Friday, May 30, 2008

I'm still here. . .

It's been a difficult year. Since the fall, I've been dealing with one thing after another, and it's taken its toll, particularly in my participation in this blog and the greater internet sphere of the Autism Spectrum.

In September, I broke a bone in my foot and spent most of the fall on crutches.

My younger son 'crashed and burned' in 6th grade and I've been advocating for him since October, watching his anxiety spike and his self confidence erode.

Early in 2008, I had some abnormal test findings on a routine mamogram.

In the Spring, I got involved in an advocacy project to fight for the middle school's newspaper. Little did I know it would involve nearly every waking hour and meeting with city, school officials, and parents, putting me in 'center stage', when I prefer being behind the scenes.

Last month, my father had orthopedic surgery, was sent to rehab, went into acute kidney failure and nearly died. As his health care proxy and the only member of the family with knowledge of the health care system, it falls to me to coordinate his care and advocate for him.

In the process of dealing with his medical needs, it became clear to me that my mother's cognitive status is slipping. And she also needs urgent surgery.

So, my resources have been taxed to their utmost, with nothing left to offer to this blog or to the autism community. For that, I feel badly. At least many of the issues that became issues this past year are now resolved.

My foot healed.

The paper was saved.

My son has an appropriate IEP (though it took from October, when I raised these issues with the school to May until we had his IEP meeting) so 7th grade won't be the wasted year that 6th grade was.

It is highly likely that my own health issues are resolved as well.

What is still highly distressing is my parents' health. My father is on dialysis, which he is not tolerating well. He's been in and out of the hospital 3 times in the past month, is there right now again. My mother's anxiety and depression are decreasing her cognition. She is also experiencing leg weakness from a back problem and is a falls risk, but refuses to use a walker or a cane. They live a 3 hour plane ride away, and advocating for them largely falls on me to accomplish via telephone. I've already flown out there for a week, returning home thinking they were stable, only to find out they are not.

I have appreciated the comments of support and the emails I have received from commenters. Thank you all very much.

I am hoping for a boring summer and a time when I can recharge my depleted emotional batteries and be able to be a better blogger and aspie-advocate.


kristina said...

Will wish a most boring summer for you too----it's like swimming in the ocean, isn't it, you ever know what the next wave will bring.


Phil Schwarz said...

Hear, hear, what Kristina said.
I hope all goes well and you have a therapeutically uneventful and energy-renewing summer.

KGTigress said...

As a mother of a child with Asperger's, I can understand your struggles. I hope you and your son have been able to find a lot of support in understanding and living with this different way of life.

I cannot say it is a curse...even though it can wear everyone out very easily and drive parents "nuts", sometimes thinking that we are all alone in our fight to help our kids cope with their unique way of thinking and processing information...this is something that is becoming a culture and, for some people with AS, it can be a gift.

My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family, especially your son.

Just remember - you are not alone....we are here for you.