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With Friends Like This...

We tried to go to the library on Wednesday. It's still too traumatic to talk about, but suffice to say we won't be back for a long time. Yep, this "incident" beats Elf's terrified, purple-faced screaming that there was a BOMB in the library last time we went... a year ago... because he saw some Muslims near the movies. Yeah, that was great. Better still? The library patrons were visibly angry... at the Muslims. Scaring that boy by wearing that getup, is what those ladies were doing.

Sometimes you just can't win. I felt awful, especially in light of the fact that I couldn't apologize. Elf was absolutely hysterical that he was gonna die, and we just had to get out of there. I don't think I want to know what happened after we left. The things people say about us, blessedly, don't get back to us often. Probably because we're never out and about on the town to hear it.

The only time Elf and Emperor get to see other children is at church on Wednesday nights. Sundays? Let's just say they've been ruined. This is also too traumatic to talk about. I'm not ready. But this all serves me right for trying to socialize the children by bringing them to preschool story time. I thought maybe... just maybe... we'd have a forgiving audience and people who would overlook social flubs.

I forgot about the children's parents. And the librarians. And that Woodjie would get overwhelmed JUST as Elf and Emperor need to look at books.

I can't do it all. I can't be everywhere. My children are NOT FUNCTIONING in the world, and the worse that happens, the more I have to pull in. The more I pull the kids in, the worse it gets over time.

But we just can't be having bomb threats in the library every week, people. Those other people deserve to have a relaxing experience.

Does that mean we should NEVER go out? Elf and Emperor shouldn't be able to check out books? Or go to the store? Or church? I'm admitting right here and now I don't have everything and everybody under control, and I need *help.* I've been formally asking for it since April through a center.

Since April. They still haven't gotten their paperwork together, and after they do? Two YEAR waiting list for help. If the children qualify. If the funding is still there. If.

I've got to admit here that I've really let myself go. I'm in despair. I've gained 30 pounds, and it isn't pretty.

Maybe those 30 pounds wouldn't be an issue to most people, but that's on TOP of the 70 extra I already had, and that sorta means that the picture you look at of me? Um, it's not very accurate. Oh! And all my hair is falling out. You can see my scalp. Ask me how often I get my hair done to disguise this. I keep thinking that a prairie bonnet would be a lot of fun to wear. I like bonnets. But they don't go with the velour fat-lady pantsuits I've been donning of late. They just... don't. But every day could be a bad hair day with a bonnet! Oops, but that would have to tie under one of my chins. If you have three chins, what's the proper etiquette for that?


I'm not the only one who has noticed what a fat lard-o I've become. I received an encouraging phone call from a neighbour. She wanted to let me know about a book that has changed her life. She's wanted to talk to me about it for a long time. She's noticed that I lost a lot of weight years ago, and that I'm yo-yoing again. And that I put all my weight on in my stomach. (Ok, all this is true, but I can feel the tears burning as I'm listening to her on the phone.) And that's really not healthy.

I'm trying, really hard, between gulps, to explain to her that I am just leading a rather sedentary lifestyle at the present and that when I get more time for exercise, I am sure I'll lose some weight. Thanks for calling.

OH, NO, she tells me. Rush Limbaugh or some guy proves that you can lose weight and be sedentary. You just follow the plan. I told her to tell me really slowly what it was so I could write it down. Well, I did write it down and tell her I'd talk to her later.

Not that I specially feel like looking that up at this point. I'm just feeling mighty blindsided. Where on earth did that come from? Why couldn't she take the "I don't want to talk about this" hint when I pulled the "I'm sure I'll be fine later... thanks for calling" line on her? My word. I tell you, this feels worse than when people ask me when the baby is due. Yes, they do.

I think I'll go hide now.


  1. (((((Mrs. C))))) I feel your pain.

    I am so sorry that things seem so bleak right now. The same thing could have happened to me, and I was almost crying reading your story. I really can't believe a neighbor would think a call like that would be welcomed by you!

    I wish I had some wonderful words of advice, but do know that I will be praying for you.

  2. Yea, I love the when's the baby due question especially when I would kill to be pregnant. But I must say I have used it to my advantage. I once told Southwest Airlines I needed to board early so I could be near the bathroom, because I was pregnant. I'm just lucky they didn't tell me I was too pregnant to travel!

    I'm so sorry about the library. I wish there was some advice I could share about socializing the kids. I would love to hear why Sundays are out. I thought things were going well at church. I don't know why people are so stupid--when they mean well (like your neighbor). I have a really great workout tape for kids--I do it with them and they love it! Maybe something like that is something you could do with the kiddies if you felt like exercising.

    Wish I had more to share...just know that I love you and I will be praying!--Bonnie

  3. Good intentions or not, she was being presumptuous and, frankly, rude. But people who are sure they are helping other people lose weight, often are. It's like they think you don't know. Like you could avoid looking in the mirror, or having to shop for clothes. Been there, done that, got the one-size-fits all T-shirt to prove it.

    Umm . . . Since she seems so interested in helping, do you suppose this neighbor would be willing to keep the kids so you could go out for a walk or therapy or a good stiff drink or to an I Hate Rush Limbaugh party?


  4. LOL Sue I have to wonder if she DID think that the call was helpful. If she didn't that would be pretty evil. I surely do appreciate the sympathy. If only it would translate into magical weight loss on my part...

    Bonnie, emailed you some specifics don't want to share in public.

    Mary, this person would NOT be an ok person to leave the kids with. She is much older.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Nothing juicy there, just a double-post.

