Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Dear Noah:

We have had a few struggles lately getting you ready for bed on time....wipe your butt all on your own (which you were doing very well prior to the plumbing issues). Now you have to wipe but we have to put wipes in baggies and it involves a lot more steps and you get more frustrated more quickly and then cry and want to give up. You were doing so well all BY YOURSELF if you could just wipe and toss it in the toilet. YOU are still wiping mostly by yourself because I have to push you and push you and it is hard and exhausting and I feel like such a mean mommy sometimes for all the constant what-seems-like-nagging.......and you end up crying a lot or wanting me to finish wiping you. It is all emotional drama all over again. Sometimes I just want to give in and wipe your butt and forget it but no....I don't. I know I cannot do this or you will never learn to do will always depend on me to wipe your butt. I persist and make you get the things ready ahead of time you will need...the wipes...the is like we live on a houseboat not being able to put things down the toilet. I told you, you would not want me still wiping your butt at 20 years of age! You said "yes I would!" all the while crying.

We got into it 2 nights ago about bedtime. Once again you were not ready on time. I got very upset about this. I felt bad because you cried....and drew a picture of a broken heart and sad smiley face on your Doodle Pad. I asked you if that were you or said you...because I was angry at you and that made you sad and you had a broken heart.

This made me feel like total shit. I have been fighting feeling horrible ever since. I know it is all part of normal growing up but I never want you to feel sad or have a broken heart especially because of me saying something to you or being angry with you. You went to bed crying....another thing I NEVER want you to do.

I could still cry just thinking about it. It has all become very overwhelming. For you and me once again. We will be doing school year round this year....because of so many OFF days we have had. Just getting you (or me) motivated to stay on track this year has been tough.

I love you......I hope today your little heart is whole again.

mommy :X

Monday, February 26, 2007

Dear Noah...

tonight you come into the room wanted to get a truck.

An Avalanche truck....or something like it you said.

"WHY?" I asked....

you said "so I can get a train horn!"

somewhere you have seen someone with a truck switch the horn out with one that sounds like a train. You think we need to get a truck that has a train you and I can drive around and you honk the horn all the time. You said we could drive out to the country and honk the horn.

You told me you can't wait till you are big enough to get yourself a truck to drive.

So it could have a train horn.

That is all I heard about.....while you cried.....for about 10 minutes.....till I found some samples of train horn sound clips online for you to listen to before bedtime....that made you happy enough......

and tomorrow is another day

i love you

mommy :X

Thursday, February 22, 2007

plumber has been here...

2 men came....they believe they fixed it. Ran that snake/tool thing down the main water-line clean out. Pulled out some rags or flushable wipes...something.....very very black nasty stinky.

I ran the backing up in the tub....same for toilet...all seems well.

Later on I will have to go out and clean the snowy mess up out front. It looks like someone dug a hole and peed or pooped all over the place. SO much for a nice pristine white snowy yard. I have to cover that up with some snow and pick up those rags or whatever it is with GLOVED hands and toss it!

so.....hopefully this fixed the problem. Took all of 15 minutes. I was thinking my conference call started at ENDED then......I hope I am not in trouble...I did catch the end of the call........and it went I think I got what I was supposed to.

I do pride myself on one thing. Under 3 feet of snow they wondered where the main access clean out was. I told him....the man walked out into the snow.....I told him when to stop. His partner got the shovel....walked out....they dug. I told him "you're standing on it"....he dug UNDER where his feet had been....

voila....there it was. I was PERFECT/RIGHT ON with my estimation....I guess mowing around it this past summer enough times branded it's location into my memory!

plumber to come out this afternoon... run some machine/snake thing down the outside water line access......hopefully they will not have to come in but they might at the end to make sure the toilet and tub are draining properly.

