Monday, March 31, 2014

Still Around

Seems like I'm always coming in here to apologize for being AWOL. I am sorry. I took the last year off to deal with learning how to navigate without a personality (career). I have never been in this position before, and with the help of a very patient and loving husband, am making my way...albeit slow going. 

In December, after 3 years on dialysis, and one month in preparation in a Colorado Springs Hospital, I lost my mom. That sent me spiraling into a chasm i didn't know existed. I am making my way back up the walls of it as we speak. I would like to say I'm making it day by day, but we are still operating hour by hour. I went to see the doctor after awhile, and he's helping me navigate the way. 

The side effects of my recent health issues (yea, along with the mental health issues, there are physical issues, yay me) I had become almost agoraphobic....i don't want to leave the house, and as bad as i want to see you? I just can't force myself to do so. Apologies to those that have wondered where the hell I've been, and why i didn't show up. Know that i want to be there for my friends, and will contribute what I can...I just can't come right now.

All in all, I think I'm on the upside of everything....except the domestic goddess part. How the hell do you stay at home moms get this all done? I am willing to pay someone to come and teach me!! It could have something to do with my current funk, and I do have all my plans and dreams in my mind, I just am unable to organize it into a working plan. HELP! :-)

Anywayyyyyyyyy...that is the last year in a nutshell. Now we can focus on this past weekend, and my lifeline to the world, Miss Molly Kate. 

Molly is now 13 years old, will be 14 in June. I'm still not sure what happened there...she is definitely 13 ....with all the glory that having a teenagers physical self, wanting a cell phone, wanting to show her style in dress, etc...but not operating fully at 13 years cognitively. 

We just did an evaluation, and i really don't think they know what they're talking about in cognitive age and IQs, because the little goober is MUCH more acute than they're giving her credit for. Recently she has become a backseat driver. When you want to use the mirror to back up...you can't. Her big head is in the way while she motions you to 'come on back, you have plenty of room'  She yells WATCH OUT! if there is oncoming traffic, and tells you to GO when the light turns green faster than that guy behind you can honk. I told the sarge it's time to hide the vehicle keys as I don't put it past her to grab them and go for a drive one day.

We went to Springfield to see Zoey Grace, her little niece that was turning 4 years old on Sunday. Then Bill and Ka came too. We prepared to make some awesome Asian food (Ka astounds us everytime we get together) so we decided to stay the night and party for 2 days.

We bought bikes for Molly and the birthday girl on Sunday, and taught Aubrey Jo how to ride without training wheels, and taught molly how to ride WITH training wheels! What a beautiful day...in the 70s and providing us with a full day of play, including Molly getting some hog-time on Gabe's Harley. She'd jump from a plane if she was with her brothers. 

She astounded me again with her secret command of the English language. We saw a stalled coal train (she adores trains) and she was soooooo excited! She counted all the cars, and then when we made it to the end she verbalized..."Bye, train, see you later"

One day I'm going to wreck the car because of her. I have never heard her say 'see you later'.  I don't know whether to be overjoyed that 5 appropriate and understandable words came out of her pretty little mouth, or confused as to why she has never uttered these words to anyone in her family! *sigh*

Today I heard her counting down verbally ...the numbers were not in proper succession, but? when she got to #1? she yelled BLASTOFF!! (another first for me to hear) 
Thank you Magic School Bus. 

I did have to laugh and apologize to the Sarge today, as running after kids and bikes all weekend, and not sleeping in my own bed, made me a mommy-zombie today. I was feeling pretty old. We just looked at the communication note from school....the afternoon was a wash deportment wise, and she spent the last 10 minutes of school asleep on her bookbag. 

I guess we were both were pooped. 
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I would like to invite you to the prayer page we have set up for molly's little redheaded boyfriend 'Bobbert'  He was diagnosed at the beginning of the school year with Leukemia, and is in St Louis now, getting his 2nd infusion of his brother's bone marrow. 

