Monday, April 13, 2015

Monday, Monday. Can't Trust That Day.

It's been too quiet here, and I've always got ideas rolling around in my head, so I'm taking advantage of this quiet moment (Rachel is napping; Sarah walked into her room of her own accord and starting playing dolls--- I crept backward slowly as not to startle her in natural habitat-- and the fact that she didn't ask me to stay with her or make some deal or ask to watch TV really needs to be documented).

What's shakin' here in this corner of the world:

1. We survived Spring Break

We had several appointments to keep, our regular speech and OT appointments, and a day trip to Atlanta to knock our every-several-months check-in with the Marcus Autism Center.  We've learned through trial-and-error that the best way to attack this appointment is for me to take Jay solo and Alex to stay home with the girls.  Every other configuration-- making it a long weekend or taking the girls wears us and and defeats the purpose of getting 1:1 time with a specialist.  I instragrammed (is that in Merriam Webster yet?) a shot of us leaving, and the last two visits have been nothing short of easy, and surprisingly, encouraging.  I have a whole 'nother post about this to write, but with autism, and with visits like this to the specialist, it's a quick snaphot of my child and it can feel defeating-- a stranger rattling off tasks and prompts for him to complete when said child has a processing delay as well as a whole host of "static" jamming his channels like sensory needs and idiosyncratic speech.  Maybe it was the quiet car ride, or the familiarity, or the calm atmosphere (the waiting room was almost empty and we went right in), but J owned  the vital stats portion and even seeing the NP instead of the doctor, attended and worked with her and she was great.  Having a child with special needs can make the parent feel like every interaction with a professional is a test to be passed.  In case you weren't aware, that doesn't make for a healthy frame of mind.  Bottom line: My child is growing, as all children grow, at his own pace and in his own time, but he is growing, and that's such an affirming thing.  I ran into our pastor this weekend out and about, and through tears ('cause when someone really cares and it's about my boy, I can't help it) I said, "There's not enough good things I can say about Jeremiah."  He's a silly, beautiful, happy boy who loves and knows he's loved and I'm privileged to have a front row seat.

2.  Swim lessons!

I've put these off because I wanted to wait until J had the maturity level to make the attempt worth it.  The girls started last week, it is was a hoot.  I told them, "She'll just show you how to blow bubbles today," but no ma'am, it was catch and release, sink or swim, go grab that wall.  There was much screaming, and "I want Mommy" and "I want to be done" in the short 10 minute lesson each girl took.  Can I tell you I giggled the whole time?  Because I knew it was just about control and the girls were safe and could do it?  And maybe even secretly thought it was a great thing to see my big girl taken to task with a bit of tough love?  Need help disciplining?  Swim lessons.  It's worth the investment.  The second lesson there was a bit of sniffling, but much more learning, and Rachel declares she will "swim like a mermaid" and I don't mind telling you she is the brightest toddler in existence.  It's simple fact.  She talks like she's years older but has that little-bitty voice, and the chubbiest face and limbs and satisfies my need to baby a little person.  She's delicious.

3.  We had two date nights last week: Praise You, Lord.

It seems like whenever we get to go out that Alex and I just pick up on the conversation we left hanging two weeks prior.  I got to use words like "myopic" and "drivel" in context which affirmed in me my gift of language.  Some beat their bodies into submission, and I, well, throw around my 9th grade vocabulary list into everyday conversation.  Use it or lose it.  We got to support our local pregnancy center and eat at the Rookery with all manner of hip individuals and talk about the continuity of the Bible and how I want to save our kids from wrong thinking about God, but that's inevitable, because, duh, GOD, and his ways are beyond tracing out and sometimes you have to learn things for yourself.  I could only imagine what our server and fellow patrons thought about us as they drank their Jimmy Carter shakes (banana, peanut butter, and bacon-- we resisted) and ate their locally sourced beef topped with pimento cheese and bread and butter pickles (yes, please).  We had a simpler date night this weekend, me scrapbooking and Alex working on the computer at our Panera. It was rather glamorous.  But really refreshing.

4.  Sugar Detox (you read that correctly)

Friends.  This is me being pretty vulnerable with you.  I have some weight concerns.  Some issues you might say.  It's taken a long while (oh, maybe 7 years) but in the last few days, it keeps coming up that change is making up your mind little bit by little bit, reprogramming your brain.  In spiritual terms, it's obedience, and that's not a once-and-done decision.

I love to eat.  I love all things cheesy and pasta-y and chocolate-y.  I know all the things one should know about eating right, but I've not been able to sustain it, and haven't wanted to.  Basically, I was hoping that I could somehow keep the same habits I've had all my life even though my metabolism and lifestyle is very different from what it was before children.

Well, the combination of poor choices (a sickening amount of Easter candy) and a few more gentle reminders that sugar is addictive, even though it's associated with fun and celebrations and won't harm you in the moment to moment; it has long-term effects that slowly erode your health.

So, despite my inclination to think we can get a bit too precious and picky about our eating as a first-world culture,  I can't deny that it's a problem for me.

So I googled "sugar detox," read a Dr. Oz article (cliched, much?) and woke up determined to eat slow proteins, real food, and no sugars or sweeteners for three days.  I was de-cruding the kitchen all morning and short-order-cooking for the kids, so I just popped some Swiss cheese in my mouth and chased it with dark coffee.  In food desperation, I pulled out the 2 year old bag of split peas that have languished on the shelf and made soup and attacked it for an early lunch.  One glass of water and aspirin later, and I'm surprisingly okay.  Maybe I've been so run down for so long it's not big deal. Or maybe I'll feel worse tomorrow due to "toxic hunger" as the Dr. Oz article suggested.

Anyway, I'm making a baby step and trying to change my behavior and some of our family food routines which is hard, but that's my job.

5.  Encouragement

Finally, I've read or listened to some great things this week that I wanted to pass along.

On using your gifts- Sophie Hudson/Boo Mama

On Parenting, not Perfection and Not Viewing Parenting as Your Resume- Beth Moore & Curtis Jones (podcast)

On moving forward- LPM blog

If you even skimmed all the way to the end, thanks for reading!  I had lots of words to work through.


David and Kate said...

that was a great post! Glad to hear your trips to ATL are going well. And good on you for being honest about the sugar struggles. I am an addict as well and cutting back gradually has been helpful for me. Good luck!


David and Kate said...

that was a great post! Glad to hear your trips to ATL are going well. And good on you for being honest about the sugar struggles. I am an addict as well and cutting back gradually has been helpful for me. Good luck!