Dellabee and Me

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Archive for the month “November, 2011”

Out of Sync

Well, I ended up scheduling an evaluation for my son with a physical therapist and an occupational therapist. It  was the poor school report about his writing skills that spurned it. D is super, super smart – he has a large vocabulary, a sophisticated sense of humor, and he understands concepts easily. But if you ask him to write 5 sentences about his favorite food, he will slack off for all of writing time and produce 2 sentences that may or may not be legible.

I’m not a high-pressure parent. In fact, if anything I am a sub-par parent, the one who forgets it’s show n tell day for 3 weeks straight and neglects to return the permission slip for the kindergarten field trip until the day before. I have totally lied about the kids’ reading times. Shut up, I clearly recall my own mother signing the Parents As Reading Partners log every year and I can assure you we did not read together. Anyways, my point is I do not feel the need to put pressure on the kids to perform academically. They are in kindergarten and second grade, not college. But when it became obvious that D was not performing at grade-level in writing, well, I became concerned. Because I know he is smart, I was uncomfortable with his performing at a level below even the average 2nd grader.

The physical therapist quickly ruled out anything related to her area of expertise. The OT seemed to note some things quickly. She also gave me a questionnaire to complete that she scored. In the end, her take on things was sensory integration dysfunction and general muscle weakness in D’s left arm.

I have been digesting this over the weeks since then. Part of me sees it. SID explains so much – D’s reluctance to leave the house, his inability to swing or ride a bike, his fear of being hurt when playing sports, his issues with wearing socks and shoes, the freaking out over loud noises.

Part of me, though, thinks it is wrong. It doesn’t fit. It can’t be right. I must have exaggerated on the questionnaire – my maternal desire to find help overriding my ability to be reasonable. I looked it up online, consulted with parents of kids dealing with sensory issues, and I don’t think it captures hims completely.

I know about sensory issues, by the way. In my BK life I worked with disturbed kids and most of them received OT as part of their IEPs. I have seen how it works. The kids I knew, though, were…well…crazy. Kids who attacked me over losing a point on the daily reward system. Girls who had their own poop caked under their fingernails. Boys who assaulted family members with knives and screwdrivers before they were 8 years old. These were the kids who needed OT. Not my kid.

Right?

When I tried to explain it to my husband, he asked if that meant our son was autistic.

Clearly, in the Big Picture, having some sensory issues isn’t exactly a deal breaker. It’s not cancer, or autism, or epilepsy. I just can’t shake my nagging suspicion that a mistake has been made somewhere – and that it is probably my fault.

The other little gem about this situation is that our insurance company will not cover OT services until we meet our deductible, which is $1500. Each week I pay $90 for him to receive these services. Have I mentioned that I am unemployed? And my unemployment will be running out next week? I’m changing my name to Freaking Thefuckout.

I feel so confused – the dueling emotions of relief that there is something off with him and it has a name coupled with the fear of what this new thing means for all of us. But I am also hopeful that this new label gives us some direction, and also helps me to understand what might be going on for D below the surface.

I don’t know how things are going to play out here.

 

Why Waterslides are Stupid

TMI Warning: super gross true story here

MANY years ago I did things like visit amusement parks, drive go karts, and roller skate for fun. I refer to this period of time as B.K. – Before Kids.

When I was 15, my mother brought me and my 7 year-old brother to Wildwood, NJ for a mini-vacation. As you might have guessed, this was not a dream vacation. However, the pier had an awesome water park. I spent about 8 hours of a July day running up 1,000 wooden steps just to shoot down the luge of water clinging to an inner tube. At the end of the day, I emerged water-logged and covered with a horrific sunburn. By horrific, I mean I had blisters on my face. I spent the next day holed up in the AC of our motel room, reading Stephen King’s Misery and eating Cheetos until my fingers glowed a neon orange.

Good times.

A few years later, I was enjoying a summer of freedom. I worked and had a car, but did not yet have the responsibility of rent. A few friends decided to travel to New Jersey for the weekend to hit an amusement park and a water park, and they invited me along. Hey, I liked rides and water slides! Sure! I’ll go!

This water park was different from the one I had fried myself on a few years prior. For one, it was huge. There were maybe 1,000 different slides. Okay, maybe not that many, but there were a lot – some that required a mat, some an inner-tube thing, and some that you just clung to by the ass of your bathing suit.

Upon arrival, after emerging all self-conscious from the changing rooms in my bathing suit trying to both walk, breathe, and suck in my gut, we looked around and tried to decide where to start.

“Let’s do that one!” my friend exclaimed, pointing up. I craned my neck to see the tippy top of a slide. What the hell? We walked around the corner so we could see it better. The slide was h-u-g-e, the top nestled just under cloud cover. We watched as the tiny form of a person shot down the slide, arms crossed in front mummy-style, until landing at the bottom with a terrific splash.

Yes, let’s start with this one.

Now, as I have mentioned before, I am not a good swimmer and I have never been comfortable with water in my face or ears. The height of the slide did not bother me as much as the prospect of a splashy ending. As we climbed the 3,204 steps to the top of the slide, all I could think about was that big splash at the end. It seemed kind of…powerful. I did not want a jet of water up my nose.

My friends went first. When it was my turn, as I crossed my arms in front of me to assume the corpse position, I decided to sit up when I neared the bottom in order to avoid getting water in my face. The man gave my body a push and off I went.

Now, what I had failed to notice while I was watching others rocket down the slide was that the slide was actually at an 89 degree angle, so instead of sliding the person was actually falling. Sadly, I did not realize this until I, too, was falling down the slide – my butt occasionally bouncing off of it. In a panic I grabbed my nose and tried to sit up, because surely the bottom must be near. I kept doing this –  pinching my nose and trying to sit up – as I went down the slide.

