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Did I Make a Mistake in Putting Motherhood Above All Else?

I watched the film “The Lost Daughter”. Olivia Coleman, a middle-aged woman, is vacationing alone in Greece. She becomes consumed with the dramatic narrative of a fellow beach goer, a young mother and her daughter. Coleman is thrown back to her own youth when she struggled to parent small children and maintain a separate self as a graduate student. She later confessed to this other woman, “I’m an unnatural mother” in response to her admission that she left her children for two years to pursue an affair. 

This scene choked me up. Theatrical reviews aside, much of the movie was uncomfortable to watch. The flashbacks to the younger self with her palpable resentment towards her children as she struggled to complete a phone call held a lens towards some of my own battles.  But I never left my children. I’ve always been right here for them. Was that my biggest mistake, that I didn’t center more energy on myself and instead put too much focus on raising children? 

I also feel that I need to be someone separate from the children. I crave the confidence that comes from being acknowledged as being successful in one’s work. That is something that is not acknowledged or clearly defined when one’s job is full-time parenting.

I suffer the dueling desires of “selfish first person” Cynthia and “selfless mother” Cynthia. I have constructed these identities. No one told me to leave my career at the museum, to abandon my own graduate work and become a full-time parent. I made those choices. I wanted to be home with my babies and create a sparkling childhood utopia complete with a curated board book collection and a membership to the kiddie science museum. I thought “I” could exist alongside this mother-self. 

When my first baby was 6 months old, I tried to return to academia, but my suburban homestead didn’t make it convenient to get into the city. In those early years, I thought I was still two people. But ultimately, motherhood subsumed my other self. I didn’t publish my research. I was no longer a career woman. I sold my suits! I had more children. I occasionally wrote “bloggy” essays about mothering. 

Many women, probably most women in America, work outside of the home. They are somehow mothers and have another job because they need money to keep the lights on or they need to satisfy an inner drive.

My situation is a little different. When I realized that my children are autistic my priorities took a sharp turn. There was suddenly another language to learn and whole worlds of therapies and medical issues to navigate. I really do have a full-time job managing their education, physical and emotional needs. But other special needs parents do this and also work another job.

Do I sometimes wish that I could trade places with someone who had gone back to work after she had her babies? Sometimes I do. 

Does that make me an unnatural mother? 

“An unnatural mother” is a filthy epithet in our culture. It’s right up there with “unfit”. That’s the judgment I feel against myself. I should intuitively know and love all aspects of being a mother or there is something wrong with me.

My youngest is 6 years old and it is starting to feel less clear what motherhood means. The feeding and swaddling and shushing away tears has been replaced by the more grueling discipline and negotiation of parenting young people who’ve developed their own minds and wants. My parenting success has actually made me redundant in all the ways that mattered most to me. 

I think I’m starting to feel like more of an unnatural mother the older they get and the less they need me. Now I’m that woman who’s knocking around the house while they interact with each other. I’m the food lady and the washer of clothes. The younger ones still believe I’m interesting but the eldest has slipped into his teens and I’ve become annoying.

Why was the most challenging time, the time of tears and tantruming, when I was exhausted and frustrated and lost, that I felt the most certain of myself in that role of motherhood?

Now I wonder if it’s too late to have made someone of myself. It’s so contradictory, I know. But maybe I would be a better mother if I felt that I could say that I had done something in my life other than being a mother. 

What else am I? I am a frustrated writer. For me, there is intoxication in a well sculpted essay. But I’ve barely kept my toes wet over the past decades. It’s a far cry from having written the novel I had always planned to. I hope that will still happen someday. Instead, my writing has been sculpted by my life as a mother. I am finding out what it means to parent older children on the spectrum. Being an advocate for their special needs has actually developed rather organically from being a naturally indignant person. Now I’m trying to use my voice for many children instead of just my own. I want my writing to reach other mothers and encourage them to raise their voices. I hope that it does.

Have I talked myself into believing that I’m a natural mother? I could argue that life would feel easier if I were “a natural”. But much of what is natural is hard and destructive: ocean waves and meteors have the brute impact similar to years of parenting autistic children. It feels like the Universe has put me roughly where I needed to be and that is my best understanding of being a natural at anything.