We need him home and at 100%. 

https://www.facebook.com/PrayersForBobbertRobertEvans?ref=hl





Sunday, December 22, 2013

Godspeed, Mom...I'll miss you forever









Alyce Jo Miller entered paradise on Dec 15, 2013, a trip she had planned for her entire life, peacefully and surrounded by her children at Select Specialty Hospital in Colorado Springs,CO.  She was greeted at Heaven's gate by her beloved mother, Naomi LuJon, who, with her step-father, Max, raised her in Cheyenne, Wyo.  She attended classes there through high school, and then attended the University of Wyoming, where not only did she set records in the swim club, and was a majorette for the marching band, but her love of music was cultivated and refined.
She met her future husband at Frontier Days, 1946, and two years later married Gerald Miller and remained his bride for 65 years. To this union, her self acclaimed greatest gifts were born, her four children. Patricia (Dale) Pfeiffer of Colo. Spgs, CO,  Jeri (Carl) Kyle of Lexington, NE, Eileen (Larry) Wilson of West Plains, MO, and Richard Miller of Greeley, CO. They provided her with 11 grandchildren and 15 great grandchildren. She was also known to bring other children into her heart, home and family, so the list of those that mourn her passing numbers many.
She only had one sister on her side of the family, (one niece and two nephews) but was welcomed into the Miller side, a large family filled with love and laughter, as their own sister. This family not only provided her with 5 brothers, but two additional sisters. Surviving her are Joe (Suzi ) Miller, Jacksonville, FL. Thomas (Bev) Miller, Central City, CO, Gladys (Mel) Cieloha, Thornton, CO, and Robert (Ursula) Miller, Peyton, CO . Brothers George, Donald, and sister Rosemary Miller Dornbrock precede her in death. This family also blessed her with a host of nieces and nephews that she held dear.
Alyce was first and foremost, an amazing Christian, a most loving mother, the Co Owner of a Dental Lab and the first female Certified Dental Technician (before anyone had ever heard of a liberated woman) She loved to dance, was on a bowling league, water skied, played tennis, and loved to teach music to the youth of her home parish of St Ann's in Lexington, NE where she spent most of her life. She had a beautiful, opera type singing voice and a fine tuned musical talent. She considered these attributes her gifts from God, and willingly gave them back to Him at many church functions.
Retirement allowed a move to Johnson Lake, and Bertrand, NE where she endeared herself to all that met her in those communities. Eventually, she moved into the home of Patricia in Colorado Springs, where she spent her final days surrounded in love, shopping, and grandchildren.
Even when facing serious health issues Alyce woke every morning, praising the dawn of a new day, and lived that day to the upmost. Her favorite song of late was "Morning has Broken" which is a perfect description of the life she held precious and led. She remains a beacon of love and faith to guide us all.


A celebration of Life will be held at a later date. Mom did not want to be the cause of anyone's tears.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I am such a bad girl...poor Molly doesn't stand a chance

Last week was a travel week. Off to Colo Spgs to visit mom....14 hours of drive time one way..... Dad doesn't like to fly.

I might insert here...KANSAS SUCKS!! Sorry Kansas, but HOlee MOlee...driving acrossed that state would try the patience of Job!

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My mountain, Pikes Peak. ...my other hometown. It was good to see that it was still intact despite the wildfires of the previous weeks.

Traveling with my family is just weird.

Dad does not read, or listen to music, or anything. He just sits in the back seat (more comfortable) and reads the road signs and checks his watch....that's it. There is usually an abundance of War stories at the beginning, but they even stop after awhile.

Molly is plugged in. DVD-iPad- something always. She switches seats at every stop, either in the front, or in back with dad. Whichever spot she chooses, there is 5 minutes of clearing out everything that I had left there from before...it all just flies because she doesn't like anything around her....at all.
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The sarge is always on a mission.... Least amount of time on the road, least amount of gas used. There is barely a reason good enough to get him to stop....he would rather find an outhouse, as oppose to a little store,  because we waste too much time in there taking a break. When he does stop? It's ONLY at his favorite places, and always the same places. There is no time for fun....i just want to stop at Osceola ONCE and get some cheese, but unfortunately, that is too close to where he likes to stop, the Dominator, so we never get to.
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Well, lemme tell ya, the Dominator, who is suppose to have the cheapest gas and the quickest in & out, failed us miserably on the trip home. We pulled into pump #2, left him to do the filling, and I jogged in with Molly to do the other. She LOVES to shop at these places...always on the hunt for a popsicle, and never finding one...she will still walk away satisfied with a bag of Cheddar Ruffles and some sort of little blue drink.

