Thursday, June 2, 2016

OMG! It's Summer?

Subconsciously, I was trying not to think about the fact that summer is staring me in the face until the subject came up in therapy.

"Your summer will be very different from years past. Have you thought about how that will look for you and what you want to do?"

Me? Do? Summer? I'm not used to thinking about what I am going to do for the summer. It's usually all about what am I going to do with and for the boys. What activities and camps will I find for them? How much more driving will I have to do in this Texas heat? How will I keep them entertained and from killing each other or being kicked out of all of the city pools like in this blog ~"Down Dog."

Too much togetherness has never been good for our family's mental health. Summers have been the bain of my existence since the kids have been in adolescence. I have come to loathe what used to be one of my favorite seasons. It has become a time when I get more anxious, sad and depressed.

Usually this time of year, I'm visiting my doctor's office in a panic that my anti-anxiety/depressant isn't working anymore. Increase the dose! Please! I don't think I can make it through the summer without someone being seriously injured. 

If you have followed my blog for a while, you may have read some of our summer stories. "Lost My Happy" and "Very Aspergery Day" (which was hilarious, in a painful kind of way) are just a couple of them.

Last summer was definitely no "Bed of Roses." Red's behavior was at an all time high of suckiness. I don't even want to think about all of the details.

This summer will be divergent from the norm for us. For one, Red has moved out of the house, and I am no longer responsible for entertaining him. Can I get a hallelujah? He has arranged for his schedule to be very busy for the summer (key word here -HE arranged). He will be working an average of 25 hours a week or more. Work will be followed by working out at the gym where he is employed.  The group home will be providing his transportation to work so ...YAY ME!

When Red is busy and has a structured schedule, his behavior and anxiety are so much better. It gives his mind less time to wander and worry about all of the "what if's" of life.

Exactly what Blue will be doing is still up in the air. Why? Because he is 17 and no longer allows me to plan his life. I know for sure he will be taking driving lessons, and he will work on his required parent taught"driving hours" to get his license. Only, I won't be the parent teaching him. We will have to hire a "parent" because we would end up killing each other. He and his father are like fire and gasoline these days. He will also be taking a class through our local community college.

He says he wants to get a job, although he has yet to look for one. And who am I to try to prod him along? I would like very much for him to do some traveling ...without me. However, I have to get him to agree and figure out if and when he will be working before I can plan anything with or for him. So yeah. Good times. 

As for me, my plan is to take a bit of a break from the blog. I will check in every once in a while with a quick update. However, I want to use the majority of my creative energy on some other projects

Many of my readers have been asking me to write a book based on this blog. I would like to focus on that.  I've been writing this blog for seven years, so figuring out how to dissect it and give a hindsight perspective will be a major project.  If you know of any editors or publishers who may be interested in helping me get my stories into a book, please feel free to contact me. (  Seriously! Please! Help!!! I am called to do this, but overwhelmed by the idea at the same time.

In the meantime, I hope to open up the blog to some of my readers, fellow autism parents and adults or even teens on the spectrum to share their stories.  If you have a story you would like to share or know someone who does; please contact me. I will be glad to help you polish it.
The Pacific Ocean in Kona, Hawaii
For the first time in 20 years, I plan to focus on self-care this summer. I will be exercising, traveling, writing and trying to be creative. I hope to put my feet in as many bodies of water as I possibly can. I will also be working on a few home improvement projects. My home has been severely neglected for the past few years.

My husband and I already have an exciting trip planned. Of course, I only have a general idea of what I will do with my mother and Blue while we're gone.  I find that I still get an extra dose of anxiety planning any get-away because there are usually so many details to work out. I'm trying to get over it, which is, of course, easier said than done.

This freedom is a strange, untethered feeling. It's kind of like I'm blowing in the wind, but I will try to make the best of it.

I will be in touch. I'm a Facebook addict, so there will always be updates there.

Love and blessings,