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Appointments make me frantic

I woke up with a plan today; I plan to get something done. The first thing on my “to do” list was to answer a series of emails from a class of counseling students. I was contacted by a professor who used my book in her graduate class about counseling individuals on the autism spectrum, and was given the awesome privilege of fielding questions about my book. The questions came to my inbox over the weekend and, as is typical, I needed time to ponder them. My priority this morning was to respond to those questions, and then I was going to move on to helping Aspie Teen study for his semester exams, get my own school work done, go pick up the Teen’s Rx from the pharmacy…and the list goes on.

One little thing can derail the entire day—or at least it feels that way. After the last email was sent, my phone rang and an unknown telephone number popped up on the screen.

Oh dear God, don’t answer it! But my thought was not as quick as my fingers that swiped across the screen accepting the call. Why did I answer the phone? I never answer the phone, and there is a very good reason for it. If I don’t know who is on the other end, I am often unprepared for the phone call.

Today it was the psychologist for our school district. She was calling to schedule an appointment for me to come down to the district office and fill out more paperwork and answer more questions about my son’s “developmental history.” Really, guys, how many times and in how many different ways do I need to answer the same questions. It is getting me a bit nuts now.

Anyway, the appointment is for Wednesday morning at 9 am, just before a noon appointment that I have so my whole day is gone on Wednesday and Wednesday is not even here yet!!! First problem is that I am already stressing about Wednesday appointments on Monday—will the baby cooperate during the appointments? Am I going to be able to get there on time? Do I know the answers to the questions they are going to ask? What are they going to ask anyway? How am I going to get everything else that needs to be done this week if I spend all day at appointments on Wednesday…can you see the panic setting in?

Then, I look at my email and realize that Aspie Teen was supposed to have a speech evaluation today between 2-4pm but I think I had to verify it, and send paperwork. So is it still on? It is 1:30pm and I am in a complete whirlwind of overwhelming panic from one phone call and one email! None of which “should” have such an impact—but does.

Now I am sitting wondering if the speech evaluation is taking place at 2pm (it is online), and how I am going to get all of us out of the house to get to the pharmacy before it closes at 5 if the evaluation really goes all the way until 4 o’clock—and I have to pick up the Tot at 5, AND in the meantime will not be able to use my computer, complete school work, or do anything else while the teen is online with the evaluation! Argh!

Of course at 2:10 I found out that the speech pathologist doubled booked for this afternoon so she has rescheduled the Teen’s evaluation for Friday! Now I am completely frazzled and need a time-out!

Calgone take me away!

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Jeannie Davide-Rivera

Jeannie is an award-winning author, the Answers.com Autism Category Expert, contributes to Autism Parenting Magazine, and the Thinking Person's Guide to Autism. She lives in New York with her husband and four sons, on the autism spectrum.