Friday, September 30, 2016

Full Circle

Life has been relatively calm and on an even keel. I have started to make a concerted effort to clean my office at work and my papers at home. As I dig through papers, I am constantly finding reminders of our lives from three years ago, when our journey with Misophonia had started.

Progress has been slow but steady. I often forget how far we have come. Our relationship with Colin has been much improved but not perfect; not too far off from comparison with his older brothers. It is difficult to separate normal teen angst from annoyance to select stimuli. Our son is adept at hiding any reactions to triggers so it is hard to know what sounds bother him and to what extent.

I will take this as a good sign!


 One of the most poignant symbols of the not-too-distant past is the clock that is pictured above.

I was cleaning the living room and wanted to give the chair and couch, that we keep covered in sheets for the dog, a good vacuum. I removed the cushions of the chair and low and behold found my clock that was tucked away. Colin used to hide this (formerly) ticking clock all the time. We believe this was among his earliest trigger sounds. Even with it's batteries removed, someone found the need to tuck it away.

New Issue

For much of the past year, Colin seemed to have been suffering from a never-ending case of the sniffles. This has continued even after his surgery. Dad took him to an ENT for allergy testing. Low and behold his biggest issue seems to be "Dog" as well as Ragweed and Weeds.

Colin has allergy medications to help but he has been reluctant to take them. When I asked him how he feels about this new issue, he replied, "...It's worth it!"

 Hopefully love conquers all!

As always..... We are a work-in-progress!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

More Like a "We" Problem

8/25/16 : The last couple of weeks have been a flurry of activity. As the summer break was coming to an end, Colin has stepped up his game with Trombone Lessons,  starting work as a Life Guard and continuing with Cross Country Running practices. His middle-brother was extremely helpful in driving him to his lessons and to work. Eldest has pitched in as well.

This past weekend was especially action-packed. My brother was in town to celebrate his 50th Birthday and my sister's house was a hub of activity. On Sunday, we drove our middle-son to college. After a long day of getting him settled, hubs and I came back home in time to feed the dog his dinner and to throw a load of laundry in. On my way to the washing machine, I noticed Colin's door was open and I veered off course to peer into his room. He was at his computer playing a video game. He heard me and turned to greet me with a squinty-eye glare.

"Get out!" he warned, followed by a preemptive "Shut-Up" before I uttered a word.

I turned and continued to the laundry area. I knew better than to try to engage. I know better than to try to talk to my son when he is gaming. It had been a long day for him as well he had worked from 9 am - 3 pm and it appeared he had been unwinding for a few hours. I decided to leave him be for a bit.

Before I was going to get ready for bed, I went back down to talk to Colin. I wanted to make sure he had one more trombone lesson left as I was the one who needed to take him. He tried to "Shush" me away but I was persistent. He grumpily answered my question about whether he had a lesson.He told me it was implied. The teacher left it up to Colin . I asked if he wanted to go and he gave me a terse "Sure". I then tried to explain that I would be on a tight schedule and it was important that we get the schedule planned out.

"Sounds like a "You" problem", Colin sneered.

I shook my head and chuckled at his insolence. "More like a "We" problem" I said under my breath. I retreated back upstairs and went to bed.

It Takes a Village

Puppy misses you.
It's been a few weeks since I started this post. Middle-son is now in his freshman year at a university that is 2 hours away. Eldest is home for the semester working at his first co-op job and in his sophomore year of college. Just before middle-son left for school, we had a nice heart-to-heart chat. He confided that he was concerned how his little brother would do by the time his middle-brother left for school. We both are pleased that Colin has exceeded our expectations.

Not only have we been able to peacefully co-exist, but there has been much improvement in our relationships. Colin seems to have repaired his relationship with his middle-bother. He also looks up to both brothers. Before Labor Day weekend, he emailed this photo to his brother as part of a campaign to "guilt" his brother into coming home for the long weekend. (Which he did ). Colin had sent me the same photo a few weeks before when he was unable to hang out at my sister's house when my brother came in for a visit.

Eldest is currently working across town and passes by Colin's school. He has helped with a lot of the driving. This takes much stress off my shoulders. It also gives the boys some "together time".

When we started our journey 3 years ago, I feared our family was being torn apart. Instead this experience taught us how to work together as a family. Ditto for my relationship with my sister. It strengthened our bond and I owe her big-time. Life has not been perfect but confirms what Nietzsche has famously said. While the adventure is far from over, we are all stronger for our experiences so far, thanks to our "We Problem"..

As always, we are a work-in-progress!