Friday, October 18, 2013

The Wicked Step Mother

  This morning was a horrible morning. I wasn't sure if I needed to bust out in prayer or have an exorcism.  Maybe both.

  Lil P was in rare form. Okay - not really all THAT rare I guess when I think about the past few weeks. She was so angry. Last night she knew what she was wearing to school today. She has a milkshake bet going with her principle over the Ravens vs. Steelers game this weekend.  Her plan was to wear Daddy's Jersey. She even tried on everything last night - knew she looked good and so we were set. Or so we thought. 

  This morning was filled with yelling, throwing, slamming, smart mouthing, and pure hatred of everything possible.  Nothing was right, fair, or helpful. I will spare all the details, cause I don't care to relive them. The hour of my morning that felt like a week long tirade.

  Big sis was headed out the door to the bus and Lil P was still half naked, ranting about the injustice that is her life.  Fortunately for her Hubs was teleworking today and was willing to take her to school. If it had been left up to me, I don't think I would have been mentally stable enough to deal with her in a confined space and with all the Northern VA drivers. It would have ended poorly.  

  As soon as she left the house I grabbed the dog, and we took a very long walk. I cried, I screamed in my head, I may have even growled. I felt so frustrated, alone, and helpless. I was asking God why? Was this as good as things were going to get? Was it not bad enough I grew up with being yelled at and made to feel less than adequate, now I have a child that evokes these same feelings? After a few minutes I thought about a dear friend of mine. She also rides the roller coaster of the special needs circus.  She is always positive, always can be a voice of reason, and yet she can truly understand that my heart loves Lil P beyond words even when I feel anything but love. It took about an hour, but she pulled me away from the cliff. While our daughters deal with different things, the emotions are the same for us. 

  So why the title for this blog?  

  While I was talking with her about some of her own situations. I had a revelation.  I feel like the wicked step mother. I'm not. I gave birth to Lil P. However, no matter what I do or don't do, it's wrong. At one point this morning I was sitting on her bed. She started to change her clothes (again) and I looked at the ground. I was careful to not make a sound, just diverted my eyes. Lil P watched me like a hawk. She immediately barked. "WHY ARE YOU DOING THAT?" I told her I was just respecting her privacy and looking at the ground while she changed. That if I looked at her, she would yell at me. If I left the room, she would yell at me. If I started picking up the closet worth of clothes that she hates, she would yell at me. So, I thought the safest thing for me to do was simply look down. Turns out I was wrong. Shocker. 

  This must be what Step mothers go though. No matter how much they love their child, no matter how much they try... they are still wrong. They are still cast aside and treated like trash. 

  I'd like to think that I no longer take it personally, and I do feel rather numb to it in the moment. But my "phone a friend" pointed out to me that I do still take the words personally, at least on a subconscious level.  

  We teach our kids that words are hurtful. We use the visual 'words are like toothpaste, once they are squeezed out, you can't put them back in'. The Bible reminds us over and over about how we are to use our tongue, 'to praise, not to teardown'. Lil P hurts me. She breaks my heart in pieces. I know that she doesn't truly feel what she is saying - that she says those things because of deeper issues she has. I try to let the words roll, and I think in the moment I have come a long way. But in the moments after I am broken.  When she is calm, she apologizes. She tells me she loves me, and that she is sorry for treating me badly. But while she is at school today, my heart is shattered. This was my last interaction with her today. One of anger, and broken heartedness.  

  Here's to a better evening. We are supposed to celebrate a birthday tonight. I wish I could feel like this will all go well, but I know something will go wrong, and that will be our 'normal'.

Friday, October 4, 2013


The past few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions. Getting back into the swing of things, adjusting to school, new medication, and drama all around.

