Look. If you had one shot or one opportunity to seize everything you ever wanted. One moment, Would you capture it or just let it slip? “Lose Yourself” -Eminem
This month is Autism Awareness Month, and for me I like to laugh at that. I am very AWARE of Autism. I can’t understand how in this day in age how anyone can’t be aware of Autism. It is everywhere. The Current stat is 1 in 68 and in boys its 1 in 45.
Last June, I had a nervous breakdown. What is called today as “Burnout” It came on the heals of a very hard year where it was discovered that my second son Ian was diagnosed with Autism level 2. I had been dealing with my older son Ben’s diagnosis and getting him all the help he needed it never even occurred to me that something would be wrong with Ian. I felt like the worse mother in the world. How could I have missed this? Me?!
I was super involved in the Autism world. Reading anything I could get my hands on about Autism and attending conferences.I was an active member of a Autism mom support group. I was even doing advance parent training with an Applied Behavior Analyst so I could basically be my son’s full time therapist. When in April we were told the news that Ian had autism. I thought OK I can handle this I know what to do. Come June I would start to unravel.
I remember when it happened. I am at the pharmacy where they know me and my kids by first name. My children are on six different medications. I should tell you this is not a mom and pop pharmacy but a big chain one. I am there so often they KNOW me. I was going to have to wait 15 minutes for them to finish the order. I saw a friend in passing and said Hi. I sat on a bench and when the friend was out of sight. I burst out into tears right there in the store. I came home wrapped myself in a blanket and cried for three days straight. I couldn’t do not do it again! How was I going to help Ian? I am drowning in Autism already. There is no more I can give.
My moms support group had a therapist that they used for their group therapy and I called her. I went into therapy. She helped me get rid of my guilt for Ian. She showed me that a life of only autism was no life. I needed to rediscover myself. I went out and got some new friends, I rediscover my love of writing and started (and still working on) a novel. I went back to the love my life. Baseball.
Through the power of social media I was able to connect to baseball in a way I could not have imaged. I found Gabe Kapler and his health and fitness blog. http://kaplifestyle.com/ The advice got me healthy, I went from being sick every month to I don’t know when the last time I was sick now. I have lost count of my healthy months. His blog is my inspiration for this blog. I just saw it and said to myself “That what I want to do. Write about what I care about and tell my story.”
Social media also helped me connect with other former and current ballplayers. When I wrote about how I was too chicken to get Dean Palmer’s Autograph. https://missbaseball.net/2015/01/15/tbt-dean-palmer/
I then shared the story with him via Twitter and his wonderful reaction to my request.
Well that was it for me. I knew right then and there that I want to be a sports writer. I want to interview ballplayers and go on television. I had a purpose in life. I am me again. I am Miss Baseball.
Now I would love to tell you that everything in my life is just wonderful but” Let’s snap back to reality.” ( that’s for you Kap) I had a set back in December when I decided I could dance like Janet Jackson at a party and tore up my knee.
Because I was active and healthy I was treated like an athlete and after 8 weeks of intense physical therapy I am back. My first son Ben has had some issues with sleep and seizures and we are dealing with that now.
A new plus. My boys love baseball. We watch it on television. They are big Ranger fans. My boys want to play baseball. I am hoping next year I can put them in a special league and they can really play. Ben is left handed and I think I could make a pitcher out of him. Ian is my tough guy, he’s got a lot of muscle on a little body he’s going to be my big bat.
If there is one thing I have learned is Don’t stop being yourself. Autism is in my life but it shouldn’t be all of my life. My children need to see me, living my life.