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Saturday, 3/12 A Nap??

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Hi everyone,

I just woke up from a nap. A nap--that's right and it was quite a nap. I slept for over 4 hours. That is unbelievable for me. I had some chores to do and I sat down in my recliner and I don't know how or why, but I slept through doing my chores, my errands and dinner. I took a nap even with all of that to do. I don't have my activity for children's church ready for tomorrow yet and we don't have any food for the bunny.

I don't get to take naps often and that is why I am surprised. I think that being overly stressed probably gave me this gift. I am sure that anyone reading this is surprised that I am chatting about a nap like it is some unusual item of high value or something, but with the hectic pace of my life recently, I haven't had a chance to do anything for myself. I had planned to catch up on my spark teams tonight, so I apologize for that.

Sleep is such an important part of healthy living, but because I have this body that hurts so much and so often combined with the life of a mother of eight who works a very demanding full time job, it doesn't happen for me the way it might for other people. This nap may be the first gift of my spring break. I can create my own song--"On the first day of spring break, I gave myself a nap." I guess I'll just have to wait and see gift I can give myself on the second day of spring break (besides daylight savings time, ha ha.)
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I went grocery shopping at 8AM to start my day. Then, I spent 4 hours at my son's school with him for his music contest today. He was a bit overwhelmed with all of the people who were there and he didn't quite understand the schedule. It helped me to remember who he is and the things that are tough for someone with Aspergers. I am lucky to have the connections I have--I have a stack of good information from the psychologist I work with and I am going to read some of it in a bit to prepare for the meeting with the staff in his building on the 21st. We had lunch there and then came home to do some chores at home before going to the fitness center. I had an almost good session at the pool until the lifeguard of the day decided to close the pool up 15 minutes early. I fussed because I planned my time out to get my workout in and I needed that time. She finally relented with only 5 minutes left, but by then I was irritated a lot and I told her it was going into a letter of complaint that I am writing to the manager. She isn't a good lifeguard consistently and I am amazed that they do not do something to either help her to do her job correctly or that they let her go. There are plenty of good people who would be glad to have a job and you would think that she would care a bit more.

I had a good workout in spite of her--I got to the pool at the right time and missed a lot of the noisier families. The water was a bit warmer than its been all week as well and that helps me. I have been bringing my small hand weights and doing some strength training along with my regular workout right there in the pool. It seems like anything I do is easier and more comfortable there. We made a couple of stops on the way home and then, I sat down to delegate tasks to the kids--and somehow, I fell asleep.

I think I am going to marvel about my nap a bit longer as I move on to what needs to be done in the next few minutes before I get ready for bed. Have a great new week, one and all!!

Gentle hugs,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I wish I were able to nap. My husband takes them a lot.

I hope you can get the pool situation straightened out.

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SUSIEQQ62 3/13/2011 4:04PM



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    You've inspired me to go take a nap. I feel pooped! Love ya, Dawn emoticon

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EMRANA 3/13/2011 1:33PM

  How wonderful! You needed that nap! Loved your little song. emoticon

Enjoy the rest of your break, my friend. You're off to a great start!

(Can I "like this" ten times since I'm that happy about your nap?)

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JHADZHIA 3/13/2011 12:08PM

    I am marveling at your amazing nap too, and absolutely green with envy as I can't even get four hours of uninterrupted sleep!! I do not even have the excuses you do -full time work and a huge family.. It is so obvious that you needed this rest very much and kudos to your family for not waking you up in any way and letting you sleep.. I know I have been guilty of waking my poor Mom up from her naps many a time :(
I hate it when people give short shrift to their jobs. Many is the time I have called an office 5-10 minutes before their closing time and get no answer. Always rush to leave as fast as you can, never give a full day's honest work..
Do try to get as many naps and/or restful days as you can in this break, you need some rest time too..
{{{gentle hugs}}}

