Sunday, May 23, 2010

Super-Model vs Super-Tanker? No...Just Super

Oh dear.

This last year I've been feeling not so much super-model as super-tanker.
I'm not overweight, but the waistband of my jeans is complaining, and there are interesting ripples and creases (oh, OK's cellulite) where once all was smoothness and light.
It would be easy to ignore my own well-being and remain immersed in a world defined by autism.

This is a subject I return to every so often.

I fear losing my integral Jean-ness (this is a scientific quantity, measured in cups of tea in the morning, and units of Shiraz in the evening) beneath weighty layers of autism.

Even though we need to dive headlong into the Autism Ocean (which is east of the Sea of Bad Metaphors) and swim with the fishes, that we don't (and probably shouldn't) stay there forever.

There are two very real dangers.

One is that we will drown, forget who we are and become part of the ocean.

The second is that the Bad Metaphor Gestapo will come for me in the middle of the night and make me read poetry until I cry.

But I won't wait up for them...
...I'm not trying to win the Pulitzer prize for literature, I'm just trying to get a point across.

For me, it's taken almost three years to be OK with autism.
Now it's just there, in the same way that my oldest son hates French, and in the same way that my daughter wears pretty funky glasses.

I have great kids, a gorgeous husband and a roof over our heads.

Now that I've had my teeth fixed and my hair professionally coloured, it's time to get out of the sea,  hit the gym and wiggle my wobbly butt into submission.

This October I will be a fit, fab and forty-year-old wife and mother, who just happens to have a cool kid with autism.  As well as two other pretty cool kids, who don't have autism.

Autism rocks, but so does it's funky momma.


  1. Not only are you a babe, you are a wise one:) Eh, is is ok to call almost 40 year olds a 'babe' :D Enjoy your gym. Can you read a book while you spin? Jen.

  2. heeheehee can call me "babe" anytime!...and no, I won't be reading while I spin...I'll be listening to age-inappropriate trance music on my iPod XXX

  3. def wise beyond your years, besides me thinks 40 is the new 30 xxx

  4. Good ladeeee.......I love the Jean-ness and her positive attitude to all things....You are an inspiration and a beautiful sister. Mary XXX

  5. Had to read this before I started 'work'! And just what I needed..especially glad I'm not the only one who likes age-inappropriate music lol xx

  6. Good woman yourself! losing your "jean-ness" would be a tragedy - I'm ridiculously fond of it!!!

  7. @ AutiMom...I like it...40 IS the new 30
    @ Mary, cheers little sis
    @ Blue's possible that I also listen to prodigy and black eyed peas (very loudly)
    @ Taz, you're a little pet

  8. Fab post now if only I could get some of that get up and go bottled and hit the gym lol. By the way in this house I liken it to being in a goldfish bowl with three other fish and me, and the others are merrily swimming around while I am desperately trying to jump out and save myself from drowning in that sea you were talking about!!

  9. @ Andra, it certainly feels that way some days lol! xxx

  10. Loved this post - thanks to Blue Sky for pointing here from twitter. Love exercise and metaphors and reading parents who are "OK with autism".

    Cheers, Barbara

  11. I just think it's deadly that you want to look well. Sometimes I get the impression that people think I should be sad and look in bits cos there's so much involved with taking care of a child with autism. So I take extra delight in showing them how truly, happy I am to have three fab kids, one of whom happens to have autism. One of the advantages of which is perfect pitch to sing me great rock tunes. On week 3 of the diet for upcoming hol to Portugal.

  12. @ TherExtras, it's really nice to get your comment. Cheers to you (and Blue Sky)
    @ lorraine, we should start a club lol! Enjoy your holiday

  13. I'm new here, having read JenCull's RT of your blog, and I'm also a mum of three teenagers, one of whom happens to have autism.

    What a great post, and how true. As for age inappropriate music, my kids reckon I listen to it frequently! Either that, or "Sims music", they say :o/

    Sometimes autism does feel like it could take over your very being. It's at times like that I try to remind myself of all YS's successes, despite the challenges.

  14. @ Jomica, it's lovely to "meet" you...gawd 3 teenagers!!! My oldest fella has just hit his teens and boy do we know it...I'm keeping everything crossed that the next two won't be as turbulent.
    Thanks for your lovely comments XXX

  15. I would join your "Fit Autie Mamma" club, girls, but the call of "Ben&Jerry"'s from the freezer is too strong...

  16. great blog as usual jean don't let your jeanness go anywhere i only know you a while but the world be a dull place without itxxx

  17. @ Truf pml.... Ben & jerry's is hard to resist!
    @ Breda, thanks babe...jeaniosity is here to stay

  18. Hi Jean! Sorry that it has been so long since I have visited your blog. Not intentional but just been upside down for awhile.

    I am with you on the wine thing, I give myself the simple pleasure of a couple of glasses of wine every evening (always red wine too)because by golly...I deserve it and so do you!

    I am so immersed in autism that I have completely forgotten what it is like to sit and have an adult conversation about anything at all and especially not about autism.