We come back out, and the sarge STILL has not pumped the gas...can't get it to work. I saw a man that was suppose to be working, outside talking to some chick on the way in, and told him about the trouble, but he did nothing, so i told the sarge just to pull around to another pump.

That one did not work either, and now Dad's starting to get irritated. You don't want dad irritated. At 86, he feels no need to contain, control, or  be calm. He'll just pop a cork and blow like a hot pop that's been shaken!

We tried several times to get help, did not have enough gas to move it on down the road, and the sarge is now starting to look at me like ....you know...IT'S ALL MY FAULT! I might mention that it's about 100 degrees, also, and Molly has used HER last bit of patience...tick tock...tick tock....

Finally, Missy Pissy Pants that I am, goes back up to the store door. It's one of those doors that ding-ding-dings when opened. So, after several failed attempts to get help, and on this 100 degree day, I opened that door and leaned on it, keeping it open. You could feel the A/C rushing out of the inside. :-)

DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING

"Are you still having trouble with the pump?"   Young guy is dealing with a woman who is upset about her lottery ticket. She is REALLY upset, too.

"Why yes, we have been here for 20 minutes, and have yet to pump a gallon of gas. I might add, we've been here wayyyyyyyy longer than powerball girl, there"

At this point, the line of customers all turn to look at the witchy woman, and i figure I'm going to get some evil looks. I find it comical that most are grinning. They are tired of waiting behind upset lottery lady, too.


DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING DING

Blondie pops out from a room hidden behind the register. A manager

"That young man is suppose to stay on the register"
Really? I saw that young man talking to a chicky chick outside when i pulled up a half hour ago
"That was me"
Oh.

She IS going to help, though, so I try and clap my trap. She comes out and also cannot fix the pump.(She did have the gaul to ask if we had pushed the start button)   A guy with a HUGE 5th wheel camper pulls in beside us, looks at us, and asks if there is trouble with the pumps. Blondie manager (grrrrrrrr) looks up and says..."Oh #2 never works"

REALLY?? #2 where we spent the first 10 minutes?? NEVER WORKS??? grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

Finally she cashes out the pump, gets us fueling, and reminds us that she is sure we don't look like people that would run away without paying. They don't do 'pay inside' with just anyone, you know.

Don't tempt me sister....

Anyway, we got our gas, finally, and got back on the road..poor sarge's.trip time TOTALLY blown out of the water, but Molly was happier for the break.

All my sibs and their kids showed up in Colo to see mom... a little visit turned into a huge family reunion...so it was good too.
the langoleers photo IMG_1932.jpg it's Miller time photo IMG_1927.jpg
Next time? I think maybe we'll get to stop in Oseola at the cheese factory...I believe the Dominatior may be off the stop list!  All I know is that I have a new-found respect for those irritating DING DING DING doors. ...they can come in handy.



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oh yea, there was a birthday, too. I'm Officially Old!
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Mom was thrilled to see everyone and looks WONDERFUL!


Saturday, June 15, 2013

Me-Ming!!

We finally got to go ME-MING!! (swimming) Molly is so funny. She NEVER gets excited about ANYTHING. That morning, she was not wanting to get up for school, as usual. She was laying in her bed, looking at the iPad, but only had one eye open. 

I told her what today was...TODAY we get to go SWIMMING at SCHOOL! TODAY we get to ride the BUS and go to the POOL!!
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Well lemme tell you...miss always calm tossed that iPad, JUMPED up off the bed and YELLED.."DAD, BACKPACK!"  Daddy usually prepares her backpack while I get her dressed, then she yells at me "I, (she calls me "I" not mommy...thank you very much, daddy) "I, Tow-well"  and I might add, she was verbalizing all of this, which again, is something that rarely happens.

 I was trying to get everything together but evidently not fast enough and daddy and I both laughed as we watched her run to get into my vehicle with only one shoe on, and her hair not brushed.  I would say she was excited.