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Friday, 3/11 Spring Break!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Hi everybody,
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It has been quite a week and as you all know, I have been a bit less than visible. This week has been full of lots of work, progress reports (report cards), family issues, medical issues, car problems and I don't know what else. 2011 has become quite a handful for me.
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I am looking forward to the next 2 weeks of intersession. I have a lot to do between serious work at my son's school before the meeting on the 21st. The teacher I am upset with has been "messing with me" all week and it has not been fun. I am rallying my troops and collecting informationa nd support to manage that problem.
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I have a medical appointment every other day of the break. I have also made all of my follow up appointments and finally chatted with the people my PCP referred me to--they call their office "The Spine Clinic" and that makes me feel like maybe, just maybe I am on the right track. I have an appointment to see the other guy in a couple of weeks for the follow up on my bone scan. (I am assuming it turned out okay or they would have chased me down.) I also have an appointment with my pain doc and well, like I said, the list goes on.
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My big goal is to get a lot of work done on my National Boards renewal. Tomorrow is my youngest son's first music contest day, so I am spending my day with him and Sunday, I have children's church. After that, each day will give me at least 3 hours for writing. I am doing three days of extra reading lessons for one of my students and I am taking down all of the snow related decorations in my classroom and making some indoors spring time. (YAY!)
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However, that will leave me enough time for some chores at home, a lot more SP, my daily time at the pool, and some extra rest too!! I need this break, no doubt about it.

Gentle hugs--and happy spring break!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    You are not one to waste time, Sylvia. Your days are filled with importance. I hope you can have some rest and relief from stress.

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ENUFF81020 3/13/2011 1:20AM


My pain doc is the best doc ever--he has done everything for me that a doc can do, including lifting me into a car and going with me to see his chiro. My ortho is another special guy and has always made me "well again" with determination to get to the bottom of my pain. My rheumy (who I see on Monday) always gives me a complete physical and does everything he can to help me out with both my arthritis and my fibromyalgia, he is such a kind and gentle man. My back doc has been a different story and that is why I am trying someone else. He rushes in and out of the exam room, is abrupt and sometimes rude and has a pat answer before even finding out why I am there. "There is nothing surgical I can do for you." He does not take the time to realize that I am a living breathing person who has a need. Grr-rr. Anyway, my PCP and my pain doc are both helping me to find someone who will do a better job with me. I am thankful for all of these other wonderful caregivers in my life, I am a complicated patient.

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PUGRAD1995 3/12/2011 11:01PM

    Wow, you are going to need a break from break.

The orthopedic doc I have also calls his practice something like the spinal institute. He is a dear. He also referred me to the pain doc and I have been very pleased with both of them listening to me and asking how they can help me. It is working. I still will have to do surgery, but they are making the wait much more tolerable.

Keep on looking if you don't like these guys. There are good ones out there-you just have to find them!


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JHADZHIA 3/12/2011 12:50PM

    If you are calling that a break, I don't know what is one!! You still have an awful lot on your plate Sylvia, and I wish it would let up for you!!
I hope that teacher finally gets what is coming to them..
The Spine Clinic sounds very helpful, I would like to think they can come up with some kind of solution to you..
I have never seen or been referred to a pain Dr. My pain control is, nothing is strong enough to work for you so why bother? I have tried acupuncture and that didn't work either. I would be curious to know what kinds of things they have tried and actually work for you.. My RA specialist says the disease modifying drugs are supposed to control pain, but they don't..
Hope you have a restful weekend!
{{{gentle hugs}}}

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EMRANA 3/12/2011 12:13PM

  Wow, that's a lot of medical appointments! I hope you get some good guidance!

I'm glad you'll be having a better schedule. You need it! I know you'll love making the indoor springtime a lot!

Hope you get some great progress on your National Board Renewal. I know that's been on the list for a long time now. Enjoy your time!

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BLESSED2BEME 3/12/2011 12:11AM

    Enjoy your spring break Sylvia! I'm glad you are going to have "Me" time! You need it and you deserve it. Praying for all the medical stuff and situation with your son:)



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Monday, 3/7 When I don't make good choices

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Hi Everyone,

I've had a mega-amount of stress that is using much of my energy. I have been going to the pool as much as I can--but I missed two days due to some issues. I have eaten more on the run rather than in my usual way. I'm not eating badly, just more and a few things have slipped into my menu that I normally don't allow.

