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Summer Dreams

3 Jun

Summer dreams… I’m lying on a sun lounger some place hot, the sea or pool ( I really don’t mind which) is a stones throw away. I have a generous Glass of pims in one hand and a good read in the other!

So… Ordinary, wouldn’t you agree?

I used to have summer dreams like that of the one above. But dreams change, they no longer seem like dreams, more like desires that I long to achieve. My dreams are simple in theory but often unreachable in life. Not because they are not possible, they are… If I give it all I have to live them.

Now although a holiday is much needed by all, it’s something that I’m sure will not be happening this summer, so as the days draw on I begin to kick my own backside and remind myself that I have a dream that needs fulfilling, that dream… To have a well plan out and organised summer!

Sounds boring and yes somewhat pathetic, but for me it’s the key to a long and happy summer. Doing things on a whim is a speciality of mine but such a skill is unethical when your a parent to a child with Aspergers Syndrome.

Some days you wouldn’t know my son was on that Autism Spectrum. Like everything some days are more difficult than others.

Little man is currently on half term as is his younger sister ‘Alice-Sara’ (I’m bracing myself for plenty of sibling wars!) Now, although this week will get little man into a bit of a mess with the lack of structure and routine, (Yes, I do try but I can never complete with the structure of school) the summer holidays are for a much lengthier time period, this huge change and the pending anxiety about the coming new school year (new class, teacher, ect…) can mean an explosive 6 weeks.

So, what’s the solution? Well, I wouldn’t call it a solution, but a semi one at least. Organising activities in advance, making little man aware of where and when we’re going, good organisation and structure is the key to his and of course my own sanity.

You would think that I have learned my lesson by now.There’s been plenty of trips and occasions that haven’t been planed as well as they could have been. We’ve had our fair share of meltdowns as a result.

I maybe a mum of a child on the spectrum, but I’m in no means perfect and the whole organisation thing is not my strongest trait.

So… Although the dream of a day spent soaking up the sun’s ray, while relaxing on a beach some place inviting, still exists, it’s in the back of my mine it will stay.

If all is organised and I start booking trips and planing days out now… My summers dream could go something like this…

A day out as a family some place nice, we would laugh and smile, eat a picnic fit for a fussy eater. The children would run around having fun, playing games together… No screaming, arguing… No violent meltdowns, abusive language! There would be no tears, no anxiety, just enjoyment being had by all! And If I could control the weather and public transport I would!

Ok, almost, because life isn’t always so simple, anything can happen! A sensory related trigger, a delayed train or even a wrong turning (getting lost is my little man’s pet hate)! But I will try as by planning and preparing that summers dream will be that much closer to a summers reality!

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This post was inspired by this weeks Britmums blogging prompts! If you’re a blogger why not check them out and join in.

#HAWMC DAY 19 – An Invitation for five

23 Apr

OK, what if I was to throw a dinner party and as a result I get to invite any five people I like! This can be anybody and they are guaranteed to turn up. Now, how do I know this for sure? Because this “Dinner Party”  is just a fragment of my imagination that provides the inspiration for this post, well, that and them lot over at the wego health blog who continue to provide the daily prompts for the #HAWMC with this one actually being some 4 days late!

So, as this isn’t really actually happening in the real world, you should note that I can therefore invite who the hell I like. Yep, the living and that of the dead are not even exempt from the guest list (however freaky that may be)! The Point… There is no hard rule, I may fancy inviting the Prime Minster… Cough… Yer Right… don’t think so! Maybe my dear granny, best mate or even my childhood crush (though I’m not sure how well he’ll be holding up)! I can even invite the drunk guy who physically beats up the bus stop, “YES BUS STOP” right outside my house on most evenings! Bottom line… You’re all invited to see just how this mum’s imagination works.

Firstly I must tell you what I’d throw together spend hours carefully preparing and cooking (and no this wasn’t in the rules but I’m telling you anyway! Now, please note, this is not my speciality, in-fact I can’t say I’ve ever made such a feast ever before… I’m no Nigella unless you count nugget surprise as posh nosh? Yer, I thought not!

My menu is in fact inspired by none other than Pinterest currently one of my favourite online places to be. The recipes I chose had sold themselves to me through there mouth watering images that I’ve either re-pinned or come across during a blog reading session.

Starter: Tomato Basil Fresh Mozzarella Salad
Pin originally from bellasblog.blogspot.com

Main: Lemon Chicken
Originally from annies-eats.com

Looks yummy doesn’t it?

