You take the good, you take the bad (and if you aren't singing the theme song to the Facts of Life right now, you're a better person than I.)

I meant to post earlier in the week, but life and other matters involving laundry got in the way.  Sean is still out of state on what sounds like a fun party getaway, so it's just me, Sweet Girl, Little Man, and Oreo holding down the fort.  We've had a full week and there's so much I'd like to say but my time (and I'm sure your patience) is limited, so we here at The Adventures of Sweet Girl and Little Man would like to offer you the David Letterman version of our week.  Here's the Top Ten Things We Have Learned/Revisited This Week! I expect to get a call from his legal department momentarily.

1.  Sweet Girl is amazing.
Already knew that.  But I was reminded once again, as she surpassed my highest, most secret, hopes and expectations at school.  The first morning was rough after I left (not when I left mind you, which made leaving all the easier for me) for about two and a half hours.  But Mrs. Sarah, bless her, said it was "pretty typical for ASD and her age." What's even better is that during those two hours of transitional stress they were keeping her on task, which is what was causing the temper to flare, but they worked through it in those two hours and didn't allow her to shut down.  Wow! Even more amazing, she had two "great days" at school after that.  She nearly pushed me out of the room Thursday, and Friday she lead the rest of her class into the room on the rope (a truly hilarious sight by the way).  She is amazing and getting amazinger :) all the time.

2. Prayer is powerful.
There is no way I would have been able to leave Sweet Girl at school if I hadn't been praying - HARD - for a very long time about it.  And I know there were others praying for her, and me, as well.  Thank you for that.  I wasn't really that nervous dropping her off and I know it's because I laid down my proverbial sword and gave it over to someone much tougher than I.  I'm still praying about it and probably will all year long.  It's good for my blood pressure.

3. Be careful what you wish for (see #2).
So I drop Sweet Girl off at school, grab a coffee and head home with Little Man.  I walk through the door to no barking.  Odd.  Oreo is usually at the door when his supernatural sense of smell tells him (at about a two mile radius) someone has been through a drive thru somewhere.  Little Man and I find Oreo under the desk.  Odd.  And he won't come out even for a treat.  Scary.  A little over a year ago Oreo broke his back and had emergency surgery to try to repair the damage.  After a couple of months of rest, rehab, and a ridiculous amount of money, Oreo was back to being a nuisance just a little wobblier.  I believe Aunt Carrie likes to say he has "drunk butt".  On this day Oreo had drunk body.  He was shaking and only through the power of bacon could I convince him to come to the living room.  I called the vet and made an appointment for him and tried not to cry.  So I prayed.  One crazy visit to the vet  - I thought taking SG and LM to the doctor was nuts, add in a dog that has to be carried and you've got yourself a bona fide circus of epic proportions - an injection of steriods, and a couple of days of oral steriods later, I'd like to revise my prayer request.  Dear Lord, Please help the vet know how to make Oreo feel better.   me find the patience not to undo all the good work the vet has done.  Seriously dog, calm down.

4.  Little Man likes the nightlife, or early morning life depending how you look at it.
Teething bites. Little Man is sporting a tooth and by all indicators is working hard on its mate.  I wish it quick passage.  Mostly because I miss my bed.  Oh, and I'd hate for Little Man to be in more pain than necessary.  Maybe I should have said that first?

5.  Full size backpacks are comical when placed on toddler size bodies.
This doesn't really need an explanation, but it is a comedy routine all its own getting Sweet Girl in the school with her backpack on.  I fully expect to find her on the sidewalk one day like a turtle on its shell.  Backpack on the ground with her arms and legs akimbo in the air.  I'll have to work hard to remember to ask her if she's ok BEFORE I snicker.

6.  Packing gfcf mre is going to give me gd hb.
Sweet Girl's pre-school program has time alotted for breakfast, lunch and snack every day.  The school wouldn't know how to do gfcf and she would have to have immediate physical allergic reactions to require the school to look in to it.  I didn't expect them to do her meals, but I also forgot how daunting filling a lunch box with portable gfcf items can be.  She doesn't mind getting the same thing everyday for lunch, and that's good.  If anyone has any suggestions I would love to hear them.  I'll just keep trying to expand her food horizons and find ways to package some of her favorite meals.

7.  Pet insurance is a good idea (see #3).
Also doesn't need an explanation for anyone who has ever had a pet.  Let me just say that urgent care and IV steroids are not cheap. The amount of money we have invested in our mutt is the only thing that keeps me from throwing Oreo out at times.  I've invested more in him (monetarily) than Little Man at this point.

8.  Do not do something with a toddler two days in a row unless you want to continue that thing indefinitely.
Wednesday after school I told Sweet Girl we could get a treat for her completing her first day of school.  So before we pulled our traveling circus up to the vet's office, we stopped at Sonic for a cup of ice.  The vet looks at me as if I forgot something when she sees what's in (or rather not in)Sweet Girl's cup, but Sweet Girl is happy.  The next day I pick Sweet Girl up from school and she sees Sonic on our way home and says "I want more ice cubes." In our constant attempt to impart the notion that spoken words are powerful, we often find ourselves giving in to some requests other parents would put off.  Sweet Girl put together a five word sentence and so ice cubes she gets.  Friday afternoon as I buckle Sweet Girl in to her car seat she gives me a smile so bright the sun was envious and says, ever hopefully, "Ice cubes, Mommy?"  If you ever need me after three o'clock on a school day you can find me at Sonic.

9.  Nobody does ice cubes like Sonic (see #8).
Before you think I'm; a. incredibly cheap, b. terribly mean and won't let her have anything else at Sonic, c. both, let me just say this is Sweet Girl's favorite thing there. She loves to eat ice cubes and chewing ice is actually an excellent sensory exercise.  I don't think that's why my Dad does it, but it does provide a good deal of sensory feedback.  And the ice cubes at Sonic are little pellets which make for some excellent crunching. Also, I am pretty cheap.  A cup of ice at Sonic during happy hour is 10 cents.  It is the cheapest gfcf thing ever.

10. Pandora had it right; let everything else go but keep hope.
I do realize that Pandora actually let alot of bad things out to wreak havoc on Man.  I did manage to pass Classic Civ.  But I'd like to think that whatever bad that is in us; doubt, worry, loathing, self-pity, whatever, we can let go of without putting it on someone else.  I was feeling a large amount of dark emotions when I thought about Sweet Girl starting school (Just Another Manic Mom-Day made that pretty clear).  So I prayed and tried to let that go.  I'm not sure if I'll ever be able to let all of it go, but I keep trying to.  Because what was left after some of the darkness cleared, was hope.  Hope that Sweet Girl would love school.  Hope that she would open up to some other adults.  Hope that she would maybe even make a friend.  Hope that I would be strong enough let her do all those things, or at least try all those things, on her own without me.  Even if school hadn't gone as well as it did this week (thanks be to God and Ms. Sarah - and Sweet Girl, of course), I couldn't let myself get bogged down in the dark stuff.  I would keep hoping that it would get better.  I'm writing this after a long and bad day in the world of Sweet Girl and Little Man.  There was little sleep for anyone, a Sick Girl, a Cranky Man, an accident by O'roid'o, and a migraine for me.  I'm hoping that tomorrow is a better day, because hoping is better than whining.  After the mess is cleaned up, hope is what is left.

So that's our Top Ten.  The phone's ringing.  I bet I'm in trouble.   


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