Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Love Hurts



Once upon a time, in a land known as New York, a future blogger was born.


Kathryn was a happy child. She loved balloons, dachshunds and evidently…bag lunches. She was also psychologically wedged between the cartoon-world and the world of reality…and as this photo attests, her parents were too poor to afford any sort of grass for the front lawn.

Kathryn loved playing dress up with her IV, who firmly refused to be seen with her outside of their backyard in “that hideous dress” and “that ‘rat’s nest’ you call a hairdo”, although she felt it was quite fetching…secretly believing the 80’s pop star “Blondie” would totally approve..

She often visited her friend JD at the “farm”. JD would only agree to play “Little Red Riding Hood” if we used the freshest of fruits in our makeshift-muffin-basket and if Kathryn promised to never, ever ask what JD had on underneath that blanket. (Notice the way the lamb and the duck are staring at JD…a wary look of incredulousness on their sweet little animal-faces.)

Kathryn dreamed she could be anything she wanted to be…from a cover model- - -

…to a major league pitcher.

She imagined a future with marriage and many Clooney-eyed babies.

And retiring on the world’s tiniest tropical island without a care in the freakin’ world. (Except for the obvious.)

The reality, however….was a tad...different.

In the past week alone, we’ve had a little bit of this



…and a little bit of that



…and a whole lot of this:



And it felt more like this:



The abbreviated version: My eldest son has autism. I don’t talk about it much. Let’s face it, autism is not funny. It’s sad…and frustrating…and difficult. My son spends a lot of his time with other children with disabilities.

One of them decided to punch my son in the mouth.

He punched him HARD.

This resulted in a trip to the Emergency Room and five stitches to his chin.

Then we went to the dentist, to discover that he had three abscesses that required urgent root canal.

So the next day, he had three root canals. Halfway through, the Endodontic-guy said he had to postpone finishing, as the two front teeth were “mobile”. “Mobile” is a fancy way of saying that they were wobbling and loose enough to walk out of the room on their own and hail a cab. No-one wants their front teeth to be “mobile”…unless you’re six.

Endodontic-guy says we need to go find an Orthodontic-guy who will see us ASAP to “splint teeth 8, 9 and 10” for the next 6-8 weeks.

After four weeks, Endodontic-guy will finish up his root canals and then we can get rid of this extra wire.

They’re hoping he won’t lose one of his front teeth. We’ll just have to wait and see.

He’s still in pain. He’s eating lots of mashed potatoes, applesauce, pasta and cereal with warm milk. We’ve argued the pros and cons to dodging, ducking and weaving versus pushing, shoving and downright running away.

The latter was my contribution. What do I know? I’m a girl….we can go our whole lives without having ever been punched in the mouth.

I’d like to believe that the worst is behind us….but maybe I’m being na├»ve. I long for the simpler days…when pizza didn’t have to be eaten with a knife and fork and a bag of frozen peas were used for consumption…and not for reducing facial swelling.



If the description of “Supermom” is holding ice on your son’s face, whilst wiping away the blood, whilst not gagging, whilst dialing your cell , whilst driving the car, whilst imagining you’re throttling each and every person responsible for not protecting your child from harm….then, I’m golden.


Heather said...

That is horrible, sad and maddening! I hope he doesn't lose his teeth. Is there going to be some kind of punishment for the other child? Tricky situation.

Sorry you had to go through that, but yes your golden.

Gavin said...

Wow...that all makes my week seem a lot less stressful. D: I hope things go ok for you. -hugs- And wow..this was a lame comment, but my head is like a million miles away right now.

Erin@TheLocalsLoveIt said...

Terribly sorry you're faced with this right now. I do think that Supermom is just that...and you're right...you deserve the title.

KellyGrrl said...

Wow. Here's hoping for a speedy recovery and for the kid that hit him to mysteriously fall and knock out his own front teeth and need stitches!

And you definitely win a supermom award for going through that...

Tom Bailey said...

You seem to handle a challenging situation very well. Situations like those have so many different directions people take...

Teaching kids to fight back, suing the other parents for damages or other things or doing nothing. Whatever you do will be right for you.

Best regards

ValleyWriter said...

