Thursday, October 29, 2009

Happy Hour Friday #2

Otin hosts this Friday game where we're asked to just take a moment to talk about what makes us happy. I figured that I needed a post to offset all the negatives that I let loose yesterday in my Take a Peek Through Our Window post.

Here goes:

- We have a new pumpkin in the family!! I am thrilled to announce that our Pumpkin-Farmer friends back in Ontario, added another little girl to the pumpkin collection. Grace Anne has made Isabella a proud new big sister and has also made three little boys in Calgary very excited to meet their new 'cousin'. In absence of a photo of the newborn, I'll show off her adorable sister instead.

- I got a lot of kind comments following yesterday's post about what a great mom I am and how wonderful I must be and how beautiful and stunning and witty and charming.... okay, so I'm exaggerating a little. But the comments were so sweet. But now I feel guilty about it. Because truly, life isn't that bad to warrant me getting such a pat on the back. I know that there are parents out there who may have children with physical disabilities whose needs FAR surpass my children's. Or people who are caring for their own elderly parents. Or people who have no children of their own, but are caring for other people's. I'm just doing what I do because it's our life and it's the way it is. I hope Otin doesn't mind, but I'd like to share an exchange we had because I think it best describes my feelings about this. He said: "it must kill you to hear people complain about silly things like having to get up early or their days at work!". To which I replied, "No, it doesn't. It's all relative, isn't it? I couldn't live a boring life either, it would make me crazy! I'd probably still choose mine. A single mom with even one child earns my respect. Or someone who works outside all day doing physical labour. As tacky as it sounds, I just think everyone needs to be kinder to each other and appreciate that we all have our own stories and challenges. There's no such thing as perfection." I am happy to have enlightened some of you who may have had no prior knowledge of some of the challenges that families with autism may be going through, because I hope it will give you pause before judging the next parent you see with a tantrumming kid.

- GEEK ALERT!! But I am so excited to have learned this week that there is a new L.M. Montgomery (author of Anne of Green Gables) book that has just been released, entitled "The Blythes Are Quoted".
These comments come from the Publisher: "Adultery, illegitimacy, misogyny, revenge, murder, despair, bitterness, hatred, and death-usually not the first terms associated with L.M. Montgomery. But in The Blythes Are Quoted, completed shortly before her death and never before published in its entirety, Montgomery brought these topics to the forefront in what she intended to be the ninth volume in her bestselling series featuring her beloved heroine Anne." Sounds great to me!

- I am happy for my kids that it's Halloween on Saturday. The twins don't really have an understanding of what's going on, but they do get the routine of going door to door. Unfortunately because of their restricted diets, they don't get a lot of the treats, but I plan to run ahead to every house on Saturday with pieces to a puzzle for Owen and some diet-friendly treats for Will, to ask the neighbours to hand those out instead. Tomorrow Jake and I are headed to his school dance (3rd grade people, can you believe that! AND he asked a girl to go with him and it wasn't me!), then on Saturday our whole family was invited to a Halloween party! I am very, very happy about this, more for Jake, Owen and Will's sake than my own, because we have never been invited to anything before. Usually we get the polite invite that awkwardly suggests only bringing Jake and one parent, unless it's from one of our friends in the autism community. Anyways, we're thrilled to be invited, even if we only last 10 minutes. And when I say I'm happy for my kids, I'm including my husband in that statement. He already has his costume ready and did a little dance in it tonight for our benefit.

- I am happy that my boys are still all healthy (knock wood), despite the fact that H1N1 is in their schools.

- I am happy that a Chinook is rolling in tomorrow, just in time to warm this city up for Halloween.

- I am happy to report that I think we've killed off all those miserable mice!

- I am that I've had some new followers this week and have gotten to meet some really great people in the blogging community. I only wish I could get more organized to find some time to spend on each of their blogs. Eventually, I'll get a rhythm going and get on top of comments and blog browsing.

- Here are all the reasons why you shouldn't feel sorry for us and our circumstances:

* because autism has made us appreciate every single achievement that our kids accomplish, that we may have otherwise taken for granted.
* because autism has taught us to be parents who are not complacent and who realize that action and hard work is the only way you can change your circumstances. Sitting and moaning about your life isn't going to make it any better.
* because autism has brought the five of us closer together and has given us a stronger bond with Jake because of our common challenges with his brothers.
* because autism has introduced us to some amazing people who I would have never met otherwise. It has forced a deeper level of friendship with a handful of friends that may have never happened had it not been for our boys' diagnosis.
* because despite our initial upset, Owen and Will's diagnosis forced us to pack up and move across country to Calgary and we love it here. We could have never foreseen living out West otherwise.
* because my boys don't speak, they show us love in ways that other parents may never experience.
* because autism has taught us tenacity, perseverance, patience, tolerance, acceptance, joy, compassion, passion and understanding. We see beauty in things that others see as ugly. My boys have taught me to find humour in the everyday and to see that intelligence doesn't just mean that you can summarize what you've read in a book.

- I am happy to have Happy Hour Fridays to remind me of all that I am grateful for. I hope you all have a great weekend and Happy Halloween!


otin said...

Very nice Stacey! I wish that you lived close to NYC, I would love to meet you!

When I was a kid, divorce was not a normal thing. I was very much in the minority in school. I remember feeling bad that I did not have what the other kids had. After years of feeling bad, it hit me one day that I met so many people that I would have never met, had my parents stayed together. I can see your point that out of every situation that other's may view as bad, there is always something good that comes out of it!

Who is the hubby supposed to be? Elvis?? LOL!

fancypants said...

I understand what you mean when you say you are doing what are supposed to do. I have had praise before for something that I should have done anyway and felt a little awkward about it.

HOWEVER- you have gone above and beyond- there is no doubt about that- you and your family. Even if it is all relative- there are still those who stand up and fight while others who sit down and give in. You are a fighter, sister!

Menopausal New Mom said...

Terrific post Stacey, I didn't know you lived in Calgary, we've been there several times, my stepdaughter used to live there and then moved to Red Deer with her family.

If you weren't so busy blogging, you could easily find a career in lecturing and speaking to parents. You have great insight.

BTW, you deserve every pat on the back you received yesterday and probably a lot more!

kys said...

You are so modest! Going ahead with twin friendly treats is a great idea! I wonder how many of the parent's I know have thought of that. It's too late this year, but I will let them know for next.

Have a good time trick or treating and at the party!

Nezzy said...

Oh, girlfriend take a little pat on the back and be proud. Yes, you are doing exactly what you should be doing but we all could use an uplifting word, a hug or a pat on the back of a job well done.

Have a great time out roaming the neighborhood with your precious children. God bless!!!

Sarah @ When two becomes three... said...

This was a great post Stacey. Truly.

Sarah @ When two becomes three... said...

P.S. I am a huge Anne fan too. Thanks for the tip on the book release.

blueviolet said...

I hope you guys have a great time tomorrow night trick or treating and at the party. What a nice break from the everyday humdrum.

I'm not really sure what hubby is, but that hairdo is wicked. ;)

Anonymous said...

This is a really great post.

That is such a good idea about pre planning the treats that people give to the kids. Great idea.

Unknown Mami said...

That is THE cutest pumpkin I have ever seen.

You are so awesome for running ahead a providing treats. Warms my heart to picture you doing it.

Menopausal New Mom said...

Hi Stacey, there are some awards at my place for you! Congratulations!

Viv said...

You've been kinda quiet this week, hope you and yours are okay.

prashant said...

Terrific post Stacey, I didn't know you lived in Calgary, we've been there several times, my stepdaughter used to live there and then moved to Red Deer with her family. Work From Home

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