Dessert: Key Lime Cheesecake Bars
Originally from bhg.com

And let’s not forget what we’re drinking! I chose the very pretty and hopefully tasty drink “The Taste of Summer”
Originally from theregoesthecupcake.com This would defiantly be on the menu.

So, I guess the only thing to sort now is the guest list…

OK… The first would be my Late Grandmother who I referred to as Nanny Peg. My Nan lived with us or rather we lived with her! Not that my mother lived elsewhere, we all lived together. However my mother working full-time and my father not living at home made such an arrangement ideal. Plus I loved it!

My Grandmother was a very down to earth woman, however brought up in London’s Eastend meant she knew how to look after herself and her family. A single mother of two, who worked nearly all off her life (even when she watched us after school she still worked part-time during the mornings). I admired my grandmother for the person she was, very strong-willed, a woman who wasn’t afaird to have an opinion regardless if the opinion  differed from that considered to be the “norm” Open and honest was just one of many characteristics making my grandmother the wonderful person she was! Of course we were close, like you wouldn’t beleive. It was hard when she got sick and by this stage she had moved in with her son, my uncle, as she needed lots of rest! By now I was 17 years old and found I missed her dearly. Nonetheless I found myself spending fast amounts of time with her and although this was something I loved to do, sadly it wasn’t just for social reasons. My grandmothers Kidneys were failing and she was very sick. Dialysis 4x per week which required us to be travelling back and forth into the city to London’s guys hospital. Sometimes I’d come home alone as she’d be kept in for something or another. Other times we’d enjoy doing a detour on the way home, off we would go to chill in a cafe or coffee shop and chat for an hour or more. The above continued for many months in-till my grandmother started home dialysis which required her to set this up herself not 4x a week but 4x a day! It was quite simple, the machine was doing the job her kidneys were failing to and if she didn’t do it she’d die and no one was ready for that, especially me.

I can’t remember which day of the week it was but a week day it must have been as my as my uncle was working and my grandmother had told him that she was going to call me to see if I wanted to visit and have some lunch that afternoon! I never got that call… the only call I got was the one that suddenly changed my world forever, the one that caused me to feel such a indescribable pain, one I’d never experienced before and never wanted to again! With the phone to my ear, I stood looking at those before me going about their day as if in slow motion! Inside my heart was bleeding, outside my body was physically & uncontrollably shaking, my feet rooted to the spot I was stood at! I tried screaming but the words failed to come out… I never got to say good bye, I just wanted to tell her how much I appreciated her, how dearly I loved her.

Quite strangely it wasn’t my grandmothers kidney disease that ended her life but a heart attack instead!

My Nanny Peg would be the first on the guest list! I’d tell her the words I still long to and introduce her to my three beautiful children. I discovered I was pregnant with Little man on the day of her funeral. I still believe he was her gift… my grandmother never did anything by half’s and was the first person to teach me that important lesson that “Normal doesn’t exist we’re all individuals!” My grandmother also once told me that… “Whatever Normal is meant to define, it’s boring anyway! I do hope she’d be proud of her great grandson as well as his 2 siblings! I also hope that she’d be proud of the person I’ve become in the 13 years she so sadly went away. 

My next guest would have to be my very good friend Donna. She’s a massive support to me and we do so much together. Since having the children, there’s not been many friends able to stick around to maintain a friendship. I think Donna likes the fact we’re your “non typical” type of family and to be honest I appreciate that she enjoys the company of her sometimes crazy mate who often struggles to know if she’s coming or going. 

My friend Donna along with my grandmother would actually turn out to be the perfect guests as they are both strong, outspoken characters which really highlights why our friendship is a strong one. Donna does have some of them same amazing characteristics about her, and although she is much to younger than that of   my grandmother, these two ladies would probably get on well.

Now, you may of expected a guest list of sexy men and A listers, you may actually consider my list a tad boring? Truth is I’m a family girl hence why guest 3 would have to be my amazingly wonderful mother. My mother continues to support all that I do and was amazingly supportive both before and after Little mans diagnosis of Aspergers Syndrome. My mother is a really relaxed person, she is able create and hold an awesome conversation and is an intelligent women regardless of whether she thinks so or not. I love my family and along with close friends I don’t think I could have dragged my arse through these past few years and remained intact (mentally that is)! A dinner party wouldn’t be incomplete without that of my mother and to see her sat with my Grandmother, the mother she sadly lost, would be an image I’d cherish till the day I died.

OK, Guest 4 … Now this maybe somewhat not what you expected, especially following the announcement of my first three guest, but for me the choice of my next guest is a logical one! Hans Asperger, the man who gives Asperger’s Syndrome it’s name! 

