Austin Not Smiling
This morning was one of those mornings at the Parker house. I am completely frustrated and it is not even 7:30 AM. As I sit here drinking coffee while Luke eats his “white donuts” for breakfast and watches videos on YouTube about Jurassic Park toys, I am counting down all the things I must do today before I can go back to bed. This morning I almost called it quits. Who needs school anyways? I am pretty sure they can learn whatever they need watching TV or playing XBOX.
I am sure for most families, school days can be a real struggle. For many like us there is the high school kid who doesn’t want to get out of bed until there is exactly 75 seconds remaining before you need to leave the house to get to school on time. Then there is the 4-year-old who eagerly gets out of bed but takes forever to get into the car because they are walking out the door carrying two blankets, a Power Ranger, a Batman, a sword and a glass of milk. “Please leave your blankets here.”, I said. “But I ‘meed’ them.”, is the reply I got.
Then there is Austin, our middle child with autism. Waking him up each morning is like choosing a piece of chocolate out of a Valentines box of candy. You may choose something really sweet and delicious or you may get something filled with chalk flavored toothpaste that makes you gag and spit all over your new shirt. Some mornings he is eager to get his shoes on and head to the car. Other days he is grabbing his shoes from the closet and throwing them across the room as far as possible. Today was more on the later end. There are days when everyone can wake up on the wrong side of the bed. For a child with autism, sometimes its like they woke up on the wrong side of the bed and it was the side next to the 100 foot cliff. Continue reading
Photo by Seth Rader
“I need a break from our children.” That is what my wife greeted me with when I arrived at the house yesterday after work. My initial thought was “Yes, absolutely. You have been with them all day long.” Then, I began to live out the last few months in my mind. Actually, I am the one who has been with the children the most by a significantly large margin because of her nursing school schedule. After nicely pointing that out to her, she rephrased her statement. “WE need a break from our children.” Ah, yes, to that I completely agree. It is critical for parents to find times to be together without their children.
Now that she and I are in total agreement, we will continue our daily life and will most likely never set aside time to get away together, even though we know we need it. Is it because we don’t love each other? No. Is it because we don’t like spending time together? No, that is not it easier. Is it because our children are so horrible that no one wants to watch them? Well…I don’t think that is it but sometimes I wonder. The truth is all parents have a hard time spending time together but for parents of kids with special needs, it can sometimes seem downright impossible.
Attribute: Koshy Koshy
I am going to let you in on a little secret. Now, I have revealed this to a very few select individuals so the simple fact that I am telling you should make you feel pretty special. On top of that, it is probably one of the most unmasculine things I could say. So, here goes…deep breath…I love Hallmark Channel Christmas Movies! Whew. That was hard. I am so glad I got that out. The mounting pressure was unbelievable. I don’t know why I like them, I just do. Yes, there is often more cheese in there than a bowl of queso. Even stranger is the fact that I watch them by myself, not forced to watch them by my wife. Hallmark Christmas Movies make the holidays great.
My wife is finishing up her last year of nursing school. To say she has been busy is an understatement. In the past two years, she has either been working, studying or sleeping most evenings. I think that is how I came to enjoy the Hallmark Christmas movies. I have spent many nights taking care of our children as a way to support my wife as she pursues her dream of becoming an RN. I have successfully watched all Christmas movies released for the 2013 season and, as of this writing, have watched all the movies released for 2014. Plus, I think I have just about seen all the reruns from previous seasons as well. The love stories are the ones I like the most. There is something about watching everything fall apart for almost two hours, then in the last 5 minutes, everything changes for the better and the two realize their love for each other.
(Man, I am having a hard time writing all this mushy stuff. Camo, guns, tools and trucks! I just had to throw those things in there to get me back on a more masculine line of thinking.)
My wife is super talented and doesn’t even know it. We spent a week at the beach this summer and while there, she took several pictures which I think are spectacular. Here are some of the pictures she took.