Admit It.

This week was a horrible week.  The child care center I own was robbed.  Not much was taken, but damage was done.  Can I just ask, who robs a child care center?  Unreal.

We need our ‘Article 5’ letter from an Embassy that will now be closed all next week for mid-Autumn Fest in Chi*a and then Columbus Day in the U.S.  One lousy piece of paper stands between me and my travel approval to go to get Dolly.  One letter, and now a whole extra week.  Unreal.

There were some high points though.  We got to eat dinner with a family that has almost as many kids as we do (I said almost), one comes from a hard place, and they have others who have had to overcome hurdles like some of our kids have.  Those moments are nice, because it makes me feel less alone.  It helps to admit the struggles and frustrations we have raising not only kids from hard places, but just kids in general.

It feels good to just be with people.  That makes it sound like we’re hermits, and we were for quite awhile.  Bubbly made it impossible to be with, or around, people for a very long time.  As I spoke with a family member earlier in the week, she reminded me that it would be okay to just let Bubbly be who she is when we’re out and about.  I reminded her how intense Bubbly’s episodes can be, how when she loses it, she loses it.  She reminded me that people, especially family, would understand.  I agree, given enough explanation, they would understand.  The problem is, I would have to explain her situation, and I never have.  I would have to admit it.

I would have to say that I have a daughter who was so badly abused that she is now living on the Autism Spectrum.

Damn.  I hate the way that sounds.

I would have to admit what she lived through, and what she continues to live through.  I would have to actually say it.  Do you know how many times I’ve actually said it?  Hmmm…I can count them on one hand.  I know, I know, here I am putting it on the internet for all to read.  But, if you were standing in front of me right now, and I told you, I would have to say it…in words…out loud.  And what if you had questions?  Or God forbid, if you said something absolutely insane like ‘I’m sorry’.  I might cry, and that would be an actual emotion.  Crying is for the weak.  And even worse, the crying would be associated with what Bubbly went through.  I might be sad.  I don’t do sadness.  I hate it.  Ever.  I speak vaguely and matter-of-factly about what happened to our girl.   I can also count on my hand the number of times I’ve cried since I came home with Bubbly, Giggles and ShyGuy.  Emotional overload from them caused me to become a little emotionless.  I think about, and talk about, their feelings so much that I’m just plain tired of emotion, even my own.  

I’ve pushed it down.  I think about, and act on, her abuse on autopilot.  I don’t want to talk about it with anyone who doesn’t absolutely need to know.  I don’t want to have to name her special needs or explain how we think they happened.  I don’t want to hear how sorry everyone is for what she lived through.  I don’t want anyone to pity her, because she would hate it.  Most of all, I don’t want anyone to think she’s not absolutely perfect…

because I think she is.

who doesn’t want to admit it, because maybe, she’s kind of hoping it will all go away.   

3 thoughts on “Admit It.

  1. FWIW, in the times I’ve spent with her, I think she’s AWESOME!!!! And I know those times have been short, but what I see when she’s just hanging out does not scream “ASD!!!!” to me. She just seems like a cute, fun little girl. (As I’m sure my oldest just seems like a goofy 14-year-old. We both know that things arent’ always as they appear – sometimes better, sometimes worse, sometimes just different.)And you’re right – it’s’ on a need-to-know basis. Sometimes you just want people to get to know your kid for who s/he is without qualifying it with a diagnosis/label -and the beautiful thing is, sometimes it works out okay that way, because the sun breaks free from the clouds and s/he has a moment/hour/day where the challenges just aren’t at the surface. Hallelujah for those moments! :)We love you guys. All nine of you. *grin*PS. I’m NOT planning on catching up with you anytime in this decade. 🙂

  2. I think she passes for ‘normal’ (whatever that is, because are any of us actually ‘normal’?) pretty easily. It’s when things change quickly, or she gets scared that she turns into a big old rage monster (insert image of the Hulk). At those moments, I know people look at her and think “Holy crap! That kid ain’t right.” I was fine with that when she was smaller, but now that she’s older, it totally embarrasses her. She talks for DAYS after it happens about how everyone thinks she’s ‘weird’. My heart just breaks for her. I have to find the balance between protecting her and stunting her by never letting her go anywhere or do anything. That’s my issue, not hers, and I’ll keep working on it. P.S. We wouldn’t expect you to catch up to us. We think you guys are great, just the way you are 🙂

  3. Well, you know that we are som BIG fans of Bubbly (and all Ketarki), especially a certain 11 year old. He seriously doesn’t know or care about anything except that she picked him, and that makes her 100% awesome in his book. Sometimes, I think that kids find a special friend who just gets them, exactly as they are, warts and all. Maybe they connect on some level that we cynical and jaded adults just don’t understand. I don’t know how it works, but I know it does. Wyatt could handle the Hulk. On the other hand, he has the least patience of all of us for his own sister. Even less than me, and that’s saying something!This stuff sucks to talk about, to think about, even to write about. It just SUCKS. Little girls should be able to laugh and sing and twirl around without a care in the world. I get SO mad, sometimes beyond the point where I can form a rational thought. Especially when sitting at a table surrounded by people who know, who see it, who have papers and testing and evaluations to confirm what we’ve known for years. She is damaged. She is fragile. She needs help that we can’t give. Her past is going to affect every day of the rest of her life. And someone else DID THIS TO HER! It feels like the ultimate failure as a parent, to not know how to make it all better, to not have the medicine or the kiss on a booboo or the magical fairy dust to restore a little mind and a little spirit to that carefree place that they must have known, even just once, before we knew them.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: