31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs: Blogger Spotlight on Rebecca of “Backwards in High Heels”

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs

I’m in the midst of trying to get work for Chapter 6 in my Excel book done early (it’s due on Wednesday by 11:55 p.m. but I try to get stuff done at least 24 hours before the due date in that class in case there’s a problem and I have to do a lot of work at school), doing a couple extra problems for my Accounting class in prep for the test on Monday, and doing a boatload of laundry in case we lose power tonight when the really scary storm hits. (I only own three pairs of jeans and they’re all being washed. I need to hit up Fred Meyer or Kohl’s for more so I can give them to my mom to hem.) Because I have a deadline on how long I can probably work tonight, you’re getting another blogger spotlight.

Why I’m spotlighting this blogger: When I approached Rebecca and told her that I wanted to feature her and her blog for this, I wanted to be really careful because while her daughter Ella is in a wheelchair after losing the use of her legs at age 9, she’s not exactly what people would consider “special needs” (she prefers “adaptive”)…

(By the way, they finally have a somewhat firm diagnosis for her!!! Details are here and here.)

She’s currently the number two ranked professional female wheelchair skater (WCMX) in the world, I’ve seen videos of her doing rung pull-ups at her mom’s CrossFit gym (something that I lack the arm strength to even think about doing), and she’s perfectly capable of speaking up for herself on MANY subjects. In other words, she’s kicking butt and taking names so she’d tell you not to pity her. πŸ™‚

What I want to feature, I guess, is what her mom Rebecca did to get Ella the wheelchair she needed. After getting denied multiple times by insurance companies (because insurance companies are that way), Rebecca took to Twitter with the hashtag #ellaneedswheels. Chevrolet mistakenly retweeted it… and that was a fabulous thing because the hashtag went viral which got the attention of the escalation department of her insurance company. Long story short, the insurance company caved after 3 Fox News Anchors and Michelle Malkin retweeted the story. πŸ™‚ (An article by my friend Sarah about the whole thing is here.)

Oh yeah… there was also the online swear jar thing. πŸ™‚

So please, go check out Rebecca’s blog while I fold laundry before the world outside fills with flying houses, witches on brooms, and flying monkeys.

My cup of cranberry juice.

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs: Snarky Answers to Stupid Remarks

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs

Every parent of a special kiddo has had at least one person make a stupid remark to them. Some people have even let me do guest posts on this subject. πŸ™‚ Now that I’m kinda sorta done with hell week (at least until I start correcting the issue with one of the problems on my Accounting homework), I thought I’d post a few here.

“Daniel is autistic? Did you vaccinate him? Have you tried the GAPS diet?”

*utters a gutteral growl and points to the shirt that reads “Yes, my kid is autistic. Yes, we vaccinated him. No, we’re not doing the GAPS diet. Now go away, you weapons-grade plum!!”*

The word “retarded”.

Apparently someone’s parents neglected to teach them manners! Good thing to know I’m raising Daniel not to be socially stunted enough to say something like that in public. πŸ™‚ *smiles sweetly*

“Need help? (Usually said as I was trying to enter or exit with the kid in his stroller.)

Nope! What makes you think that?

“You need to take care of yourself. (Usually said after criticizing Daniel’s behavior or my parenting.)

You’re right! Thanks for offering to pay for a qualified sitter while you drive me to the local nail place for a mani/pedi and clean my house from top to bottom! Oh yeah… you can also pick me up an iced vanilla lattΓ© with whole milk from Whidbey Coffee Company on the way. πŸ™‚ Don’t forget to scrub my toilets and fold my laundry before you pick me up! *smiles saccharinely*

It must have been so hard to leave your kid in the hospital and come home every night. (This was said to me at a church dinner after Daniel’s epic three-week hospital stay in March 2011.)

*glares* Who said I came home every night? Didn’t Jon tell you how much I *LOVE* hospital food, showering only once every 4 days, and sleeping in uncomfortable chairs while watching my kid hooked up to endless tubes and machines?

Someone calls Daniel the “Planned Parenthood poster child”

*repetitively throat-punches the speaker because there are some things YOU JUST DON’T SAY TO A MOTHER!!!!!!!!* (Making this even worse, it was a close family member who said it. Needless to say, we have no relationship anymore and I’m not regretting it.)

Something about how having an autistic child is the worst thing they could imagine.

Yeah, you know, having a child who makes comments like that to people must be pretty humiliating as well. I weep for your mom.

“I’m sorry your child is retarded.”

*shrugs* Eh, at least he’s smarter than you are!

It must be hard knowing that your kid is autistic because you chose to give him the MMR vaccine.