JUST what I did not need to happen today. I have to finish some work...and I have a mandatory conference call from 1:30 to possibly 2:30 p.m. The landlord called...said I was very hard to get hold of.......said he had tried last night (we were at the store)and again all morning...he was using up his minutes. I told him I do not turn my phone ringer back on as I am sleeping in the morning till 9:30 or I work at night when Noah sleeps....till around 4:00 or 5:00 a.m. sense getting into details...I guess he thinks I have no life. He also seems to have some problems with memory or something. He did not know the house number here...HIS property he rents to me....and today he called me Melissa.

so maybe later today the plumbing issues will be resolved! HOPING they don't have to dig up the yard or anything else!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

some updates...

continued plumbing issues...

so today I decided to do a load of laundry....knowing full well as the water would spin out it would back up into my tub. I forgot it also backs up into the toilet and it will overflow if you are not in there to make sure it does not. Thankfully I was standing there.

this is for the birds. I called the landlord back who is now back in Florida. I asked him "were you ever going to send someone over to check the plumbing problems?" His response:

"I DID NOT KNOW I WAS SUPPOSED TO." followed by giggling. WTF????

I reminded him of our last phone conversation about 10 days ago? 2 weeks? on a Friday night when the tub and toilet were both overflowing and how he had said he would be by the next day with someone to check it out. OR send a plumber on MONDAY. NONE of those things ever happened. I have made do since....trying to time taking a shower or giving Noah a bath or doing small loads of laundry and flushing ever since. It is impossible. The water always gets backed up......we always end up with the same problems. I have plunged....I have used Liquid Plumber...this is a much more serious problem I think than that. One probably requiring a snake or something else.

On a good note, Noah woke me up saying his upper side tooth was so loose he wanted me to pull it out! I DID! YEAH! NOW if we can remove the other 4 loose teeth in his mouth, especially his top front teeth we will be good to go!

Not sure how I will finish the laundry. EVEN if I do it will take all day for the tub to drain out. That means weird toileting till then....

and such is our lives for now...

Monday, February 19, 2007

Dear Noah:

Well we went to see this movie today with aunt Melissa and cousin Audrey. The movie was not that great and a bit long and tedious.....not much action. You had a very hard time making it through it but you did. Today you seemed to have a trying day. A little bit of whining and crying at aunt Melissa's......over silly things. BUT I am impressed with how QUICKLY you recover from those events now. SO MUCH more quickly than ever before.

So.....we had a decent day. Plumbing issues still....I took a shower this morning....which means you cannot flush the toilet correctly afterwards for awhile or it will overflow. I cannot believe the landlord thinks that is acceptable.

mommy loves you noah......:X

Sunday, February 18, 2007

loneliness and depression...a continuing lesson

I can understand loneliness and depression. If they gave out a degree in the course I would most certainly be awarded top honors. As I sit here typing in the seclusion of my room, mug of coffee at my side, still in my pajamas, white bright light is trying to burst through my drawn blinds. Outside the house is surrounded by a wintery blizzard dumping of snow, making it difficult to even open my front door. Winter, isolation, seclusion, aloneness, depression. I see a most familiar pattern emerging. Oh I forgot could I forget restlessness?

Today seems especially futile to me. That feeling scares me to death. It reminds me of how I felt when I attempted suicide years ago. No, I do not want to kill myself or die now. But, the way you can feel, which can lead to action is what I have been fighting off recently. It is exhausting. The inner emotional turmoil and tricks the voices in your head try to play against each other are probably about as close to madness as one can get without actually being mad. No, I am not schizophrenic. I am talking about those inner voices we all have, that we replay over and over and over again in our minds each and every day. Thousands of repetitions of unfortunately, usually negative thoughts. I wonder why that is. Why does it seem to be so easy for your inner voice to repeat negative phrases to you to knock your own self worth than positive affirmations? It takes great effort to be able to repeat positive phrases to oneself over and over on any given day. It is a conscious effort, whereas the other negative thoughts just seem to ramble at whim very freely.

I have done nothing lately but deep, intense self-reflection. I guess that happens a lot during winter when there is little else one can do. I have looked at my life as it was, as it is now, and what it might be like one day in the future. I do not wonder how I got to the point where I am now because I already know. I have realized I currently live a very isolated life with does not help loneliness or depression. In fact, they all feed voraciously off each other, creating a huge snowball effect, which enhances their powers over you.

