Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Conversation with KA

Karson has no desire to leave home...ever. Tonight I was talking to him about where he would like to travel.

Me: Kars, where would you like to go visit?
K: My bedroom
Me: How about somewhere else?
K: Well, I have to tell you I like living on the North American Continent. North America is just fine with me. I don't need to go anywhere.
Me: Well, if you were going to leave the United States where would you go? How about England?
K: King George lived there. He was a bad man. I don't want to go there.
Me: How about France?
K: They speak France there. I don't speak it. I'll pass.
Me: Well how about Brazil? Kylee lived there.
K: That is the place where you drink and party all the time. I don't do them so, no. It's not the place for me. Okay...I'm thinking maybe Australia...nope...there are great white sharks there.
Me: Antartica?
K: Too cold. I dont have a warm enough coat.
Me: Korea?
K: I am never going there. You know that.
Me: How about somewhere in Africa?
K: Nope you have to get shots.
Me: New Zealand?
K: Do they have dolphins and popcorn there? Yep. Okay, Maybe we can go there sometime in the future.

In the store trying to get him to consider boxers instead of briefs.
Me: feel these
K: Too hard
Me: How about these?
K: Too soft. Really going with out is just fine with me.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

K has been getting in trouble at school
with his teacher for arguing, etc. For instance last week she told him
to finish work on paper A. He said he didn't FEEL like it and that he
would work on paper B instead. She told him that he had to finish paper
A before working on paper B. He continued to argue. So she took paper B
and put it on her desk. As she is helping another student she sees him
get up and start to walk towards her desk. She told me she is
thinking "Don't do it bud" He does. Takes the paper off her desk and
goes back to his. She goes back over and takes it back, etc.
Yesterday he got in trouble for arguing. She told him she was taking
away his recess today. So this morning she says "Hi K." He
responds, " I am not K. I am his twin brother,U.K is
absent today."

I KNOW Better

One of the things you learn as the mother of two autistic boys is to avoid the store like the plague. Unfortunately, the other day I had no choice but to go shopping with them. Keep in mind this was during a PMSing episode.

First we went to Whole Foods where the "keep your hands on the cart" speil just wasn't getting any airplay in their brains. Hands were everywhere, whining was unlimitless and when we checked out I had more items in my cart than I placed there and racked up my own national debt. After loading groceries in the trunk we went to do the dreaded "Mommy trying on fat-assed clothes" which made me cringe even thinking about it. It was in this store that Kullen was touching everything. Everything. I cajoled, I threatened, I whispered pleasant phrases such as "if you don't keep your hands off everything you will be keeping them in your pockets for the rest of your life." It was two seconds after uttering those words when I saw Kullen out of the corner of my eye about 2 feet from me. He had pulled up the blouse on the manaquin and was playing with its boobs.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

For My Kids

Today our nation gave my children a gift. That gift was in the form of a man who I believe has the ability to inspire them for the rest of their lives. A man that will give them hope when there doesn't appear to be any. I showed them by voting for our first African American President that I value all people of color, just like I value them. I hope that by casting my vote for Barack Obama my vote assured them that I respect people of color and that I believe that they are capable, have the wisdom and innovation to lead this country on a course in history that when looked back upon will be remembered as one of our finest moments with our greatest leader. Today I let my kids know that I believe that there are times in our nations history when it is too important to just be complacent and that only through hard work of yourself and others can you aspire to some pretty lofty ideals. And that bridge burners end up with a scorched earth policy and blisters on their hands. Today was a historic day in America. I am proud to be a part of it. But more than anything, Barack Obama's win today showed me that I must do everything I can to make sure that my children gain the right to run for President. After all, if he can do it...they might someday have a chance too.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Them Bootstraps Aren't Really For Pulling On Your Boots

I confess. I am on a BB in which a majority of the people are conservative Christians. Recently many people on this BB have made repeated attacks on those who are down in their luck,those who are poor, etc and stating their belief that Obama wants to take care of all these "losers" at the expense of all these good God Fearing tax payers. Of course the word Socialism has recently been introduced to instill more fear and justify their irrational hatred of Obama. In fact one person went so far as to write:

The poor keep getting poorer because they keep doing whatever it was that made them poor in the first place. Ditto for the rich. There is nothing at all unexpected or unforseen about the behavior that's responsible for most of the poverty in this country. If you ignore your education, fail to develop a work ethic, do drugs, get pregnant before you're out of high school or before you can afford to raise a child, become a petty criminal, join a gang, hang with what you obviously know to be the wrong crowd, become a drinker, or generally comport yourself like a self-loathing slob, guess what? You're probably not going to make a lot of money!

So let's take a minute and examine this statement and while doing so lets look at it from the opposite end of the spectrum.

Let's examine those persons in the military/captains of business and industry who have used their parents positions/connections and money to circumvent the system to get opportunites that others deserved. They use the system for personal gain not based on merit but on these types of connections. And they use them in order to increase their wealth, grab power, or prestigue . Even worse is their sense of entitlement to those positions. It is truly mind boggling. We don't have to look very far to find examples of these types of people. Do the names Bush and McCain ring a bell? Frankly, these are the people that are far more dangerous to me than any two-bit hooker. Face it, plenty of rich people hang with the wrong crowd, become drinkers, fail to develop a work ethic, etc. Yet, they have the luxury of money, connections and family to sustain them and even promote them to places they do not deserve to be. A lot of people with higher grades/SATS etc do not get into the Ivy league where these connections are further developed and strengthened because someone's Daddy knows someone, has donated to the school, or their parents have attended. During the Vietnam war many kids were able to avoid serving or served in positions that kept them in the states due to the positions their parents held. People can become officers in the military because they can get into the academys that "normal" people cannot or someone who is truly deserving to be there is denied due to those connections. So to try to make the case that the poor stay poor because of their "laziness" while the rich get richer due to their "implied" hard work is not often true.

But even more troubling to me is this. So many of these conservative Christians tout the "Pick Yourself Up By Your Bootstraps" mentality and ,yet, we now have a candidate who stands before them having done just that. And instead of giving him the kudos for doing what they insist all people should do, they turn around and renounce him. So what exactly is it that is a black man is suppose to do? Stay at the bottom rung of society where you are chastised and beaten down? Or rise to the top and then you are labeled an elitist and a terrorist to boot. And if the truth be told many of these people don't want people of color to succeed because it goes against their idea of 'what things SHOULD look like' if all is right with their world. So the next time you hear the speel about bootstraps and the like acknowledge it for what it really is. Racism cloaked in everything but what it is. Hate.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

When is an embryo a child?