It is a lesson in physics – if you are falling, and you lean forward as if to sit up, you will, in fact, flip over.

Now I did not flip over. Instead, I crashed against the slide as it leveled and with my fingers clenched securely over my nose I splashed through the landing zone.

It turns out that getting water up my nose should have been the last place I worried about.

Why? Because at the bottom of that slide, as the water slowed my body from going mach 12 to a dead stop, approximately 60 gallons of slide water shot up my butt – taking my bathing suit with them.

I stood up, my legs shaking, startled by the pain of taking a fire hose up the butt, and fished my bathing suit out. I am not exaggerating when I write that water literally poured back out of my butt.

Consider that the next time your kids beg to go to Zoom Flume.

But wait, there is more.

I was with a group of 6-7 people – one of my best friends and the rest were co-workers. As I limped away to join them – they had moved onto another slide – I took about 5 steps and realized something…something didn’t feel right.

I waddled over to one of them and got in line for the next sedate-looking slide. No horrific crash at the end. Short line, no treacherous heights. I listened as my friends joked and laughed, waiting their turn. Nobody seemed to be in pain like I was. So I tried to shake it off. I went down the slide, a nice easy slide. At the bottom, I stood up and that is when I saw it.

A chunk of poop, bobbing along in the blue water.

OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD.

The bathrooms of this particular water park were poorly located. They were quite far away, near the entrance. This was not good.

I exited the slide, wrapped my towel around my waist, and tried to slyly feel around my bottom because I literally had lost feeling (other than pain) in that general area. And lo and behold, I felt something that was not part of my butt.

OHMYGODOHMYGODOHMYGOD

Everything slowed down around me as I desperately considered my options: walk around with a bathing suit full of poo, try to make it to the bathroom approximately 2.5 miles away, or try to dispose of it without anyone knowing.  I slowed down so that I was behind my friends and lingered near the bushes, then I turned around so my butt was facing the bushes and I quickly reached behind me and flipped my bathing suit around, emptying its contents into the lush fauna surrounding the giant blue enemas  slides.

Soon, I was overcome with painful, debilitating cramps that caused me to sweat and silently moan. I had to sprint to the entrance and spent 20 minutes waiting to die while hovering over a wet toilet seat. This is where I spent the remainder of the day. All that night, rumbling cramps racked my body and the weekend was pretty much ruined for me.

See, this was the kind of fun I engaged in during the B.K. years. Late nights drinking and hooking up with people, drinking way too much, drinking and dancing, occasionally pooping in a water park.

This might be why I have no desire to return to those days. My butt can’t take it.

 

A Day in the Life

 

Welcome to the my house! Come on in! You can only stay for a minute? That’s okay, I never have anyone over so even a few minutes will be great for me!

I know, it is kinda loud isn’t it? Those are my dogs. No, it only looks and sounds like they are fighting. See, the big one is playing but the small one is getting pissed. The big one doesn’t care because hey, she’s the big one! So the little one growls really loud, because she MEANS it now.

That might stop within the next hour or so.

Oh, haha, you noticed the fruit flies! Suckers needs to start paying rent! Yeah, they moved in with the apples we brought back from that little apple picking trip. See all the apples? Yeah, I guess they are kinda brown and mushy. Huh. Wonder why the kids didn’t eat them?

Oops, ‘scuse me while I let the dogs out. Isn’t that great that they scratch at the slider? Very helpful.

So, have a seat. Want some coffee? It’s fresh, I pretty much brew it all day long. No, not joking. Creamer? I have pumpkin spice! I pretty much stock up on that shit between October 15th and November 30th. Go ahead, have some.

What is – oh, that white thing? That is my cat. I know, he’s kinda gross. He’s a Persian, that’s why his face is smooshed. But his eyes leak brown crap all the time. I have to wash his face every day! Even then, he gets brown splotches of crud on the walls whenever he shakes his head. Gross, right? No, he pretty much sleeps all the time.

Hold on, I have to let the dogs back in. Did you hear them scratch the door again? Ha, sometimes I think it sounds like they are kicking it!

So what is new with you?

Mommy, I’m done!

Oh, hold on a second while I- Desmond, get back in the bathroom and pull your pants up!

But I pooped! Want to see it? It is HUGE!

Ok, just a minute. Sorry, we are still marveling over poop here. How old is he? Seven.

Right.

(from bathroom) Great, it’s plugged. No, you need to WIPE first! ohmygod, ohmygod, please don’t flood, pleeeeeeeze don’t flood I’ll be right out!! We have a, um, plumbing issue here.

Phew, crisis averted! I’m just going to wash my hands – hold on, I need to let the dogs out. Again.

So where were we? Right. You. What’s new with –

That’s MINE!!  No it’s not! It IS! You weren’t using it! SO? MOMMMYYYYYY!!!

excuse me…

(hissing….crying…feet pounding up the stairs…)

Soooo, anyways, you were saying… shit, hold on, let me get the dogs.

DING! DONG!

Huh I wonder who-

BARK BARK BARK BARK BARK

thump thump thump down the stairs

Mommy! Someone’s at the door!

BARKBARKBARKBARKBARK

Ok! Hold on. Dammit, MOVE dogs! Ella, do NOT open that door until I get there!

Oh, it’s just a package from UPS. MOVE DOG! Ok, go play you guys. No, I will not put Netflix on, I’m trying to visit with my friend. GO PLAY.

Ok, I am back. Do you want more-ohh, you have to go? Oh man, it’s like you just got here!

I understand.

Talk to you later?

Ok, bye.

Hey, guys? Come on downstairs and I’ll put Netflix on, shit, after I let the dogs out.

sigh…

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