Renata over at Just Bring the Chocolate has set a little blogging challenge – to define ‘Normal’ for our house.
Anyone who says that their family is normal is lying… or in denial… or just mad. There is no such thing as the normal family, just varying degrees of weirdness. Just like the pile of things that sits hopefully at the bottom of the stairs waiting to be carried up day after day, after a while, we don’t even see our own idiosyncrasies. Parents of special needs children, arguably, embrace this weirdness to a more impressive level than many other families, and, should you come across us, you shouldn’t be surprised if some of it leaks out into everyday life.
You can read the rest of this (flatulent dogs and all) here
So, normal in my house involves medicine and syringes in most cupboards, handbags, drawers and on some surfaces. Drugs for me, bleed management drugs for the Cheetah Keeper, anti-reflux drugs for his sister. Plus the ‘normal’ stuff of paracetamol and antihistamines etc. It’s having wipes/tissues/swabs/kitchen roll handy at all times (handbags, surfaces, pockets) ready to clear up whatever bodily fluids whichever child decides to produce at an inappropriate moment – the general rule being, the more awkward the situation, the greater the quantity of blood or refluxed stomach contents will be produced.
It’s being on first name terms with my GP (and several others at the practice to be fair), and their receptionists. It’s ringing up for an appointment and being greeted as ‘Jenny’ not ‘Jennifer’. It’s not being questioned when I ask for an urgent appointment and knowing the number for Great Ormond Street Hospital off by heart. It’s being able to park at and navigate around pretty much every hospital in the area with confidence. It’s knowing to keep an extra copy of every letter we receive from a hospital because somewhere along the line, someone will have lost their copy.
It’s being worried about every bruise, every nosebleed and whether the children complaining that something hurts is genuine or if they’re just being ‘normal’ (and making it up!). Oh, and it’s being able to teach teachers about how to manage the children’s conditions and convincing them that because the children are doing ‘ok’ at school doesn’t necessarily mean that they’re finding it easy and that their coping mechanisms may work well but may not be good for them…
There’s a little snapshot of ‘normal’ for us – there’ll be more…