Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2011

Piece #20 - STRESS!

S-T-R-E-S-S, this I believe is something that keeps building and getting worse every single year. In some cases, this is a beneficial thing because I don't think I could've finished any college paper or something for work without it. There are many times when I wished I did things a little sooner than the 'last minute'. My bad habit though seems to get the best of me because without the stress of getting something done on time, it may never happen. I try to put self-imposed deadlines for all my work and there are times when it works, but not all the time.

A recent article talked about stress in the work place, it talks about how you look at your own approach to the job and how you should adapt to the changes that take place. The problem with this idea is that change is very difficult for me with my Asperger’s. It goes on to suggest that I "gain control" and "get physical" which all sound great, but I'm in a job (teaching) were control is a  const…

Piece #19 - November

If I ever get the chance to write my biography, the title would have to be November. I'm intentionally writing this blog during the actual month. If you've had the chance to read the last 18 entries, you'll already understand why my biography would be thusly titled. One thing I didn't realize about the month was that November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness month. (There's a lot of irony in that!) If you look, you'd be amazed at how many famous people have died from the disease.

Of course, many of you all know that my birthday is in this month (6th, Yes I’m a Scorpio), but many of my family members are/were in November as well. I've also mentioned that my wedding anniversary is on the 25th of the month and if my daughter Megan and her husband had some patience, they were aiming for November 11, 2011. (11-11-11) My daughter thought it was good luck if you caught the time at 11:11, then you could make a wish. I can understand why they didn't wait though. I …

Piece #18 - Money, Money, Money

I agree in many cases that "The love of Money is the root of all evil". I'm not a big fan of money, of course I'm not rich, but believe it or not...it doesn't really matter. I didn't come into this world with money and when I leave...it's not going with me! The only irony in all of this is that my favorite color is green. It has been since I was a kid. (But, it wasn't because of money.)

I believe the issue I have the most about money is trying to keep everything organized as to bills that needed to be paid versus trying to purchase items that might be needed for the family. To be honest, my wife JaimeeAsperger's, I might miss or forget important details that could be critical to our budget. I did make an open observation that slapped me right in the face when I was given a credit card for me to use because we have to be careful about our funds at the current time. Little did I know that I ended up 'nickel and diming' myself right through th…

Piece #17 - It's a matter of...Priorities

When it comes to setting my priorities, you would think this would be a "No Brainer", but with my Asperger's (and my wife); that's not always the case. My problem is "the situation", not the guy from Jersey Shore, I mean when anything like my job or my family comes into a conflict for me (hinds the situation); I actually find it difficult to make to proper decision. Why I say my wife, is because she feels there are many times when I do something for work, where as I should’ve been something else I needed to do for the family – ahead of the job.

I think the main problem with priorities is that I tend to be a "do it now" person. Sometimes, it is a good idea to get things done right away, but there are times when I should put certain things off because of some more pressing matter. With my memory issues, I tend to forget a task if I don't address it right away, it rarely gets taken care of. As Shakespeare would say, therein lays the rub, if I hold…

Piece #16 - Trust

"In God We Trust." Or so it says on all of our currency, but what does that mean to you and me? As an adult with Asperger's, trust is one thing I try to open myself up for a little more, but it sometimes comes back to get me in the end. With my view on trust, it seems like I have two extremes; I either put my full faith into someone or something, or not at all. I generally don't tend to be an "all or nothing" person, but with trust, that seems to be the case.
I'll never forget as a father and looking at my daughters when they were babies; I'd often think to myself how much they trust and depend on me. If they didn't trust me as their dad, they might be dead now because they are completely vulnerable, being so young. One time I remember when Megan and I were going into a fast food restaurant and we were going in between some cars. We were about ready to cross through the drive-thru when I spotted an on-coming car. Megan was too little to see over …

Piece #15 - "What did you say, Honey?"

I would like warn everyone right now that my wife could easily write the rest of this blog. (It wouldn't surprise me if her comment is longer than my blog!) There are two things everyone needs to understand about listening, 1.) It's not the same as 'hearing'. Hearing is one of your 5 senses, it helps you with the listening, but they are different. 2.) Listening is work. I have told my speech and drama classes that for years and each time they look at me like I'm nuts. (Depending on your definition!) To actually listen, it takes a lot of effort and energy. Eye contact and acknowledgment of the speaker is mandatory. As adult with Asperger's, the toughest of those has to be the eye contact. My wife is a very beautiful woman, but even with her good looks, I still have a hard time looking in the eyes for a long period of time...especially when she's mad at me!