I saw one of my potential children when she was 8 cells. I say potential because that is all she was...a potential. She was a potential at conception. Without a woman's uterus she had no potential to be born (at least in this day and age) Had the temperature changed significantly in the petri dish that potential would have evaporated. Without oxygen flowing to the embryonic sac she would not be here. Had they placed the cells in the wrong place or at the wrong time in my cycle she would not have been able to grow and develop. So many variables any one of which had gone wrong and she would not be here today just like the other seven that did not develop. I am honored to be her mother and am extremely fortunate to be so. And as her mother I would not want her to be forced into being a breeder for a couple just because they wanted to experience parenthood. I want my child to have the right to be a mother when she is ready not when someone else is ready for her to be one. I was lucky I was able to choose when I was ready to be a mother and I am sure glad that no one forced me to be a mother, at say, age 13. We are lucky that we get to... for the most part... choose when we become mothers. We are lucky to live in a country that we are not sold off at age 8 or 10 destined to became a mother soon after because we have no choices/options available to us. That we can choose our mates, where we live, what we eat and who/what we worship.

What is a hero?

I am sure I will get slayed for this but I have been thinking about this for a while. Since before the election. In fact, I did just look up the definition for hero and will admit it is not in line with my own idea of what a hero is. It seems to me that today what with Higgleytime Heros and the like where everyone is a hero we throw the word hero around so that it no longer has the special connotation that it once did. Seems to me it was once reserved for people of exemplorary character who risked their life without concern for themselves and they performed their act of heroism without intent of getting any rewards, leniency, special treatment for themselves.
Three weeks ago Uncle Mark arrived home from Iraq and my kids asked if he was a hero. Frankly, we do not think he or the other members of our family who have served are heros though they are most likely brave. No doubt about it they did perform a very difficult and hazardous job that many of us would not like to be charged with. Yet, they were doing a job they were paid and trained to do and they knew the risks when they signed up. Now, if one of them had laid on a granade in order to protect their fellow soliders then to us they would be a hero. The firemen and policemen in the Twin Towers who knew they were going down but were determined to get others out despite the cost to themselves; they were heros. The woman or man who witnesses and accident and jumps in a river to save people in a car, they are a hero. Using my own ideas of a hero I am not sure McCain is although I do believe he was a brave man who surely suffered while in the hands of the North.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Seashells By The Seashore

For me it is the end to the perfect day. The wind is blowing softly, the sandpipers are scuttling along the shore while the suns golden glow shimmers as it sinks below the waves. My six year old son skips along the sea, jet black hair flying behind him. He delights in the unfamiliar of the shore songs that greet us and offer up the oceans bounties. Shells of many colors: brown, tan, black, white and an occasional tinge of pink. He runs collecting both big and small. He scoops them up,washes them off, and dumps them in the bag as we make our way down the beach. I help pointing out the errent ones that he has missed along the way. But of course, I leave the chipped, broken and those shells whose imperfections make them less than a desireable collectors item.

"Mom, LOOK at all my shells," his voice booms. "There are hundreds of them."

I peek my head into the bag. Bits and pieces with jagged edges greet me.

"But Kullen, these shells are all broken," I say, trying to be helpful. "Why don't you collect ones like this?" handing him a perfect specimun that has just washed ashore.

"But Mom, they don't have to be whole to be perfect. They are beautiful just the way they are."

And with that, he looks into my eyes and holds my gaze with those deep brown eyes of his and gives me a dirty black shell, the majority of whose pieces are scattered over the bottom of the Atlantic. But when I turn the shell over I see he is right. The center makes a perfect circle which circles back upon itself. The color is uniform and is as dark as ebony. And as I stare at that shell I suddenly see my son within it. They both have a few cracks, even some missing pieces, I suddenly come to the realization that they are indeed both perfect. Sometimes it just takes a six year old boy with autism to remind you.

Monday, September 29, 2008

I think I should be a strategist

Since last week I have been telling friends and family that it wouldn't surprise me to see Sarah Palin come out during the debate and say something like the following:

For the past several weeks I have been relying on the advice of the Washington elite. As you have realized that just isn't me. I am a reformer. I am not an insider and have no desire to be. John McCain put me on the ticket to go into Washingon with fresh new ideas and to shake things up. He put me on the ticket precisely because I am not an insider. Therefore, I am no longer going to allow others to attempt to transform me into an insider.I am Sarah Palin, governor of Alaska. That is good enough for the people of Alaska and it will be good enough for the rest of the United States too.

So imagine my surprise when I saw this on the internet today
Despite bad reviews from all sides, John McCain's campaign has decided that having Sarah Palin do big broadcast interviews was a good idea, the National Review reports:
Team McCain tells me the strategy of having Palin talk to traditional broadcast networks ABC and CBS was designed to allow Palin to reach the maximum number of viewers. "Coming off her tremendous performance at the convention, our goal was to allow as many Americans as possible an opportunity to see her answer questions about her record, her biography and her principles and convictions on as large a stage as possible," one campaign source told me this afternoon. The new CBS interviews, to be done tomorrow, are intended to keep Palin in the public eye as she prepares for Thursday's debate.
Bill Kristol says McCain isn't happy, however, with the way his staff has been handling Palin and is making some changes for the debate:
I'm told McCain recently expressed unhappiness with his staff's handling of Palin. On Sunday he dispatched his top aides Steve Schmidt and Rick Davis to join Palin in Philadelphia. They're supposed to liberate Palin to go on the offensive as a combative conservative in the vice-presidential debate on Thursday.
The Wall Street Journal has more on Palin's liberation:
McCain campaign manager Rick Davis and senior adviser Steve Schmidt are planning to coach the candidate ahead of the debate, according to senior advisers. They traveled Sunday to meet the Republican vice-presidential nominee in Philadelphia. After her appearance with Sen. McCain at a rally in Columbus, Ohio, these top officials plan to fly with her on Monday to Sen. McCain's ranch in Sedona, Ariz., which they hope she will find a comforting place to prep, these people said.