I dunno… I think it would be harder being so deluded that you believe that lie that vaccines cause autism even after *MULTIPLE* studies of millions of children proved that they don’t along with Dr. Andrew Wakefield admitting that he lied, The Lancet issuing a retraction, and Dr. Wakefield being stricken from the British Medical Record for knowingly deceiving people. But that’s just me. *smiles with teeth*

What other stupid things like these have you heard people saying?

7 Quick Takes: Migraines, Eye Exams, and Secret Trump Apologists, Oh My!

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

*facepalm* Let me explain this in small words so that people understand because apparently, there are people on Facebook who are depriving a village somewhere of their chief idiot:

If your reaction to the news that he’s groped women, harassed them, and treated them horribly is anything other than “that’s horrible!” and possibly “I’m not voting for him” (I’m not saying that you have to like or vote for Hillary)… YOU’RE A TRUMP APOLOGIST.

If your reaction to this news is “well, I’ve been dealing with that all my life so why is this any different”, you’re missing the freaking point and… YOU’RE A TRUMP APOLOGIST.

If your reaction to the news is to deflect to Bill Clinton and what happened during his administrations, you’re missing the point (yet again) and *surprise surprise*… YOU’RE A TRUMP APOLOGIST. (And for the record, I was not old enough to vote in the 1992 and 1996 elections so you can stop claiming that I’m responsible for whatever he did.)

If your reaction is to cite 50 Shades of Grey as evidence that women are asking for it, you’re a disgusting human being and (not shockingly)… YOU’RE A TRUMP APOLOGIST.

If you’re reaction is to say “yeah, it’s horrible but I’m voting for him anyway”, you need a filter between your mouth and brain and *drumroll*… YOU’RE A TRUMP APOLOGIST.

— 2 —

And speaking of the stupid deflection to 50 Shades of Grey This meme explains the problem in that logic very succinctly. It also illustrates why I am *INCREDIBLY* proud to have contributed money to the effort to kick Joe Walsh out of office and replace him with the amazingly wonderful Tammy Duckworth. πŸ˜€

Joe Walsh is a moron.

— 3 —

And for the record… You are not required to vote for either Trump or Hillary. If you find them both repugnant and are of the opinion that third parties take votes away from your chosen candidate, you have the option of simply not voting for a presidential choice on the ballot. HOWEVER… you *DO* need to vote for someone for the House, Senate (if there’s a Senate race in your state this year), governor, and for any local races because those people do the day-to-day governing. In the case of your House member and your senator, they’re part of one of the checks and balances on the President’s power.

— 4 —

Eye exams. One of the temple pieces on the frames of my glasses snapped on Tuesday and I had to find someone who could do an eye exam because I haven’t seen either an optometrist or ophthalmologist in probably 2 years. (They get pissy if you go in for glasses and your prescription isn’t current.) One local place was able to get me in this afternoon and when they checked my vision, we discovered that my distance prescription on my sunglasses corrects to better than 20/20 in terms of reading as well. As I’ve had reading glasses for 23 years and bifocals for 22 of them, this was a surprise. It’s also another sign that my vision improved after the HELLP Syndrome which is almost unheard of — usually, women have to get a stronger prescription for their vision after having it.

— 5 —

The timing is impeccable. Can I just tell you how fun it is to have an eye exam while dealing with a migraine? It’s just fabulous. The tech and the optician were both apologizing for putting stuff in my eyes and shining lights in because light sensitivity is one of my migraine symptoms.

— 6 —

Stormy weather. The Pacific Northwest is supposed to get hit with several *MASSIVE* storms this weekend with insane winds and atmospheric pressures that are apparently reminding one forecaster of what was seen during the 1962 Columbus Day storm that killed 46 people. (My Practical Accounting professor had me look it up during class today because I was bored and done checking my homework. It’s nice to be useful.)

I and the rest of God’s country would appreciate it if you’d keep us in prayer that there are no fatalities and no widespread power losses.

— 7 —

A kindred spirit. You know your professor is a kindred spirit when you get all the references to literature, movies, and TV shows that she throws into quizzes/pre-tests/tests. Our last test had the business owners named after characters on The Office and our pre-test for the chapter test this coming Monday had names from Pride and Prejudice.

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs: ID Bracelets

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs

Good news: The nice people at Dayspring want to give one of you fabulous people a $100 gift card. I know that a gift card like that would *TOTALLY* pay for my yearly Christmas cards. πŸ™‚ Go on over to yesterday’s post for the Rafflecopter.

