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Love Is...

3731EE5E-9738-4F00-B20E-00FCD6A743EB Last night, my daughter was feeling out of sorts. I could tell, even though she couldn't "tell" me, even with her AAC Touchchat. My daughters and I live in a small, rented, 3 bedroom ranch, built in 1952. We call it,"The Little Blue House," and it is a lovely retro home for us. We're happy here. Safe. The lower level is "finished" and has a makeshift bathroom with an old jetted bathtub that we rarely use.  The drain stopper is broken, there's a rubber plug on a chain to replace it. When the tub is running, it sounds like a Dodge Hemi engine, without the coolness.  I moved us here after my divorce, and had lofty thoughts of creating a "gals pad" downstairs, so my girls could work on independence. The area has a hideous mauve sectional sofa that I bought in a tag sale, a cheap not-so-smart TV, a therapy area, a spare bed, the laundry and what I'd hoped would become their own bathroom. That didn't happen. No matter where we live, they are always in the kitchen near Mom in all their noisy glory.
Love Is Running A Bath
I decided to run a bath for my daughter.  I gave a small spider a respectful funeral, cleaned the jets and washed out the dust. She was surprised to see a full tub. Happy, I hope. She's always loved the bath and the pool.  I helped her sit down.  Then I sat on the closed toilet, keeping near her while she luxuriated in lavender Epsom salts. I had a rare moment of maudlin sadness. When I was a girl, I always read the local newspaper. Not just for the news, but for a small, one panel cartoon known as "Love is... by Kim." Maybe you remember it? My Mom used to send me clippings in the mail when I moved out of our house at age 21 to start my adult life. My daughter is 20. I thought of  the Love Is series as I sat next to the tub.  A quick Duck Duck Go search brought me right to the cartoon. My beautiful daughter is unlikely to have a boyfriend, lover, or husband to run a bath for her.  She has me. Her tired, old Mom. I tucked her into bed early. She tilted her forehead to me, her version of a kiss.

Love is... running a bath for her.

Comments

drymeadow

Every Christmas and birthday my extended family would buy well thought out, age appropriate gifts for my son. Gosh, they meant well but the gifts were too complicated and didn't do it for him. After a couple disappointed looks I always bought 3-4 rolls of blue tape to accompany any gift because that's what he really wanted to begin with. In our house, love is blue tape, baby back ribs, and a hike in the mountains.

He doesn't see very well since the vaccine took his eye. I was told in an 8 minute eye exam. The ophthalmologist told me to make another appointment, he only had 8 minutes to explain what had happened. Apparently if you want to make a million dollars a year, you can only see your patients for 8 minutes no matter what's going on. I did cry on the way back to the car but no one saw my tears, for my son doesn't see very well...

Marianna

TOB: I couldn’t have said it better myself :)

Morag

Really good article ,
NoSpa?
No Time?
Too Expensive ?
No Access?
No Problem Spa at home is achievable !
Low Cost?
Good Access!
Got Time, in your own time !

Love Shack The B52s YouTube

Kim, got a good book to post on to you, need a postal address.

Benedetta

Oh you sweet moms on here you broke my heart each one of you including Kim. Hugs to you all

Gayle

Kim you are a wonderful and loving mother to your three beautiful daughters. I am a mom to an adult son with autism also and am here for him and his every need and I just want to take care of him and make sure he is safe and loved. I wish this tragedy of autism had never happened to all of us and I am hoping that there are smart researchers in the world who will develop a miracle CURE for our children and I pray to God for that every day. We have to hope and keep faith alive for our special children all over the world. God Bless us everyone.

Beleaguered Autism Mom

Love is... shaving my adult son's face, helping him wipe his butt, help him brush his teeth, straighten his pants, turn his shirt around if it is backwards or inside out, prepare his food, cut his food, shut the car door, clean his room and bathroom, plug in his iPad, so he can listen to kiddie videos, drive him to speech and OT and don't cry when they tell you he is legally blind at the IEP meeting. Doing all of these things while remembering how healthy and normal he was at birth. Kim, I hope you stay strong and live a very long time. You do more than most of us.

Joejoe

So sorry that your daughter and our children have to go through this misery, I pray that there is someone good hearted around them at all times especially after we the parents pass. These are obviously evil people doing this damage to them. God bless you and everyone in the autism community suffering with this or any other affliction.

Gerardo Martinez

Thanks for Sharing. Such an example of true LOVE. I wish these things had not happened to us, but they did. For me Love is taking my autistic non verbal son on a hike. The park is in the city limits, but there are parts that seem very isolated. He is 14 now. I do sometimes think what If I were to slip and fall? Become unconscious? He could not call for help, He would probably wander off. Another potential news tragedy.

Yes, Love is knowing this and still going on a hike with him. There are sad thoughts, but I am grateful to God that there is more love in our lives than sadness. Thanks again for the great story. Blessings from Texas!

TOB

Oh, Kim. I don't know what to say, but your post tore at my heart.

Not every child has a mom like you, but for the ones who do, no boyfriend could ever love them as much as their mom. You are the reason your girls are healthy and safe, and when they are happy, you are the reason they are happy.

This country has never dealt well with people who need help. We're great at writing checks to corporations, and awful at recognizing that some people have been dealt a very difficult hand and need help (or--dare I say it--compensation from the folks who dealt them that hand).

I was encouraged when I read the article you posted about the apartment complex with a portion of the residences set aside for individuals with disabilities. Maybe because this apartment complex is seen as "development" and "job creation" in the community, it will be seen by other towns as a model and something worthy of community investment. I hope that similar opportunities open up--it seems likely, because someone's going to see that there is money to be made--and that the staff employed by these apartment complexes (maintenance crews, meal prep folks, etc.) are good people who will care about the residents or are at least dedicated to doing a good job. It won't be enough, but it will be something, for at least some people.

It is times like this when I can hardly stand how unfair the world is, and I just pray that the next world really is all about God's justice. There is a whole lot of sorting out to be done.

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