It is strange sometimes to see how I react when I am alone. I used to crave being alone....could not wait to move out on my own and live alone. Funny, when you are finally alone, you usually end up not wanting to be, because you suddenly realize just how alone you really are.

Some would say I am not alone because I have a son. Well my son for the most part prefers staying in his own world better than sometimes being in mine. I can't say I blame him. His world has a gloriously controlled environment. Nothing there is unpredictable. He is surrounded only by things that make him happy and keep him calm. So while he is here, unless I step into his world or drag him out of his into mine, we live together yet separate in many ways.

I had a pizza delivered last night for my son for supper, and while I am friendly, I also realized I must really be semi-desperately lonely, to want to strike up a fairly long conversation with the delivery man. As I watched him drive away I could have almost cried. How freaking sick is that? It reminded me of my mother and how "friendly" and "talkative" she always seemed to be, even to complete strangers when we were growing up. Looking back on it now I have to wonder if she did that because she herself was lonely? Was she depressed with her life? I know she did not and could not talk to my dad about things. They just did not ever seem to have that type of relationship. Was she starving for companionship surrounded by a husband and 5 children? If so, that is intense loneliness at its best. So it is very possible to be surrounded by people and still remain very much alone.

As I sat at the kitchen table eating my own supper while my son was in his room eating his, I was slapped again with the realization of just how "alone" I was. I find it interesting that the older I get the more frightening or disturbing that seems to become to me. I am puzzled by that. It is not that I do not like my own company. I do. But I am a sharer. Most things in my life just seem to hold little enjoyment or meaning unless I can actually share them with someone else. As with most humans, I too long for the actual presence of another. Sharing a meal, great conversation over a steaming mug of coffee, an article, movie, our thoughts, dreams, desires, hopes, fears, would be huge. I have also realized the friends I had before don't seem to be free anymore. I know everyone can get busy with their own lives. But I miss having someone I can call up to talk with or invite over for dinner and a chat or for a cookout and afterwards just sitting outside well into the dark listening to the crickets chirp as the moon and stars shine overhead. And let's not even get started on the lost intimate aspects associated with loneliness.

Sure I could do what most of us do during times like these. I could turn on the TV and let the muffled voices play endlessly in the background like white noise, but at some point I will have to turn the TV off, and the silence is then only more deafening and noticeable. I could escape into a good book, but eventually the book has an ending. I could do many things, but eventually I would still have to go home at night, and face myself being alone again. Why is that so scary for me now?

I am a woman and of course we need to have our famous "circles" where we can sit for hours and talk with other women (or men) about the same things over and over again, until suddenly we realize we "feel better." We do not talk to get anything actually fixed. This is why it is extremely difficult for a man to be part of this circle. They are fixers. They will listen to a point before they no longer hear any actual words coming out of your mouth. They fall into an almost trance-like state where they have turned your voice off and no longer hear you, because they just want to "fix" whatever is wrong. They are already busy working on a solution. Us women do not always want something to necessarily be fixed....we just have to talk about it endlessly, sometimes for hours at a time, going from point A all the way through the alphabet to point Z, before arriving back to point A again, and then we are done with it. We have released it. We can let it go.

I no longer have that. I have not had that for over 20 years. It is no wonder I have so many thoughts racing through my head. I am working hard on becoming more like a man in my thinking and not having to actually "work the circle" or at least being able to work it in a faster fashion, but I fail miserably. Why? Because I am very much a woman. The best I can do is hope for a man who will be more than willing to just listen to me ramble on until I can complete the circle. Or at least be good at faking it.

My writing is one way I have discovered I can obtain some sense of relief. Paper is my friend and the letters being spilled forth into words become my voice. When my thoughts and emotions are overflowing, about to burst from the dams in my brain, I sit down and write. It flows. It is easy. It is natural. It is soothing. It is my friend. It is always there...always present....always willing and ready to listen. It does not need to fix anything for me. It is just there. Present.

Presence. Presents. I think having the presence of someone beside you is indeed the best present one can give to oneself.

