Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

“I wanna wear my fancy shirt,” he said. It was 8:00 a.m. He should have been dressed. We still needed to eat breakfast, brush teeth, find his shoes and catch the school bus. “Okay,” I said. I went to his closet, and held out the two fancy shirts he’ll wear. One’s a short-sleeved orange polo. […]

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  • Janine Huldie - Ok now I am bawling as tomorrow is the last day of first grade for Emma and kindergarten for Lily and totally just can’t believe how fast time is flying. As much as I know and hope for the future to be bright, I still am so ready for it. Hugs and here is to summer vacation though if nothing else now ❤️June 24, 2016 – 2:07 amReplyCancel

  • Ruchira Khanna - Jeez! I absolutely loved your take, Kristi Rieger Campbell.
    “I close my eyes. I see yesterday, tomorrow, and hope that I’ll hold a grandbaby one day. ”

    As a mom we all wanna dream the same and no one could have said beautifully than you >3
    Loved the incidents of you and him.

    Joined in the fun after a long break. Was visiting my parents thus, might not given justice to the prompt as you have 🙂June 24, 2016 – 3:59 amReplyCancel

  • Dana Dominey - Oh my goodness… there you go again. As you know my, “Little Peanut,” is twice as old are your boy now… Oh how I remember fondly asking him if he wanted me to hold his hand so he could fall asleep in car even before he finally spoke at 4yrs old. How warm and cuddly he was facing in in his Baby Bjorn… his little head under my chin… And the longing for him to have friends of his own.. and it finally happening! Your stories of before friends to NOW… all of them racing all around your home! Remember to pinch yourself anytime you take it for granted. You are his best mom ever… You created an environment that aids in his thriving! And he is happy!June 24, 2016 – 4:21 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Dana, thank you! I definitely will pinch myself and OOOH the Baby Bjorn! I still have Tucker’s bouncy seat and Bjorn. Just haven’t been able to get rid of them yet. *sniff*
      Love that you held your Little Peanut’s hand in the car. I used to sit in the back most of the time 🙂June 24, 2016 – 12:26 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - Glad you see so many wonderful memories in the past, see how far life comes, and the dreams of some day. Sweet all around. Sorry for the morning after appearance.
    I enjoy taking part, but have a few issues with getting the link up working right, how I like it, as I am so bad at blogging as a whole. The writing part I knew I could do, but didn’t expect to not be at home last night. Stayed over at my brother’s house one extra night. Different routine, but here I am. Hope I didn’t let you down any. Thanks again for including me. Happy to be here.June 24, 2016 – 10:39 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey Kerry,
      No problem about the next morning appearance – truly! I’m glad you’re here and of course you didn’t let me down!! I absolutely loved this week’s sentence. Thank you for it.June 24, 2016 – 12:27 pmReplyCancel

      • Kerry - Thank you.
        I am always fascinated by what people see, imagine, when they don’t have their eyes wide open to help navigate.
        Might sound strange.June 27, 2016 – 8:33 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - Oh, this was a good post. First, yay on the friends coming over;). Next, I always think about my kids handing me a grandchild to hold. I will not be able to handle it!!!!!June 24, 2016 – 2:10 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Allie, EEEP to the kids handing us grandchildren to hold. I don’t know how I’ll handle it either but sometimes I think about it. Like, kind of a lot.June 24, 2016 – 5:56 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - Oh, and baby Tucker is scrumptious!June 24, 2016 – 2:11 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - Way to make me cry, as this is the time both our babies are going to turn seven. WTH??
    So beautiful.June 24, 2016 – 3:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Oh, I love how you picture the future and meeting your grandson…some people may think it’s strange to picture that sort of thing, but I don’t, because i totally get it. 🙂June 24, 2016 – 3:34 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Emily,
      So glad you can picture meeting your grandkids too! It’s not weird 🙂June 24, 2016 – 5:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Echo - Sleep with one eye open, my friend. It all goes too fast. My boy is now a 5th grader and I can barely handle it. Yet, at the same time, it makes some kind of weird, illogical sense. I still have no idea what I am doing though!June 24, 2016 – 8:59 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I’ll sleep with one eye open and OMG I can’t believe he’s going to be in second grade and YOURS IN FIFTH. Said it on FB will say it again. He is YOU. So much. Love. Ride the waves and the lightning my friend.June 24, 2016 – 9:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Dashy - Such a heartfelt post. Time flies doesn’t it? Surely there are moments that you miss greatly, but also the many moments yet to come, the very ones you can look forward to. 🙂June 25, 2016 – 4:04 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hi Dashy,
      Time SO flies and yes, the ones to come are the ones that help us let go of the ones too quickly gone I think. Or something like that.June 25, 2016 – 7:55 pmReplyCancel

  • Corinne - I’m always asking my now teenage niece and nephew why they grow up. I hope someday you’ll see your not-so-little-anymore boy carrying his baby to meet his or her lovely grandmother!June 26, 2016 – 8:59 amReplyCancel

