Saturday, August 7, 2010

I Am Homer. Hear Me Groan.

Your mission today, should you chose to accept it,  requires you to create a brand new word to describe The Autie Day From Hell.
You can restore all your other adjectives to their original factory settings, as none of them do justice to the whole new level of lunacy we reached today.

It was like a giant, autistic, Russian Doll of madness had descended over Co Monaghan... each new level was cracked open and I thought "surely there can't be more", but guess what?
There was more.
And plenty of it.

Allow me to walk you through my day.
Point and laugh as you please.

In the perfect 20/20 vision of hindsight, I shouldn't have climbed into bed beside my daughter late last night for a "quick cuddle".  Especially not after sharing a rather lovely bottle of wine with Himself, filling me with a delicious cosy sleepiness.
I was unconscious after about 4 seconds.
I may have mentioned this before, but sleeping with my daughter is like being battered by a human windmill.  I woke up 2 hours later, curled in the foetal position, whimpering "please make it stop".  
MeanwhileBob had assumed the 'Move-Me-And-You'll-Pay-For-It' position next to Himself, and I marveled at the ability of small children to expand in size, like an evil sponge, to fill completely the bed they are sleeping in.  Some clever physicist must have written a law about it.
I observed the painfully learned wisdom of Let Sleeping Bobs Lie, and concluded that it was safer to risk bodily injury from my daughter, than the ear-splitting outrage of a displaced autie kid.
People have walked to the gallows with more enthusiasm than I trudged back to my daughter's bed.

So I woke up this morning feeling like I'd done 12 rounds with an unusually skinny heavyweight, and then the real circus began.

I had just finished my second mug of tea, when an ominous silence descended on the house.
Experience has told me that this can only mean water.
With no small amount of trepidation I sprinted upstairs, only to find an empty goldfish bowl next to the recently flushed toilet...Bob was nowhere to be seen, but it had his modus operandi stamped all over it.
These are the same goldfish I found flopping about the floor yesterday after Bob emptied their bowl on top of himself.  I was sure that having survived that, they would live forever.
As Forevers go, I would feel pretty short-changed to only get 24 hours of it.
So the goldfish have been prematurely jettisoned into Fishy Heaven.
(Or flushed down the jacks, as my oldest son less poetically put it.)

We all got dressed, lamented over the dearly departed, and had breakfast.
More tea was made, the laptop was switched on and we resumed our favourite game of Redress the Streaker, which has become a regular pass-time chez Bob.
I returned from a search and rescue mission to find Bob's clothes, only to discover my lovely pink laptop wearing the tea I was trying to drink.  Bob was looking very pleased with himself.
Apparently, pink laptops don't like tea as it has been sulkily refusing to work ever since.  I said a prayer of thanks to the patron saint of extended warranty (St Harvey Norman, I believe) and tried hard not to dispatch my child by express delivery to somewhere far, far Jupiter.

As the day wore on, the hoover was dismembered and it's contents were artfully displayed throughout the hallway.  Juice was requested and poured over the sitting room floor.  Dinner was made and not eaten.  My older kids couldn't put a drink down for a moment without Bob tipping it over.
My patience had long since packed a bag and said "I'm outta here" and I thought "this is it...I am finally.  Going.  Mad".

But from somewhere deep inside me (probably from my last shreds of sanity), a question bubbled up.
Why was Bob behaving like a small God of Destruction?
I'd love to say I had a delightfully satisfying "A-Ha!" moment of clarity, when the common denominator of pouring occured to me.
What I felt was more a forehead-slapping, Homer "Doh!" moment.
All day Bob had been trying to tell me that he wanted to pour, and I hadn't seen it until the house (and my mental health) had been reduced to a sodden pile of rubble.
You'd think after living with autism for 3 years that I could read the non-verbals.

Anyhow, peace was restored when I produced a basin of water and a couple of jugs so Bob could pour with happy abandon.

After he had soaked himself, the decking and an 8 ft circumference around him, a trip was made for some emergency chocolate shopping.  Not for the kids, but for myself.