I cannot prove it, but it seems as if these things have contributed to my mood. It isn't the best mood I have ever had. Of course, not enough sleep or time to do what needs to be done doesn't help.

i have a solution--I am going back to my goals and I am going to really think about what I need and what I've been doing. That is that--chances are my goals are perfect, but just in case... My next blog will be a recommitment to myself and my goals. It will be something to help me to feel as good as I can and to use my energy on what is important.

I can do this. I know it. I need it!!

Gentle hugs,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    The same things happens to me, Sylvia. You are doing the right thing.

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BLESSED2BEME 3/8/2011 11:27AM

    Way to go Sylvia! You need to take care of you and reestablishing goals is a great start!

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JHADZHIA 3/8/2011 11:22AM

    You do need to take stock and prioritize what is really important and needs to be done. Do what ever you can to ease this workload. If there is any way to get help, ask for it. You need to look after yourself and put yourself first if you expect to ever heal fully and reach your goals..
You can do this..
{{{gentle hugs}}}

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EMRANA 3/8/2011 9:31AM

  You can definitely do it, Sylvia! You've already accomplished so much, and with a way busier lifestyle than most of us. Looking forward to your next blog!

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STEPPYSUE 3/8/2011 8:38AM

    Can't wait to see it Sylvia!

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Saturday, 3/5 Making progress here and there!!

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Hi all,

It has been another tough week, but good news is lurking in so many places. They finally got the transmission for our car--we have held out for a rebuilt one since the difference in cost was $1300 vs $2800 and money is something we don't ever seem to have enough of. It will be good to get that resolved and make life so much easier for everyone. With so many of us working and going to school on top of my medical appointments that hit at least 3, usually 4-5 times a week along with Megan's 2-3 appointments weekly, it has not been fun to have our reliable little (economical) car down. I won't even worry you with what the extreme costs and the raising prices of gas are adding to my previously mentioned cash flow issues are like. emoticon emoticonWe bought our little car for that concern and then the Suzuki dealer folded and we have to travel two hours to find another....

Big news is that Marshall started working this week. I have made it a point to ask everyone about their jobs and if they are hiring entry level people. He has a job with a cleaning group who I found out about from the ladies who clean at the fitness center. There is an entire change in his demeanor after working since Tuesday. On Wednesday, DHS sent him a letter and has approved him for their program and he will be eligible for assistance in getting back to school and for employment. Hooray--it has been a year now since he so unfairly lost his job.