  • yvonne - Oh, wow, your ending really got me! It took a moment for me to realise what it was about but oh!
    And all the rest was beautiful too. I thought Tucker was almost 6 and was surprised to see he’s nearly 7. How fast time goes!June 26, 2016 – 6:48 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thank you Yvonne!!! And I know. I keep remembering his third birthday. His first. I can’t believe we’re soon to celebrate seven. GAH.June 28, 2016 – 12:09 amReplyCancel

We walk in the door, and I remind my voice to be gentle. Sometimes, she forgets. Tonight, she’s listened and is quiet, waiting. I’m quiet too, waiting for the right words. My son takes off his shoes and his helmet, pushes his scooter behind the door, and starts to walk away, head bent. “Buddy…” I […]

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  • Janine Huldie - Aw, love this as I lay with Lily snuggling me tonight as she is sad that kindergarten is ending and is heartbroken that she will miss her teacher, who she adores. Ode to be young and see it all through their eyes still though. Hugs ❤️❤️June 17, 2016 – 2:05 amReplyCancel

  • Deirdre Conran - Love this as always! Your blogs always make me smile. Too bad you never knew what happened to ricky!June 17, 2016 – 3:48 amReplyCancel

  • Sandy - Kristi, it’s been a while. I have so many of your posts in my inbox to catch up on. I knew this one would be special and I was right. I love the relationship you have with your son and that you are so willing to share it. It’s inspiring.June 17, 2016 – 7:34 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Sandy! Hi, you. I love seeing your name here and your pretty smile on FB. Thank you! My son deserves more credit than I do. He’s such a gentle and sweet soul that he makes it easy to have a good relationship with him. xoxoJune 17, 2016 – 6:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons - First of all, Holy Moly – Tucker looks like you!!! I never noticed it so much until I looked at the at picture of you. 🙂

    I wonder what happened to that first Ricky too?? I wonder how many things I hear like that when I was a kid and knew something was wrong but didn’t really know at the same time?? I wonder if my girls hear things like that now?? (Actually, I’m sadly sure they do – I just wonder what they hear and how they respond.)June 17, 2016 – 8:02 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to Tucker looking like me Lisa (and YAY because doesn’t every parent want their kid to at least have some of them in them??). I tried to find Ricky on FB but had no luck. I wonder what my son hears as well. I think not much but oh gosh I don’t know.June 17, 2016 – 6:07 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - Isn’t it haunting – to think of kids like the first Ricky and wonder where they are today?

    I’ve often wondered whether staying or going is better (like you thought at Tae Kwan Do.) Now I’m always going, but my kids know I’d stay in a second if they needed me.June 17, 2016 – 10:08 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yes – I did try to find Ricky on Facebook but no luck. Sigh. I hope he’s okay. Not knowing about staying or going is hard. It’s the pull away and hold close thing maybe.June 17, 2016 – 6:12 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - I know what you mean about re-living certain moments from our childhood through our kids and the experiences they are having now. I look at some of the friends they have now and wonder if that person will be their “Ricky” who they wonder about when they’re older. Of course, with social media, they have a better likelihood of keeping track of childhood friends than we do. I’ve tracked down a lot of mine, but there are still a few others who I wonder where they are now…June 17, 2016 – 10:40 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Emily,
      It’s true that our kids have a better chance of staying in touch than we did. I mean back then, if you didn’t have a phone number or an address, they may as well have lived on another planet. I tried to track Ricky down on FB but haven’t had any luck. Oh well. I hope he’s okay. And that the Rickys in our kids lives are able to be found…June 17, 2016 – 6:14 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - I hope Ricky is ok! We had a band of wild boys in our neighborhood and at least three of them are now dead. Two were brothers. Oh, those poor parents!
    Why did I crash your beautiful post with that?
    I hope Ricky 1 is ok..June 17, 2016 – 10:48 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - OUCH to the band of wild boys in your neighborhood! That’s scary and horrible. The poor parents is right. Sigh. I hope Ricky 1 is okay too. I tried to find him on FB but no luck…June 17, 2016 – 6:15 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - I had a Ricky too. His name was Rory. Hard to imagine them as anything but the little boys in memories. Somehow, now sure I will ever try very hard to find out what the adult Rory is up to. I believe he is on Facebook though.
    Another sweet portrait of your relationship with your son Kristi. Actually, I wrote something other than a blog this week. It’s a short short story and all your stories of you and Tucker have had an influence on me. Reading it back, I noticed a bit of influence in there from you. Thank you for that. Of course, all fiction and different story entirely. Just a small detection of the affect you have had on me since I started linking with FTSF.
    I just love the special, unique little rituals and things that are just between the two of you. They are so imaginative and uniquely yours.June 17, 2016 – 11:47 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey you, I’m going to read it now and I’m sure it’s absolutely brilliant and amazing and I am beyond flattered that you feel like there’s a slight influence in your post from us connecting. I’ll let you know what I think (going now).June 18, 2016 – 12:17 amReplyCancel

  • KErry - Hey. Allow me to clarify. When I say that I mean I wrote a short story, independent of the blog world. The post here is something else. The short story is for a summer writing contest here in Canada I’m submitting to.June 18, 2016 – 12:22 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - Girls at his party – oh momma, you’re going to be in trouble! Tucker’s going to be a playa! What are you planning?June 20, 2016 – 9:47 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Allie, it’s going to be great! A pool party with pizza and Minecraft cake. The cake’s going to be amazing (I hope) – one of my neighbors started an allergy-free baking company and is making one from a drawing I gave her 🙂
      And yeah, girls. Oh jeez. Wish you lived closer!June 21, 2016 – 10:52 amReplyCancel

  • Lux G. - I don’t have kids of my own yet but I see my cousins’ offspring and say, wow, isn’t that familiar. 😀June 22, 2016 – 11:10 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Awww that was so sweet! And about Michelle* – too cute!