More broadly, the McCain campaign aims to halt what it sees as a perceived decline in the crispness and precision of Gov. Palin's latest remarks as well as a fall in recent polls, according to several advisers and party officials.
Some prominent Republicans and senior members of Congress have expressed worries about certain facets of the Palin campaign, particularly that Gov. Palin may be "overprepared" and not encouraged to be herself, an adviser said.
"She hasn't had the time or inclination to question the judgments of the people telling her to hit her marks," said one Republican strategist. "Gov. Palin is a team player, but the campaign needs to adjust to a game plan that works for her.
"It's time to let Palin be Palin -- and let it all hang out," said Scott Reed, a Republican

Obviously, I need to become a paid political strategist. It is apparant that I am sneaky enough, have the stupidity of the American public pegged , and also am slick enough to plan enough ahead in order to rein in the sheep..oops, the citizens of the United States and have them just where I want them. Or maybe I should just be a Wall Street Executive. Either way, I guess it shows I could be an expert at screwing the unsuspecting public.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Dear Judge

THis is a recent letter I sent to the local traffic judge

Dear Judge:

Please read this letter with a keen sense of humor as this is how my
letter is intended. I am not meaning to undermine the seriousness of
the situation but, frankly, if I don't try and laugh about this
situation, I will cry.

First, let me say I am a hot flashing pre-menopausal woman of
five...that about sums it up quite nicely!!! Recently, I was issued a
ticket on my way to Corcoran to take my children to swimming lessons.
I was given a ticket that says I was going approximately 70 in a 55
zone. I object to the speed written. I was in fact, going 65. How do
I know? Well I inadvertently set the cruise control at 65 after
turning onto the highway. Yes, I know the legal speed is 55. My
husband warned me NEVER to go over 55 on this highway because the
road is a speed trap. With that said and in order to avoid any
problems; everyday that I went to Corcoran; I set my cruise to 55.
However, on this particular day when I turned off the highway I had
my three year old screaming in the back seat because her six year old
brother had just clobbered her over the head with a toy. The other
six year old had just found a soda and decided to shake it before
opening it and spewed soda throughout the car. These are the types of
things that two autistic boys tend to like to do when their mother is
driving. So as I set the cruise I was trying to maintain my composure
while yelling at the top of my lungs, "Stop hitting your sister...If
you EVER shake a soda again you will never ever have another one the
rest of your life...Kellis stop crying... there is no blood...Kullen
stop taking apart the electrical system of the car and put your hands
in your pocket NOW ... don't make me pull over the car." (In
retrospect perhaps I should have pulled over.) All of this was said
in a span of 10.5 seconds. In addition, I was thinking about my 17
year old teenager who was suppose to be coming home from Brazil in a
few days after being away on an Rotary International Exchange for a
year. She had called me an hour prior to this incident to tell me she
might not be coming home that weekend as she was in the hospital with
appendicitis. Obviously, I was not thinking clearly when I set my
cruise. I am guilty. And I am remorseful. I am remorseful for going
over the speed limit as it caused chaos in my car after the highway
patrol man stopped us. I had to deal with my kids being afraid I was
being taken to jail for the next week. I am remorseful for not
pulling the car over and regaining Mommy control I am remorseful
that I was not paying close enough when I set my cruise control. And
I am remorseful for breaking the law.

With the question of my guilt out of the way I can only assume that
you have several options available to you about what to do with me.
Maybe there are more but I suspect I am too frazzled to think of
them. The first is to send me to traffic school and that is a good
choice. However, I have been so sleep deprived for the last six years
(autistic kids do not sleep well) that I am seriously afraid I might
fall asleep in class and get myself in even more trouble.

The second option is to send me to jail for a day hopefully on a
weekend so my husband could watch the kids. I promise I would bring
the CA Drivers Handbook to read and study it. Frankly, it would be
the first time I have been able to read something longer than two
pages of anything in the last six years and most likely it would not
have the words SEE JANE RUN so, frankly, this type of reading would
be a delight. While I realize that at my age and weight the strip
search might be slightly ...okay, really embarrassing...the thought
of having a private cell with a private bed sounds like heaven. This
coming from a mother whose children ALWAYS end up in her bed every
single night. If you sentence me to serve this sentence, I will
never tell another mother for if I did they would all be squealing
their tires backing out of the driveway as they raced for the
highway in an attempt to get some much deserved rest. I promise it
will be our little secret.

Another option might be just to slap me on the wrist (I'll bring it
to you) and say "Okay, you have a clean driving record and sometimes
we all have a bad day. My advice to you is to wait until your husband
comes home and take a slow drive out in the country without your
kids to get a little rest and relaxation. This case is dismissed."

Whatever you do, I promise I will not break the speed limit again. I
have learned my lesson and frankly bail at $168.00 really needs to go
to pay my kids numerous medical bills instead of the court.



P.S. My friend who works in the jail says that perhaps I might want
to reconsider that jail idea. She says that MRSA is rampant there and
that the last thing my kids need is MRSA. I will leave that for you
to decide.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Happy 7th Birthday, Karson

Today was Karson's 7th birthday. He was so excited and has been for a week to the point of annoying his classmates. So thank goodness today was the day. Frankly, I was worried. He invited 5 classmates to his party and only one had responded so I was afraid that we would have to somehow make everything okay. Since Karson has such trouble with social situations I just knew that no one was coming. But they did. Four out of the five showed up which just goes to show that if you raise a child to be polite and decent to others that even if they have other "issues" they will still succeed. It reminds me of an interview I remember seeing with Princess Diana in which she said that the most important thing she could teach William was good manners because she did not know if he would be intelligent but with good manners anyone can have doors open to them that may otherwise be closed.

How Hidden Is Racism?

As the mother of three children whom are “persons of color” it occurred to me after watching the RNC that things can change on a dime in the spirit of winning at all costs. All of a sudden Christian conservatives are calling the birth of Sarah Palin’s grandchild a blessed event and making Palin’s 17 year old daughter the poster girl of all that is good and holy; a righteous child who has chosen to do the “right” and noble thing. For young teens everywhere she is now the idol that they are to look up to. The child who has done the “correct” thing under God‘s personal direction. Yet, I wonder how “blessed” that event would be had Bristol Palin come out on stage holding the hand of an African American or Hispanic young man and introduced him as the father of her child. Something tells me that the “blessed event” would have sent shockwaves through the convention hall and Governor Palin would have been sent packing back to Alaska. Somehow I believe that the “mixing of races” might not have played out so well for young Bristol and her mother. That racism would have reared its ugly head like it usually does for those young women who carry a baby to term who is the product of a union that crosses their own racial profile. It would be nice to believe that this would not be so in this day and age. Yet, time and time again we see stories about people of color being physically abused or killed because of their race. Gay men and women who are murdered because of their sexual orientation. While most whites would like to believe that things have substantially improved for persons of color because it is comfortable for them to do so, in fact, racism is alive and well here in the USA. Unfortunately, it is one of the things that is energizing the McCain/ Palin ticket. It isn't just about voting for a woman it is about voting against a person of color. I just wonder if it will ever be about voting for the smartest, most capable person for the job regardless of their race or gender. Seems to me we have a long way to go before those will be the "good old days."