Yesterday I wanted to believe that everything would go well. The morning started out so great. Then 3:20 came and it all hit the fan.  No matter what I said or did - it was wrong. Thursdays are busy for us. Lil P has about an hour to work on homework and then she has Tae Kwon Do. Then an hour after that she has percussion lessons. Last night she only had a worksheet to fill out - it would have taken her 5 minutes to complete. Instead she drug her feet for 45 minutes. Arguing at every prompt. While this was going on Big Sis was complaining about a pencil that Lil P had stuck into a moldable eraser. An eraser that the night before Big Sis was complaining about - calling it junk because it didn't work. Because of the ongoing struggle I was already involved in with Lil P, I asked her to drop it for now. As I walked away she mumbled "not like you care". I snapped back and reminded her that I did care, but it just was not the time. She told me she wasn't talking about me and tried to cover her tracks in front of her friend.  As I walked away from her I saw her make a face and throw her arms up - as if she was going all gangster behind my back. Really?  As I started to call her out on that, even her friend was saying "come on, don't be like that, your mom is so nice to you". I was floored that she had completely disrespected me in front of her friend. Had it been any other friend, I would have immediately taken her home.

Then the phone rang. It was my father who I have a very superficial relationship with. He was an absent father, and about 6 years ago had a car accident that was a huge awakening for him.  He had called not to say hi, but to fuss at me for not calling him and wife #4 to wish them a happy anniversary. ARE YOU KIDDING ME????

Back to Lil P. She reads every evening. Her Language arts class requires her to turn in a reading log - showing how many pages she reads every evening. All week I had asked her about her log, and she promised me she had kept up with it. I stress to the girls that these things (reading and practice logs) are easy A's since they do them all the time.  The log is due today. Last night I took it out of her folder and it was BLANK!

I am tired. I am tired of caring. Of fighting. Lil P wants out of this special ed class that she is in because it really is not advantageous for her, but yet she will not do her part? How do I fight for her? How do I say she is capable of a certain level of work, when her only hang up is simply DOING IT!  I get that it's easy, I get that it's a pain to take the 15 seconds and write down the page numbers, BUT COME ON!!

So last night I quit. I quit fighting. I quit checking with the girls to be sure they had everything they needed for the next day. I quit. If they don't care, then why am I running myself crazy?

I started to lose it. I couldn't stop crying. Hubs came in the room and I so needed for him to hold me and love me. Instead, he told me he was headed out for band practice at church. Wow. I'm a pile of blub and he's indifferent as well. I yelled at Big sis to go with him. She offered to stay. I told her I was tired of being hurt. She had totally disrespected me and couldn't offer so much as an "i'm sorry", so there was no purpose in her being with me.
It was like I had freed her from the drama.

Yesterday everyone was great at pointing out my faults. My failures. Even if the dog has an accident in the house - it's me who gets fussed at. Not the kids who barely walk him long enough to do his business. It's me. I poured myself a drink - and sent a message to my father. It was forward and long overdue. He immediately called and I let it go to voice mail. He was teary - apologized, but then blamed me for not being open enough with him about my life. That he didn't know how stressful the things I deal with are.  What kind of apology is that? "I didn't mean  to hurt your feelings, but if you would call me more and share more, I could be more aware.." SO it's again my fault that he  thought his behaviors were okay.

Today I didn't jump out of bed and make breakfast for hubs. I didn't pack lunches for everyone. SInce I get fussed at for doing it all wrong anyway - why?

When I spend my mornings directing and get yelled at "I know mom!!", then I guess they know.

Today I heard "Why are you just sitting there drinking coffee - why aren't you packing my lunch?" I simply replied that she could do it. That way it was just as she liked.

Hubs packed his own lunch. Lil P packed hers. Big Sis made her own breakfast and got ready for the dentist. Lil P had to run to catch the bus. And I felt numb to them all.

Don't get me wrong. I love them. It would be easier if I didn't. Collectively, the people closest to me and even my father managed to hurt me in a matter of a few hours. And not one of them seemed to care.

Today I feel indifferent. Not angry, not revengeful, not anything really. Just indifferent.

Does that make me a bad mother, daughter, wife? Maybe. Maybe the things I wanted to be most are just the things that make me the worst.

I am sure I will pull out of this. But for now - I will be indifferent. Indifferent is comfortable and free from hurt.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Glad you pooped,but you're pissing me off

Tuesday was a tough day.

(NOTE: from this point forward, D1 will be referred to as Big Sis and D2 as Lil P for consistency with a FB page about my true life)

Tuesday is the one day a week when we have NOTHING going on. No Orchestra for Big Sis, and no Tae Kwon Do for Lil P.  Last week, Lil P joined her friend to work on math homework together. It went well and I was thrilled that she had a friend she could do homework with.