I am so sorry to hear all the tough stuff you've been through this week. At least you're maintaining some sense of humor - hang in there!

Gigi said...

Oh Kathryn!! I had no idea! I'd wondered what had been going on. Much love many prayers! If you need a shoulder - I'm here.

book*addict said...

It sucks that things like this happen to us, and that we always end up doing everything ourselves (regardless if there's a hubby/partner or not).
I really hope your son gets and feels better soon. And that the other kid gets an adequate punishment.
Remember that God wouldn't give us obstacles if He thought we couldn't handle them and that with every obstacle it's a test of faith to make us stronger.
Things will get better, and if they don't we know where I reside within the blog world.

Mrs. Prissy Pants said...

Your son is in my thoughts. I have a special place in my heart for children with autism. I worked for a family who had an autistic son when I was in college. I was trained in ABO and I grew very attached to this child. Hope your son feels better soon.

Fierce said...

Oh my! That's so sad about your son but I suppose with a mom like you, he's about as normal as normal gets (I mean seriously, what IS the definition of 'normal' nowadays).
I'm sure it'll all work out in the end, and I agree, you deserve the title of 'Supermom' for sure!
Just relax and remember, BREATHE! You'll be fine Kathryn, something like this isn't enough to take you down, talk less of keeping you there...
xoxo

WannabeVirginia W. said...

Oh no, I am sorry to hear that! Sounds like you've had a rough go... Hope your son feels better and keep up the sense of humour. It is what gets us (moms) through tough times when we just want to take on every single douchecanoe that hurts our babies and kick butt!

Dreamfarm Girl said...

I'm so very sorry to hear about your family's troubles. No fair!! I indeed think you are a supermom. I hope your son is feeling better soon and all the dentistry works according to plan. And I'm in awe that you could manage to tell this harrowing story with cleverness, humor and grace.

Picture Imperfect said...

Hi Kathryn,

You are a strong woman and yes, you are supermom! You're doing a great job sweetie.

Hang in there, we're all here cheering for you! Let me know if you need anything.

*hugs*
~smooooooooog

Alicia said...

Wow Kathryn,that sucks big time. Poor guy. But someday he's going to have a great story to tell his children and then he'll finish that story with the heroic save of SUPER MOM!

I'm glad you're back and even with all that pain and chaos...you didn't lose that amazing sense of humor.

Gillian said...

Super Mum with a smile - indeed. You've had a rough week!

*Hugs*

Lou said...

Bad news K, trust he heals soon and well. You truly are amazing you know, writing every day, working, mothering with an extra challenge. I love the pics.

Runnergirl said...

You've been going through so much and yet still you found time to come and leave me lovely comments - you really are SUPER!

Things will get better, but in the meantime... ((Hugs))

Rambles'N'Shambles said...

*hugs*

Keep fighting, your words alone show how strong you as a family all are.

Such bonds are priceless, there will always be pain and hardships, but without that pain and hardship, the good things in life wouldn't be as enjoyable, nor would the sun seem as bright.

My thoughts are with you all

dailyseeking said...

Welcome back! I will be praying for you and your family.

Joyce (Foyce) said...

Wrap yourself in HUGS from moi and your blog admirers, Supermom!! We're all with you.

Smileyfreak said...

Sounds like you took great care of your son,so of course you are super mom! :) Hope your week starts to improve and a big Get Well soon to your son :) -hugs-

Tina said...

My God, Kathryn. I think you're marvellous. That's a tough situation. I hope everything turns out okay. I'll say a prayer for you all. Love, Tina

Maureen@IslandRoar said...

Oh Kathryn, I'm so sorry! Your poor boy. Teeth are so painful and so expensive. And to have all this at once....
All I can send is some heartfelt hugs!

jmberrygirl said...

Wow. I had no idea. Hope things improve--in your son's mouth and your life. My husband has had more than one reconstruction on his teeth. THey're surprisingly resilient and the falsies really aren't bad. I know several people who've lost the front ones and had plates inserted--they even match the normal color of the teeth. Hope it turns out well--thinking of ya!

B-ster said...

I was hoping you took a vacation. Goodness, you are a supermom! Hope he doesn't loose his teeth. Poor guy!

Mark Price said...