Friday, September 12, 2008


Last weekend I was trying to get Karson to jump into the pool without sitting down. As I was coaxing him I said, "Karson if you jump in you will be so proud of yourself." His reaponse, "I already am proud of myself."

Palin Belittles Teaching Profession

I find Governor Palin’s belittlement of Senator Barack Obama’s career accomplishments offensive. Since when does being a teacher for many years count for nothing? Coming from a long line of teachers I find teachers share many attributes that serve them well in government. Teachers need to know how to collaborate effectively, how to work with a diverse group of people and how to listen in a way that allows others to feel comfortable enough to share their concerns. They have to constantly evaluate the effectiveness of their teaching and refine themselves and their message should the need arise. Teachers have to know how to lead critical discussion, they must be able to problem solve effectively, find insight in unlikely places, they have to be flexible and clear up misconceptions quickly. Teachers must be able to show how different ideas connect and show how they apply to everyday life. Great teachers have to communicate effectively, know how to procure and use outside help, treat people with dignity and respect, share personal stories to inspire others and show genuine interest and concern for those at the top as well as the bottom of the ladder. They must possess a willingness to encourage, to teach responsibility and work long hours for little pay . Teaching is an honorable profession for millions of Americans. I am saddened and insulted that Governor Palin does not recognize that teaching , being a community organizer, a member of the state legislature and the US Senate prepares you for handling more complex issues in an honorable manner. Attacking and belittling does not belong in the classroom nor in government. Personally, I like Senator Obama’s subtle but persuasive style. I suspect that other world leaders will too.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Palin's Lack of Experience

For Governor Palin to believe that her four months of experience as a mother to a special needs child qualifies her as an expert/advocate shows that she has a total lack of understanding on what being a parent to a special needs child entails. Experience and effective advocacy come only after spending years fighting insurance companies, the state, and school districts in an often futile effort to get your child the multitude of services they need. You must have years of visiting doctors, specialists, and therapists under your belt to understand the kind of stress that this type of intense care puts on the caretaker and the rest of the family. In addition, you must have had to make dozens of anguishing decisions about what services to keep and which ones you can no longer continue because of the tremendous costs associated with the special needs child. Finally, you must have cried yourself to sleep more times than your want to count because of the guilt and frustration you feel at not being able to get your child the services they need in order to reach their full potential and become independent tax paying citizens. Truly it is only after years of ups and downs, disappointments and exhaustion that Governor Palin will have the experience necessary to be an effective parent/advocate for her own child and for the rest of us fighting for our special needs children . I wish her luck navigating the world of special needs.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Our Hearing

Well folks I have not written because I am still exhausted and

Dave did in incredible job or organzing everything and we had
exhibits A-HH. Here is a quick run down.

1. The night before the hearing Dr. KS (our kids psychologist that they see every week) scored the teachers ABAS
II and called to tell us that they were statisically invalid. The
reason was that there were too many "I am guessing" answers. AS you
will recall in Janauary the boys we were told that were denied
services SOLELY based on their teachers ABAS II tests. So Dr.KS believes that the ABAS II that they did for the CVRC is
probably statistically invalid. when we got into court we asked to
see the entire ABAS II instead of just the final scored page. We were
denied that by the CVRC citin "confidentiality" reasons. In addition,
they say that they do not have the RSP teacher(Mrs. D's) ABASII that
she filled out for both of the boys. Here is the kicker. Mrs. D hand
carried the envelope with the ABASII down to the CVRC. In Karson's
envelope was hercompleted ABAS II and his teacher, Mrs. B's
ABAS II. In Kullen evenlope was her completed ABAS II and Mrs.
S's ABAS II. The CVRC has both teachers but cannot find Mrs.
D's!!! Mrs. D informed me that she had tons of "guesses on her test"
So on Friday I went to the school and asked that each teachersign a
form waiving their rights to "confidentiality" so that the entire
test could be viewed by the judge and ourselves. Unfortunately, it
was kicked upstairs to the district level. All the teachers are in
agreement that we should have access to these documents. So I have no
idea what will happen. However, On Monday I am going back to the
school and will put a formal request in to see the boys entire
records. In the RSP file there are copies of the ABAS II tests that
the teachers took. I don't know if they will let me see them. I will
also be asking that a count be made of each subsection of the test
with the number of "guesses" that each teacher entered.

2. The CVRC used over 2 year old data to assess Kullen which is
against their guidelines and if we get the ABAS II thrown out then
they have nothing to have denied him with.

3. Their psychologist, Dr.S, lied on the stand and said that she
never said their determiniation was based soley on the ABAS II at
which point I yelled out "She is lying" Not once but twice.

4. I did great as a witness. I really did and I got in so much
stuff that was way beyond the question DAve asked. He would ask a
question and I would go and go and go and no one stopped me.

5. 5 days before the hearing we had to turn our evidence over to them
and they to us. Well I made CD's of the boys and forgot to include a
minute long segment on the poppy toilet paper that is left in the
trsh can because Karson cannot wipe his butt. They refused to let us
enter it into evidence.

6. Dr. S (CRVC's psychologist) signed off on the fact that the boys were autistic but
said it was no her handwriting that listed their diagnosis.

7. There is no MD signature signing off on Kullen's report. This is
suppose to be a team evaluation and a doctor is required to sign off.

8. Under oath we asked Dr.S why they did not include the "circle
of support" (family, parents, friends, teachers, etc) that they are
suppose to when making a determination. Dr. S got very pissy and
said she didn't know what that was. Folks, that is from their OWN
FRICKIN guidelines!!!!

I could go on and on. Unfortuantely even with all this I don't know
that we can win because:
1. While we can ask questions we don't know how to ask them in a way
that will get us the biggest bang for the buck
2. We don't know how to get further important evidence admitted that
we did not have when we exchanged evidence.

