stupid thing. I should be more thrilled that I accomplished something I didn't think I could. I should NOT worry/focus/perseverate about/on the 100 years it took me to finish.

And... I did NOT laugh when a kid told me ran 20 miles on his treadmill. I know my five mile run this morning felt like a marathon, so I can actually relate. And... I was NOT super impressed by some of the kids I talked to - they were such good listeners and such sweethearts. Two boys actually congratulated me and shook my hand when I saw them on campus later. You know, I spend so much of my time dealing with kids who are struggling and when you see these same kids act like a million bucks, it really does NOT bring tears to my eyes.

Oh, and I do NOT look like a leper with my skin flaking off on my shoulders. Because I take such good care of my skin, I would never have such a bad sunburn that it would take 5 days to "turn to tan".

I have NOT gotten into this "grocery game" of saving money and buying stuff when it's super cheap. I did NOT drag Zach to Albertsons so I could buy cheap milk, chicken breasts, and a loaf of bread. I am NOT going figure out how to use coupons better and all that good stuff. I do NOT wish I lived in a place that doubled coupons. How wrong is that??

And I will NOT not keep boring you with my confessions. I am NOT at work right now without any pictures to add... So if you want some pictures, scroll down and see me breaking child labor laws...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Do you ever feel like this?

Do you ever feel like this?  All work, all the time... dishes, laundry, vacuum, pay bills...
And it seems like everyone else is having fun?

Yeah, Ryan feels that way too.