  7. ♥♥♥Hugs♥♥♥ I don't know what to say. That must have been so hurtful. Sorry. No advice ~ & you know I understand all about kids with anti~social behaviours. *sigh* I wish there wasn't an ocean & 2 continents between us & I could pop in for coffee with lots of chocolate cake & cream & stuff the whole weight thing. Not helpful, no. Love you anyway. You're beautiful inside.

    [Gee I can say a lot when I have nothing to say. Sorry about that.]

  8. Oh sweetheart, I hear you on the weight gain. (((hugs)))

  9. From one lardo to another, I feel your gain . . . ;-P

    It is probably impractical for you, but I sure am enjoying walking every day with Pamela for 30 minutes. How does your crew do with outdoor time in the back yard or finding cool things to explore or just burning up energy without causing a ruckus?

  10. Mrs. C, ((Hugs)) from me too! I'm sporting a bunch of extra weight at this point in my life too. I've managed to fit some exercise time in.. but I have to get up at 4:30 in the morning to fit it in and be able to get lessons prepared for the kids. Then, I'm exhausted by lunchtime.. Have I lost any weight, no! Do I feel better? Somewhat.. when I'm not discouraged about my inability to lose weight.

    The library is a big challenge for us too. A couple of recent visits for us have ended in Samuel being escorted (by me and his helper) screaming out the door. I am in the process of talking with our library about setting up a story time for kids with Asperger's Syndrome. I was shocked when I contacted them for a one-time event and they came back to me offering a monthly event!

    I hope the help you need comes through. Is it through a state program? There is a 10 year waiting list for some services here in VA, but I have help through another waiver in the meantime. Are you near a college or anything where you might be able to find some student help?

    I wish I had better advice to give you.. just take things one at a time. You're not alone.. my life is pretty much an unorganized shambles right now too. I have almost no social life and as the months go by it gets harder to get to the computer in my office as the school books, things to file, etc. grows into a mountain, and it's getting harder for me to find the time to keep in touch with something that helps me maintain my sanity.. blogging friends.

    Sorry to take up so much space talking about me!

  11. I really enjoy your blog and I think you and your kids are wonderful, sorry the rest of the world sucks :(

  12. LOL Ganeida, I'd rather have an enabling friend than a critic anyday!! You come on over and bring the coffeecake. I'll put the coffee on. :]

    Kim, it really stinks, doesn't it?? Hope you are feeling better. Been thinking of you.

    LAA, I *loved* your comment. I really appreciated it. I feel alone, and hearing I'm not the only "that mom" in the universe actually does help a little.

    Lisa, thanks!! That's the sort of comment out of the blue I like to hear! :] God bless ya.

  13. I have nothing. Just cyber hugs (useless) and prayers (very useFUL).

  14. ((((hugs))))
    Getting out for us has been a big challenge too. Last year my husband was deployed for nine months and there were just some times we had to get out. I remember sitting in the car and praying a lot before entering anywhere.
    I always found it fascinating that people were okay with a five year old having a raging fit over a toy they wanted in the store but if my 10 year old nonverbal autistic child got upset in the least they all shoot us a dirty look.
    Seems kind of messed up to me!
    As for the weight issue, I am with the person who mentioned the coffee cake! :) My weight is generally in direct proportion to my stress level.
    I hope things improve for you and you get the help you need. I will be praying for you!

  15. ohh. I'm sorry Mrs. C. I'm sure it will get better. Just a tough time right now.. Wish I had something to say to make you feel better. You always have such nice things to say to me when im down..and How can you exercise when you are homeschooling 2 kids and keeping an eye on 2 more little one's.

    Maybe Mrs.C. needs a little Mommy get away. Even for the afternoon. Just some time to yourself to get things back in perspective.. and ignore your nosy neighbor~!

  16. I don't know what to say and I wish I had answers for you. You are definitely a strong, capable, beautiful, grounded woman. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.

    I don't know if this will make you feel better or anything, but a favorite story in my family is how my brother watched Halloween (the original) when he was 5 or so. Somehow based on the white hockey mask, he got the idea that the killer was Japanese. And he would scream bloody murder at the site of ANY Asian man for nearly a year. Someday, hopefully, you might laugh at the "bombs," too :)

  17. Okay.....


    I am sorry you have such a knuckle head for a neighbor. Even if her attempt was sincere to reach out and *try* to be helpful, she looked like a complete behind the way she went about it.

    (Another hug for good measure)

    As far as the library goes, they *do* want you there. They do! Patrons keep libraries alive, but, as you said it needs to be a comfortable experience for staying away is not the answer. Making it a point to get the kids there IS. Call the library beforehand. Let them know you are coming and *ask* if there is either an aide or a volunteer available to HELP you navigate the library with the kids to make the visit a little easier on everyone. I am sure they would be glad to help. You cannot let others ignorance and intolerance of your family's situation and special needs keep you from living life. How will the kids ever learn? They won't. They will be afraid to go out, afraid of social situation and unable to to interact in those situations. Pick a day on the calendar, make it library day every week all summer long.

    As far as the weight goes, I love you no matter what size you are, what you look like, if you have any hair at all or if you color yourself with Sharpie markers and drool a lot. You have shown me your true self and she's a phenomenally beautiful, brilliantly kindhearted woman with genuine love for her children. That's all that matters. When you are ready to focus on you, the weight will change, you know that. And honestly, if anyone makes a comment about your weight, or the neighbor recommends weight loss books, etc again I would act floored and *scream* 'WHAT?!!? I'm FAT?? Who told you this???' and act nuts. Hopefully it keeps her from speaking to you for a long while. lol

    Love you.


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