Thursday, May 6, 2010

Gift Ideas for "Special" Moms

I found the perfect letter for over-worked moms of special needs kids.  I don't have the heart to give it to my dear husband this year: 

1) He's been working 70 hours/week for 2 months straight...and still hugs the kids and me most nights.
2) He's got major family worries, and he's the fall guy.
3) Mother's Day just happens to fall on his birthday this year.  Love you, honey!
But simply laughing over it and sharing with you makes me feel better.  Validated.
Here's a link or read it below.

A Special-Needs Mother's Day Wish List
By Terri Mauro,

Psst ... moms! Commercials are going to try to convince your spouse that jewelry or candy or flowers are the perfect Mother's Day gift, but you know all too well that the important things in life don't hang on a necklace or clip round a wrist. Things like sleep. Understanding. Revenge. Tailor this list to your own special needs, then use it to give your significant other a clue about giving a significant present.

To my loving partner in parenting:
I know you're trying to figure out a Mother's Day present for me (and if you aren't, take this as a big, fat hint).

Jewelry is a lovely thought, but not exactly practical, given that our child might steal, break, perseverate on, or require us to hock anything nice to pay for medical expenses. Candy is always appreciated, but since I've just consumed all the children's Easter sweets to save them from obesity, diabetes, and allergens, I'm not really in the mood. Instead, honey, why not pick one of these gifts I'd really love. They may take a little more effort than something in the Hallmark aisle, but they'll make a big difference to me.

1. You know that material I've been asking you to read about our child's disabilities, that stack about 500 pages high? Read it. Now. Really.

2. Do some research of your own for a change and bring me something I haven't seen before. Then explain it to me.

3. Find the home number of every specialist and educator who ever dissed me and make some really good prank phone calls.

4. Offer to stand guard duty at the bathroom door while I take a nice, long, hot bath, free of constant cries of "Moooooooooooooom."

5. Buy some sturdy boxes for storing all the children's school papers, and then believe me when I say I have to save everything they've ever done for possible documentation of learning progress.

6. Buy some sturdy notebooks for storing all the children's specialist reports, and then organize them for me so I can always find the exact one I want in a snap.

7. Sit down with me for one hour to discuss decisions we have to make about our child's behavior, treatment, schooling, and/or future. No TV watching, newspaper reading, or dozing allowed.

8. Next time you're tempted to make some crack about a neighbor or a teacher or a family member that you just know our child is going to repeat out of context at the worst possible time ... don't. Just don't.

9. More precious to me than diamonds and rubies is a good long nap. Make it happen.

10. Next time we have a dispute over discipline, I win. (What's that? I always win anyway? It's the gift that keeps on giving!)

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Little Animation

I discovered this little animated gem through a parenthood chat on Facebook.  Love the creativity, whimsy and near-barf experience...

I want to see more of her creations!
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Name Game

Tonight I was reading a story where a main character's name was one letter off from G's name. My 4 year old G kept stopping me to see "his name" on the page. The fact that it was spelled differently than his mystified him. He got his funny furrowed brow working, the one that M and I love. He became a bit obsessed with it, flipping pages backwards and forwards to see this strange name that was his, but not his.

I tried to explain it many times, citing examples of names and words that can be spelled differently, yet sound the same. I told him that my name is Patti, P-a-t-t-i, but some people who have that name spell it P-a-t-t-y or P-a-t-t-i-e.

With a serious, sad expression G said, "You mean your name isn't M-O-M anymore?"

And so the discussion on titles ensued... :}

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Just Dandy

Another sweet story today. G got off the bus after school with a business-like air. I started my daily social skills ritual: trying to pull information and small talk out out of him which doesn't come easy most days.  I asked him how his lunch was, if he finished it all, etc.

He interupted my stream of 20 questions with, "I've got something in my backpack!"

I said, "Oh really, did you save some of your lunch for later?" 

He replied, "No...there's something in there and it's for YOU!"  And with a smile looked me straight in the eye - bonus! I asked if it was a Mother's Day present, and he said no, while feverishly checking all the compartments, unzipping and feeling around, looking for his treasure.  He finally exclaimed, "Here it is!", pulled out a crumpled up dandelion, fluffed it up, and handed it to me. He made a big show of taking a big sniff and saying how great it smelled, and of course I did too!

~ Instant Heart Melt: Just Add Tears~   Sniff sniffle

I asked if he picked it at recess, and he quizzically said, "No, I picked it at SCHOOL."  I imagined he was thinking, 'Duh, I just got home from school, not someplace called recess!' I'm pretty sure he doesn't know/understand the word recess.  :}

N's 1st flower gift to me was in Indiana, M's at our last home, now G here. N and M were about 2ish, G is 4.5...I simply forgot that I was waiting for this moment.  He picked a flower for me because he knew I'd enjoy it.  He was excited to give it to me, he remembered (obsessively of course), and was proud. What a milestone for my little sweetie!

I'm blown away at his progress these past few months. PROGRESS is my Mother's Day present. I'm doing it right. He'll get there, I just know it.

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