[Insert A Title Of Your Choice Here]

The stomach bug got us all. Baby Girl got it twice and the rest of us got it once (pleeeease no seconds). Since Baby Girl seemed better the day after the throwing up ended, she went back to school on Thursday, only to wake up that night throwing up again. So I’m sure half of her class will get wiped out, too. I’m going to stick a couple cans of Lysol in her backpack as a weak-ass apology.

It was funny how it affected all of us differently. Baby Girl obviously had it the worst with all of the throwing up, plus she complained of a headache, and she’s still feeling worn out today. I only had it bad for several hours, but then I had muscle spasms that lasted a day later and still feel like I had my ass kicked. My husband was sick for a couple of hours and slept all day but is still worn out today. LM was also sick for only a couple of hours and slept all day but is going full blast today. The rest of us aren’t at 100 percent just yet, so if looks could kill, he’d be a dead man by now.

Since BG was feeling better on Thursday, we went to her parent teacher conference that night. Her teacher and assistant teacher had lots of good things to say about how she was doing. Her test scores were great (yep, they have to do standardized testing in kindergarten) and at the top of the class. Her teacher said she can read pretty much any word she puts in front of her and is on a second grade reading level so far and is great with math, too. Her teacher also said she seems like she’s in her own little world a lot when they aren’t doing the more structured activities and doesn’t see her initiate playing with other kids but when they approach her she plays (and takes charge) and gets on well with everyone.

The teacher vented about Asshole Psychologist a little, too, and told me that they had the FM system for BG within two hours of that meeting. She said as a mom of a kid who will need services in a couple of years that it scared her and that she was in our corner and would do whatever she could to help. ❤ (And eventually I’ll stop gloating/complaining over Asshole Psychologist, but probably not anytime soon since a) it pissed me off so badly and b) we aren’t done.)

We aren’t quite caught up on laundry yet, but are getting there. Hopefully everyone will be back to normal tomorrow! My husband has Monday and Tuesday off work, so it’ll be nice to play catch up and relax a little. The kids have been on a Teen Titans Go! kick, and now we’re watching Teen Titans Go! To The Movies, and it’s fucking hilarious. It’s definitely my favorite kids show they’ve picked up lately.

Oh, and remember how I hadn’t had a sugary drink (Coke, sweet tea) since April? Well, I shot that all to hell with my virus. After hours of being sick, I found a bottle of Pepsi in the fridge and drank it. I never cared that much for Pepsi, but it was heavenly. It didn’t stay down long, but now I’ve gotta start over.

How is your weekend going?

That’s Sick, Yo

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. (Don’t hate me for starting Christmas music already.) It’s also the sickest, and not in the good sense that the word “sick” is being used in these days.

The night before, the girl woke me up around 3AM. Not by kissing my cheek, shoving her knees in my back, or rubbing her feet on my pajamas (something she loves to do, which is so darn odd), but by puking on my back. That poor girl threw up for the following nine hours. We were worried that her reflux was flaring up again, but the vomiting shifted to diarrhea and then back to vomit later in the evening, so we felt like it was safe to assume that she had a stomach bug.

I truly learned what Clothes Mountain is when we went through most of our towels and linens. We had a trash can and vomit bag, but somehow vomit still got everywhere.

She woke up at 4:00 last night and refused to try to go back to sleep. Super cranky. We kept her home today and hopefully she’ll feel all better by tomorrow. Tomorrow will mark her tenth absence this year, so she’s missed 20 percent of the school days at this point. Plus she gets the half day for therapy every week. Ten days is the most they’re supposed to miss, so hopefully we won’t run into any issues if she misses more.

While my husband and LM were out last night, she wanted to lie down on my bed because she was tired. I laid down with her, and she didn’t go to sleep but became Chatty Cathy instead. That is one interesting child. She started talking about Teen Titans and how she noticed that each of the characters has a different way of talking. She told me facts about lions and the planets. (She seemed disappointed when I didn’t know which planets are gas giants.)