That sux for your boy. I dunno what to say except it sux and shouldnt have happened. Maybe the other boy didnt mean to hit quite so hard. I don't know too much about autistic kids. I think your son has a good Mom though who will help him work this out.

Gay Guy said...

You ARE Supermom, you are! You are doing an admirable job. Much better than I would be doing, that's for sure.

Spot said...

K~ I know how frustrating and emotional this all has been! I'm so glad that he did well with all the visits, I can't even imagine going through all of that with CJ since we have to put him completely under to get dental work done. The worst part is that it is hard to place blame when both children have disabilities. I have been the mother of the hurt child and the mother of the child who caused hurt. And it's tough to blame the workers as well because sometimes our kids are just so damn fast and even we don't see it coming. You know you & your son were in my thoughts all weekend and hopefully some of our conversation made you feel less alone! Many wishes for a speedy and less traumatic recovery!!!

*hugs*
♥Spot

J9 said...

I think you're golden then too!

lifelove'n'wine said...

Oh my gosh, Kathryn. I'm so sorry about all of this! I hope that everything ends up ok and that he doesn't lose his teeth. I can't imagine having to sit and see that your child is in pain. You ARE a Supermom and I'm sure your boys both know how much you love them. It's obvious to all of us that you're the best!

~:C:~ said...

To put it not so eloquently, that sucks. I'm so sorry, Kathryn. I hope he feels better sooner than expected. *non-contagious hug*

Loredana said...

Lately all I've been thinking about is the "simpler days". Days even a short while ago. I looked up at pictures my husband and I have on our walls and noticed how just a few years ago things were different. We hadn't been punched in the face with some realitities of life. We hadn't even touched the surface I guess. And it's when you're going through something that you never seem to see your way out and you wonder 'will those simler days ever come back, do they even exist any longer?'

I'm sorry your son had to go through that, that's awful. And you are a supermom, no matter how many things you can do at once, just being a mom is super!

Hope everything turns out well soon.

Sara said...

I hope it all turns out alright in the end. I'll cross my fingers that the next bit of news you get is good news.

JD at I Do Things said...

Oh, my gosh. I don't know whether to laugh or cry. Well, I'll laugh a bit just at the first part, especially my head in that grandma/wolf getup.

Not laughing now. I'm so sorry. I can't imagine going thru something like this. You know we're all here for you. Whatever we can do . . .

carissajaded said...

Kathryn I'm so sorry that this week has been so awful!! And yes,I think you definitely qualify as super mom. Or whatever trumps that.

Lauren said...

I only have two words. HOLY CRAP! Way to get through it though. God! Should I go get my pitchfork? I know I have one somewhere.

chickasauras_rex said...

Wow that is tough, glad things are settling down a bit now. This post made me really cringe, I can't imagine how stressful that must have been for you. Take care.
xo

Lauren said...

I forgot this earlier... I gots an award waiting for you.

Krissi said...

I have had one of those weeks where the mother bear is not happy. I would love to do some growling a little bit of swiping and maybe a bite or two. I'm starting to think civilized is underrated.

serendipitous said...

Wow, that is a very stressful week. I hope everything turns out okay in the end. I am sorry your son got punched in the first place and that he has had to go through so much pain since. It must be hard to see your child in pain...

Wendy Blum said...

Wow! You really are super mom. That's A LOT of pain and stress. But that's what we sign up for as parents... Like it or not. Last year, my oldest son was hit in the head with a golf club at a friends house. He had a hole in his head the size of a silver dollar and a skull fracture. We were really lucky because it was winter and he was wearing one of those hat/face mask things and his glasses. Both of which we think helped deflect some of the impact. We never even bothered to wonder why the boys decided to play with a golf club outside in winter. We were just happy Zane didn't lose and eye...or worse. Sincerely hope your son gets better asap. And it's great to have you back. Blog world wouldn't be the same with out YOU =D

Clandestiny said...

Oh Kathryn, no wonder you were so frazzled! I'm so sorry that all of you are having to go through this but I have to say in all honesty that it touches me too. My mother worked for MHMR most of her life and I spent a good part of my summers volunteering there. I developed a very soft spot for the special people there. Usually they had this great childlike innocence and such love and joy at times it was just dazzling! I'll definitely keep warm thoughts and healing love headed to you all. I hope everything comes out ok.

