The hashtag is a... what do you call it?... that I'm (actively) on Twitter. @autisticspeaks. I can't promise I'll be interesting, though...
So, lest you think that because I have stopped complaining about them that the panic attacks have ceased, let me put your mind at ease; they are alive and well. The tricked me into a false sense of security when they abated for a week or so... but now I've had... four, I think, in a week.
I went to the big W today to get goggles (because Karen's taking me swimming Saturday!). You know, the ugly mask kind? Yeah, because I can't handle ANY water in my face. Anyway, to get those, and I needed toothpaste. For anyone who cares to know, I still use the bubblegum kind, because the minty kind burns my mouth. Dentist said kid kind is fine, so I stick with that. Oh, and I needed more earplugs.
And I got in and out of Walmart in like 10 minutes (even found a post-Easter-clearance duck, for me, and frog, for my therapist), with no panic attack, and was very pleased with myself for my accomplishments. All that for $16? Yes, very happy. A duck :)
Came back home and had a walk down to the thrift shop to poke around, then on a whim walked a bit farther (still no street crossing, as I don't manage that well and I live on a highway) to the 7-Eleven and got a Diet Mountain Dew (for the record, the flavor of the scent of the store seeps into the soda and yes, I can taste where my Diet Mountain Dews are from, and this one tasted decidedly 7-Eleveny. Not good. Have you ever heard of such a thing?!).. then walked back up the hill.
And now that I've digressed like six times, well, after that, I headed to Heather's to babysit her boys for a few hours so she could go to a meeting at church. Have I mentioned that I love those boys? Because I really do.
Got to Heather's an hour early for the sake of being piled on by her two cats in the nicely cool, finished basement. Boys in front of TV (hey, they're sick) and Heather headed out. All was well.
Aaaaand, cue the panic attack. I mean, seriously? It's Heather's. I couldn't be more comfortable anywhere (except maybe my own house) than Heather's. Her house is even better than my parents' house, because there are cats! And I started to get the telltale hot flash. Then the sweating. Then the shaking. Then the dizzy... ugh.
So what did I do? What I usually do when something's wrong and I'm at Heather's. I left A (5) in front of the TV and took D (2) downstairs with me to do kitties. He was less than thrilled, but he's cooperative so it was alright.
Well on my way to calming down, I brought D back upstairs. And maybe that's when it happened, in the two minutes we were downstairs. Or maybe it was when I went to cut up strawberries for D. Or maybe it was when I grabbed two bites (literally) to eat myself. I'm not sure, is the point.
A took D's BRIGHT BLUE blueberry juice, and I guess he shook the cup. When I came back in I saw D doing it and told him to stop and had him clean it up. At some point, I saw the spots on the floor... as in, big spots. More than a foot in diameter. On a cream-colored carpet. And remember, I was still kind of halfway panicked.
So I emailed Heather and found the rags and the carpet cleaner. I had A do the smaller spot while I did the larger one. Wondering, what the heck am I going to do with him until Heather gets home?, and not being at all one to raise my voice or scare children... I had an idea.
"A, I will not yell at you, so stop hiding from me. You will go upstairs. You will put on your PJs. You will brush your teeth, and you will get into bed and wait there for your mom to get home. D will stay down here and continue to watch TV (A's favorite thing in the WORLD) while you lay in bed."
Oh, I got him. He cried. He screamed. He begged.
I shook. I sweated. I was dizzy. I was so, so, so overheated. My head got fuzzy...
And Heather came home. I flew downstairs to lay with the kitties to calm down (only after explaining my state, and A's, to Heather) and I guess she had A come down for a snack. Don't know if she yelled, or punished, or figured he'd been punished enough, or what.
But me? I'm pretty impressed with myself. I think I handled the situation really well (I've never punished a child!). I also think I handled my panic attack well.
Oh no. They won't stop me!
And A? He's over it. Told me goodnight and thanked me for coming.