Friday, November 24, 2006
Let's embark on the things that are going on in my life in more detail...

In the marriage area- My husband and I are very close, even though we have different hobbies, we invest in eachother's time. I always try to play the card games he likes with him and he has even attended my knitting group and learned to knit, which he caught onto quite quickly! We both enjoy watching professional wrestling together. I really enjoy having our friends over for the pay-per-views. That is one of the things I pride myself on; the fact that I can hang out with him and his(our) friends and just be one of the guys. I don't give myself the credit though, I know full well that we're just lucky to have such awesome friends.
There are some complications in our marriage though. My husband works part-time and goes to college full time so our time together (with three boys) is few and far between. In addition we currently live in the basement of my parents home until Mike graduates. It causes some bumps, you could say. I'm fortunate in having such a wonderful husband that I can talk to. We are luckily on the same side when it comes to my family and the things we need to discuss. But even then, living with your parents when you're an adult with three children is obviously not an ideal situation. It is definitely quite frustrating. Finally, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Mike should be graduating in either May or August, depending on availability of classes. There is a slight chance it will go one more semester in August but we are hoping that we can get a waiver so he can take one class and its prerequisite at the same time. I very much am looking forward to getting a house and being out on our own finally, as you can probably imagine.
I must also say, though, that we are deeply appreciative of the sacrifices my parents have made for us by letting us stay here. We will have a much better situation when Mike has a degree and doing it this way will save us a great amount of stress.

Moving on...the children area- My children are wonderful. I enjoy being a stay-at-home mom so much! My life had an emptiness until Mike and the boys came into it. As everyone knows motherhood is pure joy but comes with some stresses. Currently, we're having our two oldest children, Rashawn and Rayden, tested for Autism. I've worked with Autism in Special Ed classrooms every summer since I was 13 or 14 so I'm quite familiar with it. Basically, for me, the testing is just proceedural. I already know they have it, now it's just the question of where on the spectrum they are and how to deal with it to maximise their educational and social development.
Both boys are extremely high functional, they make brief eye contact regularly and are very affectionate. But the signs are there, even if I didn't recognize them right away. I was at a parent-teacher conference for Rashawn when the teacher said she had some concerns and wanted to pursue the testing. I was in a little bit of shock of course but I handled it as calmly as I could, carefully considering all of her examples of signs he showed. Then I went home, and started to observe him. It didn't take long to realize she was right. I think I was already convinced on the way home from the conference, but watching him just made it that much more convincing.
It was in watching Rashawn that I started to observe Rayden also. He has much more obvious signs and possibly has a little more profound case than Rashawn, while still being high functioning. He is very delayed in his speech and reacts to any stress such as noise in a more dramatic way. Although I'm very lucky that neither of them scream, because I think that is one of the greater stresses that comes with autism. Rayden will throw himself on the floor and we're having trouble with him hitting. Although it never hurts it's still something we need to take care of now. He's very cuddly and each time he reacts in these ways it's obvious that he's very stressed and doesn't know how to communicate it, which is a major part of autism.
Rayden was a bit harder to accept because of his history. When he was 7 mos. old he started having seizures and was diagnosed with Infantile Spasms, a rare form of epilepsy in infants. God blessed us unimaginally. The first medication we tried worked and even after we weened him off of it the seizures didn't return. Shortly after I went to a support group meeting and it was a very difficult experience. I saw all the children around me and not one had been completely cured with the medication. Some it worked for but not long term and others it had no affect at all. Each child had severe mental and /or physical development difficiencies. It was probably one of the hardest things, sitting in a room thinking how lucky I am when the ones around me are still struggling. An older sister of one of the kids asked her mother why it had worked for my son and not her brother. I couldn't bring myself to keep going to the meetings, it was much too heartwrenching. But even harder than that was the fear that began to grip me again of the seizures returning (it can happen anytime, even years and years from now). It eventually lessened more and more. My faith in God and my trust in him kept me from obsessing over it. But still, any rigid movment Rayden would make I would stop everything and just watch him to make sure he wasn't having a seizure. It was a difficult thing but we were blessed in it.
I am excited right now about Rayden starting school. He's going to be in Rashawn's class which gives me a two and a half hour break 3 days a week because Rion takes his nap at the same time. Ahhhhhh, sigh of relief.

On a happier note...knitting!- My knitting group that meets once a month is doing great. I just love sitting and hanging out with friends while we knit. it's slowly adding members, and I'm in no huge hurry, I know God will do what he wants with the group and I'll be happy with whatever happens with it. Eventually I would really like to start a knitting charity that knits and prays for people going through a tough time, but like I said, whatever God does with it will be just fine with me because I know his will is best.
Currently I'm working on a baby blanket for a friend. It's a technique that's really nice called double knitting. I can't wait to get to the more difficult part where I knit the baby's name, birthdate, and measurements into the blanket. My next project will be another baby blanket for a family member and then I plan on doing a more complicated sweater that has me really excited!Here's a picture-

Okay, enough with about the writing?- I'm really excited about what I'm doing with writing also. I'm working on a fantasy book series. I won't be able to give any details but I'm surprising even myself with how well it's coming together and I haven't even started the first page! I've just been writing notes because I want to have everything worked out so things connect throughout the series. I can't take credit for it though, because God has made it very clear that he's the one giving me ideas. I'll write something down that pops into my head and then I'll realize later on that it connects to something I wrote a long time ago. It's trully amazing. I'm so honored to have God working through me in such a way!

And the book of the day?? Well week or month, depending on time :)- I just finished The Lost Boy by Dave Pelzer and I'm running to the library today to pick up the third book in the trilogy, A Man Named Dave. Then it's on to Eragon by Christopher Paolini because fantasy is the best. And after that is a reread of Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns because I LOVED the book in high school and want to get even more out of it. You can also check out my current reads through the book club a friend and I created on facebook.

Link to Book Club

Another area at the weight- I'm in the process of losing all the weight I gained through 3 pregnancies. I'm happy so far with the results. I've lost 40 lbs and have 20 more until I reach my goal weight. I may lose a bit more after that but we'll just have to see how I feel.

One more thing...singing- I'm currently singing with the Symphonic Chorus in my city. We sing with the symphony probably 3 or 4 times a year at least. It's really been a great experience. We had 40 people selected from the chorus to join a few other university choirs and perform Carmina Burana with the symphony in the brand new concert hall in our city. It was amazing! I've wanted to do Carmina for years so it was a dream come true for sure. And it didn't disappoint one bit, the performance was absolutely incredible. I won't ever forget that experience. Right now we're about to hit rush week before our Christmas concert so life will be quite busy but after that we'll have a few weeks break for Christmas and New Year's. So that's the chorus end of singing. I have also been working with a wonderful man I've gotten very close to over the six or so years we've worked together. Mr. Price my vocal coach has become like a grandfather and mentor to me. I love him dearly. So it was hard when recent finances made me quit my lessons with him. I'm determined to go back though. I miss him so much! I"m realizing how much I trully cherish him both as a vocal coach and friend.

I suppose I should wrap it up. Thanks for reading!!


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Posted by Elyse at 3:00 PM |