Copyright ©2007 Melinda A. Napoletano
Image Source: Yahoo Images

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

PJs and another snow day!

we got a lot of snow following the blizzard! The drifts in some areas are HUGE.....over 3-4 feet I am sure. I have some that high in the backyard. I did clear a path to head out and feed the birds.....and also the front walk. I ended up calling someone to snowblow my driveway was really deep. Noah wants to go playing in it....but the winds are still pretty strong and it is still cold. AND it is sooo deep....Noah would not be able to even walk on it and is clear past his butt!

Here are a few pictures:

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

a message back from Liam Turley- - this is pretty impressive and shows a lot of class and took immense nerve on his part to send this to me....

Dear Noah's mom,

I am sending you a copy of my apology I posted to your blog. I thought
this would be convenient in case you wanted to cut and paste it to your blog
as a closure to the issue I instigated; especially since the blog goes from
bottom to top:

Dear Noah's mom,

Please accept my apologies for causing this reaction. The reason I said I
horrified was because I am ultra-sensitive to the needs of children. You run
a very well organized
website, and I am impressed with how you detail your family experiences. And
although I support the spanking ban in California, I don't think it will
pass; I think that there should be no penalties. I therefore don't agree
with it totally!

I originally found your website while doing research for my school. I was
just worked up because prior to the time when I posted, I was also in the
middle of reviewing an abuse case and a pile of situations that I used as
part of a research project. I chose the wrong blog to participate in;
especially since it was written in 2004. Once again, I am sorry for the
interference it caused on your website. I wasn't trying to imply that you
pose a threat to Noah. Please, forgive me.

Sincerely yours,

Liam Turley

he definitely earned my respect for doing this...and while we will not always see eye to eye....I was very impressed he took the time to respond back to me and explain where he was coming from the day this was great that he actually took time to "step in my shoes" for a moment.

the snow has begun.....right around midnight...slightly after......

Friday, February 09, 2007

Dear Noah:

Click on the Dear Noah to see and hear Noah's song he made up tonight about our plumbing issues...

tonight we had more plumbing problems. Never fails.....a Friday night too. You were in the tub taking a bath....and I did a load of laundry. When that load went to spin out....the water apparently started to back up into the tub via the metal seal up near the faucet.........just GUSHING out.....and also backing up in the toilet....thank goodness it was not sewer water. I am also thankful we had your bath done and had washed and rinsed the shampoo out of your hair.

I got you out of the tub and clothed and called the this time the tub was over half filled. NO amount of plunging was getting us anywhere. The landlord did not seem overly concerned and basically refused to call for a plumber because he did not want to pay for after hours fees. Said MAYBE he and a buddy could make it over in the morning......but it may not be till MONDAY before things were fixed. I asked him what we were supposed to do for a toilet..let alone a shower or anything else. He seemed like he thought the toilet water was still going down......oh yeah...just use it anyway.......let the poopy and pee water back up into the toilet as it drains!

I was so mad. I cannot believe he would not call that an emergency. At the very least he says he has to come out and PLUNGE first...if that does not work THEN he calls a plumber. I finally had to tell him I had to go and I guess it all depended on how much damage he would have to fix later as there was at least 2 inches of water on the floor and it was still coming out all over the place...

SO......I was upset but not cussing or yelling. Well I think I did say "damnit" once because you pointed out to me I had used one of our words we were not going to use anymore. I know you hear me ranting in the background and I normally handle these things pretty calmly so you will also remain calm and learn how to handle things calmly. BUT to be honest this did not sit well with me. I told the landlord I had no time for him to bring his plunger over and me and him to PLUNGE together for a few hours. I had to work, make you cookies and supper, put things away around here....somehow clean things up now, etc. SO maybe he will show up tomorrow with his buddy....likely waking us up well before we have had sufficient sleep since I am having to work again tonight and should have been this afternoon and earlier this evening to begin with.

Instead this at least forced me to clean up a few things around here in case someone comes I did do that. I have a few things to finish in the kitchen and then I will make a pot of coffee and get to work.