Things are rattling around with Micah and the unacceptable school situation. I may need to do some damage control over my emotional outpouring on the principal, but I do have his attention. He did send the school nurse to check Micah's arms and she didn't say a lot except to ask him if he thought he might do something similar again. I got a call yesterday from the offending special ed teacher to set up a meeting with all of the staff who are involved with Micah. This is progress and although I want it soon, I am hoping to wait until after next Friday so my job won't continue to have interruptions like the past several days. That will give me time to totally plan out my expectations of them. I talked with one of his doctors who is decreasing his antidepressant because it can cause the self-injury behaviors and some of the negative talk he engaged in. The big revelation came when we saw another of his doctors. After reminding me that this wasn't my fault by either disciplining Micah in a prudent way or by not forcing an issue with that school when Matthew had similar issues 17 years ago, we moved on to construct a plan of sorts. I have some research to pull out and have started that and then, I am going to educate them on what "crimes" my son has committed, how it is part of his diagnosis, what they need to do about the issues to help him grow and get better--and then to give them no more than 30 days to comply or we will go to due process. It is absurd that once again, I am having to do this in that junior high, but as Micah's doctor reminded me, it will indeed be the last time I have to do battle with them. This time, I am going to be a bit more moral and not only work towards something better for my child, I am going to open the door for something better for all children who they are responsible for. Special education laws were created to protect people with disabilities. Micah's diagnosis is one of those particularly important in the school environment, as so many are--autism is pervasive, but Aspergers is one for higher functioning and often kids with giftedness in various areas. However, they do have enough of the autistic characteristics such as echolalia, negative types of talk, poor social skills, repetitive mannerisms, etc... that they need in this case to be protected from people who don't have the patience or knowledge to help but in most cases, to be nurtured to a higher level of functioning. !7 years ago, my oldest son Matthew was in this school. Matthew has cerebral palsy which went through a variety of diagnoses medically until that was the one that made sense. Matthew has had seizure disorders and also AD/HD (which we now understand as an adult was more likely Aspergers for him all along.) We went through trial and tribulations in this school trying to get him preferential seating and help to remember his planner and homework and so on and so on. The kids were encouraged to badger and belittle him as well and it culminated with him receiving a beating by a classmate in the lunchroom that left him covered in blood and significantly distraught. This is a school with an unhealthy understanding of human rights--or as I so untactfully told the principal--that his school was sick and I have come to realize that there is no way to correct that because having new people has not made a bit of difference. I also told him that the things that go on there are unacceptable at every level and that as an educator, I was offended by their unwillingness to do what is appropriate when I do those things willingly and daily in order to give my children success and to help them to grow as developing human beings. (I said quite a few things that maybe I should want to take back because they were a direct response to my emotions over how this all turned out and how I saw my role in it--but then again, if I can make this improve, maybe it was something long overdue. I assume that as I write this, you all realize that my other 6 children between Matthew and Micah also attended that school and none of them were unscathed from my brightest to my most average, from my gifted to my academically needy. I think some of that is the nature of junior high school, but I also don't think that damaging children is the job of any school, even if they are hormonal aspiring adolescents dealing with that unpleasant rite of passage known as adolescent opposition. It is part of the package and if you aren't up for the game, don't work with junior high or middle school kids. I don't think I would do well with it and I am not in such a setting.

Finally, I finished--sort of--my first section of National Boards writing yesterday and it needs to get some editing now. I have 2 online friends and my friend and mentor from my first round who are all going to help me with this. It is raw and I have some issues with some of it, but having a document to start working on is a good thing. This weekend will give that project a few hours as I start on another component, but report cards are a big part of the work I must do this weekend.

I also have promised myself some time and am going to lunch with my best friend today--I think we provide some therapy for each other--and she is probably doing more of that for me right now than vice versa, but we have been best friends since I started teaching and she is one of the blessings in my life. I am lucky to have her. I am also lucky to have you all in my world.

Have a wonderful weekend--I've just been informed that it is snowing here. Go figure--we have had every conceivable type of weather this week from 60's to lightning and thunder to sleet, fog, you name it. It has been a tough season and I am visualizing sunny skies, green grass and trees, and beaches that we have none of!! It's not that far off, my friends.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JHADZHIA 3/5/2011 2:41PM

    Glad you are getting a break on the cost of getting your car fixed.. Can't imagine a family of your size managing with limited transportation..
I hope this school does wake up about special needs children after what you told the principal. That is awful what happened with your first son. You don't want some kind of repeat. You do have to make a stand and get your rights.
Good that you got your first writing done for the boards and that you can actually get out for a relaxing lunch with a good friend -enjoy!
No sign of spring here, just endless cold and clouds :((
Have a good weekend!
{{{gentle hugs}}}

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Wednesday, 3/2 Our son has Asperger's, what next?

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Hi everyone,

Life has been hectic and I am under the gun to get my National Boards Renewal finished. I have a couple of good dieter friends who are also new recruits to SP who are going to help me by reading and critiquing. I'll have some things ready for them to read this weekend. This is an important project to me, so please hang in there with me. I try to stop by here and I track food and the like each day, but I cannot get enough time to be as sociable as I like.

