Edit: meeting got canceled, so we have to wait until next week. Sigh.
We have to meet with Asshole Psychologist and the rest of the IEP team tomorrow.
Y’all, my anxiety is an absolute mess over this. I just want to go in there and meet with people who have my kid’s best interests at heart and not have to deal with some jackass. I don’t like confrontation, as confrontation sends my anxiety into a tailspin, and that’s what this will be. I was hoping that we could avoid him. We tried to talk to the principal about doing a 504 Plan only and not bother with an evaluation at this point since we found out she wouldn’t qualify for speech services, but he said the whole team had to meet to discuss it.
I’ve done so much reading on federal laws relating to students with disabilities (IDEA law) over the past two months, as well as anything I could find on IEPs. I know they’re legally obligated to evaluate her if we push for it, I know the steps to take if he tries to violate her rights and refuse an evaluation, and I know who to contact to file complaints at the district and state level if he acts unprofessionally again. And I’ve talked through every possible scenario or insulting bullshit he can come up with and how to respond. My husband probably thinks I’m crazy on that last one, but obsessive brains gonna obsess.
But still, despite all of that preparation, anxiety. Ugh.
On a more positive note, a friend of mine put me into contact with someone who works for an autism society that is a parent advocate, and she plans to attend the meeting with us. I don’t know much about her or how bringing someone else with us will be taken (I could see him making a stink over it), but assuming he doesn’t try to bar her from being there, it’ll be helpful to have someone else on our side I think. I also plan to record the meeting to have proof of any assholery.
Fingers crossed that it goes smoothly. Or that he develops explosive diarrhea before the meeting and can’t attend.
Last Monday night, my MIL called to say that her husband was having chest pains and needed to go to the hospital. The next call we got was from my SIL who said he had coded twice and that we needed to get there ASAP. After dropping off the kids at my dad’s house, we went to the ER and found that he had coded a third time. My SIL, a nurse, said she didn’t expect he’d make it after all of that. Thankfully, she was wrong.
FIL is doing okay a week later. He coded another time over the past week, but he’s doing amazingly well all things considered. (Before we left the ER on Monday, he was joking around in the bed.) The doctors thought he had a heart attack at first, but later decided it was a heart rhythm issue that they’ll need to give him a pacemaker for. He should have surgery for that this week, so hopefully things go well.
My FIL is my daughter’s favorite person, hands down. She has told MIL before that she doesn’t need to be there when she visits since BG only wants to see him. She doesn’t say it with malice, but it still hits hard just the same. When BG found out about FIL going to the hospital, her response was, “Well, I’m not visiting Grandma anymore until he comes home.” Lawd. I can’t imagine how hard that would be on her if something did happen. Hopefully we won’t have to worry about that for a long time.
I’ll do another update post later. Between visiting the hospital and stuff with the kids, it has been kinda hectic. I’m going to host Thanksgiving on Thursday, so I’m sure I’ll find time to write a post freaking out on Wednesday.
Little Man discovered a new-to-us show on Hulu called Fresh Off the Boat. It’s about a Chinese family that relocates from DC to Orlando, FL and has to adjust to suburban type living. It’s also set in 1995, so I have been loving seeing some reminders of my childhood. I was 11 years old in 1995, just like Little Man is now, so that somehow adds to the neatness factor a little.
The boy loves the show. In fact, the little Benedict Arnold bastard has been watching the show behind my back, leaving me to catch up on my own. That might sound harsh, but he did the same thing to his dad, who wanted to watch Green Arrow and Flash with him. We’re both on the verge of disowning him.
The main character Eddie is quite the slacker and loves the rap/hip-hop stuff that was all the rage in the 90s. Think Biggie, Tupac, etc. I never listened to them because I’m vanilla as fuck and have zero interest. The CD I had on repeat then was the soundtrack for The Baby-Sitters Club Movie. It was replaced a couple years later when Hanson released their Middle of Nowhere album with MMMBop on it. Did I say “vanilla” already?
The boy has been listening to a lot of music on his phone lately. He has entered the earbuds stage of adolescence — you know, the one where they listen to music nonstop and don’t want to speak to you as much. It’s a double-edged sword because you like talking to them, but they also tend to be smartasses, so it’s nice to skip out on that. I’ll admit, I haven’t really paid attention to what he listens to, because he builds his playlists out of the stuff we have on iTunes. The most kid non-friendly thing we have on iTunes that I can think of is a Weezer song called Can’t Stop Partying that talks about partying and drugs.
