Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Glimpses Of Little Girl

We usually see all the new Disney movies, so I assumed Natalie would be excited about Frozen 2. After all, she absolutely loved Frozen. She'd skip around in the costumes, she'd wear Elsa's crown proudly on her head, she'd sing all the songs, heck, she even had a Frozen birthday party, and these were the days when finding Frozen merchandise was difficult, so she was extra excited to find Frozen stuff. I can still hear her squeal as she pulled out the Elsa dress that I had stalked on the Shop Disney site for weeks since it would come in and out of stock at random times.




"You know I was like SEVEN then," Natalie cut in. "And I don't know if I want to see Frozen 2. It might be cheesy."


I get it. She's in Middle School now. It's not as cool to like princess stuff. But.





As she gets older, it's getting harder to catch a glimpse of the little girl she once was. I know kids are supposed to grow up and like new things, but.




Was she really going to skip out on Frozen 2? She loved Anna the most in Frozen because Anna was silly. Like her. We used to sing the songs together. "We finish each other's.." I'd crone. "SANDWICHES!" she'd screech, and we'd giggle.



Sometimes, if I look hard enough, I still see the little girl in her. Mostly when we go to Disney World and sometimes when she twirls around the room.




Sometimes when she's being silly, there she is, my little girl, the one who doesn't care what other people think, who doesn't care if it's cool or not.




I had it in my mind that it would be okay if she didn't want to see Frozen 2. So she thought she was too old, fine. It's her choice. The rest of us would see it, and I'd remember her excitement when she got an Elsa doll, and I'd remember when she'd twirl around the grocery store in her Anna coronation dress, not caring who saw. Those memories will always be with me, no matter what, no matter how old she gets.




"Mom," Natalie said the other night. "I do want to see Frozen 2." She gave me a tiny smile and there she was: my little girl. "You know I do love Sven. And maybe even Anna." She gave me a hug and returned to her phone.


And I remembered her in the Frozen dresses, laughing, giggling, and I thought, yeah, she's older, but she'll always have a bit of little girl in her.



Monday, November 18, 2019

Hey, It's Okay

I got this idea from Glamour magazine. You can link up any day of the week. All you have to do is make a list of what you're okay about. Simple! Please do not link up a post that has nothing to do with Hey, It's Okay. It's rude and I'll delete the link.




HEY, IT'S OKAY....




.....to think the original Baby It's Cold Outside is fine. I don't get why people freak out about it. The version with John Legend and Kelly Clarkson is pleasant, but doesn't beat the original.



.....to always be tempted to write "we do 4X2" when people post about doing the 4 gift rule for Christmas. It's awesome if that's what you want to do, but it's not for everyone. Some people seem to want to guilt people into doing this. Some are genuinely just sharing the idea, but some are like, "If you buy a lot of toys for your kids, you're doing it wrong," and it's like, "pardon ME?" (I wrote a post about not feeling guilty if you do holidays differently here.)



......to have watched Dr. Oz interview Jon Gosselin and was like, "Yikes." I guess Jon had a 10 year gag order so he couldn't talk about his marriage with Kate. He said some pretty outrageous things, but most I wasn't surprised with. (They did a show called Jon and Kate + 8.)



.....to currently be reading Christmas Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella. It's amusing--if you liked the other Shopaholic books, you'll like this one.



.....to have thought this rainbow tree that I saw at the store At Home is awesome:




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Sunday, November 17, 2019

What It's Like To Love Someone With Autism

Running.

Running after my son.

I had been in this position many times throughout his life. When he was two, he would randomly dart off in another direction, his legs moving quickly. I would chase after him, my breath coming out in puffs, a stitch at my side. I would always be thankful that I had him young because I wasn't sure if I'd be able to do this if I were older.



I would eventually reach him and gather him in my arms. Sometimes he'd giggle as if it were a game. Other times he'd screech in my ear, because it turns out he was running from something that triggered him. In many cases it would be florescent lights over head. It would especially be bad if one was blinking and humming. It got to the point where I'd avoid areas if I saw a blinking light.

He got better as he got older. The lights didn't bother him so much. But other things did. Sudden noises. Too many people around him. He'd dart off.

And I'd follow him.

Chase after him. Because that's what mothers do.





If you're wondering if the chasing stopped as he got older, well, no. Tommy has gotten better with dealing with things. Therapy has helped. I've helped. If I see him upset, I remind him to take deep breaths. In and out. In and out. Don't focus on what's upsetting you. Focus on me. Focus on your mother. I'm here.




He's 17 now and still runs. He ran the other day. My daughter wasn't listening to me. So my husband raised his voice, reminding my daughter to listen to her mother.

This set Tommy off.

He can't take it when someone is upset, even if it's not at him. Sometimes if people raise their voices he can deal with it. He'll take deep breaths.

Other times?

My husband raised his voice. My son opened the front door and took off down the street.

And I followed him.

Chased after him. Because that's what mothers do.

I found him at the end of the road, his hands clamped over his ears. He saw me and looked a little ashamed, because he knows better to run, but I also know he can't help it.

"It's okay," I said. "You're okay."

He took some breaths and walked back to the house with me.

Loving someone with autism is always being there for them, through the triumphs and the tough times. And believe me, there are tons of tough times.

But they notice when you show up. They notice when you are there, patiently waiting for a meltdown to dissipate. They notice.





Loving someone with autism is an adventure.


Loving someone with autism is knowing you will always be behind them, making sure they're okay, for as long as you possibly can.








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