THe real thing we have to win on besides incompetatnce (not knowing
the laws, being late on the mandatory 120 assessment, using old
documents, not including the circle of support, etc) is that they are
saying that the boys adaptive skills are adequate and that they are
not seriously impaired. This is really what this is all abou and what
we need to prove. Dr. KS said that the boys had IQ tests of
about 100 and therefore their adaptive scores should fall in that
area too. But theres are at 76. Unfortuantely (well not
know what I mean) some catagories theyare in the 13 as in academics.
They are also trying to show that their IQ's are too high but really
it is not suppose to be based on IQ.

We are not done. We did not finish and dave still has to ask me
quesitions and I have to be cross examined. In addition, we have to
do arguments. We are exhausted and MAD as HELL that we have to fight
so fricking hard. In reviewing recent cases it appears that hardly
anyone wins so it is an unhill battle. If we lose we will keep bringing forth new evidence to get the boys services. Period.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Our Trip To The Orphanage

A two year old girl prostituted out to the highest bidder. A little
girl with cigarette burns up and down her young body. A young boy bearing a 4 inch long scar on his head from where he had been pistol whipped by his father. An eight day old baby, sexally abused. These are just a few of the children I held today at the orphanage. I wonder, how can children who have survived such horrific abuse still greet us with such smiles. I know I wouldn't have the fortitude.

Casa Hogar Sion orphanage came into existence over 10 years ago when Carmen Gonzalez recieved a message from God to help the children. She wondered if she was crazy and what the message meant. Three months later she heard God speaking to her once more. Again he told her to go out and help the children. What started out as a mission to help just a few children has grown into an orphanage which houses 120 children. Living in dormitory rooms of 12-18 children, each child has their own bed, attends school and is fed three meals a day. Often the children have been abused and neglected or their parents have died. Sometimes parents just need a place for their kids to come until they can reclaim them. As Carmen explained, "Sometimes our children come in with hard hearts but through the love of Jesus their hearts soften."

The orphanage needs $14,000 a month in order to survive and provide for the basic needs of the children. It costs $2,000 a month just to send all the children to school. This does not include the tuition that is needed to send the older children to trade school or college. It also does not include the $120 it costs to supply the school uniform that is required for school attendance.

Water must be brought in on a daily basis at a cost to the orphanage as the water that flows from the tap is unsafe to drink or cook with. There is no heat in winter and no insulation in the walls. Every child seems to be walking around with a runny nose. Everyday, day in and out, there are 30 loads of laundry that must be done, noses that need to be wiped, and beds that need to be made. And it is done by dedicated house mothers who make sure that the floors are clean and the children get a hug or kiss every time they walk by. Several of the older girls have gone to beauty school. They cut the little ones hair. But still there are shortfalls and shortages. For instance, we brought supplies donated from our church. You never would believe the happiness shown over a 6 pack of shampoo. They had just run out. The joy at new toothbrushes and toothpaste. Yet, still there was an urgent need for diapers. But as Carmen says, "God will provide" a statement we hear uttered over and over again with the utmost sincerity and belief.

Not only does Carmen have the orphanage to worry about but she has also started a community based program through her church, Templo Sion. Everyday, the doors open and close to two hundred local children file into the small room where they are led in song and prayer by one of the girls who has grown up at the orphanage. Then they receive a hot meal; the only one they will get that day. As we served the meal a "mucho gracias" and a big smile was served back at us. It costs Carmen over $100 a week to feed the local children. Some days the food is more plentiful than others. Since the government regulates but provides no funding for the orphanage and local lunch program, if one of the children is sick and requires medical care money is taken out of the food budget. This means no meat that day. But to the kids who attend Templo Sion it doesn't matter. It's the warmth that fills their bellies and the love that fills their souls which sustains them.

Back at the nursery I fall in love with K. "Oh Geez," I think. Another K. It is fitting as she buries her head into my shoulder and clings to me. If I try to put her down she grabs on tighter. She falls asleep in my arms her soft light brown hair falling over her long dark eyelashes. She fits perfectly in the crook of my arm; as though she was meant to be there. I feel like if the world stopped this minute that it couldn't get much sweeter than this. I think of all kinds of ways to sneak her across the border. Dave says NO! Meanwhile, Dave is playing with a little boy who keeps trying to steal his glasses. We hear his history and wonder how he has been able to trust the world again. But the answer is right there in front of us...the dedicated people at Casa Hogar Sion. People like Arleen who is the accoutant. She lived a high powered New York City life and gave it all up to live at the orphanage where she can feel the wind and see the outside from the inside of her room. And its the children who have grown up here and now stay to serve the Lord and the children who need them.

Not all of the 40 orphanages in Tijuana are like this. At the government run one there are no toys, no books. The children are not educated. They stay in the rooms all day except to eat. Which makes me wonder why the "lucky" ones end up at Casa Hogar Sion. Why do they get love when some children will never know what it is like to have someone smile at them or to encourage them to reach their fullest potential. How can this be that each child does not have the basics: water, food and love?

If you or your church want to help I urge you to send supply boxes or make a donation to the orphanage. Their website is:

Tonight I will sleep in my nice warm house in my nice warm bed. And yet the eyes of the children continue to haunt me. And as I finish writing this the tears come yet again. So many children. So many hurts. So many needs.

A short montage:

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Classy ladies

I usually don't reprint from another source but I was so inspired by thee girls that I have done so in tribute to them. Way to go ladies!!!

YouNewsTV™Story Published: Apr 30, 2008 at 9:51 AM PDT

Story Updated: Apr 30, 2008 at 7:42 PM PDT
By Associated Press Video MONMOUTH, Ore. (AP) - A senior with a .153 career batting average hits her first home run, a three-run blast, to help Western Oregon move closer to a spot in the NCAA's Division II softball playoffs.

That was improbable. To 70-year-old Central Washington coach Gary Frederick, what happened next was "unbelievable."

Sara Tucholsky, the 5-foot-2-inch right fielder, sprinted to first as the ball cleared the center field fence Saturday in Ellensburg, Wash. Given that she had never hit a ball out of the park, even in practice, she was excited. So excited she missed first base.

A couple yards past the bag, she stopped to go back and touch it. But she collapsed with a knee injury.

"I was in a lot of pain," she told The Oregonian newspaper on Tuesday. "Our first-base coach was telling me I had to crawl back to first base. 'I can't touch you,' she said, 'or you'll be out. I can't help you."'

Despite the agony, Tucholsky crawled back to first.

Western Oregon coach Pam Knox ran onto the field and talked to the umpires. The umpires said the coach could place a substitute runner at first. Tucholsky would be credited with a single.

"The umpires said a player cannot be assisted by their team around the bases," Knox said. "But it is her only home run in four years. She is going to kill me if we sub and take it away. But at same time I was concerned for her. I didn't know what to do."