Chrissy said...

These pictures are great! Sorry you had such a crappy week.

Kathryn said...

Heather: Yes, yes and YES! I'm sure there will be some punishment for the "puncher", but they've not made a decision yet. It's difficult (to put it mildly) when both parties are special-needs. It also sucks.

Gavin: No, not a lame comment. I appreciate your taking the time to comment at all! It's hard to know what to say to something like this. Believe me, I know!

Erin@TheLocalsLoveIt: Thank you...the parody of that Photoshopped image was supposed to remind myself (and anyone who's struggling) that we all just do the best we can...and that'll just have to be enough.

KellyGrrl: Yes, I have to admit...I hope this kid gets to experience what he's put my son through. I don't think any of us were prepared for how "involved" it would be. Yikes....

Tom Bailey: Thank you...you're absolutely correct...it is sooo complicated, with so many possible outcomes. The disability-part on both ends just makes it that much more of a challenge. I appreciate the understanding...

ValleyWriter: Thanks. I wasn't so funny last weekend....but I'm relieved to see that the humor's still lurking somewhere inside. I'm so appreciating all the kind words posted here...

Gigi: Aw, thanks sweetie! I really do appreciate that. Just knowing you guys are listening and are kind enough to take the time to comment is comfort enough!

book*addict: Thanks, doll. He's continuing to improve physically and the rest'll have to be dealt with. We'll get through it. Thank God I've got this place to come and vent and feel accepted...with autism in your life, you don't always get that in the "real world". Makes my home here extra-special.

Kathryn said...

Mrs. Prissy Pants: Thanks so much for the kind thoughts. It's always hard to accept the simple fact that some things can't be fixed, no matter how much we love them. **I can't comment back at your place! The f*%#&ing word verification thingie is cut off and there's no place for me to type it in! Have you noticed you're not getting any comments???**

Kathryn said...

Fierce:Thanks so much, sweetie! I think (hope) it helps explain why this place is so special to me. Here, I'm able to just be ME. No judgment, no "special circumstances"...just me. Love that!

WannabeVirginiaW: Ain't that the truth! It's really hard to not totally lose it on people...to try and keep your cool...esp. when the person you're dealing with is just the messenger...and they're saying, "Don't shoot!"

Dreamfarm Girl: Aw, thank you for the lovely compliment! Altho, I doubt I could have told the story without spitting nails a few days ago! That's where time and distance are definitely a good thing.

Smoog! Yeah, well...I don't always feel so strong. But today's been a good, productive day...where I didn't groan each and every time the phone rang. I can live with that! Thanks for the encouragement!

Alicia: Aw, thanks sweetie. I'm convinced that I'm automatically funnier once I click that button that brings me "home" (re: here in blogville). I'm very fortunate to be in such great company.

Kathryn said...

Gillian: Uh-huh...that's me...but, I've got much better hair than that woman!!

Lou: Thank you....hey, we've all got our challenges. It's never a dull moment...that's for sure!

Runnergirl: It's my pleasure, sweetie! I'm super-glad for the diversion...hanging out with all of you is a blast!

Rambles'N'Shambles: As I've said before, you are wise beyond your years, young lady. Thank you for the reminder to keep fighting...and I will, dammit!

dailyseeking: Thank you! I'm happy to BE back! I missed you guys!

Foyce! Thanks, Secret-Agent....you're da best!

Smileyfreak: Thank you...I'll pass on your kind wishes for his speedy recovery. We're getting there...

Tina: Thanks so much. I really appreciate all the kind words. It's so lovely to have so much support here!

Kathryn said...

Maureen@IslandRoar: Thanks...from one mommy to another, I know you can relate. I'd no idea that one hard punch could cause so much damage. It never should have happened, though...

jmberrygirl: Well, that's good to hear...that worse case, he can still look like he's got his front teeth. I'm still hoping they'll be able to save both of them.

B-ster: Aw, I'd never leave on vacation without telling you guys! (Believe me, you'd KNOW if I were going away!!Seriously.)

Kathryn said...