And then she abruptly shifted gears and told me she had to start liking Barbie dolls. I asked why and she said it’s what girls are supposed to like and if she likes them too, maybe people will stop staring at her all the time.

“Who’s staring at you?” I asked.

“Everybody. Everywhere I go, people stare at me. I hate it when people look at me. They all think I’m different,” she said and scowled.

I told her that I doubted anyone was staring at her because she didn’t like Barbies and it’s probably because she’s so cute.

“I know I’m cute,” she agreed. “But I have short hair like a boy and wear boy clothes and that’s why people stare at me.” (For the record, while her hair is shorter, it looks nothing like a boyish haircut, and she probably only wears her shirts from the boy’s section half of the time.)

I talked to her for a while about how everyone is different and can like whatever they want to like, as I’ve done in the past. I told BG that I’d be happy to get her a couple of Barbies for Christmas, but that she should want them because she actually wants to play with them, not because of other people.

She shifted gears again. “Sometimes the girls at school cry,” she said. I asked why, and she told me it’s when they fall down or have an accident.

“Do you ever cry?” I asked.

“Only once. On Halloween, in PE, we were playing Duck, Duck, Goose. I cried then.”

“What happened during Duck, Duck, Goose?”

“It was loud. It’s always loud in there. I had to sit in the middle and didn’t know why. Everyone was looking at me, and I started crying.”

“Poor girl. What did the teacher say?”

“She fussed and said stop, so I stopped, but I wanted to cry more. My friend Zoey patted me on the back and tried to make me feel better.” Zoey is the child who told my husband on the field trip that it was her job to protect Baby Girl.

I told BG that I was sorry that happened and that I would talk to her PE teacher about it. I’ll get a pair of noise canceling headphones for her to use in there when it gets too loud for her and let the teacher know to give BG a sensory break when she gets overwhelmed. She retired a few years ago and decided to work again part-time, so hopefully she isn’t one of those teachers who is difficult over this sort of thing. It really bothers me that she couldn’t take a few seconds to ask why she was crying.

I asked BG if any other enrichment classes were too loud for her, and she said music is, so I’ll get some headphones for that class, too. I could just ask her teacher to send around the pair she already has, but I imagine they’d get lost eventually.

“I hate when things are loud. It hurts and makes me sad and mad!” She sounded upset, so I asked BG if she wanted a hug. She hadn’t wanted to be held or cuddled all day. “No. Why do people want to hug all the time?”

“It’s a display of affection, to show someone they care about them.”

“My friends hug me a lot.” I asked if she was okay with that, and she said sometimes it makes her skin feel itchy. I told her she could ask them to give her a high five instead. I decided to take the opportunity to delve into her brain and ask about some of her other autistic traits, like why she doesn’t make eye contact sometimes. This is because it hurts her eyes and makes her feel sad. Rubbing soft things makes her feel happy, but she said she doesn’t do it at school because people will stare. She has a lot of meltdowns because she’s always cranky — everything is too loud. I knew sensory overload was the cause of that. I’m going to look into some less bulky noise canceling headphones for her to wear more frequently.

I hate the kiddo is sick, but I’m glad it gave us the opportunity to lay down and talk like that. I doubt she would’ve been still long enough to talk for so long about things like that otherwise. Hopefully she’ll bounce back today and be back to her normal wound up self.

And Now There’s Two

We met with the psychologist on Friday to discuss the results of LM’s evaluation. He said that he thinks the boy is also on the spectrum, but very high functioning. The doctor said it was tricky with LM because it was hard to tell how much of his social difficulties are tied to how smart he is, but he thinks the pieces fit. He spent a lot more time with LM than the person who evaluated him when he was seven, and his testing covered more, so it was good that he had so much to pull from.

Despite the reason we tested LM — his sister’s diagnosis combined with him telling me about how he feels like he fakes it socially and stuff — I really didn’t expect that diagnosis after filling out the parent surveys. I didn’t think the surveys had as many 2s and 3s or Almost Always or Always marks (for the symptoms) as Baby Girl’s. I figured the doctor would come back with “ADHD, but has autistic-like traits” like the one who evaluated him before. (And possibly Tourette’s because of his tics.)