An opponent did.

Central Washington first baseman Mallory Holtman, the all-time home run leader in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference, asked the umpire if she and her teammates could carry Tucholsky around the bases.

The umpires said nothing in the rule book precluded help from the opposition.

Holtman and shortstop Liz Wallace lifted Tucholsky and resumed the home-run walk, stopping to let Tucholsky touch the bases with her good leg.

"We started laughing when we touched second base," Holtman said. "I said, 'I wonder what this must look like to other people."'

Holtman got her answer when they arrived at home plate. Many people were in tears.

The second-inning homer sent Western Oregon on its way to a 4-2 victory, ending Central Washington's chances of winning the conference and advancing to the playoffs.

"In the end, it is not about winning and losing so much," Holtman said. "It was about this girl. She hit it over the fence and was in pain and she deserved a home run."

Frederick, the Central Washington coach, said he later got a clarification from an umpiring supervisor, who said NCAA rules allow a substitute to run for a player who is injured after a home run.

The clarification doesn't matter to those who witnessed the act of sportsmanship.

"Those girls did something awesome to help me get my first home run," Tucholsky said. "It makes you look at athletes in a different way. It is not always all about winning but rather helping someone in a situation like that."

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Little Ensteins

Its about time that adults acknowledge the fact that children are the true inventors of the world. And better yet, they do their inventing for free. No wages, social security, no workers comp, no nothin'. They just do their thing and all hell breaks loose. For instance, Kullen's concoctions all the super glues to shame. For some reason he will not mix his food on his plate but somehow his food all comes together in the chair groves and is impossible to get out. You can't chip it, you can't burn it,and you can't wash it. It stays stuck to the chair better than any super glue ever made.


One of my favorite quotes:

"Alice laughed. 'There’s no use trying,' she said. 'One can’t believe impossible things.' 'I daresay you haven’t had much practice.' said the Queen. 'When I was your age, I always did it half an hour a day. Why, sometimes, I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.' ” Lewis Caroll, Alice In Wonderland

Sunday, April 20, 2008

A Tad Bitter Are We...You Bet!!!

So Dave is getting ready to go away on another business trip. I hate it when Dave makes it "sound" like business trips are a big inconvience and he wants to be home with us. Yet, while he is gone he rarely calls. It just doesn't add up...ya know! So while he is sitting there complaining about his time away from home I am thinking...yeah, right, give me a frickin' break!!! Wah, wah, wah!!!

Like who doesn't like fresh sheets daily, their room magically cleaned when they step outside the door, a choice of foods for every meal of the day that I don't even know how to pronounce much less cook, getting to watch whatever YOU want on TV, those little bottles of soaps and creams that smell so yummy, renting a sportscar in an attempt to relive those magical yet desperate days B.C., shopping at someplace other than Target ALONE, fluffy impossibly white bathrobes, and lets not forget all the liquor you could want with the oh so tempting possibility of passing out on the bed and waking up with a hangover that is not the result of your kid screaming you awake at 5 a.m. in the morning. Oh and the eye candy down by the pool. PLEASE. Should my life only be that "rough."

Personally I think that Mommyhood needs its own frickin' conference once a week in order to keep up with all the news coming from science on how best to raise our children, seminars on how to make jello into a nutrious food and how to keep your sex life glowing when you have had little hands touching just about every part of your body 5000 times a day for the last three years, or how about instructions on set broken bones in your own home so that those pesky doctors bills can be avoided. Yep I want my own little conference to attend. I promise I will look dismal at the thought of going off on my own but I'm afraid that when I burn rubber after the requisite hugs and kisses; it might just be a dead giveaway as to my true feelings.

It's Okay If It Is My Way

I don't know about you but the thought of tanks coming to get me and my children gives me pause.

It has been very interesting to me the lack of public outcry regarding the raid on the polygamist YFZ Ranch in Texas. I mean just three weeks ago many fundamentalist religious leaders were outraged that California had deemed home schooling "illegal" according to the religious pundants. Yet, no one anywhere is crying out against the state of Texas on religious grounds for separating families and removing over 400 children from the place that they call home. I guess as long as it is "them" meaning those who are wrong in their religious beliefs vs. "us" those whose spiritual ideals are correct then it is okay to feed "them" to the wolves and not wave the Constitution in every one's face.

Now don't think for a minute that I agree that marrying off 13 year old girls to lecherous 50 year old men is fine and dandy. Nor do I believe that limiting exposure to the outside world is in the best interests of women and children in being able to develop that thing we call "free will." I can't say that I believe that having 50 children is a good thing either or that marrying one's cousin will improve the species in any lasting and good way. Hours of chores a day, well it seems a little excessive but hey we are all suppose to be trained to be good capitalists here in the good old USofA and we know the people at the YFZ Ranch were because our government awarded contracts to them. However, I can also say that I do not believe many tenants of many "main line" churches are good for society or the individual either but that doesn't make me want to have the state step in and rip children from their parents.

When I think of the damage that is being done to these kids by being put into and exposed to the foster care system I question what is worse...staying with what you know and those who love you or leaving to experience things that you should never have to be exposed to. Having been a foster parent I have seen the damage that is done to children who become victims of the system that was "suppose" to protect them and it is not pretty. Having children with RAD I know what ripping a child from those they love can do to the quality of quantity of their future relationships.

And so I ponder the unanswerable questions of what is better (or worse) known vs. unknown and why the conservative religious movement abandons some of its most conservative when the views are not "their" own. I guess it boils down to not wanting to keep company with those who are "different" than us or wanting to be sure we are on the "right" team. Or perhaps it is simply an economic issue for the leaders of the Christian Right. All I know is that the people paying the highest price will once again be the children and they are the ones who can least afford it.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Don't Eat What My Children Give You

This has been a hard couple of weeks. We are getting ready to move (again) and my house is a disaster. Truly. I have mopped once in an entire week, cleaned the toilets two weeks ago, the sinks over a week ago. Trust me it is a mess.

So yesterday I give all the kids a popsicle. Five minutes later Kullen, while nonchalantely licking his popsicle, says "I dropped my popsicle in the toilet mom but don't worry I rinsed it off." I would like to say that in the 2.3 seconds it took for me to process this tidbit of first thought was for my son but I confess that it wasn't. Instead I feverishly racked my brain trying to remember if I had just taken a lick from that same popsicle. Afterall, I absentmindedly graze from my kids plates all day and don't recall doing it just seconds later. Hence...the weight issue. After deciding the odds against me were 60% which in this household are considered favorable; I quickly rise from my seat and tell Kullen "Well bud lets get you a new popsicle."