Now, I wouldn’t change Little man, though some difficulties he experiences I’d of course fix in a heart-beat. I love my child the way he is and am no way looking for the so-called “Cure”

I’ve always been extremely interested in psychology, the working of the mind, why we as humans do the things we do! I’ve had to learn all I can about the condition my child has been diagnosed with which has therefore brought about much interest in the subject as a whole. I’d love to ask the man who gave my child the “label” he holds today some questions. What with it being his discovery, I’d love to learn more about his past studies, hear his thoughts and pick his brains. It would be wonderful if he’d be willingly to shed a little light on the grey areas helping me understand autism  just a little more.

Hans Asperger, the medical professor who passed away in 1980 2 years before I’d actually made my appearance in this world, died having little if no idea what type of impact his studies into medical psychological disorders and that of the condition he referred to as “Autistic Psychopathy” (AP) would have on those in the world today. His studies and there findings recorded within over 300 publications were largely ignored during his living years, that was in-till the last year of his life “1980” when suddenly others become interested in his findings and that of the “Autism Spectrum” It was only then that the condition known to us as Aspergers Syndrome, got given its official title after that of its discoverer. Sadly regardless of the rise in those bringing awareness for the condition, it is still sometimes disregarded by many!

Hans has been described to have displayed the very characteristics he described as AS traits. A talented & intelligent man who was described to exhibit the black & white thinking style of someone with AS as well as that of his language and learning skills. Han Aspergers has been noted to have done some great things such as opening a school for those described as having AP and AS. Sadly due to the bombing of the school during the war it was therefore destroyed along with many of the earlier papers he wrote on the autism spectrum during that of the 1930’s and the early 1940’s.

Its documented that Hans Asperger was a kind and caring person who’s passion was to get the children he believed to be on the autism spectrum an efficient & decent education therefore enabling them to approach their adult lives as happy young people with good prospects and an array of opportunities ahead of them.

Sounds like a man who shares many of my interests and defiantly someone worthy a seat at the table.

Oh… I almost forgot, I’m a dinner guest short!
OK, the last dinner guest would have to be… MMM…. let me think… MMM… Oh yes, “Robbie Williams” Why? Because he can provide the entertainment’s and his pretty great to look at too!

#HAWMC DAY 15 – Writing Style

16 Apr

We all have one, our very own unique writing style.

Its something I believe we all acquire regardless of how or where we were educated.

I remember my literacy lessons at school quite well. It was always a subject I loathed and as mentioned before, if you asked me back then if I would every engage in writing as a hobby, literally do it purely because I enjoyed it, you can be sure I’d answered with the term NO WAY!

Regardless of the above, I guess I was never really bad at it (though grammar wasn’t my strongest point and still isn’t). I much preferred art and drama but on the whole secondary school wasn’t one of my favourite of places and I therefore regrettably skipped a reasonable chunk of it.

Now, I’m passionate about writing, its something I engage in daily whether blogging or just scribbling in my diary.

Looking at my writing style I’ve established that I’m quite versatile depending on what I’m writing about, where it’s going, its intended audience (if any) and of course my current mood are all factors that contribute.

Regardless of my love for my Mac Book, I’m a person who still loves to use good old fashion pen and paper. Many of my published post (and many an unpublished post) can be found drafted in one of my many note books.

I feel my best posts are those that have been written on the spur of the moment! This quite often happens at times I feel the need to vent or just declutter my mind a little. Its times such as these I feel I do less thinking more writing! It just seems to flow and when it does it normally results in some pretty good material.

I guess my writing style is one of honesty and emotion with little touches of humour here and there! My personal opinions are stated open and honestly, I let my emotions do the typing, I say how I feel normally leaving little back! Laying it out there for the world to see can be a risky way to write but it works for me!

As for humour, I guess many don’t expect to find it on a blog where a mother writes about parenting a child with Aspergers Syndrome. However, those that parent a child like mine will completely relate to some of the funny situations I sometimes find us in. Other times I find myself adding the odd bit of humour to a potentially  depressing or difficulty situation I’m writing about! This sometimes comes out unintentionally and in many formats. I guess it’s just that common scenario of, “If I don’t laugh I’ll cry!

Will you find any bad language on my blog? Does my writing style consist of profanities? I try to keep it as clean as possible and I don’t write a post full of bad language! However, you may occasionally find the odd swear word has somehow wiggled its way in there! Again this is life and sometimes life can be a tad shit… Oops :0

So, have you ever sat beck and asked yourself what’s you’re writing style?

Post 15/30 as part of the Wego Health #HAWMC

#HAWMC DAY 13 – The 10 things I can’t live without!

