What happened? Where’ve you been?

Dear friends,

It’s been a long time since new content was posted, and I’m sorry for that. I wanted to drop in with a quick update and let you know what’s been happening.

When I began this blog I fully intended to continue creating and posting additional content on a regular basis. However, my family unexpectedly hit a bit of a rough patch.

In a period of about half a year, both of my in-laws passed away, requiring my husband to be out of state for months at a time.

In the middle of that time, after 10 years of hoping for another child that never came, and 3 years of trying to adopt through foster care (it turns out social workers are reluctant to place a child in a home where there is already a special needs child), I unexpectedly discovered I was pregnant. We were overjoyed…until I lost the baby. Over the course of about a year, I experienced two more unexpected pregnancies that also ended far too soon. The last one occurred between about Thanksgiving (give or take) of 2012 and the New Year of 2013.

The day after Christmas I developed a headache, which worsened over the next several days. After seeking medical help several times and being told it was just a migraine, I finally insisted that they check a little closer, and a CT scan at the emergency room revealed a bleed in my brain. Further scans showed that a clot had formed in the main vein leading out of my brain, and no blood was circulating in the entire right side of my brain. The pressure building behind the blockage had caused a vessel in my brain to burst. We don’t know how long it was like that. I spent several days in the hospital being treated and evaluated. Our family is very grateful that the damage was much less than it might have been, and that I have no serious long-term neurological effects from this stroke, just some lingering minor annoyances.

Shortly after I was released from the hospital, we learned that I had lost this baby too. Due to my somewhat complicated medical situation, the miscarriage was completed surgically under close medical supervision.

Over the next few months, further testing revealed that I have two rare genetic blood disorders. It is likely that the combination of the two is responsible for the multiple miscarriages, and also that the pregnancy hormones contributed to causing the stroke. It was very strongly recommended that I not attempt further pregnancies.

In the spring, my grandfather passed away. Over the summer, my husband’s business tanked due to shifts in the market and his absences dealing with family issues.

It was a difficult time.

But my husband has found new work, I am recovering well, the two children we have are strong and well, and life is going on.

Needless to say, I have had a lot to sort through, physically, mentally, and emotionally. I am still figuring out how to get things back to what passes for normal around here, sorting out priorities, learning my new limitations, and taking things one day at a time.

So for those of you who are wondering, no, I don’t know if or when I will be putting up new content. I have some that’s mostly ready to go, and some that’s in the planning stages, but I’m not yet at a place where I can take it on. I don’t know if or when I ever will be. I am sorry if I left you hanging. Some days are like that–even in Australia.



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Nadine Winningham (@eReadingFreak)
    Sep 14, 2017 @ 10:08:15

    I just found your website last night. Your prehistory items were exactly what I’ve been searching for. I just finished reading your last post and my heart hurts for you. I’m so sorry for everything you guys went through and endured.

    Please know the time you put into your website is very much appreciated. And even years after you first posted you’re still helping someone.

    I wish you the best and hope light is shining brightly on you. You need some good.


    • neboautism
      Sep 14, 2017 @ 13:23:13

      Thanks so much for your kind words. I’m so glad to know you found this helpful.

      Life is a funny thing. Those hard couple of years where the hits kept on coming worked some deep and permanent changes in me, and my life, and my family. There are bits of me inside that still feel broken, and probably always will. I sometimes resent the medications and monitoring of my health that needs to happen now, it feels stifling. And I still have a hard time holding other people’s babies without feeling like I’m coming apart at the seams. Little things in a movie that wouldn’t have even registered before throw me for a bit of a loop.

      Yet at the same time, having to peer out through the cracks in those broken places has also made me see life on a whole other plane. Things that would have felt catastrophic before are now just mildly annoying, or even actually really funny. I have developed a whole new appreciation for the wonders of medical technology. I’m more patient with myself and other people. I’ve been forced to be really frank with myself about what my real priorities are and need to be. I wouldn’t want to live those couple of years again, and I would never wish that kind of experience on anybody, but I can honestly say I’m a better person because of having been there. Great good can come out of terrible pain.

      As for what I’m doing now, well, I’m still homeschooling, but I’m down to one part-time student. Some of the time freed up by kids getting older and more independent has to go to just getting through the days, because post-stroke everything takes just a little bit more time, and energy, and focus. Just regular “life” can be exhausting (I never realized before how much spatial processing goes into hanging up laundry!) but at least I can still do all the things I really need to, and for that I am deeply grateful. This could so easily have all been SO much worse.

      And most of the rest of my “free” time for the past few years has been going into writing (sci-fi and fantasy–reality was kicking my can, and I needed a vacation from it). I’ve always thought it would be fun to write a book “someday,” and apparently having a stroke is one of those things that makes it clear that “somedays” are a somewhat limited commodity. Also, I needed something to do that made me feel productive but didn’t require a lot of intense spacial processing (guess which part of my brain exploded…lol) and sitting at my computer doing verbal stuff instead of spacial stuff (like art) seems to fit the bill. It turns out I’m not too bad at this writing thing, for a beginner, and I’ve been picked up by an agent and am currently in discussions with a small publisher who seems to really like my work. It’s a little scary and exciting all at the same time.

      Anyway, thank you so much for your well wishes. Yes, live has gone on for me, and the sun has come out from behind the clouds. My husband is still in his new job, but has worked his way up to be the head of his department and really likes it there. My son has finished high school and is working toward some goals for his future (which still works a little differently from “normal” because of his ASD, but I’m proud of his progress.) My daughter is thriving. The little bits of heartache that still cling to the edges have mostly settled into a deeper appreciation for each other and for the little things in life. And I’m figuring my own stuff out a little at a time. If you’re interested, my writing web site is http://www.amybeatty.com. I’d love to see you over there too.


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