Good to hear from you Mary (PA). Glad you enjoyed the necklace Mary (Hou) made for you. She does such lovely work.
Mom really loved the lilies Mary and Tom sent. They came Saturday afternoon. They were still in bud but some opened the next day, and they continue to gradually open, so she will enjoy them for quite a while. They are a very lovely pink to pinkish-lavender color. Her face really lit up when she saw them, and then lit up again when I told her they were from you. She reached out and touched a bud very gently with this look of wonder on her face. I know she understood you talking with her on the phone. She likes that very much.
I am firmly convinced that she understands what is going on around her, and she reacts appropriately. I got a raise and a bonus recently. When I told her, she looked at me, raised her eyebrows, pursed her lips while smiling, and nodded to me, as if she were saying "Oh how nice! I'm impressed! Well done!"
She also knows that Mary will come to visit every day around 4pm. When it gets past 4 and Mary is not there she gets restless and looks at the clock repeatedly until Liz tells her what's holding up Mary and that she will be around. Then her agitation goes away. When Mary was sick and couldn't visit recently, Mom didn't get agitated and she seemed to understand why Mary couldn't come visit. The other evening I came home around 8:30 (the ONLY time I've come home late since I got back from Malaysia), and M&D were still up so I went into their bedroom to say hello. Well, Tiger started howling and prancing outside their doorway and Mom very suddenly turned her head to the door and broke into a really big smile. She then immediately turned to me and looked right at me still smiling broadly. I said Tiger wanted to go for a walk, and she gave a very tiny nod of her head, and waved me out.
Dad on the other hand wonders who Mary and I are from time to time.
He had a few days lately when he was acutely aware they were not in Florida and he thanked me each day for letting he and Eleanore stay with me. Then one day he got kind of teary-eyed and asked if I could help him get Mom back to Florida. I told him that she was too sick to go back right now, but when she was well I would be glad to drive them there. He just nodded and then said thank you again and walked back to the bedroom (with Liz). Nancy used to get upset when he would insist that this wasn't his home, and he wanted to go home with Mom to Florida, until I explained that I've been telling him I would gladly drive them when Mom was better. Apparently now she are using that logic with him when he gets upset about not being in Florida.
And then there are the days when he smiles broadly and tells me how great it is that Mary comes to Florida to visit them every day. I guess I must be living in Florida too. And The Big Dog is NOT HIS dog!!!!
Oh, hey, M&T, in addition to thanking you for the book by the autistic lady Temple Grandin on understanding animals, thanks for the Renaissance CD! I found it in the book the day after I wrote you that other note of thanks! The book brought to my conciousness that I've been doing a very Aspie-type thing all my life. (JO and Mary Hou - this is the lady that come up with the way to calm down cattle in a slaughter house was to put them in a slot where they had gentle pressure on each side. This then was applied to autistic and Aspie kids by wrapping them tightly in a blanket and holding them close.) I've always prefered to sleep with a pillow parallel to my body with my head on one end and then the rest against my chest. I used to love that Maggie used to sleep back-to-back with me, and I've missed that greatly since she passed. Now that I'm back in a twin with the side pressed up against the wall, I started putting a pillow there so that I get the gentle pressure like Maggie used to provide. Well, that's the same thing as wrapping an autistic-Aspie kid in a blanket!
Ah, the Aspie within! I understand some of my own behavior much better since learning about Aspies. Oh, my lady friend from Holland, Leigh, wrote me recently that her son with the problems has been diagnosed as an Aspie also, although in my opinion he is a much milder case than Matt. It makes sense when I think about her now ex-husband Joel. I can see him as an adult Aspie, although not nearly to the degree of my friend Steve, who by the way was in Italy on vacation with his wife recently. He sent me a postcard of Pompeii!
Well, I'm going home now. Take care and lots of love and hugs, Anna
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