13 Apr

The health activist writers month challenge (#HAWMC) is in full swing and I’m really quite enjoying the daily prompts. However, I wasn’t overly keen on today’s but given this is meant to be a challenge, I didn’t bail out.

 So, when asked what 10 things I couldn’t live without, I got my thinking cap on…

 

1) My Children: Obviously the first thing I’ll list is this! My children, they’re my everything, my who entire life, the reason I breath. A life without my kids truly isn’t worth living!

 

2) Friends and family: My mother and father who reared me and made me the person I am today. Friends who have been amazing through some of the most difficult times of my life… I’m truly thankful to you all, if only you all knew how much!

 

3) Health: I want to be around for many years. I want to watch my children grow and evolve into adults, finish education, get there first job, get married and invite me for Sunday lunch.

 

4) My blog: How superficial you may think? But this is my outlet, a place to let of steam, share any happiness and achievements along the way. It’s got me through tough times, provided a connection to something I never knew existed. Who would ever think a blog could save someone? It saved me from insanity, that I’m thankful for!

 

5) Passion: It’s what drives me to do the thinks I do. To live without passion would be like living without food and water for me!

 

6) Dreams: Whether they amount to anything is totally irrelevant, they keep me smiling and give me something to aim for… surely we all have a dream?

 

7) A Voice: No I can’t sing (I actually recall my mother telling me I sound somewhat like a cat crying out in agony) but it does give me a way to speak up when it comes to the things I believe in! It’s helped me to raise awareness for autism and aspergers as-well as a number of other charities and campaigns. I’ve realised how powerful a tool one persons voice can be, you’ve just got to know how to use it!

 

8) Technology: I can just imagine my grandmother shaking her head if she was alive to read this! Yes, she would likely tell me and in no uncertain terms, that In her day people spoke to each other face to face, not all this texting and emailing rubbish! But we are now living in a modern world, one where my Mac and my iphone have become something of a second skin. These tools along with the rise in social networking sites have provide me with more than just a way to communicate with those out of reach but has also provided me with a platform to raise awareness for something I believe in and feel passion towards! The facebook support page now has over 5,000 members and continues to grow, I love that it’s become a place for parents like myself to gain support and friendship with those who relate most. I’ve also found a place to release inner creativity, experience things I otherwise couldn’t or wouldn’t have! And along the way I’ve meet some amazing people, some Im pleased to have become firm friends with.

 

9) A Little Me Time: Sounds a strange one but without it I’d go absolutely bonkers… I’m sure of it! I may not get a whole heap of it but what I do get I fully appreciate it.

 

10) Memory’s: It’s memorise both good and bad that help me mould my future. I am able to learn from past mistakes, avoiding any recurring undesirable situations. Those help memories keep me smiling when times are difficult… Memories really do help create a more positive future. 

And an extra one for good measure…

A sense of humour, the ability to laugh at yourself. Life is a serious affair but a bit of laughter is good for the mind!

 

Post 13/30 #HAWMC set by wego health

#HAWMC Day 2 – A NOT SO INSPIRING QUOTE

2 Apr

There is one quote that quite frankly gets on my Nelly … “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”

Why is this even suggested? Who made this stuff up? Come on, seriously, I live in a country where it takes a month to even get a slot with your local GP let a lone a CAMHS Paediatrician (Child Adolescent Mental Health Service) who is there to assist me with any issues or difficulties relating to Little Man, his Aspergers Syndrome, Anxiety and a whole other host of issues! “So… Frankly, who needs some piece of fruit?”

Yes, maybe I shouldn’t take such old wife tales so personally, actually I don’t! I’m pretty much able to disguise between what needs to be taken with a pinch of salt and what needs to be absorbed as reality, though this isn’t the case for everyone… this isn’t the case for Little man.

This is a child who mostly sees the world in black & white, without the support given from certain therapies he may just spend his days indulging in an apple a day only to get that sudden bump to earth when he actually requires a doctor to come his way and will they?

The likelihood of actually chocking on one of these healthy daily snacks seems more likely and yes the doctor would still be “Away” just when you ironically need him!

Of course my point isn’t related to apples, well not as such, its about services, much needed services that parents like me and thousands of others physically need to fight for! We deal with the hidden disability, the stigma nestled between child mental health and that of neurological disorders… yet here we are still finding our child stuck on a waiting list, one that’s so long it’s not surprising that when you receive the much awaited letter, your child’s out collecting his P45 and your at Bingo.