Whether by choice or by nature, I have become the right kind of mother. 

My fancy school district is making headlines in a cringy way.

Our family moved to a rich neighborhood, in a wealthy city, for their school district.

We needed a really good one. Our children are on the autism spectrum. They need an individualized education plan (IEP) that is heavy on expensive therapies and extra staff. A wealthy town should mean more money invested in the school. No reason to mince words. We came for the special education services!

Four years ago, I was impressed. Our school has a therapy animal and the campus is all shiny with a kinder-garden and art everywhere. Most significantly, we cared about the pedigree of the special education specialists. The kids adjusted well and we got them good IEPs. Finally! We can sit back. It’s the constant vigilance that exhausts parents of disabled children. What is going to go wrong next?

And sure enough, things started to get worse with the school. Then worse than that. And then extra worse.

The high muckety-mucks at the district office were clamping down on services and dismissing parent concerns. A message appeared to have been handed down to deny services and to be evasive about it.

Several of my friends moved to another town because they were sick of fighting for the obviously essential services their children needed. Others put their kids into private schools. All of that property tax and yet the kids who needs occupational therapy and speech are told they’re fine! They are smashing their IEP goals. Your kid is no longer considered autistic. (I know…)

At one point, we also pulled our kids out of the district and went with a charter school because we knew we’d get a better IEP for our kids. Yup. We had to go outside of the rich school to a far more modest community to find special education providers who cared about helping my children do well in school.

Now we’re back in the district, in the posh neighborhood. It’s a very hard pill to swallow, but it’s so the kids can be a part of the community. It’s all for kids.

How long did it take for the re-worsening? No time at all.

We’ve re-joined the district when they are actively suing several people with whom I’m friends! And I don’t have a lot of friends!

These people are being sued because they are pushing back against the school district and insisting on the appropriate services for their autistic children. Just let that sit in your mouth for a minute.

The school is suing families with disabled children.

The parents got uppity and asked for the meetings to which they are entitled. They asked for the data and for their child to be included in the classroom with his peers. They asked for the same free access to public education that every other child is getting. Lawsuits.

These women were recently interviewed by CBS 8 San Diego. Please read the article. You’ll be blown away.

Autism and the Horror of the Pediatric Well Visit

AUTISM MOM IS UNSTOPPABLE!

After today’s doctor’s appointment, and the requisite trip to the donut shop, I am in tears, thinking, “Maybe I shouldn’t even be a mother! This is too hard!” I want to crawl into bed. And today was for a well visit!

Pediatrician appointments destroy me. I don’t sleep the night before, during the appointment I’m sweaty and my heart is pounding. Once we are through, I am wrung out, my eyeballs hurt, I’m full of body pains, and I think I may throw up.

There are no good “autism pediatricians”. There just are not. And I live in a city with highly rated children’s hospitals and the Autism Discovery Institute. These are specialists with year-long waiting lists. They are not pediatricians.

I have found that the best physician I can hope for is the hands-off pediatrician. Someone who is going to tick the boxes next to the eye and ear exam and administer vaccines. I’m talking about someone who can identify an ear infection and has at least heard of autism. We’ll start the bar there.

Why do I have such little faith in the average pediatrician? After switching through 7 general practitioners in two states, I have not found one who gets it. Specialists sort of get it. They can’t empathize, no matter how many children they work with, unless you find the unicorn who also has a special needs child. But your garden variety pedi? No. You’re the QUIRKY family with three autistic kids.

We have a fantastic developmental pediatrician and she barely gets it. Maybe because she is a mother to typical kids she is incapable of putting herself in our shoes. The neuropsychiatrist is full of sympathy and is understanding when my 12 year old refuses to speak at his evaluation, but now he’s just making educated guesses based on how I complete his essay questionnaire. These people work exclusively with neuro-diverse families and they still couldn’t possibly get it. So why would I expect that level of recognition from a typical pedi?

The much dreaded appointment begins.

