Life lately {May 2017}

I noticed today that I have no updated the blog for a month. This was not intentional but it has been crazy around here and I have not had the head space or inclination to write any posts. So I thought I’d do a little catch up before I get back to business!

Technical problems

Firstly, computer and internet issues have been the bane of my life. A windows update knackered both mine and the Mr’s laptops. Thankfully we have a cousin who is a whiz with technology and he managed to rescue one laptop, which we are sharing, while we wait to see if the other is destined for the scrap yard in the sky.

BT and Open Reach are in a conspiracy to send me to an early grave. We are having terrible issues with our internet which they are unable to solve. It seems to be a case of right arm not knowing what the left is doing. They won’t be winning any awards for customer service, that’s for sure.

Health problems

Well. it’s certainly been a month of health problems. I have had 2 further incidences of bowel obstructions resulting in me collecting more points on my A&E frequent flier card. Not only that but I’ve tripped and twisted my knee. Thankfully I’m already on crutches so have cut to the chase on that one.

Mr M has won the award for most random health problem. He had to have a blood test but the lady doing it made a big mistake and inserted the needle into the tendon in his arm rather than the vein. He immediately fainted and stopped breathing. Thankfully he was already in hospital and suffered no long term effects.

 

Positive moments

It has been rather an overwhelming month in more ways than one. I’m getting stressed and anxious about constant hospital admissions and my lack of control over them. In an effort to regain a more positive mindset I have taken time out to pursue hobbies and regain some balance and perspective. I have spent hours ignoring the house work while I learn to crochet and have rediscovered my love of sewing and dressmaking. I have sat in the garden for half an hour with my camera in an effort to capture a bumble bee and worked on my vegetable patch.

A busy bumble bee in the gardenTurns out they are very tricky to capture!

Taking time to myself has helped lift the rut I’m in. I’m not sure if this is classed as mindfulness or slow living but it has certainly helped. I guess we all have months like this now and again. Months where the problems seem to outweigh the solutions. They can leave us floundering if we’re not careful but there are always bright spots if you take the time to look for them. So, onwards and upwards. This month is going to be amazing!!

 

7 things not to say to the parent of a child with autism

When I started this blog I fully intended to steer away from parenting topics. However, today I read something that made me despair of the everyday ignorance surrounding autism and Aspergers syndrome. Over the years I have heard some naive, some misguided and some downright offensive comments about my son OJ, who has a diagnosis of Aspergers syndrome. So, I decided to direct my anger into something constructive and create a list of some of the things not to say to the parent of a child with autism.

 

7 Things not to say to the parent of a child with autism:

Did they have their jabs?

There is no proven link between autism and vaccinations. End of.

They’ll grow out of it

No they won’t. However they will grow out of the additional support and resources that are offered to children. Adult services are woefully underfunded. The moment OJ turned 18 non of the agencies that had assisted us could be seen for dust. Just because the support vanishes it doesn’t mean that the condition has vanished too.

What’s their special talent?

Let me guess, you’ve watched Rainman? A misplaced idea that people with autism all have an extraordinary skill or ability seems commonplace. Many don’t and those who do are not performing monkeys to be bought out for your entertainment. OJ is a normal teenager. He likes to play on the computer however he hack the Pentagon with his epic computer skills.

They look normal to me

What does normal look like? Many disabilities are hidden. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there. You don’t look rude but you still opened your mouth and voiced this ludicrous opinion.

 They just need some discipline

You cannot naughty step the autism out of a toddler. You cannot ground a child until they make eye contact, or eat foods that make them physically sick. Sending a teenager upstairs to think about their actions will rarely elicit a light-bulb moment where they suddenly realise the error of their ways. However strict you are with your child it will not ‘cure them’ although you can teach your child coping strategies and ways to deal with sensory overload.

God only gives you what you can handle

Give me strength. Even as a Christian, this trite phrase gives me the rage. There is no celestial plot happening behind the scenes to see just how far God can push me. There is no divine being in the clouds deciding who to send children with additional challenges to. It’s all down to biology and dna.

My friend’s child is autistic and they aren’t like this

You have met one child and experienced the challenges they face. My child is different. Every child is different. Children with autism are not a homogeneous group, all facing the same challenges and difficulties. Autism is a spectrum and you can fall anywhere on that spectrum. You may experience similar difficulties or be polar opposites. It is still the same condition.