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She had a blast..and thank goodness for the number of teachers that volunteer for this outing, because at one time, as always, she made a move that was too fast for me. She always seems to wait for that moment when she thinks I'm not paying attention, being the sly little skunk that she is. 

She slipped away from the little kids area of the pool, to the section of the pool where there was deeper water. Molly is comfortable in the water, and we have a pretty big above-ground pool, but it's all one level and she can't float.... but she doesn't understand yet that she can't float. She's been getting her dog-paddle and freestyle 0 stroke down, so she thinks she can swim and has no fear.  For some reason, and to the dismay of all parents of children on the spectrum, she is drawn to the deep water with this lack of fear. 

I have purchased a flotation belt for her, and had it in my swim bag, but wasn't given the option to put it on her. Bee-line girl had made her move through the pool, while I had to run AROUND the pool. 

We have been trying to teach her how to jump into the pool, but she doesn't like that. At the pool that day, I decided that we would NOT try to teach her to jump anymore. THAT would have been disastrous. She made the bee-line for the ladder, and started to back down into the pool.

 I was running, but not fast enough and hollered ahead at the teachers closer to 'GRAB HER!!'  All we could do was hang on though...that 120 pounds of water-balloon-down-syndrome flop&drop-body wasn't coming out of the water. Three adults couldn't pull her out. (UGH) Then one of the teachers ran for the belt, and I was able to show her the belt and use the ABA training (which was a stretch because the 1/2 panic 1/2 angry mommy just wanted to scream) and said MOLLY!! FIRST BELT THEN SWIM!! Finally, she understood we were going to let her swim, and allowed us to drag her out and put the swim belt on...and then away she went happy as a lark...she paddled over to where the boys were jumping in. She paddled over to where all the other 13 yr olds were.

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After about an hour, she got out of the pool and was thinking about taking her suit off. I know, I saw the look in her eye. So I asked her if she was done. Her 1-1 was standing there...I think she knew, too! :-) No matter how much this girl loves an activity, she's only good for a short period of time. A whole hour was amazing to me...she's usually Miss 15 minutes. No Theaters for us. 

We gathered up her stuff, and instead of staying to lunch with the other students, we just came home. She did make me stop and open the back of the Tahoe, though, so she could recover her sack lunch, drink, and fruit i had in the cooler. 

Maybe...she'll take a rest this afternoon, and not destroy the house!! 

We can always hope.

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on a sad side note...our little red headed boyfriend up there? our 'bobbert' the little boy who has been molly's protector and voice this past 6 years at their little k-8 school, was recently diagnosed with AML Leukemia. Please join us as we pray for him and his family while they fight this horrible beast. 
https://www.facebook.com/PrayersForBobbertRobertEvans?ref=hl


Monday, June 10, 2013

The worst mommy EVER!

Summer school is upon us. It's a wonderful program! Molly gets to continue speech therapy, they study great topics thoroughly, and there is a field trip weekly! 

I like to go on the field trips with her, that way she's not susceptible to long bus trips and the teachers have back-up...mommy back up. Her teacher for the year is one on one, and her 5th grade teacher AND a friend, Miss L, and we are VERY happy about this. Miss L started facebook messaging me one week before the onset, EXCITED to be getting to work with Molly. I CANNOT emphasize enough HOW wonderful it is to have a teacher EXCITED to GET to work with your kiddo!! 

If they attend all days of summer school, they get to go to Silver Dollar City at the end of the session. They go free, family members get reduced ticket prices, and since 3 of my babies are born in June (Aubrey Jo on the 7th,  Little Bill on the 11th and Molly Kate on the  22nd) we are making it an annual family day! (plus, I'm really cheap cheap!!)

Friday, the field trip was swimming. It's still chilly here, and I'm not ready to have her swim.  I'[m a little apprehensive about taking her to swim by myself anyway...she's bad to run and jump in deep ends (I have a belt...I've seen her take the belt off at motel pools and go jump in the deep end) and there is the 'too much excitement-maybe leak' aspect to worry about (ordered special garbs to cover that) and then there's always the "I don't want to leave and am gonna melt" aspect..which is impossible to deal with at her body weight and with the limber 'flop&drop' body our kiddos with DS have, which just takes patience. Now mind you, NONE of things would happen, as a parent, though, we tend to let our minds wander to the worst case scenarios  so that we can be ready...or sometimes we just talk ourselves out of joining in the fun.