I have filled out every form highlighting my child’s disabilities and used long paragraphs to describe the best way to talk to him child to illicit some compliance. . . and yet, that doctor is still full steam ahead, auto-pilot mode for a neurotypical child, thinking he knows best.

He fires off the questions.

“Does your child get an hour of exercise daily?”

“Are they eating 5 fruits and vegetables each day?”

“Do you limit fatty and sugary foods to one per week?”

“Is there a screen time limited of less than 2 hours each day?”

Dude! Have you never met even one autistic kid before? Have you ever seen the crippled look in the mother’s eyes as you hand down judgment on her best efforts to help her child? We are here in your office which involved no small amount of bribes: full fat desserts and screen time! The patient is holding a tablet and playing Minecraft while you are asking these questions.

Do not shame us.

Because let’s not forget all of the questions that pertained to me and my vaginal or cesarean delivery and what kinds of medication I was taking during gestation.

There must be a root cause assigned in a case of autism. Nature or Nurture. Genetics or neglect. Geriatric pregnancy or lassitude. The mother is somehow to blame.

“Have you tried ABA therapy? “

They have read about this one kind of therapy and push all of us square pegs through that hole.

Doctors, are you listening? Learn about autism. Learn how to support the families. You cannot treat us like every other visit you have this week. Autism impacts the whole family. So the tired woman before you, she needs more support than asking her if she’s heard of the local autism society.

You may know my story. I have 3 extraordinary kids with autism. They are beautiful boys who can sometimes demonstrate lovely manners and make some charming eye contact. But guess what, they are autistic. Mild, severe, social, introverted, sensory processing disorder, ADHD, depression, anxiety — we’re lighting up that spectrum with many different colors and intensities.

Guess who understands autism better than your average pediatrician? Your average autism parent.

Moms and dads, give yourself credit because you’ve reached the end of the internet researching everything about autism. From living with your autistic person or people, you understand what it means to be autistic and you’re helping your child self-identify and advocate. You’re vulnerable and raw from re-doing all of the assessments and forms that each new doctor’s visit requires. You are so hyper focused on this disorder that it has consumed your life. You are an expert.

I have had 2 separate pediatricians tell me, “No, your child is not autistic.”

At that point, I had two sons diagnosed with autism and ADHD so I insisted on a referral for testing. My 2 year-olds pediatrician thought herself very cheeky as she diagnosed him, instead, as “Delightful!”

I really enjoyed my follow-up with her the next year when I shoved the autism diagnosis back in her face. “Delightfully Autistic” in waiting room 5, Dr. E.

Another thing: We’ve ascertained that my child can hear you.

He’s the one sitting on the paper covered table, 2 feet away. In fact, allllllll of the children, autistic or not, hear you talk about bowel habits and bullying at school. But then when you then want a run down of every struggle, every deficiency, and a list of his required and maybe many failed therapies. How is this already insecure neurodiverse child not supposed to develop a complex?

Don’t do that.

Do not shame my child about his disinterest in riding a bike or playing “hoops”. Don’t tell him that he has to get more exercise. This is a kid who can draw the most astonishingly realistic paleoart and has created a bracket for battles between different Godzilla monsters which he has coded into a video platform. He doesn’t need to be on a soccer team! He is a brilliant and sensitive boy and he just told you, in his perfect sardonic tone,

“Jeez, way to make me feel horrible about myself.”

Listen to your patient. See them. Be curious. Be flexible. And educate yourself. Because these children and families deserve better. Especially now when their anxiety and mental health has been tested by Covid. And please come up with something better than palming me off with a recommendation that I check out the Autism Society website. My van is already rocking their window decal and it hasn’t changed the system yet.

Why Are There No School Buses in San Diego?!

F^ck that dad who always
double parks at school pickup!

I have only been back on school pickup duty for 7 days and I’m already murderous.

We have been doing distance learning for TWO YEARS. yup. There’s three kids in my house. I’m pretty tired. In September I dropped down to 2 students when my eldest went back on campus. Oh, yes, students as in I was/am the teacher. Now it’s February and we’ve jettisoned a second kid back into the schools. I’m still homeschooling the last one but that’s another blog post.