I can’t stop partying, partying
I can’t stop partying, partying
I gotta have Patrón, I gotta have the beat
I gotta have a lot of pretty girls around me
It has some explicit stuff when Lil Wayne comes out and raps. It was the song that made me realize I should pay more attention to the music I play. That happened when the then 4-year-old LM started very clearly singing about mixing alcohol with pharmaceuticals in line at Chick-Fil-A. It’s not a good defense, but since I struggle making out the lyrics to a lot of songs (unless I read them a bunch of times), I didn’t take notice of the lyrics. I started trying to play closer attention after that. (But still failed at least once when Baby Girl sang No Scrubs.) But, like I said, as far as LM is concerned, I don’t pay much attention these days because there isn’t much of anything in our library that LM shouldn’t listen to.
You see, what I didn’t know was LM’s dad put Amazon Music on his phone. And there’s a shit ton of stuff to listen to on that.
What I also didn’t know was just how much LM has taken a liking to the kid Eddie from the show, namely his love for hip hop. So he started listening to all sorts of hip hop and rap, including Tupac, Biggie, and Eminem. (For the record, I did actually like Eminem in my later teen years.) I discovered this when my best friend who has my Amazon info asked me about why I was listening to so much rap all of a sudden. I wasn’t, of course, so I asked my husband, and he told us about LM’s new musical interests.
I realize now that I wrote three paragraphs on LM’s new music, and that’s really not where I was going with this, so back to the 90s stuff.
Fresh Off the Boat has been fun to watch. When I was watching with LM, it was cool to point out some of the stuff that he’d otherwise have no clue about, like the damn Internet modems that hog your phone line. Who remembers this sound?
I had a love-hate relationship with that sound. I absolutely loved the sound of connecting to the Internet and doing all of the things that made me feel so mature, even if I did accidentally make myself a target for being kidnapped in Yahoo chat rooms by divulging my age and too much personal info. (Every 90s kid with Internet access did that, though.) But those of you who had dial-up modems know how long that shit could take, and eventually the love of hearing the dial-up noise went away as the rage took over.
How dare you take 5 minutes and 42 seconds to connect me?!
And damn it all to hell when someone would pick up the phone or you’d randomly get disconnected.
Oh and the times when I left it connected all night while I downloaded music from Napster and then Limewire and then Kazaa. (Granted, we’re in 2000 by that point, but it’s still childhood/young adulthood stuff.) Anything short of picking up the phone to call 911 for a heart attack and disrupting my downloads was deserving of a beat down. I tried to download movies as well, but they mostly ended up being porn videos, so I stopped that. (If y’all wanna talk about some scarring shit, try being the most vanilla and naive 15-year-old in the world and opening a very rough porn.)
The show talk about Zimas, which I had never heard of until a few years ago when my husband took a trip down memory lane. He appreciated the reference. The kids have Sunny D’s and Lunchables. Sunny D is the best, and I still buy it from time to time. I could never understand the appeal of Lunchables. Some of the kids are clearly in their Nirvana/grunge phase. The slang.
Releasing anything remotely related to the 90s is a surefire way to make money. I’m looking at you, manufacturer of the Oregon Trail game I spent $30 on. Everyone in my class loved using that old computer with the big ass floppy disk to play that came.
Watch it if you’re looking for something new and funny. It’s not as funny as The Office, but it has a lot of great moments.
What’s something from your childhood you’ve seen make a comeback or would like to see make a comeback?
After a week at home following the tonsillectomy, the girl is back at school this morning. I was worried she’d need to be out longer, because even on Saturday, she was cranky, complained of headaches, wasn’t eating or drinking much, and was tired enough to be napping. She did a 180 yesterday, though, and aside from a bit of crankiness, she went through the day just fine. She actually ate more regularly and drink a bunch of water, so I know that helped!
BG had her tonsils removed because of sleep apnea, and her doctor thought that it might help with ADHD symptoms in addition to snoring. I definitely haven’t noticed as much snoring over the past few days. I’m guessing it may take some time to see the ADHD symptoms decrease if we do at all. Oddly enough, we’ve seen more of the odd sensory behaviors (she is rubbing everything and sat in the bathtub running water over her hands for half an hour three times, for example), which we were hoping would decrease.