It was interesting to see one of the tests that shows how at-risk LM is for certain autism traits, because he had our feedback, LM’s fifth grade teacher’s feedback, and LM’s self-test. Part of the teacher’s test fell into the at-risk category, ours was a bit above hers, and LM’s was all in the probable category.

(Baby Girls’ assessment was mostly in the section where the green line is.)

I thought it was interesting how much the traits we all picked up on were lined up, just different in the severity. I was surprised with LM’s self-assessment, because while I knew that he had some difficulties, I wasn’t aware that he felt like things were so difficult to the point that most of his whole self-test fell into the probable category.

I know the psychologist had a lot of info to pull from, but I wonder if LM’s report hadn’t been so high if he would have been diagnosed with ASD, or if he would’ve also come to the “ADHD with autistic-like traits” conclusion. I don’t suppose it matters, since it doesn’t really change anything on our end. We told LM after he got home, and he said he was relieved to know “why I am the way that I am.” So, while the label ADHD vs. ASD may not matter too much from a parenting perspective at his age (we’ve been working on social skills and coping with sensory stuff for years and would continue to do so regardless), it apparently means a lot to him as far as his self-identity goes.

Now for the concerning part — the doctor said that LM’s self-report shows depression and anxiety. Additionally, the parent report and the teacher report picked up on that (although to a milder degree). That was very upsetting to learn. The doctor said that between LM going through puberty and people on the spectrum being prone to those issues (plus people with ADHD are, too), that it’s not that surprising. And, of course, there’s the biological factor.

Still, I had no idea that LM felt like that. Between not being aware of his social difficulties (fifth grade went well for him and the bullying stopped, so he seemed to improve so much there, just not internally I guess) and depressive traits, I must not be in tune with him nearly as much as I thought I was. Anxiety wasn’t that surprising, but the severity that LM reported was. I asked LM about depression, and he said that he feels down and sad and worried a lot. I know that things can look fine on the outside and the inside be a different story, but things have been going so well for him that depression wasn’t a blip on my radar.

At least we know.

The doctor is going to try to find a therapist that he thinks will work well with LM. He said he wishes his workload were lighter now, otherwise he would love to work with LM himself. He said if he couldn’t find anyone, he would figure out how to make it work, though. So that’s good. We have an appointment with the provider who manages LM’s ADHD meds this week, so we’ll run this by her. The psychologist said we may want to ask about an antidepressant, but he would recommend trying therapy for three months and go from there. I agree, because I don’t want to put LM on an antidepressant if it’s not absolutely necessary. I know from experience that the side effects can be rough, but if that’s what he needs in a few months, then that’s what we’ll do. Since it seemed to make LM feel better to know about his diagnosis, maybe that’ll help with depression, too.

Kids shouldn’t have to deal with fucking depression and anxiety. Well, no one should, but especially not kids.

Funny Bits With The Girl

The girl is often full of herself, and she’s had quite a few funny moments over the past week. Here are a few of them:

Baby Girl told me about playing with another little girl at recess. Baby Girl is 41 inches tall and this little girl, who is just a year older, is almost five feet tall. I was shocked to learn she is six! Anyway, they play family together. I asked BG about their roles, since I know she hates getting stuck as the baby, which is what usually happens.

“My friend is the mommy, and I am the pet lion,” she told me.

I love everything about that.


I was getting something out of LM’s closet and was kneeling over when his old infant car seat fell out of the top and hit me base-first on the head. I yelled and Baby Girl asked what was wrong. I told her, and her response was less than sympathetic.

“You’ll be fine.”

She sounds like a seasoned mom.


BG and LM probably fight more than they get along, but they do have their super sweet moments. LM was helping her put together a LEGO set her grandma gave her and told BG how much he loved her. Baby Girl said she loved him, too.

“I love you more than nothing.”

She has a way with words, huh?


When I called for BG to come into the living room and get ready, she didn’t answer and let her magnadoodle answer for her:

I love that she put an exclamation.

Happy Tuesday!