On this particular day, daddy and I both had appointments, so would be unable to attend....BUT I didn't want her to be counted absent, so we agreed to attend school up until the time they went to the buses to go to the pool in Willow Springs.  I just figured she wouldn't know, anyway...and we could go get pedis and have a girl day in between our appointments. 

WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!!

When the kids started to line up to get on the bus, I went to pull Miss Molly out and she gave me 'the look' ?????? WHAT ?????? are YOU freakin' KIDDING ME?? WE'RE going ME-MING!! (that's how she says swimming) ON THE BUS!

OMG! How did she figure this out??? okay..okay...I can talk her out of this...Lets promise...ummm...ICE CREAM!! yea...lets go get ice cream! 

NO!! ME-MING!!!

Ms L tried her best...she offered her a sack lunch. It had an apple in it. Ms L is regretting that as Molly hauled off and LAUNCHED it at her...Ms L ducked in time, but i think that apple may have glanced off her forehead. MOLLY NO! 

She then figured out she had gone too far, and she really was trying to reign in a full melt-down, so she took off running and screaming for my Tahoe. It was horrible. I made apologies to our wonderful teacher, assuming all the blame for this one as I, yet again, had underestimated my girl.

Driving home, she cried...she cried and kept verbalizing "Me-ming" but settled a little. I think she was holding out hope that I was going to drive her to the pool, because when I put on the left blinker to head down our highway home she let out a war hoop, and then a new word. 

NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!! ME-MING, DAMMIT!!!

Yea, I'm blaming the sarge on that one. The sarge and the KC Chiefs losing football season. I WAS impressed that we have a new word.. I'm relatively sure it DIDN'T come from the therapist and THRILLED that it was used in context...but...well....you know. 

To make matters worse, after having the electrician out to fix the power to the pool, and the Spa people out to rebuild the motor to the pool, it turns out that the motor isn't going to hold. OUR pool is still not up and running. The new motor is sitting here in the living room, Spa girl is coming in the morning to get it fired up, and hopefully Molly will have her OWN pool within the week....but that's just not soon enough.

 Maybe she'll just forget all about it if we have a nice, fun, relaxing weekend. 

Yea, that's right..she has Down Syndrome, she is on the Autism Spectrum. Surely I can make her forget about a little mishap that happened 3 days ago. 

This morning? As we were leaving for school? She ran back into the house. She forgot something. I saw her run back out to get in the truck with daddy. 

She was holding a beach towel.

Epic Fail. 


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Well I NEVER!!

We've been out of school a week...and this week starts summer school! YAY! I have been SO excited to start my new life as a SAHM (stay at home mom) but have found that it's just not as easy as it's cracked up to be! I cannot start any special projects while Molly is at home, I can barely keep up with the 'maintenance' part of keeping a house...she is so much help. I need SAHM bootcamp, for sure. 

My sweet little "angel" is a just this disaster just waiting to happen, and the house just seems to fall apart around her as she walks through it. Every single day I spot something that is amiss, something that I would have never believed she would do. The other day, daddy pulled Dorothy the Dinosaur handpuppet out of the light fixture. We have vaulted ceilings...

This morning? My bluetooth Jawbone earphone. I use it around the house all the time so that I can talk on the phone while I'm cleaning up the "Molly Messes."  I hang it up on the little piano light above the rolltop desk my computer is on, so that i don't lose it. It is very small...who would notice such a thing? 

This is what it looks like..it's about one inch long

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Molly would...this is all that is left of my earpiece.

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That means, miss OCD saw it, didn't want anything hanging from HER lamp, and tried to pull it off. I guess I should be glad she left some evidence as I know now I need to look for it...as opposed to just thinking I lost another one in my old age scatterbrain. UGH!!