It had been four days since Lil P had pooped so when she asked how long she could go to her friends house - I gave her an hour. This time frame was not what she was looking for. I reminded her it was day four and she also needed to practice percussion. Hubs and I needed to attend back to school night and were leaving at 6:15. She immediately dropped her things and went to the bathroom. In record speed she pooped. Yeah for poop, but now Lil P proved even more that she was controlling her poop at will. I know this isn't unusual for Aspies to do, but with all the things we have to manage - it just doesn't seem that tracking my 11yr olds poop cycle should be one of them.

She didn't earn any points for this delivery, but she did earn a few extra minutes at the friends house. I picked up Lil P at 5:45. She gets in the car and informs me that she didn't finish her homework. I looked at her friend and said "Why didn't you two do your homework?". Friend informs me that SHE did, but Morgan did not. I wanted to unload. But I didn't. I stayed calm. Lil P apologized all over the place and took responsibility. I thanked her for doing so, but informed her that she still needed to complete the work. Instead of she and Big Sis watching a movie while I was gone, she would have no TV and would be completing her work.  She only had 11 math problems. Then she informed me that she also had Social Studies work. I came close to loosing my stuff, but didn't, yet.  As I was forking over her dinner, she asked to watch TV. Um .. no. At her abrupt fit - I replied that I couldn't trust her to turn off the TV and get her work done when she was done eating.

Lil P argued that she had already apologized and felt like I was being unfair by not "caring or accepting" her apology. I explained that I did care, and thanked her for taking ownership - but the consequence still stood. No TV until homework is done. This didn't go over well at all. Screaming. tantrums. And then Husband, the most passive man I know, lost his crap and let loose on her as well.

Now we were not fighting about homework - we were fighting about listening and talking with respect. We were seriously yelling about her yelling and not listening to what we were saying before she responded. Irony at its finest.

I hated leaving last night. Leaving her home with Big Sis. I warned Big Sis not to parent. To do her own thing. I knew that Lil P wouldn't finish her work. I knew that she wouldn't be able to sit at the table, or anywhere, and finish her assignments. I guess deep down I had hoped that she would. That she would just take 15 minutes and knock it all out so she could watch TV.  While at the Parent night I got the battery of texts. "Lil P is playing with the dog", "Big Sis won't come sit and help me stay on task".... I began thinking how I wish there was a wine bar I could hit on the way home.

Arriving home, Husband tells me that she probably doesn't have her work done and not to flip out on her. That he didn't want to go back to the yelling. And that I couldn't even look or sound disappointed b/c even that would set her off. Um, okay.

I walked inside and could tell she was waiting for me to unload. She told me she had accomplished NOTHING. I simply said "thank you for telling me, it's late, go get your shower". That made her mad because she didn't have her homework done. So in her mind, she should be doing her homework not her shower, since homework comes before shower.  Even that took 10 minutes for her to listen. She will not be going to friends house to do homework for a while. She had to wake up early to get ready and work on homework. I was beyond furious.

Thing that bothered me most is that I KNEW she wouldn't do her work while we were gone. Maybe I was more mad at myself for thinking she actually would do her work?  She did build a HUGE pyramid with box of dixie cups. She did make cool designs with plasti-tac. She did play with the dog. She did poop again. But the one thing I had asked her to do, she didn't do.

Our ABA supervisor has emailed. Seems she MAY have someone in our area that could work with Lil P. I am torn. We have a plan now. Starting fresh with a new ABA means starting again in that honeymoon phase. Where Lil P acts perfect and I appear to be some troll who can't manage her child.

Autism & ADHD really stink sometimes. I just wish someone would say - Okay - here is what you should do.

We see her NeruoDevelopmental Dr next week. Boy will he get an ear full.

Off to control and organize what little of my life I can.


Monday, September 16, 2013

It's been way to long....

This weekend I went away to Staunton, VA. It was a beautiful town. To some it  may have seemed a bit run down, but to me it was mysteriously lovely.  Leading up to this weekend, there were many times   that I considered backing out and staying home. After all, I control the heartbeat of this house. I enforce the bed times, the homework, the prep for school, practice of cello, percussion, and TaeKwonDo. I'm not alone, Husband is a tremendous father and helps. However, he has been out of country and would be coming home to just the girls and no marching orders from me. He was probably grateful for that last part.

