Sunday, August 16, 2015

last day of summer

The opposite of what ails us is often the anecdote. We often try to treat ourselves with more of the same though.

I remember going through a parenthesis of hard time. I was 28 years old and recovering from a bad break up- that boy was the reason I moved from Missouri to Los Angeles in the first place. Work was so hard. Life was so hard. I felt lost and empty. So I ran more. I went out more. I was afraid to be alone. To feel alone. I filled myself up with noise and the hole grew deeper. I felt like I knew what I should do. I just didn't think I could actually do it.

Finally I did, because nothing else was working and I was broken. Instead of running, I chose to walk into my fears. Walk into the silence. Walk into the thinking I couldn't escape yet tried desperately to avoid. I booked two nights away at a shack called The Nurturing Nest in Palm Dessert- a city near Palm Springs. There were no TVs. No cell phone reception. Just a pool and hot springs that smelled like rotten eggs and promised healing properties. I was awful company- at first. Jittery and bored and anxious. And it sometimes takes so long to peel off the layers we build to cover unease, insecurity and pain. I had a tiny 1960's looking kitchenette and shelves of old books. I relaxed. I read. I hot-springed and stunk.

Although I was extremely excited and ready to drive home, I was glad I went. It did me good. And after that trip, I didn't need other people so much. I didn't need TV so much. I started to make friends with me- so I could think in length and not in hamster ball.

Whatever scares you and sounds like the worst ideas ever may be exactly what you need.

Today we adventured on our last day of Summer before school starts.

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We went on our first train trip. Jump and Flaptastic.

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The only thing more awesome than riding a train is watching your favorite little people ride a train.

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We went to a city called Hanford. It's in the Central Valley of California and is about a 35 minute train ride. It was like we were on an old set of the movie, Back to the Future. SAVE THE CLOCK TOWER!

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We visited an old carousel built in 1932. Grey rode a horse for the first time. His name was stormy- which is just so totally Grey.

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Doodle played it safe and sat with me.

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We also went to a place called Superior Dairy- a classic 1920's ice cream parlor complete with pink vinyl booth seats.

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Each ice cream dish was bigger than the next.

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It's impossible to be sad and watch kids eat ice cream

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Our friend Sawyer was double spooning it

And here is his instant reaction when his Momma said, "all done" because we had to leave to catch our train back.

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I freaking love that kid.

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The ride home felt like it was five minutes long. I wanted to stop time. Thank you God for perfect moments in our imperfect life.

I've been on a see saw all day. Heavy and filled with dread over Greyson's first day of school tomorrow. I'm not ok about it. And I'm desperate to add contingencies to make myself sound stronger than I actually feel. But it will be great! We will do awesome! I'm Annoyed we have to leave the house by 7:55 every morning. "You'll get used to waking up early once you have kids" they lied. Dreading making a lunch and not wearing pajamas past 8.

I'm Hopeful. Rip off the band aid and then it will be fine. Grey will adjust. Mommy will adjust. Beginnings are hard. Watch Grey- he has to do hard things all the time. Learn by his spirit, his shining example.
Dread. Hope.
Bad. Good.

Up and down
Up and down


It's got me thinking- if letting go of the boys is this hard, this horrible... I must really need to do it more to get used to it. I shush that voice that says- BUT THIS IS DIFFERENT. They have autism. They need me.

Because the truth is, autism or not- they are growing up. They need more opportunities for independence and change. And as usual, in their ability to adapt will somehow show me the way.

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It goes by so fast...We can't slow down but we can hold on and enjoy the ride.


  1. They always tell you before you become a parent, to take it all in and enjoy it, because time flies. I think until you actually have your own children, you don't really fully understand the truth in that. I have 2 boys also, ages 4 & 7
    And I look at them all the time and wonder how they got so big!? Love reading your blog. ;)
    I'm a first grade teacher, Greyson will love first grade! Oh, and we just did this same trip last week with friends and loved it. Summers are my favorite. ;)

  2. Thinking of you and your boys tonight. Thanks for the reminder of how challenging daily life is for our autistic sons. They work so hard to overcome. I'm praying for you and Grey as the new school year begins.

  3. That carousel was also my boys first carousel ride last September and also our first visit to Superior Dairy. Now we just need to add the train ride because we drove to the Japanese Gardens they have in Hanford & made a pit stop in downtown for their ice cream.