Thursday, July 15, 2010

I DON'T LIKE THIS!!!!!!!! Can we do it again?????

Insanity. That's the best word to describe the way I feel things are sometimes. Insane.

Take today for example. We drove to a really awesome water park just ten minutes from the guest house where we are parked for the month (THANK YOU Nargi Family!!!!). There were 9 different, fun, colorful water slides, and Garrett decided he wanted to go on them. Keep in mind that just this past two weeks has Garrett mustered the courage to climb "all way top" of the playland in the local McDonalds here in Whitefish, Montana.....and it's a small, very small play thing. So I walk with him up these very steep concrete sidewalks to get to the top of the slides. WE ARRIVE. Then "IT" happens......the screaming, thrashing, more screaming, kicking, grasping onto me with all his might, and did I mention SCREAMING???? He is horrified, but I know this kid. Once we get going, I know he will love long as I keep his head from going under water and keep him from getting splashed in the face. So there isn't a lifeguard at the top of the first, not-so-threatening slide, but Garretthas morphed into a 400 pound gorilla who is very, very unhappy about having his mommy make him slide. I pry his spider-fingers from around my nose, eyes and neck, plop down on my bottom on the top of the slide and hold onto Garrett and I start down the slide, trying to get him facing forward. And sure enough, once he gets facing forward and moving, he giggles and makes this excited sounding gasping noise he has perfected and LOVES IT. UNTIL we hit the little pool at the bottom. Once we have had our "splashdown," which did NOT get his face or head wet, he goes gorilla again screaming at the top of his lungs, "I DON'T LIKE THIS!!!!!!" But he doesn't stop there. He hits me, will not let go of me, screams more and more, and everyone stares. It gets quiet in this area of about 100 feet in diameter around us.
Then he looks back at the slide once we are on land and very, very quietly says, "Mommy, can we do that again?"

So we go up again, but this time to a longer, larger slide. When we get to our turn, he goes gorilla again, but this time there are people up there with us in line, and a life guard directing us. Garrett starts sounding like I am ripping his organs out with no pain meds and thrashing and clawing and this time even frothing at the mouth like a rabid dog, or gorilla, and I look at the young guy lifeguard and very calmly say, "He's autistic. He loves it once we get going. I promise I am not torturing him." The lifeguard nods in horror and sends us down. I get Garrett facing forward, he giggles, makes the happy gasping squeek noise over and over and has the greatest ride UNTIL we land in the little pool at the bottom. He screams about not liking it again, but then as soon as we are out, he asks to do it again!!! By the fourth time he was great, no dread or fight, but by that time he was asking me to carry him up the sidewalks to the slides. I would help him by pushing and pulling him a bit, and sometimes carried him. We must have ridden 6 times or so before we checked into the huge hot tub there. Then we had a hard time getting him out!!! I will say that a hot tub in a Montana summer is much, much more pleasant than very, very cold water slide water!!! Later Grouchy took him back up a few times until Garrett got his whole head wet, then that was over.

Grouchy took Grouchy Jr. back to the house for a nap, and my girls and I spent the rest of the afternoon at the water park. No pictures, sorry!! It was a great day!!! I am actually sunburned from "beaching my whale" on a towel in the grass, watching the back of my eyelids....did I just say that....I meant watching Addie and Ainslee slide!!

We also made a third offer on the house we are wanting in Idaho. This time without the contingency of selling our house. After being out here as a family, with Grouchy home every day with us, we are seeing more of our needs and realizing more of the limits we will be experiencing. I don't try to sound negative here, just realistic. We will be functiong as two separate units many, many days. One will be with Garrett, the other with the girls. We have to just face the facts. We cannot keep pretending it's all fine and we can all 5 do everything as a "family." We feel the house we like that has a guest house is best. We know when friends or family travel 2000 miles to come visit, it would be wonderful to have a private home to offer them, not a basement or spare room, but a home. My parents have expressed a desire to stay several months in a guest house near us out there, and that would be a huge help as well. We are also entertaining the thought of offering someone the guest house for very cheap rent during the school year in exchange with help around our place and with Garrett. Lots to consider, but first have to have the house with the guest house!! It's fun to dream and plan. And then we would also have a place for Garrett, should be need to stay near us in the future......

We are still in awe of how Addie has bloomed here. She was up and down the water slides for SIX HOURS, non stop. Now tonight she was poured into bed by Grouchy, but she was happy, and aside from Oscar carrying her up the slides a few times to help her conserve some energy for the long day, she didn't "need" help. For once in the summer outside, we didn't have to cut it all short for the sake of Addie's misery. PRAISE GOD for that!!!!

Ainslee is her beautiful, social butterfly self. She is so independent. In just a few days, she leaves for her first week of resident camp!!! WOW!! My big girl!! We are having a blast, but away from the television here and spending some wonderful time together. We see the girls having fewer spats and growing closer, like they were in the past. We all needed to slow down and focus on each other and our faith.

We enjoyed another farmer's market tonight, this time in Columbia Falls, MT. It was neat and most importantly I had BEER BATTERED, FRIED CHEESE CURDS for of my very favorites!!!

Everyone else is asleep. I faxed in our offer on the house. Now we wait!

Rest well and remember to say your prayers, too!!!! And remember the simple truth of the way we feel at the end of some days:
I don't like this!!! Can we do it again???
Thanks again, Garrett. You teach me more every day. I love you.



  1. You must have been exhausted after wrestling that gorilla over and over! Asa's "low tone" sure does seem to disappear when he starts to fight! Whew!

    I love that the Addie is doing so well. It is 97 degrees here today and I'm sure she would be melting in LA too! I'm so glad that instead she is running and playing and sliding! Praying the house situation gets worked out quickly!!

    This past summer we had the same realization about Asa and rest of our family. He doesn't enjoy going places and doing things. In fact, not only does he not enjoy it but it freaks him out and leads to these darn startle episodes that may or may not be seizures, UGH! And we were a family who went everywhere together! It is hard to leave him behind.

    I wrestle with guilt over him missing out on family moments. He isn't in pictures of our activities. Are we leaving him behind because it is too difficult and tiring to bring him or because it is the best thing for him? And then there is the problem of who to leave him home with? Many times Barry doesn't mind missing a nephews birthday party because the last thing Asa wants is to be dragged to a party with a ton of screaming, squealing little kids. But many times Barry wants to join in on the fun, like the baseball games. Then Anna hates the ball field as much as Asa so she stays with him. Still you can see that now not 1 but 2 of our family members is missing!

    I'll stop now but as you can see I'm wrestling with this issue very much at the moment!! We have an EEG next Friday and if it is clear that we are not startling him into seizures then I'm pushing the envelope some! I can deal with the freaking out if it is sensory and autonomic related but the last thing I need is guilt over inducing seizures!

    Thanks for letting me ramble! So sorry!! :) Hugs to that sweet bunch of kiddos you have, even that little gorilla that rears his head occasionally!!

  2. Hi!

    Susana from ivillage here! Love your blog! I can really relate with you. I get this screaming mode every time we pay for things at stores!
    Sounds like great holidays! see you around!