Wednesday, August 1, 2012

From Childhood into Adulthood terror.

The Blue-White Van.
...Still, strikes fear into my heart.
 After I graduated high school I had convinced myself I was no longer afraid or ashamed of it.
Not so my friend. Nooot so.
It's a high top, Chevy, conversion van. Feels like there should be a "Big Ol'" in that description somewhere. It had blue and white stripes. My brother Adam named it. I think because we had a white van we called "The White Van" We also had a white cat named "Whitie" and a gray cat named "Grady" and a cat named "Mama Cat". Because, well... she was fertile.
 We were totally on top of the name thing. We called 'em like we seen 'em. We did try to name her "Louie" at first tho. Then when she surprised us by having a litter on top of my dad's office papers in the garage, we had to go with something else. So that bad's not totally on us.
In all of my naivety when I happen upon "Louie" sitting in a box with a heap of kittens I was so scared. I really thought he had stolen someone's kitten family...Until mom explained.


The Van was sooo awesome back in its day when we were little. Because it had a TV inside of it that you could watch while on road trips. It had curtains and nightlights and a button that laid the seat down to "conversion" it to a bed.
The TV is what made it awesome. Grab a couple of movies and we were in Utah in no time. Our whole family could fit no prob. Mom and Dad up front. 2 in the middle captain's chairs, 3-4 in the back bench seat and one laying on top of the luggage takin a nap.
After many miles and many many rowdy destructive children, the van wasn't looking so....awesome. No mo. and it just became a big, lumbering, old, van. (embarrassment?)  I remember using it for a Sadie Hawkins-type dance, and while we were picking everyone up the muffler FELL OFF in the street, and that's why you can hear dad coming home 15 minutes before he actually gets there. Oh, you didn't know? Yeah. my dad still drives it. Not as frequently (Thank heavens.) Cause it gets like a mile per gallon and after the third time, it caught fire and that one time the brakes went out on Cole road (which is a hill. BTW). She ain't as re'liable as she usta been. I remember being at school and dad saying something about taking the car for something getting fixed or changed or something. And I walk out of school to the dreaded blue white monster poking its high top at me from the student parking lot. I didn't know that sometimes the door just didn't shut. (like 1 out of it's 2 main functions. Opening and shutening.) I found out later the mechanism doesn't always reset so no matter how hard you shut it. It will just bounce right back open. (Picture me, just slamming shut the door over and over and over and it not keeping shut. Getting more and more panicked with each and every slam. Questioning my door shutting abilities, face full of shame and confusion.) So I get in to drive home and its the passenger door that won't close. So I'm stuck with it flappin in the wind like laundry. So I find one of Dad's ties that was left behind and tie it to the handle on the door and hold it semi shut while I drive one handed on the way home. Dad later told me that that was really smart thinking. Even though I felt crazy dumb. I also remember at that Sadie Hawkins dance after stuffing the muffler in the way back. Finding a stray can of Sprite had burst open when I shut the door and sprayed all over me and my Hawaiian garb. That was the theme of the Dance. Twas a full and eventful day of little Van gifts.

Yeah, I hated that Van. Not only was it incredibly humiliating but it also brought bad luck. Like it was a living thing that wanted to stick it to you one last time.

But Dad loved it...ish... .He would go out and starter up every day so it would start up when you needed it to. He loved that you could haul a bunch of stuff like a truck but didn't have to worry about it getting wet or stole. He loved that it was paid off...and well that's prolly it in the things to love category.

After a while, The Van became less and less of a horrific promise, to a terrifying threat to a no big deal, might happen, to a faded worry from our childhood/teenage years.

And then...

My sister Sam is in town visiting from Utah and It's Summer and Hot and Glorious. We are both single and have boys we care about in our lives. So I plan for a bunch of us to go float the river. Josh has never done it before so I thought It would be a blast. Sammy tells some kids about it. I invite all my friends and we get a pretty huge group to go. We all meet at Ann Morrison at the take-out point. And we are trying to hammer out how everyone will get to Barber Park and who can take them back after we're all floated to pick up their car back at Barber. I think to myself. "Hey self, Isn't dad just hanging around today?" "I bet he would be willing to drive us all up to Barber and everyone will fit in the Trailblazer just fine. No one will have to drive back up or leave their car up there". Bam I had totally fixed our problem. (The trailblazer, by the way, was the new family car. It seated 8 comfy like.) I call dad. He agrees and is on his way. So we are all just chatting in the park waiting til he arrives.