After a two year respite from packing lunch boxes and shuttling my children to and from campus, I’m not sure it’s a fair trade. To be free of teaching my kid for 6 hours or spend 5 afternoons per week foaming at the mouth. It’s really too close to call.

Why doesn’t California do public school busing?

I’m from New England and the yellow buses were a part of the community. You cursed your life if you got stuck behind a bus on a long rural road. But unless you lived around the corner from the school, your kids got a ride.

Not here though. I’ve read that only 9% of Californian children are receiving state funded school transportation. What? Yet as of January, there is a law requiring me to scrape my dinner leftovers into a compost bin.

But we’re just going to completely ignore the awesome carbon footprint of 200 parents, idling their cars for 30 minutes, 5 days a week, at just one neighborhood elementary school in the second largest district in the most populous state.

I digress. Back to the assholes.

These people are too busy and too important to wait in the queue and feel like they can double park in the lot, causing peril for other families and inciting my ire.

Nothing really earth-shattering to report. I’m going to have to go back to photographing license plates again and ratting on those tools to the front office lady. And she’s feisty, so, fair warning.

All of this could be avoided if we had some for sight and provided public transportation for these children. It’s little wonder that we’re all so cranky at 2:30.

Thank the gods that we have a disability placard. (That beautiful blue tag is my favorite accessory.) If I get to school 30 minutes before the bell I’ll probably get a parking spot. You may remember that there is actually an extra disability space because of my complaining. https://cynthiazorabedian.com/2020/03/03/invisible-disabilities-are-misunderstood/

The takeaway is: plus side, I’m down to 1 kid in my homeschool classroom. The downside is I didn’t even get a month’s grace before I’m back to seeing red tail lights.

I swear, I am capable of writing about other things than autism and school, but those topics just happen to be what burns my biscuits most regularly.

My Google search history reads like I’m drunk

Valentine’s Day crafts kids

Is rebound trampoline good for lymphatic drainage?

How can I stop being so annoyed by everyone?

Is that character Noah also from Mad Men?

Why does it hurt when I suck in my stomach?

Best hair dye for grays

Best under eye serum

Best CBD gummies

Best THC gummies

13 searches for “covid news schools”

Best historical fiction

[Falls down a Wikipedia rabbit hole]

Are probiotics really a thing?

Supplements that make you lose weight

I will Google anything and I have. If I’m upset or worried about something, I’m going to confess to the Google search bar before I text a friend.

Because Google never judges. And she always (eventually) tells me what I want to hear.

It may take an hour, but I will find an article that validates any intrusive thoughts that habitually crop up around midnight.

It is a problem and also a delicious addiction. The ownership of those answers invariably leads to 90-something open tabs in Chrome as I toggle between there and my to-do app. I can tell I’ve had a really rough night of Google-ing by the number of reminders that pop up the next day. From “book vet appointment” to YAYY, “buy new flats for Cynthia”!

Oooof. I am AMBITIOUS at 1 am! And spendy. Too often Google-ing leads to bleary eyed shopping and that’s a whole other kettle of fish.

Google, tell me to go to sleep!

Is 5 1/2 hours enough sleep?

What are the risks of long-term melatonin use?

Easter shirts boys

…zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Guy is so “over” the pandemic he now lives in an alternate universe

I am innocently debating the pros and cons of getting an “Earth Day” cake pop with my two Littles when Guy Twenty-Something stumbles into the Starbucks and queues up behind us.

BARISTA Sir, do you have a mask?

GUY No. (horror washes down his face) ARE WE STILL DOING THAT?!

I fully hone in one this fool as I literally look around for the exit. This Guy wants so desperately for the pandemic to be over that he has convinced himself that it is.

The very chirpy barista lovingly informs this time traveler that in fact alllllllll the Starbucks, psst, and California, are masking indoors.

GUY (Mind. Blown.) THAT’S A DEAL BREAKER!!

In my head, I did add “LADIES” as a nod to Liz Lemon.

GUY It’s been two years! I’m not doing that anymore!

[tantrum. ignites into a cartoon poof of villainous black smoke.]

That’s when we also left because:

A) they were actually sold out of Earth Day cake pops, and

B) that guy freaked me out!