 

Autism is a lifelong condition. You are born with it, you don’t catch it and it cannot be cured. Please think before you speak but don’t be afraid to ask questions if you don’t understand something. Communication is the key to education.

This list is only a snap shot of things that I have heard

What would you add to the list?

Disclaimer: I have not added the comment that prompted me to write this post because some things are just too diabolical to repeat.

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7 Things not to say to the parent of a child with autism #autism

Getting my groove back

Motherhood has consumed me. A bold statement perhaps but everything I do is geared towards my children and their well being. It is my joy and my responsibility to nurture them into well rounded adults. However, as they get older and I emerge from the bubble of parenting small children I realise that something has been left by the wayside. My sense of myself. I no longer know who I am other than “Mom”. I define myself by my parental status. With that whole parts of my identity seem to have vanished. I’m determined to rediscover those lost parts of myself. I need to get my groove back.

Who was I ?

Once upon a time I was a body confident, bright young girl who had the world at her feet. I was naturally bright but also a little bit dizzy and didn’t always display common sense. You could safely rely on me to do or say something daft that would still be laughed about 10 years later. Doing things for myself made me happy. Life was a blast. Who needed sleep when you could party instead?

 

Who am I ?

Now I have no body confidence. I feel old, lackluster and saggy and live for the chance to catch up on some sleep. I watch what I say to strangers in case I embarrass myself. Some of my clothes are older than my kids. All of our money goes on the kids and house. If I had a day to spend entirely on myself I wouldn’t have the faintest idea how to spend the time.

Everybody changes

Let’s be honest. My personality, likes and dislikes would’ve naturally changed with age and maturity. The problem is that I have been so absorbed with being the best parent that I can be that I have forgotten to take care of my own needs as well. I made it my mission to be all things to all people and somewhere along the line I lost a little of myself. I don’t want my kids to feel they don’t have the best of everything in life. The great irony is that I am so worn down that they no longer get the best of me.

How do I get my groove back ?

It’s all about giving myself permission. Permission to put myself first occasionally. Somewhere inside of me lurks the confident girl I once was. I need to find new hobbies and activities that are just for me and to rebuild my self belief. I have to quash the guilt that overwhelms me every time I do something for myself. My kids will not suffer if I ignore the ironing and have a bubble bath instead. The world will not end if I sit in the garden for half an hour and read a book.

I need to give myself permission to stop worrying what other people think. To do what makes me happy. To stop being quiet in case I say something silly. I need to find my inner peace in whatever form that may take. My body and soul need nourishment. By becoming so focused on my children’s needs I have ignored my own and have been doing them a disservice in the process. A happy and fulfilled mom in going to be a happier and calmer parent. Getting my groove back will benefit the whole family.

Lets do this!

My Word of the Week is Groove

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I have been so consumed by motherhood that I have lost the sense of my own identity. How do I find myself and get my groove back?

 

A new beginning, a new focus

Hello and welcome!

It would be true to say that this post has been long time coming. Last June I had a tech disaster and lost 2 years worth of work from my previous blog. Rather than wallow, I decided to turn a negative into a positive and use this opportunity to start again but with a different focus.  However, due to an unexpected a series of events I found myself taking a much longer break than anticipated. Now, I have dusted myself off and am finally ready to launch Inside Out.  A new blog, a new beginning and a new focus.

Welcome to a new beginning at the new Inside Out blog! Posts will be covering issues relevant to your mind, body and home.Image courtesy of Pixabay

What’s it all about?

Inside Out is aimed at a slightly older reader. Those of us who are emerging from the bubble of parenting young children. I want discover what I can be outside of my main role as a mother. I finally have the time to invest in my personal well being but don’t know where to begin. How do I combat the guilt that I feel when I do something solely for my own enjoyment?

My tagline is Mind, body and home. Many of the topics I plan to cover will fall within one of these headers. Themes such as body image, mental and physical health and style and beauty (for those of us who are the wrong side of 39) will be covered. I also have plenty to write about interiors, renovations and home and garden. We are currently knee deep in rubble as we renovate our house and have plenty to share on that subject! It may not be Instagram worthy but it will be an honest account of restyling a home. I also have lots of crafting ideas and tutorials for you to try your hand at, as I truly believe creativity and hobbies are a huge benefit to your personal well being.

I hope you have enjoyed this little introduction.

I’d love it if you’d return to follow our story!

 

My word of the week is New