....When I hear a familiar rumble behind me....

Immediately my gut hurt. It's The VAN! Why? Why did Dad bring the Van? Nooooo! Please be indigestion. Please be diarrhea.
Then my phones ringing and I know it's Dad. Cause nobody can ever find anybody in Ann Morrison without being guided by satellite. Samantha comes up to me and she's like "Hey is dad calling you?" (she doesn't recognize the rumble) I don't wanna answer but I do and I'm like. "Hey, dad... We'll meet you..." He says. "Well I'm in the Van" (It's the only van we have left now, so we no longer need to differentiate with colors. It's only known now ominously as The Van. The Van of Punishment. The Van of Death. The Van of I'd rather walk, please. PLEASE!) "Yeah I know. I say." I now have to tell Samantha. Warn her. Yeah, you know that guy you like? The one you brought with you for a summer day of fun? The one you're not exactly sure of yet cause things are fun and simple and new?  He's about to meet the Van. Tthhheee Vaaan. The one Dad stopped cleaning out when everyone refused to ride in it? The one he used to take the lawn mower over to grandma's house in?.. cept he didn't take it out for 3 months after he was done? With the mower and the gas and the bag of grass hanging on it baking inside all summer? The one where things go in but don't come out? With the Cheetos on the floor? In fact, the carpet is actually probably Cheetos remnants? (I have seen my Dad pick up and old Cheeto and spit it out and say "Yucky" like floor Cheeto's being caca is news?) The van Dani rocked in and broke all the seats? Like...ALL of them. Yeah. That's what we're riding to the park in. Soo Giddy yup.
"...he's in The Van Sam."
"NOOOOOOOOO!" she bellows
She doesn't hold her torment inside like I do.
"The Van?!?" "I Hate my LIFE!"
"I heard that," Dad says into my one ear.
I think to myself does he not know??
Does he really not understand this humiliation hurricane he hath unleashed upon us?
"He heard that," I say.
"WELL!!"She says.
"Why didn't he bring the trailblazer?"
"Umm Daddy why didn't you bring the Trailblazer??" I say.
"It wasn't home. Mom's got it." He says.
I should have factored this in. I saw that the TB wasn't there when we left for the park. Why would I think it would be available? Why would I not guarantee this in my negotiations with my father? Who by the way is impervious to embarrassment  Unlike myself. Metal, Adhesive and Embarrassment that's what I'm 'lergic to. I could have been all like. "Hey, Dad, what car you got? The Van? Nnnnn K bye."
I have invited Alllll of my friends here. Including the boy I like. (and will end up husbanding.) and I have ZERO damage control time. No prep at all. These kids have NO idea what's about to happen. No idea what's about to slap their innocent fun-loving faces. It would have been better to tie a garbage can to a car, get in and just ride up in that.
So I hastily spout off an "It's old and broke" type speech and lead my friends to The Blue Wagon Of Shame. And pray that they will still talk to me after. I vaguely remember Josh saying. "Cool van." I throw up in my mouth a little.  I lovingly give the keys of my car to my sister and tell her to save herself and to take 2 of the kids I know the least well and her guy friend and to run because there's "Not enough room." (riiight.) I've never seen her move faster.
I ask Josh if he wants to ride with her and I pray he takes the opportunity to save himself, One because I love him and want to save him from the horrors of the world. 2 because I only want happy nice things for him. He says. "Nah I'm good." Even though I can feel my heart pounding in my chest. It feels like there is no blood flow to my brain.
"Nnnokay" I squeak out.
Then we get in The Van...
El Diablo Furgoneta...Devil Van.
I don't even look at Josh. Cause I'm scared and sweaty, not because it's a bajillion African degrees out. But because my body is going into shock and I really need to use all my concentration to make my knees bend when they are supposed to and walk towards this doomed destiny.
 It has been a long time since even I have been in The Van. So here is a rundown.
1 captains chair is completely gone. The back is broken on the remaining seat, making a nice bridge to the floor. I imagine one of my poor friends rolling down whilst my dad accelerates.
There are...
No seat belts
No, A/C
There is no longer a bench seat.
The passenger front seat is held up by a single 2x4
The carpet has been ripped up halfway through the middle.
Leaving some lovely exposed metal flooring. To scrap our skin with.
Oh, and since most of the seats are missing we only have random stuff to sit on. Someone literally sits on a TV. And the rest have the choice between a disassembled garden trellis,  a weed whacker or a pile of trash to sit on. Josh beelines it for the wheel well "hump thing" because he tells me later. "I'm no dummy." My Dad's all "Hey kids! Sorry, the Vans a mess." like it was accidental or something! Like he's as surprised as we are! What?!
 I'm the last to get in so I plan to just crouch by the door where the other captain's chair used to be but dad says he needs a navigator. So I go sit by him up front. Like a traitor. We are almost there when dad starts to slow down and pull over to the side. I'm like Nooo dad we aren't gonna stop to visit anyone. (Cause he does that sometimes) He loves visiting and keeping you hostage while he does it.