As a former retail slave I have encountered plenty of asshole customers. But this guy was genuinely clueless that the entire state of 39.4 million people are supposed to be wearing masks indoors. Indoors which includes the place where you get your coffee!

I know it’s just me that still reads all the Covid articles on CNN and the Times and the Tribune every night. But surely, this Guy has some friends or at the very least he is on social media somehow? He was deep into his phone at the outset of this drama so maybe he just hasn’t looked up in two months to notice what we’re all still doing?

All of you Guys listen. My senses are crackling on high alert because of all the expected crap entailed in an outing with two small children. Don’t come creeping up on me and drop your revolution all over my sugar and caffeine party. I don’t have the luxury of your oblivion. I’m responsible for young lives.

We drove a mile down the road to a different Starbucks where everyone behaved politely, wore their damn masks and conducted themselves like it’s 2022.

My Pandemic is Different than Yours

Why I Unfollowed You on Social Media

For nearly two years I have been physically and emotionally cloistered from the world. I have fibromyalgia and several other autoimmune diseases which result in chronic pain. I did not want COVID-19 on top of everything I’m already struggling to manage. My husband has underlying medical conditions and my three kids have autism, putting every one of us in the category of “high risk” for severe Covid symptoms.

We don’t f–k around with Covid precautions.

Obviously, we’re vaccinated and boosted where applicable. I have the best masks. I get my groceries delivered. I give my kids haircuts. We only do essential medical appointments in-person, and we haven’t been to a museum or zoo since pre-pandemic. My one exception has been the library because we’re all nerds.

My kids were in distance learning well beyond the typical child’s experience with school closures. And I had to fight to keep it that way! I’m still homeschooling my younger two who just became eligible for vaccines. We had planned for them to go back after Christmas but then…Omicron.

Many of the people whom I speak with about their Omicron infection have been vaccinated and boosted and they had a mild infection. “I was just really tired!” or “It felt like I had a cold.”

That doesn’t sound so bad! Maybe I’m being insane and I should just dive back into living! (I have said this to my husband more than 700 times during the course of the pandemic.) And then we talk about how we’re all so fragile already and what would it do to us if even one of us got Covid? What does it do to us if even one of us gets regular sick?! This is how our pandemic is different from yours. We cannot justify the risk.

If you know what it’s like to have an exceptional child with autism and ADHD and generalized anxiety disorder then you know what really tired is. Okay, I see a few hands. Double that. Far fewer hands. Triple that? Okay, anyone left? Just the 5 families?

That’s my life. Chronic pain. Long suffering spouse. Three boys with different needs. Imagine that “I-have-a-newborn” level sleep deprivation but instead of 3 months make it last for 12 years.

This is why we’re so risk-adverse when it comes to catching Covid. We couldn’t survive more “tired”. Or worse, if one of us, or all 5 of us, got it bad? We are on the floor tired even thinking about it!

So here’s the rub: Your Instagram posts. Your Facebook stories. Your effing blog. They are each pushing me over the edge. You are on another vacation! You’re going to a winery! You are at the movies! Hell, you got together with extended family!

We just can’t be friends, because my pandemic is different than yours.

In my pandemic, I’m homeschooling multiple kids for the 4th semester.

“I don’t know how you do it! That’s not for me.”

Erm, I’m not some saint! It’s not for me either but this is how locked down we are.

I want to visit with my friends so desperately, but I just know I’m gonna come off as a freak because I’m not taking my kids on public transportation to a museum or queuing up at a theme park. I’m not going to be able to meet you at that bar even though “it’s outside.” I can feel you judging me even if you remember, oh, yeah, she’s got all that crazy crap going on. I don’t hear from my nearest and dearest because I’m a bummer to talk to! I honestly don’t blame you. I’m a tangible reminder of the pandemic. I’m Debbie Downer. And I’m lonely. Even in the special needs communities, who has three special kids and also has her own disabilities? Uh, bagel. I’m an alien during the best of times, but now? I’m a

I admit that it’s depressing, how much life I feel like we’re missing. But you read about those high-risk population and that’s me and mine. I’m hanging on for “after the pandemic.” It’s our family mantra. Even the 6 year-old. “Mama, after the pandemic is over…” Trust me, those words haunt my dreams. I’m so sorry, baby. Soon, I hope!

I ask myself, “Is it worth getting COVID to go to Marshalls?” Sometimes it is! But rarely.

We did take a vacation before Christmas but the locale was selected for maximum social distancing and we generally spent time in nature. When we went into the village to let the kids shop for souvenirs, a calculated risk, I was on high alert against overcrowding, glaring over my mask at anyone who got too close to my kids. And after 15 minutes, DING, we were back outside in the mountain air. We still managed to come home with plenty of candy, magnets and stuffed animals. I’m sure if you read my own family blog post for that vacation you’d think I was a “normy”, too. Nope. Full on Covid weirdo. I fooled you.

There are a bazillion articles about how people are “done” and “over” the pandemic. I know you are. I get it. I am, too!

I have Googled, “Should I try to get Omicron?”

NO! is the resounding answer from the scientific and medical community. This is not the 1980s when your mom held a chicken pox party. Remember those? They weren’t a good idea either because you don’t know if you’ll be one of the unlucky ones to get a more severe form of the virus.

Our medical community is even more tired of Covid than we are. Please continue to stay safe and practices all stuff we know works to prevent a Covid infection.

As for me, I eagerly await the time when I can re-friend you on Facebook and Instagram and only hate you for posting so many damn pictures of your food.

My kids are all vaccinated and here’s what I know

I have 3 young sons. My husband and I (we’re both vaccinated and have our booster) decided that we wouldn’t wait to get any of them vaccinated. As they became eligible, we immediately made appointments for them.

My 12 year old got his vaccine back in June. I brought him to Radys Children’s Hospital where I hoped he would have a less stressful environment. It was so easy and the staff was all so kind. I would definitely recommend bringing your kids there.

After the first shot he had mild soreness at the injection site and that’s it! He’s a bad patient so I had laid in a supply of Gatorade and ice cream and other treats. I had the Tylenol ready. And really, he didn’t need anything! He was happy for the day off from school and unlimited screen time. The second shot went just as easily with no side effects other than injection site soreness.

I was so relieved that he was protected. It was right before the summer Delta surge. But 40% of my family was still not protected as the other boys were 5 and 8. I held my breath for 5 more months.

Finally, the vaccine was approved for 5-11 year olds. We booked ourselves at Radys Hospital again. My Littles were very brave and eager to be vaccinated. We talked about it a lot, about how everyone would be protected and that we would be able to have a more normal life. We would be helping to protect our community. And there would be donuts for a treat. Two quick pinches and I had two vaccinated kids! There was even a therapy dog to pet while we waited out the 15 minutes to ensure no one had an allergic reaction.

No one had any problems and the donuts were delicious. Once again, I was relieved that the children experienced no side effects other than a mildly sore arm. They weren’t even tired enough to nap. Probably, the donuts were working against me there.

What I didn’t say at the outset, but what you might know from reading my other blog posts, is that my boys are each autistic. They have more anxiety and worries, more sensitivities and, in the case of my eldest, more food and environmental allergies than a neurotypical child. Yet they were troopers. I am so very proud of them.

Now, if my kids can get the vaccine, then you and your kids can. I was more worried about us being unvaccinated than getting the vaccine. Please use our family as an example to get protected. And then you too can get donuts!

The Booster: What to expect for side effects after the third shot COVID-19 vaccine, Moderna.

I am high risk for serious complications from a COVID infection so I was eligible for “The Booster”.

Having Googled extensively prior to the shot, and not getting many hits, I wanted to share my experience.

I have a myriad of auto immune diseases and I did have a rough go of things after both my first and second shots, but mainly with the second. I expected that I would have some side effects and hoped that they would be mild.

I got my third shot Saturday at noon. Within an hour, my injection site pain had me wishing for ibuprofen but I was trying to hold out for 4 hours. Do not ask me where I came up with this time frame, maybe it was one of my doctors, but I had been advised not to take any anti-inflammatory medicine within 8 hours prior to the vaccine and for 4 hours afterwards. I also read and was told by other doctors that I COULD take my regular medicine (anti-inflammatory drugs) before and after the shot per my regular schedule. Shrug. I was going to try to tough it out in case it impacted the production of antibodies.

