Thursday, September 20, 2007

Role Reversal

My mother had shoulder repair surgery Tuesday. Her doctor, a tiny redhead who looks just old enough to buy lottery tickets, did a bang-up job of making Mom whole again.

There were a few problems post-op, including an O2 level that seemed to hover around 80. Poor girl, she now seems to be developing a respiratory infection, accompanied by a nice fever. She is bruised and bloodied, somewhat loopy from the Vicodin, and really, really sore.

Strangely enough, I am ENERGIZED by all this excitement. THIS I can fix. I can bathe her, dress her, speak with her doctors, pass meds, administer breathing treatments. I can transport her to appointments, curl her hair, smooth lotion on her skin. I can tuck her in and kiss her goodnight. It feels completely natural, and necessary, for Mom and I to switch roles for a while. She has been through so much this summer. It's her turn to be nurtured. Please keep her in your prayers, OK?

Now for some good news. Ava has finally called me by name. Yep, my new moniker is....

Drum roll please....


Saturday, September 15, 2007

The times, they are a'changin'

It's official. My baby is not a baby anymore. My 14-year-old son, Dominick, is a high school freshman. It happened in the blink of an eye. Just yesterday I was carefully assembling his backpack and pinning notes to his shirt. I was the snack mom, cubing his favorite colby-jack cheese to share with his classmates. My refrigerator was covered with assorted glitter-covered construction paper love notes professing "My mom is the best mom because...". I JUST removed the black silhouette of his Kindergarten head, made with the help of an overhead projector and an underpaid teacher's aide. I am grieving, folks.

Dominick tells me that EVERY DAY he is invited to "get high". HE IS ONLY 14, FOR GOD'S SAKE! The girls are getting on birth control. They are surreptitiously making appointments at the STD clinic--yes, they are! The boys are shaving in the morning, and boasting about "getting with" said girls between classes. It's a veritable hormone factory at that school, I tell you! The girls are downright cruel to one another, lifelong friendships forgotten as they compete for boys. And the boys? Too busy worrying about the other boys' sexual orientation and who has the biggest biceps. It's like 1982 on steroids.

This is what our kids with Williams Syndrome won't experience. I think Laura, my sweet, optimistic Laura, summed it up best:

When other mom's are bailing their kids out of jail, I will be home, snuggled on the couch with Ava watching Lifetime movies.

Enough said.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

It's a Wonderful Life

After several months of literary constipation, I am back. I have a million things to say, which makes it even harder to write! I am afraid that once I start writing, I won't be able to stop. Or maybe I won't be able to start. Consequently, you are getting small talk. Nothing of great significance here. I'm saving the important stuff for a rainy day.

Justin, Laura, and Ava enjoyed a few days of R & R in Bellaire, Michigan, over the Labor Day holiday. For those of you unfamiliar with Michigan, Bellaire is located on the second joint of the ring finger (think MITTEN). Justin's paternal grandparents, whom I LOVE, arranged for a family reunion of sorts. Everyone had a great time, and it certainly didn't hurt that Justin's cabin was about 50 feet from "The Brewery". Walking distance, if you get my drift. Thank goodness. Why does beer taste better when you are at the lake?

Ava is looking good, isn't she? She is changing every day. She's a long, lean, groovin' machine. I have to get a video of her rocking out to her CDs. It's as if the music just takes over and she loses control! She does everything at full throttle. Even her temper tantrums. I cannot begin to tell you how satisfying it is to watch Justin deal with Ava as she throws herself to the floor and proceeds to do "The Worm" better than a drunken bridegroom. Hee hee.

Last, but certainly not least, Ava stood up all by herself and took one step! Only one, and she hasn't attempted to actually walk since, but you have to start somewhere, right?