 Oh, Well except this time the Van did literally run outta gas. As in no more gas in the tank. As in we're stopping willing or not. Thank goodness there is a gas station and dad glides right in on fumes. So he starts filling her up and goes inside. It is so beastly hot everyone else jumps out so they can breathe fresh gas station air. Because it's actually fresher than the air inside the Van.
 Dad comes back outta the store with a Gatorade and a small bag of Cheetos's and I die a little inside.
He says "Okay let us go!" and we all scramble back in. So as he starts her up and accelerates into traffic. Since nothing anyone's sitting on is secured to the floor. We all get tossed about like a salad in a gerbil ball. The kid on the TV gets it the worst. He falls completely off and is like a turtle on his back for a while. Rolling, scared, confused I'm sure contemplating which life choices lead him here.  Laying in old Cheetos, grass clippings, and food wrappers. In The Van.

Ever heard of grace under pressure? Well, I ain't got none of that. All the awkwardness I thought I had grown out of I still had. Which I knew. I just thought I could hide it better, with like age or something. The thing that got me through, was me saying to myself. "This van is part of me, Part of my history and a precious family keepsake. If they can't handle that then they aren't real friends... yea... that's what. THEY'LL just have to DEAL. Yeah!" That lasted until we got past the gate at barber park and then it didn't calm me anymore and I just wanted to explode out of the Van. I was biting back what I wanted to say. Which was " Get out. Everyone out! Go!Now! Never speak of this!" My hearts racing and I just start to babble  "Okay everyone good? Everyone here? Ok? uh..yep.. just crawl out, don't look back. It smells fear so... just own it, trust me." I try at making jokes but...really. why? even? try?
 We finally make it to the river and everyone graciously thanks Dad for the ride. All I'm thinking is let's get in this river and wash ourselves of this memory.
 He then asks what time he needs to be back to pick us up at the take-out point. Ya know like a good dad. Completely oblivious. But totally caring. But I'm like "NOPE!" I shout. "WE'RE GOOD!" I'm still shouting. "WE GOT IT COVERED!" I can't stop shouting "HAH! IT'S OKAY" (signature awkward laugh.) "FOR REAL DON'T COME PICK US UUUP!""DON'T COME BACK HERE!" "HAAAA" I can't make myself not shout. "THANKS, DAD! LOVE YA!" "TAKE LUCK!" And he rumbles off and that is the story of the last time I survived The Van. I think (hope) it's been parked ever since. Since it feeds off pure horrified embarrassment and it had like 12 personal Thanksgivings off me alone. Maybe it could just die full and happy. It just had to get me One. Final. Time.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Happy Memorial day!


Me: But I wanted to go to the water park with Josh and Nicole and cousin Mitch. 
Tummy: Haha.
Me: You can't be serious.
Tummy: There's only one water park you'll be visiting today. The kind that flushes! haha! Burn!!
Me: But we already had the bug. We got over it already.
Tummy: Does it look like your over me?
Me: But...Please?...
Tummy: It's twice as nice the second time.
Me: Is this because I ate pizza and cookies and watched Josh work out instead of joining him like I said I would?
Tummy: No. That would be why your fat. 
Me: . :o ...
Tummy: asked...
Me: This is really upsetting.
Tummy:  Oh I know. I'm upset to...see what I did there? haha. 
Me: very funny...what If I change my plans and drink Pepto every half hour?
Tummy: Nope.
Me: But I was really excited to go. Josh never has school off.
Tummy: I know right? That's what makes it soooo funny. I timed it puurfectly.

Hope your Memorial Day is better than ours!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

How awesome is this guy?