Yesterday, I bent down to look under the bed for something Larry lost, and OMG!! the rest of my day was spent cleaning out her "hoarding" spot! It was easy to see under there, as daddy's favorite LED flashlight was turned on and laying wayyyyyy in the middle. We have a king sized bed, so you just cant reach things there without aid, so i have one of those 'grabber' things...ordered special extra long, just for this purpose...but i can't use it, because it's sitting right next to daddy's flashlight. Most of my afternoon was spent on my belly, grunting, straining, and cussing...then, of course, there were dust bunnies to deal with...nothing worse than dust bunnies under an immoveable bed, on carpet.  Thanks Molly. (I'm relatively sure that it was at this time she was busying herself killing my Jawbone)


In prepping her for summer school (Molly is not a good transition girl) I've been showing her pictures of Ms Driscoll. (DRE-SKO!) Ms Driscoll has been FB messaging me all week. She was Molly's 5th grade home room teacher, has worked with her during summer school before, and is an amazing woman & phenom teacher just in general, and is going to be with Molly for summer school this year, too! I cannot tell you how much it warms a mama's heart, ESPECIALLY a mama of a kid like Molly, when a teacher starts messaging you a week before and is all excited about getting to see your kid, getting to work with your kid, and telling you about the plans she has to excite your kid! A.MAZ.ING.

Anyway, we show up at school bright and early this morning. There is no fussing about getting miss "been sleeping in till 10am" up at 6am...she pops right out and gets preparation business taken care of without fuss.  

This is the kicker...we walk up to the front doors, and DRE-SKO!! comes out to meet us...'HEY MOLLY!!' she yells...Molly turns and gives her a big ole hug. (yay...pictures and talking did the trick!)  She THEN?  THEN? turns to me...places her hand on my chest...gives it a little push and VERBALIZES..."Bye"

WELL, I NEVER!!!

My little monster is growing up. She'll be 13 next month...and she is acting like it already. 
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The sarge and his 3 daughters, Molly next to Tammy, and Kelsi
next to him. 


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

LIVID!!

I just got off the conference call with the DOJ, NDSC, NDSS. Susan Goodman was doing most of the hosting. They had met yesterday to discuss the Ethan Saylor case and what we can do moving forward. 

Moving forward.

ETHAN SAYLOR WAS MURDERED!!

http://www.justiceforethan.com/

Tackled by off duty police officers because he wanted to watch a movie for a second time, and didn't understand about purchasing a ticket. His aide had gone to get the car leaving him alone for just a minute. 

They could have waited. They could have talked to him. They could have bought him a ticket. They could have de-escalated the situation. What THREE LARGE MEN did was shove Ethan face down onto a stairway, handcuff him and smash his larynx....killing him.

And what was questions were answered by this much anticipated conference call?

Why have no charges been brought? Why no investigation? 

Because he had down syndrome.
Communication Problems
We need to focus on police training on handling people with special needs.

What will make this better and not happen again?

We need to write to our newspapers.
We need to write to the Maryland Attorney General.

Statement that most ticked me off?

This is not about Down Syndrome. But now the Down Syndrome community is involved. If he had Autism then all the Autism groups would be involved. Then we would have to train for all sorts of disabilities.

Most heartwarming phone calls:

Jacked up mommas calling from all over the country. They hung up on one. Everyone hosting are confused as to why all the moms are calling for the NDSC to DO MORE and WHY all these moms are so  ANGRY!!! 

We do need to something...and yes, this momma is angry, also. We need to more than just write letters. We need to stop being so complacent about this. 

We need to RODNEY KING it...we need to TREVON MARTIN it. WE NEED TO MARCH!! We need to make sure the ENTIRE COUNTRY is aware of what happened and that WE WILL NOT STAND FOR THIS. This young man needs to be our Matthew Shepherd. We need to remember his name for eternity, and NEVER ,NEVER, NEVER let something like this happen....EVER!

We need to DEMAND JUSTICE for this young man. They need to lose their jobs and be charged with manslaughter at the very least. These men don't get to kill a man and walk away....just because he has down syndrome.....and because they think no one will stand up for him. 

Susan Goodman? THIS IS WHAT WE NEED TO DO!