While this morning was tough, I think back on this weekend and feel blessed and inspired. I left with two ladies who I have gotten to know through D2's TaeKwonDo classes. I adore these women. They treat me like they have known me all my life, there is absolutely no judgement, and I feel no anxiety about how I should look, think, act, or keep my house when I am with them. I left my house Friday morning with two amazing women and I came home Sunday night with a dozen new friends just like them.

I've written in this blog (although it was a long time ago) some tough lessons I have had about friendships. How many of my friendships since moving here have been utilitarian. When there is no longer something I can offer to certain friends, I am left confused, standing alone. The other group of impostors are those who take a look into the world of Autism, judge and run as fast as they can.

This weekend, I was reminded that there are fabulous people out there that not only are amazing on there own, but truly get what I live through. I got to be me. A mom, yes, but was able to share stories about D2 that others could relate to and laugh with me about the craziness that is my life.

This weekend left me feeling inspired. I've so missed scrapbooking, photography, and blogging. I was reminded that to be a better wife, mom, and friend - I needed to be true to who I am. To take time for me, doing something that I enjoy. It's not only important for me, but for my girls to see me as more than just their mom.

Last night while I was saying good night to D1, she said I seemed different. That it was interesting to see me laughing with the three ladies that brought me home. To hear one of our funny stories. She said it was neat to picture me having a glass of wine and laughing with a group of friends as we walked through the streets of some town. She was glad I went, and wanted to know when I was going to get to go again.  It warmed my heart.

What I want most from being a mom is to never fail them. I want them to be independent, strong, firm in their faith, and simply amazing. Well, if I don't set that example for them, there is no telling who will fill that role. I'm not just mom. I am also a friend, a wife, and a woman who knows how to laugh with other amazing women.

I don't know if those women will know how deeply they have impacted my life this past weekend, but they will each be forever cherished in my heart for a lifetime.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

2 for 1 specials

Seems I am breaking down inside piece by piece.

Last year for my birthday, I had my uterus removed.  The surgeon was offering a 2 for 1 special so I also had a large cyst taken care of that had developed on a gland in an area that I won't mention.  For a few months I felt amazing!  Wishing I had my uterus ripped out years ago.  Then the pain started in my ovary, and I am part of the less than 1% who have the cyst return!  SO, next week, I go back under the knife.  It's that time of year again and my surgeon is running the same special.  Two surgeries for the price of one.  I get to have one ovary removed and the glad that likes to develop the obtrusive cysts is getting removed all together!  That'll teach glands to mess with me!  Behave glands or I will rip you out!

Today I have all my pre-op appointments.  I am trying to be optimistic about the whole thing.  It's such a pain.  I have so many other things that I think I would rather deal with.  Teeth drilling for example.  And if I am going to choose a surgery... lets go with something more beneficial - like a tummy tuck or new boobs.  Apparently there was no way to slip either of those things into this surgery.  The Dr was only offering these two.

I know that "it'll be worth it", that "you'll feel so much better"... but that was the lil words of wisdom I was holding on to LAST time.  Today I think I may ask the surgeon if there are any other optional parts in my girl region that I don't really need, that she go ahead and take those out as well.  Just clean everything out - make it pretty and call it a day.

At least this surgery will only have me depending on others for a few days.  As soon as I am off the pain meds I can drive.  From the time I broke my shoulder, I know that I can go w/o pretty easily.  I have a pretty high pain threshold.  So MY plan is to be back in action by Thursday.  I still have to follow Dr. restrictions for lifting and 'activity' for 6 long grueling weeks.  But at least I can drive, the girls where they need to be.  Think Husband and I will have to plan an early anniversary trip.  ;-)

Alas, I am off to embrace the day of talking about things that make teenagers giggle. (who am I kidding, those words still make me giggle)  Getting poked, prodded, measured, and pretty much removing every ounce of conservative from my day.

Embrace your day lovelies, and if you think your day is odd, remember that mine is pretty awkward today as well.  Mwah!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

FaceBook before bed?