So, as I sit and watch the UK slowly slip down the pan, as the coalition destroy just about anything in its path I wonder how we move on from here? I basically want to know why a man who promised a better deal to those with disabilities, their families and registered carers, is now doing what can only be described as his “Best” to kick us to the curb first, in his mission to take over the country acquiring himself one or two well deserved nick names a long the way? Is there a game plan, this is politics after all! Surly he doesn’t think that making yourself into this hugely hated figure within society will get you any brownie points in the long run? Is it plain to see that he didn’t receive my vote?

See, now I’m running of course….

The reason behind such a sudden “Pop” directed at the UK Government is for the same reason most find themselves ticked off! As a member of this society, I sure am sick of hearing promises that quickly find themselves forgotten and buried within some dusty old file in the house of commons! As a mother of a child with Aspergers and Special Educational Needs, who fought for a statement of sen only to fight for that same statement to be amended! A parent who has endured the battle for her child’s right to an educational placement that can meet his needs, I was bitterly disappointed at the proposed “Green Paper” and worse the lack of progress since (well, public progress)! Yes, the LEA and Health Authority will now work together, families will be able to access the services “they can’t access now” till their child becomes 21! Lets not also forget that both LEA support services and those provided by the National Health Service will become readily available, what with the change in the assessment process! Remember this is for the benefit of those with disabilities and their families, nothing to do with government cuts and quick fixes at the expense of the most vulnerable! It will all be perfect wont it! Everything will be so much more efficient & faster this way, you may even get a little respite if your lucky … Blah… Blah… Blah… YES, We’re all still waiting?

So, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away?” Um, NO! Broken promises, shabby money saving cuts, and politics, that my friends is what keeps that doctor away!

This post was written as part of the #HAWMC, 30 prompts, 30 days, 30 post (this was day 2)

Check out the wego health facebook page for more info and a whole load more bloggers talented bloggers  the challenge.

I’m a mummy but I still have hopes and dreams.

29 Oct

 

I don’t normally participate in blog prompts, however, I had to write this post having been Inspired by the fabulous Britmums and there blogging prompt of the week.

  So the prompt? 

What are your hopes and dreams for the future

 Now, I read quite a few of the post, written by my fellow mummy bloggers and although they were all great post written by some excellent bloggers, I felt most had the same dream, for their children to be happy or successful! 

Now before I put my size 5 heels in it, of course I want the same thing for my own children, what mother wouldn’t? However, don’t you think our own mothers wanted the same for us? Therefore, don’t we owe it to them, to fulfil our own hope’s & dreams, or at least try?

 I’m not stating that it’s wrong to have hopes for our children, I have a string of them, the list is as long as my arm, I want them to be happy and healthy above all else. If my children are successful then that’s great, but the happiness & health is what matters to me most! However, I do hold dreams for myself too and I owe it to my own mother as well as my children to a least try to fulfil a few of them!

Yes, like many, my hopes and dreams have changed with age, but I still have some nonetheless. I hope that one day I will be able to complete a law degree, I hope to write a book, a book that will help and inspire other parents who like myself have a child on the autism spectrum. I hope to get my ideas out there in the big wide world, have my own brand maybe, one that takes off and becomes a raving success. I hope that my children look at what I achieve and feel somewhat inspired to live their own dreams, and do so for themselves amongst all others. 

And if all the above don’t happen? Well, at least I can say I tried and really that’s all that counts!

My children won’t need to be pop stars or actors, just good people who know what they want and set about making it happen. I look at where I am as a 29 year old woman and there is so much I wish I had already done. Yes, Life is busy and I’ve already ticked a few of the boxes by becoming a mother to three awesome children, but I like to think I’m more than just a mother and hope on day I’ll be able to prove that to the world. 

Life is full of amazing and inspirational people, you don’t have to be a film star, published author or spend your life doing things for a good cause to be an inspiration! The secret, I believe is, “motivation” you have to know what you want and chase it like there’s no tomorrow, If you don’t succeed then at least you know you tried and that’s what makes a mother proud.

Hopes and dreams are not handed to you on a platter, you work for them! I’d love to win the lottery and buy a beautiful house to leave my children when I’m all dead and buried, but it wouldn’t be half as satisfying as having earn that house, don’t you agree?

I have a whole bundle of hopes and dreams for myself and that of my children. I want more from life as it has so much more to offer. 

I am thankful for what I have, but there is no shame in wanting that bit more, if you don’t want for nothing then that’s great, but if you do, then why not chase it and make it happen. We are never to old for dreams, and who says dreams can’t become a reality? 

Well, I’m not ready to give up on trying for mine, regardless of being a parent, I want my children to look up to me, there is little shame in that!

If you want to reach for the stars, then reach!

It’s only you who can make it happen. 

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