Let Me Clear my Throat

So here I am, 37 years old, starting a new blog.  I’ve blogged before, before Facebook and Twitter that is.  I forever struggle with that first introductory post.  Mostly because I don’t even start my thoughts at the beginning I just sort of blurt out what I am thinking, halfway through my train of thought and expect people around me to follow along.  I’m not the best with sentence structure or punctuation so if you are one of those grammar Nazi types this isn’t the blog for you.

Ok, lets do this shit.  Hi, I’m Audra.  I’m a stay at home mom to three kids, three cats and two guinea pigs.  I also babysit a guinea pig on weekends and holidays.  I’ve been married for 13 years to my awesome husband.  He is pretty cool but I am never going to be one of those women who describe him like he just rode up on a white horse carrying a bouquet of chocolate.  I love him as is evidenced by the whole 13 years of marriage thing but I am not a gushy person.

I spend a lot of time volunteering at my children’s school.  Not because I am super PTA mom.  I am more the opposite and I atone for my shortcomings by donating my time.  I have a deep OCD like obsession with Box Tops for Education.  I am the coordinator for my school and I will literally go through your trash can snatching out Box Tops like they are little squares of gold.

I work out 5 to 6 days a week.  I guard my gym time like a rabid dog would a bone.  I’m not stick thin or even fit, truth is the gym is just the only time I get where I can go an hour without someone needing something from me.

On to the kids.  My lovely Hannah is 11 years old and best described as a hot mess.  She has ADHD, Anxiety and an eating disorder called ARFID.  I super duper love when people who have no idea what its like to live with this lecture me on it.  We knew something was off with Hannah shortly into her baby hood.  I tried to deny it until she was in school and we no longer could.  Embracing her challenges and deciding that they weren’t anything to be ashamed of was one of my most freeing moments as a parent, which isn’t to say that the road has been easy.  Parenting a child with special needs, especially ones that don’t have a ribbon and an awareness month and that most people don’t realize is a thing is hard.  It’s thankless and I get to hear all the advice from parents who don’t realize that they were dealt a different hand than I was so their advice is useless.

Andrew is my little man.  For years we marveled in his intelligence.  Everyone loved his giant vocabulary and his knowledge on all things mechanical.  With a perfectly round head, blond hair and big blue eyes and a killer dimple he could melt anyone with a smile.  He had a lot of fears as a toddler but we never realized how obsessive they were.  Coyotes, snakes, coyotes carrying snakes the list is long and detailed but it wasn’t until school started and our smart child who couldn’t wait to be a big kid like his sister started acting out that we realized something was up.  The letters flew at us but none really fit. ODD, ADHD, OCD and words like depression and anxiety.  We couldn’t figure out how a kid that was so cherished, who came from a stable loving home could be so depressed and anxiety ridden.  The school was super helpful explaining to me and voicing my biggest fears that we clearly had a dysfunctional home that was causing this and we needed counseling.  It wasn’t until a few weeks ago and three more letters that we got him figured out.  ASD, my baby boy has Autism.  While logically knowing that this diagnosis and label changes nothing, it is still a lot to take in and I would be lying if I said that I was handling it like a pro.  My inside voice has been screaming since hearing the news.  Why him, why does my sweet boy, who loves his sisters and cats and family have to go through this.  It isn’t fair.  I want to stomp my feet and ball up my fists and scream at the universe for it.  I already had to accept that my daughter’s life would be full of challenges and now my son too?  We will be ok though.  We will get through it like everything else with humor and sarcasm.

Olivia, our youngest and craziest child is our neurotypical child.  Parenting a child without any issues is sooo much more frustrating for me.  When trying to describe her words like wicked, evil and lunatic just flow out even when trying to keep them in.  She doesn’t do things for spite, she is only 5 after all, but she has an imagination and a wild streak that gets her into more trouble than the other kids could even dream of.  She is curious and carefree.  She knows that the world was put here solely for her shenanigans and she lives to the fullest.  She is so alive and vibrant that other kids tend to gravitate to her and even her siblings who bear the brunt of her pranks adore her.  She has been compared to a sour patch kid since she was old enough to first smack the crap out of someone and then smiley at them and tell them she loves them.  She thinks that Jaws, Godzilla and Tom (From Tom and Jerry) are the victims.  She hates her curly hair, she loves her best friend and her kindergarten teacher and most of all she loves her family.  For all the complaints I make about her, I can’t help but love her spirit and admire her zest for life.

So in a nut shell that is me.  I need an outlet to verbally vomit my thoughts and this is it.  Thanks for stopping by.

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