I've been married for over 20 years and the one thing that makes a differences beginning able to com…

Piece #14 - Bullies

If there was anyone that can smell out something odd about you...it would be a bully. They all had this uncanny knack of being able to zero in on anyone that might be a little off from the rest of the pack. ThePostGame.comhad this to say about bullies: "Experts say that more than 150,000 children miss school every day because they are afraid of being bullied. More than half of all schoolchildren have witnessed a bullying incident and three of every four students say bullying is a problem at their school." I'm a teacher and even that surprised me! I knew it has aways been an issue, but I think this is the first time experts have actually studied this problem. The report did go on to say:

"The bulk of bullying occurs from the fourth through the eighth grades, although it can continue through high school and even in the workplace. Bullying is intimidation or domination toward someone perceived as weaker, a way to establish superiority through coercion or force. The emot…

Piece #13 - The Boy Scouts

If there was one program I was truly grateful for my parents signing me up in, it was the Boy Scouts of America. I'm sure the next question you're thinking is did I earn the final badge that is given...Eagle? The answer is...heck yeah! I'm very proud to say that I'm an Eagle Scout, since 1986! (Man, I'm gettin' old!) The other cool thing is that my brother is one as well! They were able to provide so many experiences and interesting times.

One thing I wished I knew was how many times my wife and I had crossed paths as we were growing up. There is one thing I can say though; every year our local mall (Metro North) would host the Boy Scouts exhibition. My troop, 314 (Sponsored by the Platte Woods United Methodist Church – My old church), would do the Indian dancing in the middle of the mall for literally, everyone to see. Jaimee remembers the times when she would watch us dance and make funny comments about the outfits...or there the lack of! It was more fun when …

Piece #12 - "Temper, Temper."

Anger is a learned behavior. When we come into this world, we comprehend how to react to things by watching others. One of my many...many weaknesses has always been my anger. As you can tell I enjoy writing and whenever I've written in my characters for a story, at least one would have an anger issue. The story I'm currently writing now called Horizon, the main character Miko has problems with her rage. It's something she'll have to deal with throughout the entire story. I guess in many ways it's a reflection on how I've had to handle it. Early in our marriage, I had warned my wife that I would need her help in making sure I wouldn’t let the anger get ahold of me, for the main reason...the kids. I love my girls way too much for them to pick up the same bad habit. Yes, I obviously understand that we all get angry from time to time. (Even Jesus got angry when merchants were selling their items in the temple.) I'm talking about an extreme anger when in many ca…

Piece #11 - Christen and Sarah

I still remember a television news interview that my wife did about our youngest girls where she told them that we (Jaimee and I) don't call Christen and Sarah 'the twins', but only refer to them by name. I have to laugh at that because not only do I call them 'the twins' (on many occasions), but so does my wife as well! (So Piece #11 is titled Christen and Sarah - and not "The Twins"). Like I mentioned back in the very first Piece, those beautiful girls had finally answered all the lingering questions I have ever had about myself. In another light, they were also a miracle because before they were ever born; my wife had lost three other babies before them. Please don't get me wrong, I really love all my girls, but the older two don’t have Asperger’s. They were born on July 6th, 1995 through a C-section because Sarah was in the breach position. When Jaimee had told me they were twins, I had really hoped they would be identical and...they are! I would …

Piece #10 - The Routine

When I was growing up, I always thought of myself as a person who would 'fly by the seat of their pants'. Anything that changed was new and exciting for me. On some accounts, that still holds true today because I do like new things; new music, new movies, new games, etc. There are even cases where I really hope others will change and my situation as well because I hate having a talent that I'm really good in, but it can't feed my family. (That really sucks!) I will have to say that as I've gotten older, a routine is not necessarily a bad thing. It's been helpful to the point that it helps me remember certain things on a daily or weekly basis. I remember asking my students if a routine is bad and most said yes; but when I asked them how it could be beneficial, they didn't really know. I think we forget that routines can help prepare us for the day so when we have to tackle certain obstacles, we'll be ready for it. As an adult with Asperger’s, I've no…

Piece #9 - O.C.D.