You can see why I’m trying to post my experience because there is a world of opposing information out there.

Anyway, my bicep was hurting pretty much right away and my throat started to feel sore, like post-nasal drip sore, within 4 hours. I didn’t have a runny nose. A mild head ache started and all my muscles were hurting by the 4 hour mark.

I caved fast and took my ibuprofen.

I had no fever. I was very emotional. That could be a random effect of a busy day also getting the children their flu shots, but I thought I’d mention it.

My IC pain was getting worse so I did crawl into bed and take my gabapentin and an antihistamine by 8pm.

I didn’t sleep well, with vivid dreams and sweating. No fever.

I woke Sunday feeling achy and generally crappy and crampy. I got some more ibuprofen and I resumed my regular routine of my nerve pain medicine and my vitamins, etc. My tummy has been off, too.

Monday I was so tired and spacey and just wanted to rest, but I had Life, so tough luck. Another night of weird dreams and sweating. No fever just over heating.

Today is Tuesday and I still have the sore throat and muscle aches. My injection site pain is still there but very manageable. I even did some light exercise with the kids. I am really looking forward to a bath and bedtime.

So far, after 4 days, I feel like I’ve had a mild flu infection with no fever.

I’m grateful that I had the booster. I hope that if you’re eligible, you’ll get yours and stay healthy!

What…is the airspeed velocity of an unladen sparrow?

I’m not kidding that my life is smack out of Monty Python. Crude humor, outrageous accents, funny looking outfits, and beating a joke to death. Visit YouTube if you weren’t as big of a nerd in high school as I was. You will thank me.

Tonight, I went into my Littles room THRICE to apologize for scolding them only to scold them for a new, stupid thing they just did before my unbelieving eyes!

I hate to end our day on a bad note. They may have been absolute monsters and broken every house rule. I may have yelled and threatened and barked orders just to get them through a meal and into pajamas. But I want to end my day with a snuggle. Even with the tweenager. That’s the plan, anyway.

Except some nights are not ordained to end well.

“This morning, shortly after 11am, comedy struck this little house on Dibley Road. Sudden, violent comedy.”

Through clenched jaws, I warned them not to do silly talk at the dinner table.

“Have you got anything without spam?”

(No, they’re not doing the Python quotes because I would never hear the end of it were I to let them watch that level of shenanigans, but I may have actually laughed had they done so.)

My darling husband tried to spare me from their behaviors and I, like a moron, spent 20 minutes of my time “alone” buying small pairs of boys underwear and fighting to get the Gap Cash to work on my phone.

I emerged, evenmore tense but ready to hand out hugs and love, only to hear an expensive sounding BANG from upstairs.

WHAT WAS THAT? WELL WHY TO YOU HAVE YOUR TABLET UPSTAIRS? IT’S BEDTIME! *SILLY KNIGGIT*

And now for something completely different: a woman who is never overwhelmed with fury by the antics of her offspring.

Ok, ok, take a breath. Ignore that the tooth paste is getting everywhere other than inside peoples face holes.

“WHAT IS YOUR QUEST?”

To chew on the neckhole of my pajamas, again, again, again, and again.

I left the room, bound for a bath and to put this evening from my thoughts with a good read. NOPE! I was still feeling like I needed to go and end it well. Mother’s guilt is powerful.

Back into the fray, I was trying to tuck in the second son and he, SIR ACUTE SENSORY PROCESSING DISORDER, took umbridge with the essentials oils I had applied in effort not to put him up for adoption. He pinched his nose and waved me away, “Just go away (you silly English pig dog!)”

SO, like any woman who’s “HAD JUST ABOUT ENOUGH OF THIS”, I yell-lectured my child about how he smells and I don’t say anything and “we all have to put up with each other, including child to parent, because we’re a family! Good night! I love you!” Still counts as a loving end to the day even if I yelled it,

I would be remiss if I didn’t end this post by saying,

“I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.”

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