Last night I had the most Bizarre dreams.  One of those dreams that felt so crazy real and yet strangely odd at the same time.  Now that I am alert and well into my 2nd cup of coffee, I am laughing because each element of my dream is from FB posts that I reviewed before going to sleep.  And possibly the amazing wine I had with dinner on the mini date I had with husband.

So there I was... I was living in my home town, but not with my mother (whew) and I was not married.  I was in a long distance relationship with this amazing man. (who fortunately is now my husband because then this dream would have been very inappropriate and wouldn't be blog worthy).  I was feeling a bit stressed because I had not seen him in almost two weeks since we last talked over FaceTime. (which was odd because email wasn't even a thing yet when we dated)  He was stationed somewhere stateside and I kept checking my phone to see if he had called.  It was exactly two weeks, and I was missing him.  For some reason though I didn't want to call him because I knew he was busy and maybe had decided I wasn't worth the effort for the long distance romance.  I tried to put it out of my head because I was trying to prepare for the production that our town was putting on at the local theatre.  I was singing an opera-ish song and had not a clue what the production was about or even the words to the song. (opera ya'll, seriously?) I was a nervous wreck.  This little woman kept telling me to sit so she could prepare my hair.  I was looking over the music and my phone rang.  The screen showed a picture of my yummy Airman, and I was thrilled.  As was talking to him, the little hair lady kept yelling that I needed to warm up my voice, so I had to sing my conversation to my man.  Needless to say, he was a little weirded out.

My friend from high school kept passing me in the hall.  She rode by on her bike and shouted "Bike riding 30 minutes 210 calories burned".  Then on a pogo stick "pogo riding 20 minutes 410 calories burned".  I missed my man terribly and was hanging on to his every word.  I loved the sound of his voice and I hated that our time to speak was so limited.  He said he was deploying and would be in town for a layover, (again crazy bc there is only a tiny airport in our hometown that the AF would never land a jet). He wouldn't have to much time to see me because he would only have 45 minutes from the time he landed until take off.  Apparently he was scheduled to land at the exact time my singing would be over. PERFECT!  I ended the call, and stepped out on the stage which was now an open arena in Italy!  I sang my heart out! It was so amazing, I surprised myself.  I then jumped on my high school friend's scooter and pressed the button that said 'scooter 20 minutes 2 calories burned'.  I arrived at the airport and there was a LONG line of people holding Chick-fil-a cups and a sign that read 45 minute wait from this point.  There were security everywhere.  Apparently my man is a big deal!  His parents arrived by limo and were escorted to the front of the line while Chariots of Fire played over the loud speakers.

As I neared the front of the line, my man was signing autographs (anyone who knows Husband will find that hilarious, he's not an attention seeker at all).  Our eyes met.  He smiled and waved and then the Air Force people dressed in heavily armored gear, told him it was time to go.  He stepped off the platform and walked up to me kissing me like a rock star.  His plane took off and I was alone on the runway with an autographed picture of my Airman.  I felt so sad and alone.  Wondering where this relationship was headed.  What I should do.  Wondering if he had swoons of fans all over the world.  I missed his touch, his smile, and his wowie wow wow kiss.

Then I woke up and who's in front of me??  In my bed??  HUSBAND!!  I was married to this amazing man and I get to be a part of his world.  I laid there giggling, thinking back on my dream.  I couldn't get back to sleep.  Flashbacks of my dream and our relationship over the last 20+ years.  Almost 16 of those years as husband & wife.  We have had our highs & lows but they have only drawn us closer.  I couldn't imagine it any other way.  I am crazy about my man and no matter what the day holds, I know I have an amazing husband to turn to.

So... no more FaceBook before bed.  I am very proud of my Opera genius friend who did in fact recently perform in Italy.  My friend who posts all her activities and how many calories she has burned.  Many had chick-fil-a yesterday and posted about their wait times.  Husbands parents don't travel by limo, but I guess they are like royalty to me, and he IS my prince.  Chariots of Fire?  Obviously the Olympics, but we should all have our own theme music, don't you think?

I realize now that I don't have great pictures of him or us.  I spend all my picture taking time on our kids and nature.  Hmm.  This isn't a picture that either of us would delight in, mostly because the sun was crazy bright and blah blah blah, but it's the most current one I have.  :-)  Where did all the gray hair come from?  Sheesh.

Friday, July 27, 2012


Sometimes - there is only song.