On the way to the refridgerator I proceed to tell him why eating popsicles that have fallen in the toilet is not a good idea. Later I even find our small microscope to show him what germs look like. Anotherwords, I do the Good Mommy Act...and act is what it is. For what I really want to say is....

Son, you will be six this week and you mean to tell me that I have
never gone over rule number 548 which says "What goes in the toilet
STAYS IN THE TOILET." Or rule 673 which says "If you drop it don't eat
it" Or rule 837.2 "You never eat what has been where your butt has been
planted" or any variant of the above. I mean Come On. For crying out LOUD!!

Oh when Karson was about four he went into one of the outhouse toilets in the national park. He came out with a lollipop that he did not go in with. When I asked him where he got th lollipop he said "I found it on the floor next to the toilet."

There is a lesson to all of this. If my kids ever offer you something to eat ...don't take it! I am going to stick to this now and I lose 10 pounds in a week!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

A Little April Fools

I decided to play a little spur of the moment April Fools joke on a friend.

clddbdrkkkk: Soy cheese?
clddbdrkkkk: Gross
Squirrelchaser30: no, they don't do well with soy
clddbdrkkkk: Rice cheese?
Squirrelchaser30: tummy issues
clddbdrkkkk: Goat milk cheese?
Squirrelchaser30: ya, i buy them rice cheese stuff, but mostly we
just avoid it
Squirrelchaser30: and alex won't drink rice milk
clddbdrkkkk: How about pig cheese?
Squirrelchaser30: he hates it
Squirrelchaser30: PIG?
clddbdrkkkk: Or ferret cheese?
Squirrelchaser30: pigs make cheese???
Squirrelchaser30: shutup
Squirrelchaser30: haha
Squirrelchaser30: you had me going for a minute
Squirrelchaser30: i was like...crap
clddbdrkkkk: What are you talking about I had you going...I am dead
clddbdrkkkk: Look it up
Squirrelchaser30: pig cheese????
clddbdrkkkk: Yes
Squirrelchaser30: omg
Squirrelchaser30: barf
Squirrelchaser30: i don't want anything that comes from a pigs teat
clddbdrkkkk: Well I think ferret would be better
Squirrelchaser30: shutup
Squirrelchaser30: there is no ferret cheese
Squirrelchaser30: i'm not that stupid
clddbdrkkkk: Yes there is!!!! Look it up!!!!
Squirrelchaser30: no frigin way
Squirrelchaser30: you stop
clddbdrkkkk: Are you looking it up!
clddbdrkkkk: Do it!
Squirrelchaser30: ok i will
clddbdrkkkk: See I told you!!!!
Squirrelchaser30: there is NOTHING here about ferret cheese
clddbdrkkkk: Bullshit
clddbdrkkkk: Just a second I will find the link
Squirrelchaser30: that doesn't register
Squirrelchaser30: cheryl!
Squirrelchaser30: you stop trying to make a fool out of me
clddbdrkkkk: Doesn't take much
clddbdrkkkk: Easter Bunny cheese might be good too
Squirrelchaser30: haha
clddbdrkkkk: April Fools you big fool
Squirrelchaser30: ur an ass
Squirrelchaser30: HAHAHA
Squirrelchaser30: i forgot it was april fools
Squirrelchaser30: that's a good one
Squirrelchaser30: you ass
Squirrelchaser30: i was like, no way...but then again it is cheryl
Squirrelchaser30: so anything is possible
clddbdrkkkk: Yep can hardly wait to tell the gotcha girls this one
Squirrelchaser30: rat

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Forrest Gump Lives Here

Today I took the boys to play their first game. Baseball is a confusing sport especially when you are six. Both boys are able to whack the ball off of the T. Unfortunately, Kullen does not realize you must stay on first base once you get there or you are tagged out.

After the first quarter of the first inning Karson is begging me to quit. "I hate baseball," he says. I tell him he must discuss it with his sports loving Dad. I think he would like to be involved in a more sedate sport...something like marathon television watching and potato chip dipping.

So Karson is at bat for the second time. WHACK the ball flies and he makes it to first base. The next kid comes up...WHACK. THe first base coach yells, "Run, Karson, Run." Karson leaves the base, charging hard...into the outfield to help retrieve the ball his teammate just hit. He is tagged out by the opposing team and doesn't understand this turn of event because afterall he was only helping. If only Karson's rules were the rules by which we lived our lives. Things would be much simpler, everyone would be much happier and Peace On Earth would not just be a slogan.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

And We Question Where High Blood Pressure Comes From

I had to call Kylee on the telephone today to talk to her. Of course she had to bring up the fact that she would not be living in the dorms at college. The conversation went kind of like this.

She: "Okay I didn't want to tell you this way but I can't live in the
dorms because R is coming to the United States. We plan to get married after I graduate from high school"

Me...thinking to myself....THE HELL YOU ARE
Me...thinking to myself (in a very sterotypical fashion I might add)...Thank goodness he is from South America and a machismo culture where he will most likely forget about her the minute she leaves.
Me...thinking to myself...THE HELL YOU ARE

Me to her: "Well honey that is going to be difficult. I doubt the
United States will let him in."

She: " I have been investigating it. We will be married. He can come on a fiance visa."

Me...thinking...thank GOD the US is cracking down on immigration at least in this case. I just might have to become a Republican.

Me to Her: I doubt that the US will let R in because 1. You are not
educated and cannot support him 2. He is not educated and cannot
support himself 3. He is in a band (okaY i did not say it but I did
think it) 4. He doesn't have lots of money to come here with.
Therefore due to #1, 2, and 4 it is doubtful he can come here."

Me...thinking ....thank goodness for the Patriot Act. Here is one case where it just might come in handy.

She: "I am in a bad mood and don't want to talk anymore."

Me...thinking...don't even ask us to sponsor R. EVER. (which she does a day later)

Me...thinking...why do we have girls anyway?

Me...thinking...I was ripped off during the in vitro process when I
told the doctor that he was to eliminate teenage attitude and the
problems associated with it.

Me...thinking again in sterotypical fashion for which I beg forgiveness...thank goodness he lives in a machismo country and will probably forget her within 10 minutes of her getting on the

Me...thinking...Now I know why some animals eat their young. It is so much easier than raising them!

