By Kim Rossi
Moving is awful. Dreadful. Exhausting. FABULOUS!
Fabulous? Yes. Truly. You know that I take care of and teach my three adult daughters with autism. Most of you readers take care of your kids with autism too, young and older, like mine, and much older. As I have inched along the curve to planning for their adulthood, it occurred to me that I had to plan for mine too! We needed a snug, smaller home just for us girls. And so I found one in late August, and 30 days and a zillion minivan loads, and one moving truck later, we are in the house!
My memoir, All I Can Handle I'm No Mother Teresa, was a glimpse into our life, a life that has changed greatly in 8 years. The paperback came out on this date, 10/1/11! The girls are now women. And I am firmly in AARP territory and I'm a single parent. I'm also an Autism Mom and that means creative, right? My house is a ranch and my bedroom is in the front. No shades on the windows! Am I the only one who sees the irony of using a giant sized book cover of my memoir for window privacy on night one? My memoir exposed enough, thank you very much! In classic "one more chapter" style, I'll share this story with you.
Last Tuesday my town got 7 inches of rain in 2 hours. The entire town flooded. Cars with water up to the windows. The high school had to shut down for the rest of the week. Businesses near my karate school had to have their windows smashed by the fire department so employees could escape. It was a mess. And Bella had dental surgery that day. I was at the hospital from 10:30 to 4:00pm. At dinnertime, I was to pick up the keys to this new house. I ventured out into the giant storm. It was treacherous to drive the mere 1/4 mile from my old house! I arrived, said hello to the two realtors and heard a familiar sound. SHSHSHSHSHSHSHSHSH. Anyone remember the flood in the "Little Green House" chapter? The bathroom ceiling was leaking copious water! And the basement? 4 inches of water from side to side. The finished basement I was planning to create a suite for the girls in just days later. Good golly miss unsinkable Molly Brown! The owner showed up and was aghast. New roof is underway and hopefully a sump pump. I did not have to steal a fan to dry the house. Make note of that.
Yesterday, the movers carted everything to the new house. I was so worried about the girls having a home to walk into from their visit with Dad in New York that looked complete. Safe. Theirs. New but familiar. By the time 6:00 rolled around, the beds were made, kitchen complete, living room set, and lower level set up with a cool suite with their favorite things. I'd say I'm 85% done. Not bad single handedly! (Pun intended, tongue firmly in cheek.)
I owe my daughters thanks. They teach me every day that we have to acquire new skills and meet challenges that seem impossible every day. They do. I do too. They've taught me to believe six impossible things before breakfast - and then make them happen.
Miss G loves the wacky old convex mirror I bought a few years ago. She calls it "black mirror." It's a 1960s piece, with an eagle on it. It speaks to her. She loves it. She relies on its presence. Take a glimpse at at us through the looking glass. We're safe and happy and smiling in the very dry lower level of our sweet little house like four Cheshire cats.
Kim Rossi is Managing Editor of Age of Autism.