I was working with her on some makeup work for school when she felt up to it, and lord, it was like pulling teeth to keep her on track. I see why she brings home so much incomplete work. Part of the makeup work was working on handwriting. From what I’ve seen of the other students’ work on display, she has the worst handwriting in the class. She has developmental coordination disorder, so the poor handwriting goes along with it. She also has a summer birthday, which doesn’t help.
I feel bad for BG watching her try to write, because it’s such a struggle for her. A lot of her practice is tracing letters, but she is rarely able to keep her pencil on the dotted line. It blows my mind how I can show her the right way to form a letter and guide her hand over how to make it multiple times, and she does the opposite or something completely different directly after. You wouldn’t think that she had three years of preschool, almost a year of OT, and her mom helping her every day by looking at it, poor kiddo.
The girl’s teacher kept in contact with me over the week, checking in on her. I thought that was really sweet. It means a lot to know you’re leaving your kid in the care of someone that cares about her during the day!
Things are about to get busy again. My husband and Little Man are both doing the Christmas play with our local community theater group, so they’ll be practicing three nights per week. LM wasn’t going to do it at first because his free time is reduced since his school day ends later and he has to go to bed earlier, but the director messaged us and asked and he agreed to do it. He really enjoys acting, so even though it cuts down on his time after school, at least he’ll be having fun.
The girl wanted to sign up for Cub Scouts. She went to the first meeting and decided she hated it for some reason she wouldn’t give us, so that’s out. Her grandmother is relieved, because it gave her a small heart attack that her granddaughter wanted to join something that is supposed to be for boys (even though that group is co-ed).
I did so much of that during our text exchange over Cub Scouts.
We tried to get BG to try another meeting, but she had a meltdown and was sobbing, so we let it go. It would’ve been nice for her to have the opportunity to socialize outside of school, but whatever. The Cub Scout leader gave my husband a form for a popcorn fundraiser at the very first meeting and said we needed to sell $300 worth of stuff, so my husband wasn’t inclined to fight BG over it too much.
And, yay, both sets of grandparents invited the kids over for Friday and Saturday! That means double weekend date night, a first in the history of Baby Girl. My husband and I went out last night to our favorite Italian restaurant and I had my usual chicken parm. (Obviously the 30-day keto challenge got postponed dammit.) It was so damn good. I had leftovers and threatened my husband’s life if he dared touch them like he did last time.
He also ordered a slice of chocolate cake, which ended up being enough for four people.
I texted LM during the meal and taunted him with the cake, which didn’t amuse him very much.
Not shown is the other half of the cake, which we did bring home for the boy.
I doubt we’ll go anywhere tonight, so it’ll be a stay-at-home date night. He has whiskey and I’ll have rum and vodka, so we’ll do Hulu and for-real chill.
It looks like we’ll have guests in a few weeks. My in-laws are moving their mobile home and asked to stay with us for a few days. I love them to death, but am not looking forward to it, mostly because my father-in-law is the loudest person in the world. And as someone who a) takes out her hearing devices around him and b) is mostly deaf in one ear and has a severe loss in the “good” ear, that’s saying something. He and BG get going and it’s so loud that you literally can’t converse with anyone else in the room. Hello, headache town. They’ve always been good to us, though, so we could never say no to helping them out. I will be buying a new bottle of Excedrin migraine reliever, though.
This past school week ended up being good for BG for the most part. We had minimal crying in the mornings. On Thursday night, though, she had a meltdown of epic proportions because she didn’t want to go to school. She was in the bathtub of all place, and when it was time to wash up and get out, she refused because getting cleaned meant she had to go to bed soon and going to bed soon meant she had school in the morning. Oh my god, y’all. I came in to find her in the corner of the tub out of my husband’s reach (it’s a large garden tub) throwing water toys at him. I couldn’t get her to come to me, either, so I was like “fuck it” and got in.
Except for it’s a 33-pound kid who is wet and somewhat sudsy from the bubble bath. And there’s also legs kicking, fingers clawing, and teeth attempting to bite. Plus screaming. Holy fucking hell. That’s the worst meltdown I’ve seen in a while. Lawdamercy Jesus, as my grandmother would say. We needed a truck load of Xanax after that.
