. . . I've been told that I write novels for email messages. Perhaps this is the way to go. I'll try to make each entry, or Gemstone, a "precious" one. On mediocre days, all I might be able to produce is a "semi-precious" entry. In any case, an entry might be a "neat" Gemstone--something that is uniquely mine.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Parenting an Autistic Child

I was doing some reading last week at work (of course after all my jobs were finished). I usually don't read Reader's Digest, but it was available and sometimes the jokes are pretty funny. In this edition was an article called "My Daughter, Myself" where a woman, Sallie Tisdale, talks about how it feels to care for a disabled child. I found some of the things she wrote relatable to my own situation.

Some of what I read was disheartening, some other was a kick in the butt:

"Ambivalence is a normal state for me. It is hard to articulate what I seem to have lost, because it is something I never had. Annie was never going to go to law school--we knew that. Eventually we knew she was not even going to drive a car. What I miss is something vague and dreamy about a daughter growing up. I have fantasies of high school girls giggling in a bedroom behind a closed door, of long phone calls. I feel grief for the past, for all that there was none of, and grief for the future, for what there may be none of yet to come. Every parent loses a child, several children, as each successive child passes into the next--the chrysalis of the infant becomes the toddler, the toddler gives way to the child, and the child to the youth, and finally the adult. This is one element of being a parent, of being alive, though there is an enduring sorrow in realizing not that the child has died but that the adult anticipated will never be born.

"I feel sad and sorry for myself or pissed off, and then I feel petty because I'm sad and sorry for myself, because I'm complaining when things could be so much worse. She's not aggressive or incontinent. She can walk and make herself a sandwich and sleep through the night. And we're lucky, because as late as it was in coming and as vague as it is in explaining things, we did eventually get a diagnosis.

"Long-term studies of people with autism are not reassuring. Very few go to college, are employed, or lead independent lives. The supports of school are remove, and nothing takes their place.

"Don't ever say to her, and don't say to yourself, that there is any tragedy in who she is. She is what she is."

Friday, May 6, 2011

Another Dream

I posted on Facebook this morning the following:
"What does it mean that I had a dream where I was a LEGO Harry Potter video game character flying to escape dragons and death eaters on my broomstick?"

To this I got quite a few answers:
"I think it means you are going to Orlando to see Harry Potter! ;-)"
"it means I'm not the only one that dreams really kooky stuff; WHEW, what a relief! ;0)"
"You have 3 boys ;)"
"that you're a TOTAL NERD"

The last coming from a high school friend who remembers what a nerd I was back then. But I digress.

One friend posted that he thought I should go on my favorite dream interpretation website, dreammoods.com to see what it had to say. What a great idea! So here's what I found:

Regarding being chased by Death Eaters, "I'm Being Chased!":
"Chase dreams are one of several common dream themes, stemming from feelings of anxiety in your waking life. Flee and flight is an instinctive response to a physical threat in the environment. In such dreams, the scenario often features you being pursued by an attacker, an animal, a monster or an unknown figure, who wants to hurt or possibly kill you." In my case the Death Eaters and dragons. "Consequently, you run, you hide or you try to outwit your pursuer. Your actions in the dream parallel how you would respond to pressure and cope with fears, stress or various situations in your waking life. Instead of confronting the situation, your dream indicates that you have a tendency to run away and avoid the issue. Ask yourself who is chasing you, so that you can gain a better understanding and insight on the source of your fears and anxieties."

Regarding flying around on my broomstick and trying to get away, "I'm Flying!":
"Having difficulties staying in flight indicates a lack of power in controlling your own circumstances. You may be struggling to stay aloft or stay on set course. Things like power lines, trees, or mountains may be obstacles that you encounter in flight." In my dream it was LEGO bricks and sets in my way. "These obstacles symbolize something or someone who is standing in your way in your waking life. You need to identify what or who is trying to prevent you from moving forward."

Now believe it or not, this website DID have a section on LEGOs and one on blocks, and even one on Harry Potter!:
LEGOs: "To see or play with Legos in your dreams, indicates your ability to make something out of a single block. It may refer to the "building blocks" or foundation of some plan. The dream may also be a pun on "let go". Is there something in your waking life that you need to let go."
Blocks: "To see a block or blocks in your dream, represent obstacles that you need to overcome. These are things that try to hinder you from achieving your goals." 
Harry Potter: "To dream that you are Harry Potter, represents your desires to escape from reality. You are living in your own fantasy world."

I guess all this just means that I'm stressed out. I'm running away from problems and am feeling out of control of my life. Because of the stress I'm wanting to escape reality. Maybe I just need to "let go" and let life happen.

There are three weeks of school left of the year and baseball season has started. That means that things are, indeed, stressful around here. Plus, I'm working more hours over the next two weeks. But this is life and I'll get through it. I've got people looking out for me. :-)