Even better news: I figured out how to get my Desktop back after the [insert expletives] at the Evil Empire decided that it would be a *FABULOUS* idea to put my laptop in tablet mode after doing the Anniversary Update. This makes my life *SO* much easier than it has been for the last 2-3 weeks because I have my desktop, my taskbar, and the ability to layer windows back. I’m trying to work through my intense fury before I send my feedback to the lackeys at the EE’s headquarters in Redmond because they have MAJORLY inconvenienced me for the last few weeks.

So… today’s topic from “the cheater entry list” is ID bracelets for kiddos. If you have one who is non-verbal like my Daniel, this is important. These two are my favorite companies.

Road ID: I discovered them two years ago and Daniel is on his second one. (We’ve moved a few times.) One feature I love is that you can get the Interactive version of the nameplate which puts a code on the back that a first responder can call into a 1-800 number and have access to every bit of your medical information so that they have all your medications and drug allergies when they’re taking you to the hospital. A lot of hikers, backpackers, and runners use them and the whole concept came when someone had an accident and couldn’t communicate with the first responders. Additionally, they let designate a charity to whom they’ll donate part of your purchase price (you can pick between around 9 of them). I seriously cannot say enough good about them and they have been wonderful in terms of customer service.

Alert Me Bands: We switched to this one a year ago (before switching back to Road ID after this last move) after a friend pointed it out to me on Facebook. It’s a similar concept to Road ID and the bracelet we had for Daniel was similar to this one. (I added one in about Daniel being non-verbal and having asthma.)

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs: You Know You’re The Mom of A Developmentally Delayed Kid…

31 Days of Parenting Kiddos with Special Needs

There is a giveaway from the lovely people at Dayspring. They really want to give someone a $100 gift card. The Rafflecopter for the giveaway is below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’m in the midst of a week where I have a boatload of work due on Thursday and Friday so there might be “cheater” posts put up by me in the next couple days. Today’s is one that I wrote in November 2011 that applies to what I’m writing about this month. Enjoy!

Daniel had a pediatrics appointment today. After it was over, I seriously felt like I should be putting together a “You Know You’re A _____ If” list. So without further adieu…

You know you’re the mother of a developmentally delayed kid when…

[+] You rejoice because your kid is at the 25th percentile for height/weight/head circumference because they can finally plot the points on their growth chart.
[+] You can succinctly describe your horrendous pregnancy and birth experience in under 10 words but most of them have three or more syllables.
[+] The sight of your kid walking at 2.5 years old makes their pediatrician clap with joy because, dude, this is HUGE.
[+] You aren’t fazed by your kid’s abysmal MRI results because you got the report six months ago and your child’s physical therapist from Easter Seals talked you off the (figurative) ledge at that point.
[+] Your child’s pediatrician tells you that your child’s brain has many abnormalities (see “MRI results above”) and will never be like the brains of other kids their age. Your response: “We’ll see” while thinking to yourself that your child has a habit of defying predictions like these.
[+] Those abysmal MRI results get you a consult to every specialist you ask to see.
[+] Your child has more specialists in their lives than most hospitals have on staff. (Josh’s mother Susan is my former IV area director.)

Now for the ones that don’t apply to the peds appointment today!

[+] You know that you will cry when your child turns three and (in California) you lose your Easter Seals therapists. (Under the Lanterman Act in California, your child becomes the problem of their local school district once they turn three.)
[+] All your child’s developmental milestones are VERY BIG DEALS!!!!!!!
[+] You have stories from the NICU, PICU, and Peds wards of the hospital.
[+] You’ve had to explain to people why your kid is not waving at them, why your kid does not need a children’s menu, or why your kid isn’t doing ____ when other kids their age can do it.
[+] You finally just learned how to (joyfully) suppress the urge to say “Bite me!” to the person who asks the third question on that last item. (OK… again this is probably just me.)
[+] It makes you happy when people acknowledge your child/have a normal conversation with them instead of talking over them.
[+] You read the blogs of other mothers who have kids with developmental delays/Down’s Syndrome/autism spectrum disorders and can identify with their posts.

To the Man In $tarbux

To the man in $tarbux who is going around talking to people at a decibel level reserved for jet planes,

I don’t like you. I don’t want to hear you. I have an incredible amount of homework and classwork due on Thursday and Friday and am working here so I can sprawl across two tables. I have my ear buds in because I DON’T WANT TO HEAR YOUR VOICE!!!!

Coming over and talking to me will cause me to glare at you and tell you to SHUT YOUR GD PIEHOLE AND EFF OFF!!!! Continuing to try and talk to me will piss me off more and the only reason you are still in one piece is that the barista came over to talk to you and saved me the trouble.

Let me reiterate:






The Tiny Irish-American Woman with the Earbuds and the Accounting Books