BUT......Noah you were walking around the house checking the tub and sinks and toilet.....and then you apparently were recording and singing a song you were making up as you went along. It is a song about all our "problems" here today and how things were going wrong and we are always seeming to get into trouble here and not getting anything done (which I am sure you hear me say and then I self fulfill that prophecy....need to STOP that)...and here is the song......and video of is sooo cute. You sing about wishing we had a half bath in the laundry room......but we would need new pipes below the ground for that....then you talk about us having to move again.......maybe to great grandma's house ...or another place.....or back to COLORAAAAADO. SO cute. I got to laughing which you heard and that is the only reason you stopped....I wish I could have kept it in as you were coming up with some amazingly unique on the spot lyrics! So here it is...I know the audio is not the actually sounds better through headphones...

Mommy loves you lots Noah......:X

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Dear Liam Turley

I left you a message in my blogger shout box in response to your comments to me about an old post from 2004 where I paddled Noah on the butt....which was actually 2 swats via his diapered butt......but I am not sure you will go there to see it.

I don't know who you are.....and I am not making any excuses. We all screw up. Parents of special needs children are not perfect. We all get tired and frustrated. I am not sure how much you have read in my blog/diary to my son. If you had bothered to read it would find Noah is the most protected and loved child. He has never been abused. I do not HIT him...a swat on the butt via a diaper is not hitting as I know in the face or on the arms or legs or bare body......I barely even swatted him back in 2004. I have not done it since...I do not believe in HITTING as an answer to anything.

I find it interesting however that you come along and tell me......without being in my shoes for even 1 day...what YOU think is or is not appropriate, right, or wrong. If you are against hitting/paddling....that is YOUR opinion. While I agree in this case...I do not have to...and I could just as easily have not agreed with you.

I hope you have a healthy who has no disability. I hope you get more than 4 hours of sleep each night. I hope you have time to work and homeschool your child if you have one that requires it....and take care of the home....all on 4 hours of sleep. I hope you can pay your bills on part-time wages. I would like to hope if you had a child diagnosed with autism......among other things...that during the "initial" period of adjustment in all your lives......that you would handle things would not be frustrated to the point where you purposefully swat a child on the butt via a diaper to see if that at least gets their attention.

If you can do all these things and so will be another God. I am trying to do all those things and more......and I am far from being GOD.

I have since uncovered that Liam Turley is a social worker student who is apparently a supporter of the ban proposed in CA against paddling (for parents even...for children 3 years of age or younger)......I have no idea yet if they even have a child......let alone an autistic child....and/or has ever experienced some of the frustrations that can go along with it......I again am not justifying my swatting Noah on the butt...but he was 5-1/2 years old at the time......and I SWATTED him not paddled....even though I called it paddling in my post back in 2004.

I understand this young social worker student is all GUNG HO and ready to take on anything to fight for the rights of children being abused and mistreated. I am all for that too. They are going at it with their eyes still virginalized as they have yet to witness the reality of what truly exists in the world. I wish someone were around when I was little to stop some of those things from happening to me.

However....swatting Noah on the butt via a diaper did not hurt him and while I did not want to do did indeed get his attention and the behavior I wanted to change....DID indeed change immediately from that point on. TRUE.....since that time I have found BETTER ways to alter Noah's bad behavior for good behavior. That only comes by getting my feet wet and being in the midst of it all day after day and learning myself what works and what does not.

AND I made the mistake here of addressing this as it being a time in our lives when Noah had already been diagnosed with autism. This was before he was officially we were even more frustrated not understanding why he was not doing things he should be doing for his age, etc. As far as we knew...there were no reasons why he should not be doing what he was supposed to do, other than just being disobedient.

anyway......I will shut up now.....because the purpose of this blog is to be a diary to my son about our lives and our trials and tribulations. I am thankful we have more tribulations than trials....

noah in his element......

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Dear Noah: (CLICK on images to see larger view)

Well we went out to shovel the snow. We took some pictures of the was all beautiful!

Dear Noah:

we are has been bitterly cold the last week. I had some fabulous things to write in here but did not have that I do have a few minutes my brain is too frozen to remember them.

more later

love you forever

mommy :X