Thursday, September 14, 2017

Um, hello?

Knock, knock, anyone home? I was just thinking of dropping in and catching up with things. 

So what's been going on...

Teen Queen had her intake evaluation for the vocational day program on the 27th of August. Longest day ever. It was only 4 hours, but a brutally long four hours. Since she hadn't been tested for IQ and other things in the last five years, they had to retest her. Normally, this isn't that stressful, but throw her into an unfamiliar place with strangers who really didn't understand the way Autism works. The diagnostician started with the pattern matching questions; you know, they show you a pattern and you have to match it using colored blocks. Since autistic people think visually, this was a breeze for TQ. She had them figured as soon as they put them down. Like genius fast. Unfortunately, the diagnostician didn't realize that quality didn't translate to words and numbers. The next section was math problems, and without any visuals supporting, TQ was completely lost. The tester was throwing them at her and taking them away to throw another one in a machine-gun pace. If you don't let someone on the spectrum take time to translate the jumble of words and numbers into pictures they can understand, you pile on to their frustration. I once had it explained to me that Autistic language is pictures and to communicate with others they have to translate from verbal language to their language, and then try to figure out how to express the answers they see in their heads into words they can speak or write. It takes time and patience, and she was given neither. I could see her start to lose it, so I interrupted the testing, gave her her noise-cancelling headphones and iPad with the finger-painting app, and gave the diagnostician a quick course on Autism. She slowed down some, but the damage was done. By the end, the state of Texas had assessed her IQ at 74, qualifying her for every program available, but breaking my heart. I know she's so much smarter than what they see. But we managed to get through it and she should be starting the Borger program in October.

Baby Queen is back for her last year in high school. She'll be evaluated in February, and will start Borger next May. She's just happy to have more minions to boss around.

My sight took an unexpected turn into the crapper in August. My right eye is almost completely occluded by the cataract. In three months, it tripled in size and doubled in density. I've had rolling migraines and been in the ER twice for medication. Spouse finally said enough and pushed me to find another eye surgeon. I had my appointment Monday, failed every test spectacularly, and was informed I should stop driving for awhile (cue wirecutter's comments on my driving). My surgery on the right eye is scheduled for Oct. 3, and left eye Oct. 13. Yeah, Friday the 13th. Because of the strength of lenses needed, the degree of astigmatism, and the fact that my deductible is already met and insurance is going to pay 80%, I'm getting everything. I should only need some cheap Dollar Store readers if I need anything at all. I'm thrilled, excited and ready. The pain and strain of trying to do everything mostly blind has worn me down to my soul.

Other than that, things are just going on. Facing another birthday, another year ending and I'm still not sure what I want to do when I grow up. You all were so sweet in your comments and support, I just wanted to let you know how I've been. Hope y'all are doing okay.