I am also quite frustrated with my youngest son's school. He has had some bigger issues that are, at the least, law-breaking at his school. Our youngest boy is autistic and makes noises. Check out any info on this and you will see this goes hand in hand. I am not sure if there is a change in the frequency or what, but their way of handling this is office referrals and discipline which isn't appropriate for a disability. (And, it is the special ed teacher who is writing the referrals for this!! It is her job to work with his needs and help resolve them.) It happened again yesterday and I was led to believe that my son was doing something inappropriate. I took away some privileges before I realized it wasn't something he can control, he went into the back of the house and punished himself by scratching his arms bloody. I am so ashamed of myself for punishing him on their word. I have spent many frantic hours with his doctors on the phone the past two days and today, I called the principal there and, well, I told him exactly what I thought of him, his staff and school. I told him that I held myself responsible that my child was taken to that place, but I also told him tha the and his school owned more of it than I do. I told him to take a look at the outcome of his handiwork and suggested that he and his staff aren't professional or caring on their student's behalf. (Remember that this is my youngest child of 8 and I have had issues on behalf of each of my older children in this same junior high. There is a sad, uncaring climate in this awful building.) I told him that I was going to look into due process for a better opportunity for my son to receive the education that special education law says he is entitled to.

Now, I need to take a next step. I am canceling physical therapy tomorrow to get him to the doctor myself. I will make a plan and approach them with an agenda that will not be relegated to silly conversations about absurdities and make specific requests to benefit my child and hopefully other children in his position. I am truly sick of this situation that has been horrible for far too long. As an educator, I am disheartened by this situation coupled with these poor performing people who make so many think we are lazy, incompetent people who are overpaid and who don't deserve to be treated as professionals making a respectable wage, especially when I have almost as much education and training as many doctors.

Anyway, as always, my plate is full--but this is different because my heart is heavy and I don't have a plan for this inappropriate situation. I will get it figured out, but am looking forward to a break from the stress and in helping my son to get past the damage that has been done to him.

Prayerfully yours,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GREENMAMA10 3/4/2011 12:47AM

    Sylvia, I am so sorry to hear about this and I can imagine that it must be very stressful!

I just can not comprehend why the Special Education TEACHER would refer your son to the principal. I thought special education teachers were specialized in dealing with the needs of their students, and I would expect a teacher in that field to be more capable than the school principal at handling a child's needs in their class.

I will be praying for your son and family, and that you all are able to deal with this with God's help and guidance. emoticon

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MTNGRL 3/3/2011 6:21PM

    Sylvia, first and foremost you are a loving mother who is worried about her child. That come first and and we understand that. I had to fight a nasty vice principal and some teachers when my son was in elementary school. I wondered why they even went into teaching. You have an insider's view of the education system but the view that is most important is your son's welfare. Praying God continues to give you strength as you fight this battle.

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LOULOUBELLE2 3/3/2011 10:49AM

    Don't worry about being the social butterfly here on Sparks...Those of us that know and love you understand completely. I am here for you and I hope you know that.

It sure does seem that you have a black cloud over your head.....Hopefully you be able to breath a bit easier when your National Boards are done. So glad you have some help with that.

The situation with you DS is deplorable, but he has a Loving and Concerned Mom that will set things right in time. So sorry that it's added stress for you.

My Prayers are with you, I wish I could just huff and puff and blow that black cloud away from you.
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EMRANA 3/3/2011 9:31AM


I was already thinking before you said it that this must be especially hard for you as an educator. You understand the school systems a lot better than most, and you know what your son should be receiving.

I hope you get some good alternatives. Thinking of you.

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JHADZHIA 3/3/2011 12:13AM

    So very sorry this happened to your son :(((
I hope you can get it resolved. Its a shame you have to use this school with its horrible record :((
I am glad you got help with your papers, it always good to get fresh eyes on them..
{{{{gentle hugs}}}}

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DIGBOI 3/2/2011 10:49PM

As a para-educator and having worked with special education students in elementary, middle as well as high schools for the past 20 years I am saddened by what you and your child are going through. Staff and administrators who do not have any understanding of special needs students and their issues have no right working in public schools.
I do hope things get resolved or you get to send your son to a school where adults working with him care for him and help him deal with his issues. emoticon

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