Mark Price: Thanks, bud. I don't know the first thing about punches to the mouth. I'm hearing words like "upper cut" and "lucky punch"....I'm thinking words like "juvenile delinquent" and "assault".

Gay Guy: Aw, you sweet man...you've given me many smiles over the last 18 months. (Minds out of the gutter, people.) You'd make an excellent parent, GG...of this, I am sure. You'd have the most well-educated, well-rounded, well-loved, best-dressed kid in town. Now pass me a crepe, please.

Spot: You were a Godsend, my dear! I hope you know that. Every time I heard the chime of my phone, I was reminded that I wasn't alone...that life existed outside of that little room with that incessant drilling! And YES-Kevin is an excellent patient...I'm very grateful for that.

Kathryn said...

J9: Gosh, I hope so! Finding my poker face was really hard that time!

lifelove'n'wine: Thanks, Jen! I'm keeping my fingers crossed that he'll make it thru all this with only a manly-scar on his chin as a reminder. That would suit me just fine.

~:C:~ Awww! How sweet are you? See? Now, if only your neighbor (bi-atch) had done that, you wouldn't have gone through hell and back!! (You poor thing!)

Loredana: I know what you mean. Sure, we know situations will improve...but what about our overall life? I actually find it's better not to look too hard at the "big picture"...it's too scary. I just break it down into bitty pieces and take it from there. It's less frightening that way.

Sara: Thanks...I'm working hard to ensure the next bit if news is definitely good news. I appreciate the well-wishes.

JD at I Do Things: Thank you, my dear. I hope you don't mind my poking fun at the two of us...I really couldn't resist. You'd make an excellent semi-nude grandma/wolf....don't you think?

carissajaded: Aw...that's sweet of you to say! I'm grateful it wasn't any worse...and I'm super-happy to be back here again!

Lauren: I know! It's hard not to want to throttle someone, right?
Grrrrrr.

chickasauras_rex: I appreciate the empathy, sweetie. No more cringing...for either of us! Must. Find. Humor. Must laugh...it's the best medicine...right?

lauren: Aw, thank you! I was just there...how did I miss that??

Kathryn said...

Krissi: It's not easy, right? My favorite is when you simply want to curl up in the fetal position and weep...but of course, we can't.

serendipitous: Yes...I think it's hard to feel that lack of control over what's happening...and knowing you can't "fix" things like you could when they were little. That part's hard.

Wendy Blum: Wow....I'm glad Zane was okay, too! (Did you EVER ask him why he was playing golf outside in the winter? Now I'd like to know, please.) I'm actually glad to have made it this far without any major injuries (of course, I've just knocked on wood as I typed this)...with 3 boys, anything can happen!

Clandestiny: Thank you, sweetie....and thank you for sharing that special part of your life here. I'm sure that your volunteering has helped you to have much more empathy for people with disabilities...it takes a very special person with a lot of patience to do what your mom did. These people are way under paid and under appreciated.

Kathryn said...

Chrissy: Thanks, sweetie. It'll get better...eventually. It always does...eventually!

Cynica Sarcastamos said...

Kathryn, you ARE SuperMom! (Who else could make me laugh throughout a story like this?!)
Here's my (feeble?) attempt to comfort you: I am fluent in 'dental' and I can tell you that the worst IS over. That would be the 'trauma': i.e., the injury, the blood, the pain, the weirdness toward the buddy who delivered the blow, etc.
Now be prepared to hear lots of: "This is normal.", "This is to be expected." or "It's all routine." as you sit with your baby and think, 'NOT normal!' 'NOT expected!' and 'NOT routine!'. (Silly doctors, anyway.)
Hang in there, Amazing Mom. It's all in a day's work for the specialists. (They'll pre-medicate him with a sleepy drug prior to any treatment appts, right?)
Just remember that this will all be but a mere - though icky - memory soon!

Kathryn said...

cynica sarcastamos: Aw...thank you for that (definitely NOT feeble!) explanation....sounds like this is a tad familiar to you, my dear. And you're totally on the mark with the "this is normal, expected and routine"....and you nailed my reaction as well! 6 weeks and the wire comes off, the root canals can be finished and maybe life will resume it's regularly scheduled programming. Thanks so much for the commment!

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