Zzzzzzzz

My body feels half dead. I haven’t been sleeping well this week and have averaged around three hours of sleep per night. I feel so damn tired, but my brain won’t settle down at all. The melatonin isn’t touching it. I can usually take a nap after dropping off the girl in the mornings if I don’t sleep well the night before, but my brain ain’t having that this week.

Thoughts, thoughts, thoughts, so many thoughts.

I should write about blah blah blah, I need to figure out how to clean the blah blah blah, I think I’ll order blah blah blah, I need to get my decorations and blah blah blah, I need to research IEP stuff and blah blah blah. 

Add in snippets of music between those thoughts, or interrupt those thoughts with snippets of music even, and you’ve got my brain.

Ever since getting on the perfect mix of meds for my bipolar disorder (my old psychiatrist got me stable and my new one added something that made things better), I’ve been much more balanced overall. My mood tracker went from looking like a level 5 thrill ride pre-meds to a level 2 ride that would probably mostly bore LM. I wonder if the sleep this week is due to another climb or if it’s just some run-of-the-mill insomnia. I’m not totally bouncing off the walls or being super impulsive or super creative, so it may be (and hopefully is) just the latter. That would be good since that would mean no drop in mood later.

I’ve been rather cranky as a result of the no sleep, and the kids have been foolish as hell this week. LM’s foolishness peaked yesterday, but thankfully I got out of the house and had dinner with a friend. And this morning, Baby Girl did well at first…she got up without complaint, got dressed, got her shoes on, and then stopped. She wouldn’t eat (whatever, I’m not gonna push it) and suddenly decided she wasn’t going to school. So she got back in bed, hid under the pillows, and refused to get up and get her hair combed and teeth brushed. Twenty minutes later, her dad got her in the bathroom kicking and screaming and did the best he could.

That’s how her hair looked.

I drove her to school while my husband drove LM. That child kicked and screamed for 10 minutes and even launched one of her shoes at my head. After that she started sobbing about how no one loves her and thinks she’s terrible and fussed because she dropped her stuffie. I handed her the plush uterus toy and asked what her favorite body organ was. I kid you not, she did a 180 just like that, completely perked up, and spent 15 minutes talking about the best body organs and their various functions.

Okay, then. At least she was calm. I messaged her teacher to give her a head’s up about how the morning went and let her know I packed some cereal in her bag. Hopefully the perky “yay body organs” attitude will stick with her throughout the day.

Back To School

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.

Here’s to a good week. Happy Monday 🙂

About Anxious Mom, As Narrated By Morgan Freeman

While updating my About Me page, I decided to have a little fun with it. And since there has been an influx of new followers, I thought I’d share that page as a blog post. Welcome aboard, new folks.


Per the blog post title, you should read this in Morgan Freeman’s voice. 

Anxious Mom, who is known as “Mommy,” “Mom,” or “Momo” by her children, is a 30-something woman who resides in the Deep South. (And by “resides,” we mean “suffers” due to the unbearable heat and humidity.) She has two heathens — a son in middle school and a daughter in kindergarten. When the children aren’t busy tormenting each other, they torture their mother in ways only children can.

There are many things Anxious Mom enjoys doing in her spare time. If you ask her directly, she’d probably tell you that she loves reading and doing intellectual activities such as going to the museum. If you observe her in her habitat, however, you’ll find that she mostly watches shows on Netflix and plays games in her downtime. She is particularly fond of comedies, including The Office, Parks and Rec, Friends, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. She has jokingly said that liking one of those shows is required to be friends with her, but through careful observation, we have learned it is not, in fact, a joke.

If you asked Anxious Mom about her background, she’d tell you that she did a brief stint as a teacher before becoming a stay-at-home-mom. Since then, she has done freelance work part-time, including providing content writing and editing services. Her primary job, however, is working as a chauffeur. This is where she truly excels in life, as she has a penchant for punctuality (as long as her children and husband don’t intervene) and safety. The mother, who we suspect was a hall monitor in another life, is proud of having never gotten a speeding ticket. She does, however, fill her swear jar every other day thanks to her time on the road, so she isn’t as goody-two-shoes as she seems.

