Poor husband, he thought today was Thursday. For a moment there, I too became excited.....I mean: yeah! The week's almost done! But no, alas, my brain worked this morning, and I KNEW it was Wednesday. Well, at least I didn't lose a day......as then I would have had to write wondering what the ehll happened to Wednesday after all?

So, yes.......I, being a California girl, had no idea that the sirens that were blaring were NOT from the main office being broken into, the nearby hospital, a strange ambulance by a private company, or a malfunctioning fire alarm. 

Apparently, when you hear the sirens, you are to take your children INSIDE and provide them safety from the windows. At least that's what people do who live in the Tornado Belt, or whatever they call it. ME? I was vacuuming the balcony carpet, and the boys were standing along the edge getting soaking wet. They did ask if they could go out and play in the huge, growing even huger puddles?.....but I did have part of a brain and told them to play with leggo's instead. After all, there was a lot of lightning and a strange odor in the air. 

Aramis asked about the odor? I said it was ozone from the rain.....no, it was power lines bursting just a mile or so from us. 

Husband and crew had already ordered $2000. of concrete, so the truck arrives, put's the lever on full speed, shoots it at them, and takes off. He said if OSHA knew, there'd be trouble. 

Here are 6 guys, surrounded by rebar steel, and lightning all around. He also said the wind started to take the rain and spin it around them, circling them like they were in the center of a rotating shower head. They hid in the artificial tree they're making, standing on a steel spiral staircase! I mean: if lightning had intelligence, then that would be the most exciting place to crack!!! I'll attach photos.....you won't believe the risk they took.But what could they do? As soon as the concrete was released, they cleaned the hose, slipped and slid up the hill while the mud bank was falling back down onto their work, and ran home as quick as they could. 

I figured he'd be home early, after all, there were golf ball size hail stones now......in no way did this West Coast girlie think for one moment "tornado". People were running everywhere, rushing to get into their apartments, and I figured: Texan's don't like rain. 

How is it that I do not react to what other people just seem to know is danger? Now, I was honestly more worried about my poor little service dog eating a leggo, I took a balloon away as "it was a choke hazard", and did stop vacuuming when the hail stones were actually bouncing around the balcony that I was vacuuming. Nice to know I pay attention to some things! 

But now: the weather is cold as can be, and gray. Very ugly, but I know it will pass, Texas has been beautiful from the first moment we arrived. Looks like we will be here even longer, as the second construction company cleared away most of a hill and made a temporary wall. The wall collapsed and now their exhibit is under several feet of mud.

There was a party planned at our apartment complex last night (a pool party!!!!), but I'm pretty certain it was canceled!!! 

We wouldn't have been able to attend even if we didn't have a tornado, as the new med schedule has Aramis taking 1 1/2 tabs at night, which means he sobs and see's monsters for about 15 minutes if we're careful, and then is asleep. It's an odd sort of existence, we all relax, eat supper, etc.....all the while Dad and I know that the minutes are counting down. Aramis will say: "I feel funny"....and I swear, you can hear the jeopardy theme song. MOVE.....get the 10 minutes required of nothing in his mouth, no water, toothpaste or food, pop the med in UNDER the tongue, confirm it's dissolved, then RUSH him into bed. He will start the crying, as the med is like Novocaine and makes his mouth numb, but he now can't drink for another 10 minutes. Wait, stroke his head, remind him to breathe, until he can drink and fall asleep immediately. That's how the med for his schizophrenia works. Isn't it fun? 

He has his own camera, and always takes pictures. Well, we get loads of strange pictures and never knew why, other than: Aramis stinks at taking pictures. Since his med, he is now more lucid, hence: more articulate. So, he looks at me the other day and says: "You know, I try to take pictures of the monsters, but I can never get them. You know why? They aren't there! Only I see them in my head, so I never can catch them to show you. I'll have to draw a picture instead." Great kiddo! Now I know what's going on..........wow, from an 8 year old, how confusing it all must be for him. 

Sometimes we tell him to "kick the monster in the knee" since the monsters pinch him, and we can't do anything about it. WE don't "see" them.....sorry luvie. I can rub your leg if you like, or your arm, as they really, really seem to like pinching his arms.  

I am doing fantastic!!! Well, very, very excited that Amazon accepted my book, and within a short period of time (days!!!!) it will be available to Barnes and Nobel, etc. It's awesome.....but more work than writing a book! There are so many things that I need to sign, or do, or build, or provide......Well, at least I know what to expect for the second book that's in the making. 

AND I'm hearing from all my therapist over the years, as well as professors who always told me to write, but I never thought for an instant that I could be "that" open and honest. 

I had a strange, but positive experience when pottying the puppy this morning......I heard a new bird call. Then, Sidney (a little), had a flashback of those little Audubon made bird whistles. You know, red painted wood, with a key that you turn and makes a bird call? Well, I looked down, and I was turning an invisible "key" for one of those, and I realized that part of me recalled perfectly: I could FEEL the texture, shape and movement of the little bird whistle and I knew it was 197-something. BUT, I also knew it was 2012,  I knew I was also an adult, and hearing the same sound now from a bird I've never heard in real life before. Amazing.......the psychiatrist says that it's because of the new med: Saphris. 

I don't know.....I'm a little leery that they are "trying" it out.....so what if it's like Effexor was? Did you know that over 50% of the sell rights for Effexor was owned by members of the DSM board? They're not supposed to have an interest....but they can waive that right too. Husband and I learned that on a documentary from 1990.....so I don't know if the process has been changed since then. But my, oh my, were the docs sure pushing Effexor. The risks are simply too high with it now, and I won't ever touch it again. Still: leaves me wondering about Saphris. 

But, it does make one hungry with minimal weight gain. That helps with the anorexia......I actually enjoy food now. The head games are still there, but I've learned if I sit down with the family, and focus on the here and now, I can ignore the messages from the past. They're there....but I FORCE myself to ignore them, and actually have some sort of intelligent conversation with the family. 

That's about it.....everything is wet outside, giant puddles, and the trees look a bit overwhelmed. Aramis and I had a "date" planned to go fishing, but there is no way I'm going now! Hey, I might vacuum through my first tornado, but I do eventually learn!!!

Have a good day everyone....peaceful wishes to all, and a huge thanks for all the support during the book writing process. Kudos to you all!!!!

Shelly
 


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    Shelly Dowen-Johnson

    I am currently traveling with my husband across the United States, due to the nature of the work he does. 

    I am the mother of two boys, one who has recently been diagnosed with Early Onset Childhood Schizophrenia (Schizoaffective Disorder). 

    It appears the Dowen family gene sequencing contributes much more than the darling dimples both boys have inherited!  But, as always, with love, tender care and support....we will thrive! 

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