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. This is one of those funny things you might never know you have until someone else points it out to you...but then, are you willing to accept it! I say this only for the sheer fact that my wife kept telling me this, but I really didn't believe her until something major happened! Or, I should say someone...Spider-man. I usually liked follow the development of a major motion picture, you know – where they’re going to shoot the film, who is going to star in it; but when it came to Spider-man, I might as well have been the director! I was riveted to the news as I watched the rights to the film alone, were being fought out in the courts. After Sony had won the battle, the countdown was on. The only reason I bring up the movie is because that was the peak of my understanding of this problem. Well, as they used to say in Spaceballs "Merchandising! Merchandising! Where the real money from the movie is made!" (God Bless you Mel Brooks!) Spider-man c…

Piece #8 - Tragedy and 2009 [Part 2]

Other tragedies that I can remember vividly, were in 1986 I was in high school, I just happen to walk by our little student store and they had the radio on. I asked what's goin' on and they told me..."just listen." It was a news report that the space shuttle Challenger had just exploded and I remember the radio announcers stating that "there were no signs of Soviet missiles in the area. We don't see any missile trails." I thought that was rather odd, but true. It was a shaky time with us and the former Soviets of Russia. The other was 9-11. I was teaching and a fellow teacher called me over with my class, so we went into her room to find all the students sitting down, watching the TV as the planes crashed into the World Trade Center. I couldn't believe it. At the time of course, some of the students didn't understand the significance of the moment in history, but they do today!

This leads me up to 2009. I've been in the education business lon…

Piece #7 - Tragedy and 2009 [Part 1]

This by far, will be the most difficult one to discuss. Psychiatrists always try to advice people that have been through a horrible ordeal to clinging to their religion as a way of seeking comfort. As for myself, my religion is Christianity. Please don't think that I'm suddenly going to turn into Billy Graham and start preaching until the tent comes down. I just want you to understand where I'm coming from when I talk about all the tragedies I've had to face so far in my life with having Asperger’s. Just as an overview ONLY, because the way you believe is your own business and not for me to say right or wrong; Christianity is the belief that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He came, was crucified and God resurrected Him from the dead. The idea is that if we believe in our heart that we are sinners and that God really did raise Jesus from the dead then we will be saved through Him (And be forgiven). [Romans 10:9] So when we die, we'll be with Jesus in heaven …

Piece #6 - The Fourth Move and Education

'I'm goin'ta Kansas City...Kansas City here I come!' The song by Wilbert Harrison sounds so easy, since I'd lived there for most of my life, finding a house should be a piece of cake...right? Welllllllll, that wasn't the case, it proved to be a lot harder than I thought. The bad part was for the first time we had to try to sell the house in Seneca before an official move could be made! (And that wasn't easy either!!!) By the time August rolled around, we were still unsuccessful in finding a home or even being able to sell the current house, and school was starting...soon. We only had one real option, I was going to stay at my parent's house in Kansas City and Jaimee and the girls would have to stay in Seneca. So with the school year beginning, I was at Kansas City Middle School of the Arts (KCMSA for short) and the girls attended Seneca elementary.


When I wanted to see my family, I would have to drive about 3 hours to Seneca for my beautiful wife and my…

Piece #5 - The Third Move and Education

When we moved the family to Seneca, we were bound and determined to try to stay in one location because in all honesty, Jaimee and I were tired of moving; so we did something we had never done before...buy a house! Again, Seneca was a smaller town, but there was something quaint and peaceful about the town. I know what you're thinking, 'Okay, where's the bigger town that you can actually do real stuff in like...shop...at...Wal-Mart?' Actually, that town (Joplin) was just about a 15/20 minute drive. And yes, we visited Joplin a lot. The house we purchased was literally right across the street from the elementary school. Which was great because our older two daughters were in school, so their walk was really short. By far, this house was the smallest house we had ever lived in. (Except the Cracker Jack Box House!)  I have to admit that if it wasn't for my parents, we might not have been able to have gotten the home. Thanks!

So we set up shop and were ready to go for …