We’ve been getting our Halloween costume plans together. Looks like we’ll do another family thing this year, and this time it’ll be Marvel Cinematic Universe inspired. BG is planning to be either Groot or Rocket or Loki, with a lean towards Groot because she wants to play “Mr. Blue Sky” on the phone and dance to it while trick-or-treating. I’m going as 90s grungy Carol Danvers, my husband is planning to be Bruce Banner mid Hulk-out, and the boy wants to be either Hawkeye or Black Panther. I love doing the family costumes! Last year we did the Incredibles and a year or two before that, we did DC. Now if our hell-on-earth state could just shift over to fall-like weather…
I’ve been thinking about a blog makeover. Maybe come up with a new name for it. Hmm.
What randomness would you like to share from your week?
It’s time for a few funny — or at least mildly amusing — things the kids have said over the past week.
Little Man and I have been playing Words With Friends with each other. (If you wanna play, you can find me at “supmynerds.”) I know we could play Scrabble, but this is much more convenient since we can just play it as we go. We were playing last night when the boy started giggling like crazy.
“Wait till you see what I put,” he said, still snickering. “It’s so inappropriate!”
I opened up the app wondering if “fart” or “poop” had made an appearance yet again. Nope. He spelled:
I chuckled. Here we go with the dirty middle schooler brain. (Or what he thinks is being dirty, anyway.) I imagine it won’t be long before “That’s what she said” clicks for him. Right now, he’s mostly chiming in with “That’s what she said” for perfectly innocent comments like, “I’m running to Wal-Mart now” or “Let’s watch something on TV.”
Over the weekend, the kids were tasked with picking up their toys in the living room and their bedrooms. BG was dragging ass, as usual, since cleaning is “the most yucky thing EVER.” (She usually changes her tune a bit when I bring out a trash bag to bag up her yucky toys to take to storage.) LM picked up something of hers in the living room and tossed it in the floor of her bedroom, which she took issue with.
“Hey! You’re not supposed to throw toys in the floor, LM. Pick it up and put it where it goes!”
“You’re a good one to talk,” LM said. “You’ve got toys all over your floor.”
BG huffed. “Well, you shouldn’t try to be like me.”
Cue LM getting the giggles.
This one started out rather annoying. LM had open house at school last week. He led us around to meet his teachers and got pissy when we wanted to meet all of the teachers on one hall before going to another.
“We need to go in order,” he insisted. “We have to go in the order the classes on my schedule is in.”
Walking all over the building from one end to the other multiple times in the crowded as fuck hallways? Uh-uh. Plus, we needed to hurry along and pick up BG so we could do dinner and baths and get in bed on time. We explained this, which put him in a hell of a mood. He walked to a couple of classes and glumly pointed out what they were and would try to take off before we could even speak to the teacher. By the time we were 2/3 of the way through the schedule, we were getting irritated.
And then we went to the gym.
The kid who wasn’t very happy about being pulled from a computer class (they put him in the same one twice) and moved to PE completely lit up.
“And this is where we have PE!” he said excitedly. “Come on, I want to show you something cool.”
He practically drug us to…
The boys’ locker room. And it smelled like ass. I wasn’t sure what “cool” thing I was going to look at in the gym, but a gross locker room wasn’t on the list of possibilities.
“Come on, let’s check out everything. I can show you where I change and my locker and the football equipment.”
The PE teacher came in just then and totally cracked up. He said that was the first time a kid wanted to show off the locker room. We didn’t hang around in there long, because it seriously stunk. At least he got excited about something, though.
On another note, the teachers we got to talk to seemed to like LM. His English teacher especially. She mentioned how well-behaved and respectful he was and commented on how if she hadn’t seen his 504 Plan that she wouldn’t have known he had ADHD. That’s probably due to a combination of his meds and how much he enjoys their class. They switch up classes this week, so she’ll have in in the afternoon instead of the morning, so we’ll see if the meds are still working their magic by then.
School days, school days
Dear old Golden Rule days
‘Reading and ‘riting and ‘rithmetic
Taught to the tune of the hick’ry stick
I have fond memories of my grandmother singing that in the mornings to wake me up for school. She fixed my “breakfast” of a Carnation Instant Breakfast drink since I wouldn’t eat real breakfast and got me ready. Good times and something I sorely missed after my dad remarried and we moved out of her house. My kids didn’t care for me singing that to them very much, which may have something to do with my inability to carry a tune.