I love him sooo much. He just gets me. I laughed so hard, AND he let me take a picture. Then he said I could put it on FaceBook. I know of no other human being willing to do this for me and all purely for my own enjoyment. His only regret is he wanted to debut his man beard in a more gallant fashion yet he put it all a side for me to get my giggle on. Love wears yellow shorts girls and isn't afraid to be silly with you.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Oh this brother I have. He's kinda Epic. I might have told you about him.

Adam had this thing with eyebrows. ...and toes and hair and mirrors ahem. Anyway.
He for a long time would get upset if you wiggled your eyebrows at him. Even if you weren't thinking about it. He hated it. Until recently that is. Now he thinks they are super funny and you can get him to laugh. I first noticed it with Josh. I saw Josh wiggling brow at him and told him "No. Adam hates that." He then told me he's been wiggling brows at Adam since he first met him and I was amazed. I wondered if it was because Josh has amazing Handsome Super Villain eyebrows or what?... Yeah.  That's probably why.
I asked Adam if he would wiggle his eyebrows for me because I couldn't remember ever seeing him do it before, and because if you let Josh do it we all get to, not to mention I haven't been able to wiggle these brows for years! Then add on the self-esteem issues I had wondering why my eyebrows were so offensive. So here's his go at it.
For some reason, Adam gets super serious and nervous when I tell him that he's being recorded. Sometimes he freezes but its sooo cute. You can see him try to hide from the camera.
Yeas that is my guffaw you hear off to the side. It's totally presh I know. ugh.
He then informs me he's over it. So we had to stop. 

Just like that. I might have overdone it with him but at least I got it on video and lucky for me he is very forgiving. Unless it's regarding eyebrows. lol

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Giggly Giggles.

Saturday night Josh and I are at my parent's house about to leave. So we gather to say a quick family prayer before we take off. Adam had been watching a clip from Mulan 2 and had been giggling the whooole night. (Like he was laughing pretty hard.) Duringthe prayer, I hear Adam start to chortle and snort and giggle out loud. So I totally open my eyes to watch. (Sshh... Don't tell) Then he says to himself. "Oh. Ah! Oopps!...sorry." and then stops and is quiet. Then it was me that had a hard time not laughing....All the while Dad is trying to finish the prayer.

I now bring you The Adam Chronicles.

So. I have a Brother named Adam. He is my Only brother. He is pretty Epic I gotta say. He is Autistic and is the only boy in a family of 6 and 1 of 2 Autistic siblings. I have written a little about him and my encounters and adventures with him. He is one of the sweetest and loving people I know. Adam has the ability to make me smile and contemplate my path in life all in one moment. He is silly, caring, warm and engaging . The way it is with people and Adam is either they totally accept Adam and his abilities and personality flaws or lack there of.
Or... they don't..... They can't adjust to his disabilities and only see him as such. It really is Black and White like that. They all filter themselves out that way and I only see the results. Through him I get to see people as they truly are and I get to see the world differently.

So...that being said. I introduce to you "The Adam Chronicles." I'm going to share and keep record of my experiences with him. Adam doesn't really know I'm doing this. Not that its a secret. It's just that he likes Facebook and You tube and Everyone's Favorite couple can't really compete. Unfortunately. But we still try.

So today we went over for a Sunday visit and Adam wanted a clean up on his hair cut. But as you might have read on a past post about Adam the clippers my mom used to have....didn't really cut it..(haha see what I did there?) So I just used hair scissors for the whole thing. And I told him "Get your garbage dress hon." and he couldn't find it. So he asked me to help him make a new one and I did.

As well as took pictahs!!

 Before just a plain garbage bag.
 I tried to get him to make a questionable face. Like a "I'm not to sure about this?" Type look but it didn't work out to well.

 You can't really see it but there is only a slight cut for his head and arms. It's a lot different than the one he made. I'm not as fun as he is. It's ok. I know it. The next one is of him trying to squeeze through again. I guess he has a bigger noggin that I thought because I was sure to make a good size hole....

Ah success he squeezed through ok.

Before this I had Adam stick his head under the faucet to get his hair wet and so I just turn it on and head out to find the scissors next thing I hear is Adam making these noises so I go back into the bathroom to see what's up and the water he has his head in is Antartica temperature and he is making this hooting sound and brrr noises. "Ohmygosh Adam I'm so sorry." I turn on the warm side and say. "let it heat up a little." Because that sink takes a while to get even warmish. So after a while I come back again and Adams saying "Ahhh. Ohh AHH!"  and he's still in the same position. Hunched over the sink. I stick my hand in the water and now its hot like lava. So I try to mix the two and its either Ice Tundra or Nuclear Reactor. So I try to use my hand to quickly get his head warm and hair wet. Poor kid. Nothing goes right when we try to cut his hair.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Big news for the Fleshmans.