Sunday, February 24, 2008


We were out at dinner the other evening celebrating Kullen's five years in our family.

As we are eating Karson says,"MacKenzie says that Chinese people are ugly and that I am Chinese."

"What did you say?"

"I told her that I was Korean, not Chinese," said Karson.

So how do you explain to a six year old that to this little white girl thinks that all Asians look alike no matter if they are Korean, Thai, Indonesian, Chinese or Vietnamese. That it will not matter to her that each Asian nation and people have their own rich culture of food, stories, dress, history and that are as individual and unique as each person at the school. How do you explain to a young child that he will forever be seen as a foreigner in the land of opportunity and that when people ask where he is from they aren't asking if he is from Cleveland? How do you explain that soon he will be getting questions about where his "real" parents are and that for some reason perfect strangers will always question our family relationship with the "are they related line", planting seeds of doubt about our family in his young mind? How do I explain to him that what I learned was learned based on white privilege and that he will get all that entails when he is with me but that it will disappear when he is not? How to I explain to him that when he is older and driving to keep his hands visible at all times if he is pulled over and not to make any sudden moves? How do I explain to him that people will make assumptions about him like he loves fish and is good at math based on his skin color alone? How do I explain to him that certain words like "chink" are meant to hurt him and "keep him in his place"? Will he believe it when I tell him people like that are the ones with the problem or will he internalize it and grow up not liking himself? And why is it at this date and time these are STILL things that have to be explained to a young boy whose mind has yet to be polluted by others...until the other day.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

All About Me... But Should It Be?

What is it about Americans? Why does there seem to be this national obsession for constant change and wanting more? What ever happened to being happy with what you have? Finding contentment in what is instead of what isn't?

Over the years I have been guilty of the ME syndrome and have known many others who have fallen victim to its hold. So we work harder, get more degrees, and new toys in a false attempt to make ourselves feel better. But all of this comes with a price which is fine if you are single for you are paying the price alone. But what about when you have children?

Interestingly, it seems to me that Americans seem to convientely forget the fact that after you have children it isn't about ME anymore, it is about THEM. That sometimes you have to put dreams on the shelf for a little while, that work/relationships/recreation won't always be what we imagined and that personal sacrifice is called for when you become parents. Face it, you no longer can expect a perfect life or to get your way all the time. That kind of attitude is fine when you are single but has no place when you are married with children.

Unfortunately the ME in all of us tends to forget that there will always be a better job with better pay, a more understanding/sexy/loving person, and one more mountain left to climb but at what price? Our children didn't ask us to improve ME they only ask for us to create love and stability for THEM by letting go of the ME WANT syndrome.

Now don't get me wrong, I am not talking about situations where there is abuse in a relationship or where a single mother wants to go from working at McDonalds to becoming a nurse. What I am talking about are all the parents who have the "American Dream" but still keep searching for something better on the backs of their kids. It isn't about, "What can I do for you?" Instead it has become "I'm dissatisfied/I need something more/Life isn't exciting enough/ and Where did the real ME go?" When will people just realize that when you become a parent you give up ME for something better and more important. And that is US. The US that was created the minute you signed up for parenthood.

That is why I am encouraging my kids to delay parenthood until they have gone to college or obtained the material things they want from life. Until they have explored the peaks and valleys that are what we call LIFE and truly understand that there are ebbs and flows throughout our lifetime but that we don't just add more things or leave everything behind when those difficult times hit. The phrase 'Seek And Ye Shall Find' should be the motto of the young hip and single. Not the slogan of the parent.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Think About It

It has occurred to me that people put their time and effort into those people/ things that they treasure and those people/things that bring meaning to their lives. Where have you been putting your time and what message is it sending to those around you?

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Omma vs. Mom

There is a debate going on in regards to a blog by an adoptee who says that adoptive parents wearing things like Omma pendants are appropraiting something that they shouldn't. That adoptive parents by taking on these names are erasing something that does not rightfully belong to them. Interesting concept.

So I have been thinking about this.

I do wonder if part of the issue for the adoptee has to do with loss and not giving up on seeing their Omma and Appa again. If you suspected that your birth parents were still alive then it might seem disrespectful like your a-parents were trying to take their places. Like why isn't "Mom" and "Dad" good enough for them. The only thing I can relate it to is this:

If my husband were to die and two years later I married again I am not so sure that my children would appreciate being forced to call the new guy "Dad" For them, "Dad" would have a very specific meaning, the man they grew up with, who read to them every night, the man that the world knew as "Dave" and they knew as "Dad." The man who holds the title of "Dad" in their hearts. And its only when and if they CHOSE to give that title to someone else would it be right. Not just because I wanted them to.

Perhaps for some adoptees the word "Appa" or "omma" has that special place in their heart.The place that gives them hope that someday they will be able to meet the person/s who created and birthed them. The place that is reserved for their Korean birthparents. Perhaps those are the words that they have longed to say the first time they touch their first mothers hair, or feel her warm hand in theirs when in Korea and it would only seem right to use those Korean terms of endearment like "Omma". If my kids were meeting their first mother in Korea they certainly wouldn't call her "mom" because it wouldn't have meaning to her or a shared sense of a cultural meaning plus it would be their term of endearment for me.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Today is Kylee's 17th birthday. It seems so strange to have someone who was the main focus of your life 17 years ago not here to celebrate that wonderous day. I miss her. I want to hug her and tell her how much I love her. And then this happened:

Kylee and I were IMing each other when she says," Mom I want to have a serious discussion with you."

Of course with words like this coming from you 17 yo's typewriter your mind begins to fly wildly. She pregnant...she was hurt...she's in love...she never wants to come home...and a host of other absurdities crammed into the old gray matter.

And then she types, "I just wanted you to know that when I am 18 and if you have saved a little money, if anything were to happen to you and Dad I want to take the kids."

And I started bawling. Not because her offer is necessarily a possibility but because she would offer knowing all the challenges that our special needs children face in the years to come. And because I have secretly wondered at times if the adoption of our younger children had perhaps made Kylee feel left out or at the bottom of the pile. That somehow her needs became secondary to theirs.

But maybe I was bawling because that is the minute that I realized my daughter had matured and grown up. That was the moment I realized that she was beginning to think like an adult, love like a parent and grow into a person whose concern about others that she loves outweighs her immediate concern about herself.

And so on the day I so desperately wished I could hug my girl and give her a gift, she turned the tables on me and gave me the best present ever. A one sentence treasure that came from her heart. And sometimes it just doesn't get any better than that!