When I began this adventure about a year ago, I didn’t know where it would lead.
Faith was in need of a new car seat, but due to her size, she had outgrown all conventionally produced seats. That narrowed my choices from 4000 seats, to about 4 special needs seats.
To be honest, not a one was cute, or looked confortable. But how would I know…..I could not find any real reviews.
“Real-life, this is my kid, in my car and this is what I think of the seat and this is what my kid thinks of the seat.”
If I am spending upwards of $2000 to keep my special needs child safe, at least give me more information than a boring line-by-line fact sheet. I want to know what other real moms, of real special needs kids, think of it.
I was never able to find real reviews on any of the seats, and we had to make a choice based on pictures.
That got the wheels turning….
I had been blogging since 2005 but I felt it was time to add more elements in. If I was searching, and failing, to find information on how products work for special needs families, it was also happening to other special needs families.
I did an informal poll on my personal blog, and of my Twitter and Facebook peeps. Would a review blog focusing on how products work for special needs families interest you? The response was overwhelming and immediate.
Armed with that knowledge, and on coffee wishes and valuim dreams, Mommy Rambles began.
I don’t know what I’m doing most of the time, I just try and do right by you, the loyal readers who I hope I am helping. I try to show you parts of our life, good and bad, and try to get to know you, my readers.
What this recap is leading into is….. Today I was invited to, and actually attended my first Bloggity Thingy.
I have severe social anxiety. Awful!
I am scared to drive. Terrified.
When the invite to Activision Games for Girls Summit arrived, my first response was ….no. I can’t. I can’t drive there. I can’t walk into a room with people I don’t know. I just can’t.
But a tiny, probably heavily drugged, part of me said….”You have to.”
If I want to keep Mommy Rambles on the right track, moving into bigger and better things, to be able to help you, my readers, find out the information you need, then I need to take the next step. I needed to step out of my comfort zone and actually start meeting people.
This was the perfect place to start. I knew the wonderful lady I was invited by, Jenny. I knew that one of my close friends Alane was going. I could do this…..I could……
Oh goodness…..what did I get myself into?
The day before the Activision Games for Girls Summit, I received the dreaded call from the school. Faith was sick, throwing up, and I needed to come pick her up. Right Now. And she needed to be out for at least 24 hours.
I managed to get our respite care worker scheduled to cover from 9 to 3. Which is all fine and good, but I needed to leave at 8:45 to catch the ferry…. Hubby looked at his schedule and was sure he could sneak home from 8:30-9
The morning of the summit arrived and my tummy was in knots. I was ready to back out. I felt a major panic attack just moments away. 8:30 – no hubby. 8:45 – no hubby. If I didn’t leave at 8:45 I ran a risk of missing the ferry! Full panic starts now. 8:50 hubby calls…stuck at work. (Deep calming breathes….I can do this. No I can’t.) 9am the respite worker arrives. I literally run out the garage door as she walks in.
Crap, crap, crap….I am late. So late. And WHAT THE HECK? My van is on Empty. My GPS says we have 15 miles to go. I’m not proud of it, but I have driven 20 miles with my gas light on before so I think I can make it to the Hyatt 8, then get gas afterwards. Right? Right?
I stopped by to pick up Alane. Knowing how late we were, and how close I was to a nervous breakdown, she did her best to keep the conversation flowing. She also spent the ride to the ferry terminal talking in the “soft, soothing, everything is fine, ooooommmmmm” kind of voice usually reserved for dangerous people holding weapons.
With 2 minutes before sail time, we got through the ticket booth, flew up to the holding line, and watched the gates close.
We missed the ferry!
We did some rerouting, Google mapping and plain ol’ cursing and came to the realization that the fastest route to get us to Seattle would be to just stay right here and wait for the next ferry.
Okie-dokie. Put in a movie for kiddo, got our electronics charging for the trip, got the car warm and waited. While we were waiting, Alane briefly mentioned something about her battery having died in the ferry line. Whatever…my Scarlett had never failed me before. The conversation was good, the tweets were good, the movie was good, the next ferry arrived and unloaded right on schedule. My anxiety level was waaaaay down. I COULD do this.
Then the movie stopped, then my GPS stopped. Oh nooooooooo!
My battery was dead. In the ferry line. Seconds from loading.
I jumped out of the van and ran to the car next to us. It happened to contain the sweetest older guy. He was so sweet that I want to adopt him and keep him as my grandpa.
He helped us jump the van in literally minutes. Less than 5 minutes later we rolled onto the ferry and were on our way. Thank you Grilled Cheesus, thank you!
I spent most of the ferry ride calming my racing heart and reassuring myself that I COULD do this. Every cell in my body wanted to turn around and just go home, but dang it….I needed to do this to help my blog grow. And make the connections I needed to make in order to keep reviewing the products that my readers are looking for.
As we approached the Seattle ferry dock, the adrenaline started. Would the van start? Would we have enough gas to get to the Hyatt 8? When I reached my van down on the car deck, who should be there? Sweet guy I want to adopt as my grandpa. He wanted to make sure the van started. (Can I please hunt him down and keep him? Does that sound too stalkerish and strange?)
I said a quick Hail Mary and…..Scarlett started right up!
Perfect! This day was turning around! We made it to Seattle, the GPS was locked on to the Hyatt 8, we were only going to be 10 minutes late!
Docked….cars rolling off into the wilds of Seattle….but…our lane wasn’t moving. Dang it people, I have things to do, fears to get over, challenges to overcome…..why are we NOT unloading?
Because the car in front of us broke down.
A multitude of muscular Ferry workers appeared out of nowhere and finally pushed the car far enough out of the way that those of us stuck behind could drive around and off.
Then I was doing it. I was driving in Seattle. Alane did resume her calm speech and helpful directions and…..we made it! We pulled into valet parking, handed over my keys, said another prayer to Grilled Cheesus that my van would not run out of gas while the valet was parking it, took a calming breath and headed to my very first Bloggy Thingy!
WOO HOO! Crazy eventful day but you did it!! *Doing happy dance* 🙂
wow – you can take a conference and turn it into a MacGyver adventure – can I go with you next time? (I’ll bring the valium latte).