So, back to a single word to describe that day?
I'm going with "D'OH!"


  1. oh jeanie! I'm exhausted reading about that day! Well done you for copping on to the pouring thing! if anyone deserves chocolate it's you xx

  2. Oh dear poor fishy lol, Hope Bob has got over his water fixation for a while and you get to have a nice peaceful sleep tonight. xx

  3. And I thought I'd had a difficult day! I would have been far too exhausted to notice the pattern...hope the laptop tragedy is resolved soon xx

  4. Jean, I am just back in from two weeks in Kerry en-famille, and loved this blogpost.

    I am wondering why it took you 4 seoonds to fall asleep, you need more wine, it normally takes me about half a second to fall into a post wine slumber and I loved the 'evil sponge' child, been there.
    You have such a talent with words, why not join the Magpie tales for a challenge some week? Would love to read what you come up with.

  5. Oh dear, poor fishy, poor pink laptop and poor mammy Jean. Chocolate is a definite must after that day. I can only imagine how the patience would run out after a day like that. XXX

  6. oh jean wish you didn't have such a way with words cause instead of all how horrible for poor jean i am pmsl i love the way you cope

  7. @ Taz, I bet lots of the great inventors had autie kids
    @ Andra, he had a great night's sleep last night (ergo so did I!). Phew!
    @ Blue Sky, I have great hopes that today will be better
    @ Brigid, I will check out the Magpie stories for sure
    @ Elaine, it was either chocolate or I was gonna hit the streets looking to score some hard drugs....chocolate is just easier to get
    @ Breda, you gotta laugh!

  8. Oh Jean....I'm feeling so sorry for you and kinda guilty that your brilliantly written post gave me a huge smile (and a lot of giggles). WITH you but not AT you of course ;)
    I hope tomorrow is better :)

  9. Lol'd at St Harvey Norman, but (being a total tech nerd) I am v worried about your laptop. I hope it makes a speedy recovery. V unfortunate after your broadband debacle so I am glad to see it is not keeping you from us :D Jen

  10. OMG Jean...what a day! The poor fishies. The pouring thing appears to have started the day before...the wonder of hindsight, as you say! A stressful day that you made so go have some more wine with that chocolate! xx Jazzy

  11. @ Fiona, It was almost worth the stress just to laugh about it
    @ Jen, there are many laptops in our house, so at least I still have access...I'll be taking my sick laptop to the doctor tomorrow
    @ Jazzy, I may have had some wine last night...

  12. Jean, you have the patience of a saint. On the upside at least Bob has stopped depositing brown fishies around the place...

  13. Oh....I'm so glad you wrote this and shared it with the world. It sounds just like a day in the life of my family. I so giggled my way through it, with you of course not at you. I had a thing for pouring as a child too, I just loved the sound the water made in different containers. I remember my Mom sitting me on the window sill every time she did the washing-up, she would give me different sized containers and my beloved 'Toby jug' to pour with. Wow....thanks for bringing back that memory.
    Thanks for the post. x

  14. @ Alison, I remain VERY pleased that the brown fishies have stopped being deposited in the most unlikely places
    @ alienhippy, he was delighted with himself when I finally twigged that he wanted to pour. He must think I'm an awful eejit

  15. Thank God for work....Some one would most certainly have lost a life :)

  16. Jean, I am so sorry but i am giggling as i write this. Sounds like you had a right day of it, Bob sounds brilliant!! What a fantastic description. "Keep calm and carry on". xxx (This i going to come up as pabs, but it's kerry. xx)

  17. @ James, yes I think your A&E dept was would have been a sea of tranquility compared to home
    @ Kerry, great to hear from you! It was mental that day, but you gotta laugh XXX

  18. Like nostradamos I am very good at predicting the past, so I can say " Told ya!" now that you have worked it out....

    Having said that my son and daughter are direct decendents of Ponyo- any kind of stress and I retu

  19. Return them to their habitat: bucket, sink bath, pool, ocean- it all works. Just water will do xx