We're Moving  or well...that is... Josh is moving...I'm staying here. :/

To Arizona! 

Josh got into a school down there and he reports for orientation Jan 15th!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Everybody poops....Especially on Thanksgivng...

So when ever I think of Josh and I's first Thanksgiving as Man and Wife I think of this story.
Which is funny because Josh says it didn't happen on Thanksgiving. I could have sworn it was on Thanksgiving tho. Because Jeff and Samantha weren't there and they spent their first Thanksgiving with his family and then spent Christmas with us and Maria and Jared Spent Christmas in Utah and Thanksgiving with us. Josh says no that it happen after Jeff and Sammy's Boise Reception and that's why they weren't there. I've always told it as a Thanksgiving story and Josh always tries to correct me but this be hows I tells it.

Adam my beloved brother with Autism is very blunt. And doesn't always get kidding around and joking. He especially has a hard time taking a joke aimed in his honor. Especially from certain people. My brother in law Jared is one. Adam having grown up with all girls is not used to the way boys play around with each other. And Jared is a total dude. Get what I'm saying?

Another thing about Adam is his... um... potty breaks?
They are long or frequent and a lot of times both. A good amount of the time emergent as well. Any time we go out to eat it's never a surprise to see a suddenly dropped plate spinning in front of the seat Adam had been sitting in.

It's common for a lot of individuals with Autism to have Gastro Intestinal tract issues.

I call them Potty Problems.

Adam has this.

And he was having this... the night Jared and Josh where going out to bring things in from the car at my moms house. The main floor bathroom is right next to the side entrance door and is the busiest bathroom in the place. Adam had been its main occupant for a wee bit this night and when he came out. Jokester Jared says."Geeez Adam you stink!" (a phrase Adam himself has offendedly said many times to dad, the dog, barking spiders.)

But Adam was absolutely MORTIFIED.
He couldn't say anything.
He could only offer up embarrassed and offended noises of indignation.
He then went straight to Maria for words of comfort (and probably to tell on Jared.)
Maria then says to Adam. "Oh Adam, tell Jared every body poops."
Adam then pushes Josh out of his path while hoofing it to the side door Jared had just exited out of. Wild West kicks it open and screams at the top of his lungs out in to our quiet neighborhood culdesac.


........ then quietly comes back inside. Walks up the stairs to his room. Shuts his door. Starts watching a movie.

Having totally had permission from Maria and even been given the words to say. There wasn't really anything anyone could say to him. Plus it was absolutely hysterical.
We still laugh when Jared tells the story from the outside of the house. Suddenly hearing Adam kick open the door and giving him a piece of his mind and then hearing it echo down our street. I can't imagine what the neighbors thought when we moved in. It was a neighborhood containing mostly retired piano teachers and an elderly swimming instructor and 1 family with 2 quiet well behaved children. Oh goodness. I wonder what they think the story is behind Adams outburst.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Mind. Blown.

Josh just told me. In a casual manner. That he has only seen a "few" episodes of Star Trek...(?).. .none of the movies either.........and I just don't know what to do. can I even begin to explain.
There is to much.... feels so wrong...
This is bigger than me. For I am only one (Wo)man.

With any epic story. It must start at the beginning.

He even said Star War Trek! To my very own face you guys!!! Like he doesn't even know the difference!!!
I covenanted with him to watch all the movies TOGETHER as a family from the start. I told him he didn't have to watch the series. (But I want to!) because it may actually take us years as it is. But he said he would. (Whew!)

I remember watching the original Star trek reruns on Sunday nights at my Grandma Nada's house. and it killed when dad said we had to leave before the episode was over. Tantrum worthy even. I am actually really excited to be able to do this together.
We are totally Embarking on an Epic Journey and I am Joshes guide.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Our new baby

Joshes sister gave him an awesome birthday present! And WE LOVE HER!

Someone once said. "Babies are very healing." There is something about being depended on by something soo precious and innocent. It takes you beyond yourself and helps you let the unimportant things align back to were they belong. For me I never thought it'd be so furry and poop in a box......(Did I tell you?? SHE POOPS IN A BOX!!!) It's so cute!