As you can see, Anxious Mom is a blogger. Some people call her a mommy blogger, and that irritates her greatly. “I am a mom who blogs,” she maintains, as though there is truly a difference. She has blogged for five years and writes about herself and her family. When she first started blogging, she wrote a lot about her mental health, and it’s suspected that she’ll do so again. The rapidly-approaching-middle-age mother is also fond of writing blog posts where she rants about meaningless topics.

This concludes our glimpse into the life Anxious Mom. You can read her other blog posts or follow her on Instagram for other mundane insights into her life.

So Long Tonsils

I talked to Baby Girl’s teacher about things. She said she admired how we advocated for Norah and told me some things she is doing in the classroom to help. She admitted not knowing a lot about autism, but said she is researching strategies to help. She told me her goal is to minimize situations in the class that may be stressful for BG and reduce sensory overload (or meltdowns).

That was good to hear, of course. She also told me that she got an FM system for the girl . I’ve never seen one, but apparently it’s supposed to reduce background noise and deliver the teacher’s voice to BG. She said some kids were curious about it, so she explained what it was and BG seemed happy with it.

The teacher also talked about how they would handle any issues that came up and said that either she or her assistant would take BG to a quiet area to help her calm down while the other stays with the kids. She asked for suggestions for strategies and other changes she could make in the classroom that might help. I’m so happy to hear all of this, because while getting BG through the school day without a meltdown is important, reducing that frustration so she isn’t completely on the verge of one after school is important, too.

Also, the principal said that while she may not get an IEP and be eligible for certain accommodations through the school district, she’ll have a personal education plan for the school itself. It’s a charter school and receives state funding, but they’re able to make their own rules. (Like allowing her to start late if we had chosen to do so and letting her leave early for her therapy appointments.) The district psychologist has no control over that, so I am assuming that FM system was provided that way since she’s technically supposed to haven an IEP to get one. Take that, asshole.

Good stuff.

The girl had her tonsils out yesterday. That poor child seemed like she was on the verge of panic attacks multiple times over the past few days. She was terrified of having the surgery done. She wasn’t worried about pain — that never came up — but the idea of having them removed scared her.

We expected yesterday to be very difficult, but BG was in a good mood when she got up. She didn’t seem too nervous, even when we got to the hospital. After we checked in, a nurse took her back to a room that had the Disney channel playing. We got her dressed in a gown and then the doctor and the anesthesiologist came in to talk to us. When it was time for them to take her back, she didn’t cry, but I sure did when I watched them wheel her away.

We knew the surgery would be quick, but were surprised when the doctor came out half an hour later. I expected him to say something was wrong and they couldn’t remove the tonsils or something, but he said they got him out and she did great. It took longer for her to wake up from the anesthesia than it did for the tonsils to be removed.

When we went back to the recovery room, BG was crying a little. The nurse gave her some water and we rubbed her back. She then asked:

“Where’s my Barbie dream house?”

Um, what?

“What Barbie dream house?” I asked.

“The one I’m supposed to get after surgery.”

“But you don’t even like Barbies. We don’t have a Barbie dream house, sweetie.”

This made her start crying really hard. “But I want my Barbie dream house!” she wailed. I can only imagine how confused we must have looked to the nurses since our daughter, who can’t stand Barbies and other “girl stuff” was crying over a Barbie dream house that she thought she was going to get for some reason.

My husband asked if he should go get a Barbie dream house for her. I looked it up and they cost almost $200, which is half of what we paid for the surgery. I shot that idea down. She did manage to get him to stop by Target and get another gift for her, though.

The doctor said that BG would need a week, maybe two, to recover. After a half hour nap yesterday, she was bouncing off the walls. Same today. You wouldn’t even know she had surgery. I shouldn’t be too surprised since she’s not one to respond to pain much. Even when she had strep throat, she never complained about it hurting. We took her to the doctor because she had a fever and was lethargic and found out that way. Hopefully she continues feeling well and it isn’t a delayed reaction!