So, Little Man is only on his third day of middle school today, but he said yesterday that it was still awesome. He likes the lockers, the extra bit of freedom, and having different kids in most classes. He also really likes the teachers he has had so far and even likes riding the bus. He made a friend (whose name he can’t remember, of course lol) who is into superhero stuff. He said even though the kid thinks Spider-Man could beat Superman in a fight, he’s pretty cool otherwise.
LM said his heavy backpack caused his desk to flip over in class when he got up, and was shocked when no one laughed and another kid helped him get it back up. I hope this polite behavior continues. Middle schoolers can be pretty harsh to each other, but it’s starting out on a very good note.
Baby Girl, on the other hand…yikes. She said her first day was “fine,” but didn’t give me much in the way of details, aside from playing with the other little strange girl at recess. (And I won’t refer to her as the little strange girl again, just specifying since I did in my last post.) Last night when we got her ready for bed, she was rage crying over having to go to school again. I hoped she’d feel better after a good night’s sleep, but more rage crying again this morning. She perked up a little when we got to the school and the principal let her cuddle his dog, so that’s good.
I know it’ll take a little time for her to get used to the longer days and less fun atmosphere (compared to preschool), but hopefully she’ll come around. She’ll only have a half day once per week since she has to go to her therapies (which she enjoys), so maybe that’ll help. I hope we won’t come to regret starting 5K instead of opting for another year of preschool.
The transportation is a headache. Even though LM rides the bus, we have a 20 minutes drive to the bus stop, and he has to be there an hour before BG’s school begins. I’m not feeding her breakfast at home and letting her sleep a little later and taking her to get grits while we wait for her school. And in the afternoons, we’ll have to wait about half an hour for his bus to get to the stop. Leaving at 6:40 and getting home at 4:20 every day. Less than three hours of free time before taking showers and getting ready for bed, and that doesn’t count homework and supper. Yeesh. At least they aren’t doing any sports or plays.
It was nice to have a quiet house for a few hours yesterday (and take a nap!), but today I’m missing them. I’ve gotta stop dragging ass and get on my to-do list. Eventually.
If your kids have gone back to school already, how’s it going for them?
Little Man has not had the best summer. He has often been moody and defiant. He hasn’t wanted to read or do any of the summer school work I’ve prepared for him (the last part is understandable, though). And he regularly antagonizes his sister, which leads to the screaming and name calling. I chalked a lot of it up to puberty coming on.
Since school is starting up in a week, I decided to put him back on his ADHD meds. (We don’t typically have him take them on weekends or school breaks.) Plus I made him start going to bed earlier, so he can get back on a sleep schedule that will be appropriate for when school starts.
And now my angel boy has been back for the past two days. He has been ridiculously sweet, hasn’t had an attitude about doing his chores — he even asked what he could do to help — and he finished a Harry Potter book and started another, without being asked to read. Plus he is making LEGO creations like crazy and isn’t asking to watch TV or play video games all the time.
Praise the lord.
It’s interesting. I know his ADHD meds help with focus (although he was always a big reader in the past, meds or no meds), but I never noticed not taking them affecting his mood/behavior in the past, but that is the only big change, so it has to be it. (He isn’t sleeping any longer than normal, so it’s not going to bed earlier I wouldn’t think.)
I am so grateful. Now, I know for a fact that he’s definitely in the throes of puberty (which I found out for a fact earlier this week in a way that has scarred LM and I both), so I know those mood flair ups will still happen at times. But seeing such a turnaround in his attitude and his love for reading coming back makes me so damn happy. There won’t be anymore skipping ADHD meds during weekends or breaks now.
In other news, BG had her kindergarten readiness assessment earlier this week. Her teacher said she is definitely ready for 5K and was impressed with her reading and other stuff. While she did well on that, BG said she isn’t ready, though, and wants to go back to preschool.
I think school anxiety is contributing to her meltdowns. She doesn’t want to be away from me, she doesn’t want to give up Pizza Hut Wednesdays (probably obvious, but our routine was Pizza Hut on Wednesday), plus she’s worried about making friends. BG said she doesn’t think people will like her because she’s different. And then she said if anyone asks her to be her friend, that she’ll say no because she doesn’t want to make new friends.
Plus her teacher doesn’t have superhero stuff and has “that yucky Barbie doll and princess crap.”
I think she’ll feel differently after she goes for a couple of weeks. She has her share of challenges ahead of her, but she’ll like getting back into a more scheduled day. I think she’ll also enjoy some of the enrichment classes she’ll take, like a STEAM-based class. Fingers crossed.