    I hope your first Ricky grew up to be okay. Today I regret not saying anything about a friend I had in middle school and I know her mom “beat” her. She showed me her bruises. In my mind I couldn’t fathom it being done for no reason and wondered why she was bad at home if she was good in school. 🙁 But one time she told me she got a bad beating and it was my fault. We had gone to the movies and had to call her mom to pick us up. There was only a payphone at the Pizza Hut. It was raining. She asked me to go call her mom. So I ran to the pizza hut and called and I was out of breath when I told her our movie was over. She beat her daughter because I sounded impatient when I called. So she stopped being friends with me. I’ll never forget that. And I so regret that I never said anything to my parents. Good for you being so young and saying something.June 23, 2016 – 8:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - I forgot to comment WOW to how much you Tucker looks like you!June 23, 2016 – 8:02 pmReplyCancel

I found a boy behind a dumpster. He was drunk, floppy and adorable. He looked like a stuffed animal sitting there alone.  I went to him. I’d always wanted to know what it felt like to have a boy inside of me and thought that because we’d danced and kissed earlier, that maybe this was my […]

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  • Out One Ear - Yes we do. Absolutely! And I think that is where it starts. We MUST teach our boys that no means no. (And girls too.) Both genders need to respect the other. Boys must be reminded that this could happen to their sister or mother or aunt or friend and it should not be tolerated when their guy friends get out of line. Learn to be a stand up guy, and a stand up gal. Realize that 20 minutes of “supposed” fun can ruin a lot of lives. In this case, it was not fun. It was rape. Society needs to quit making excuses for these types of crimes.June 7, 2016 – 7:10 amReplyCancel

  • Dana - The whole thing makes me sick. The only positive thing to come from this is the opportunity to discuss it with our kids, and each other.June 7, 2016 – 7:27 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - The whole thing makes me sick too. I’m actually sort of shocked I published this but the victim’s statement to the court was heart wrenching.June 7, 2016 – 9:23 amReplyCancel

  • Ivy Walker - Boy, i dont even know what to write here except maybe ,well done , yes you’re right and thanks for writing this.June 7, 2016 – 7:45 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Woooo, that was hard to read over coffee & an English muffin. So many things to talk to our kids about….June 7, 2016 – 8:56 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Kenya, I should have warned you and told you to read one of the last two posts instead.June 7, 2016 – 9:24 amReplyCancel

  • Emily - I thought this post was brilliant. I constantly talk to my boys about respecting women and girls and I pray the message is ingrained in their heads because I so agree – this must stop.June 7, 2016 – 9:17 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks Emily. I’m a little bit shocked I actually published this.June 7, 2016 – 9:24 amReplyCancel

      • Emily - I think it’s great that you did…sometimes we need to write about the things that matter, even if those topics don’t “fit” into our regular blogs or posts.June 7, 2016 – 9:27 amReplyCancel

        • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Emily. You’re right. We do need to write about what matters, even when it’s hard… thanks for the support and the reminder. <3June 7, 2016 – 9:44 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - Wow, Kristi. You have a set, woman. I’m pretty sure I was doing what you were doing last night at about the same time – reading all of this crap and just sitting here, mouth hanging open, thinking “what the hell is wrong with people?” It made me physically ill, really, and I had to turn off the computer and go to bed.
    I pray every day that when the time comes, my daughter finds herself in the company of men who were taught the things you talk about here. I pray that she makes choices that won’t put her in a place where she can’t say yes or no – think about the impulsivity factor of ADHD and the terror this parent has about the future where that is concerned. Why? Because been there done that. Maybe once again me having what she has is such a very good thing.
    I have some thoughts on this and I wasn’t going to hit publish on them, but I just might after seeing that you did. You inspire me more often than you know, my friend.June 7, 2016 – 9:47 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thank you thank you thank you Lisa! It made me physically ill too which I guess is why I wrote this even though it’s not something I usually would publish here. But if not here, where? I hope you end up publishing your thoughts – I just read that there’s a petition to have the judge removed from the bench for this so it’s not just you and I who are outraged and disgusted. I know what you mean about your girl – I worry about the same for Tucker which is I guess what made me think about the whole thing from the other perspective. xoxoJune 7, 2016 – 10:08 amReplyCancel

  • Jena - I’m glad you’re Tucker’s mama.June 7, 2016 – 9:48 amReplyCancel

  • Julie - You captured the feel of entitlement really well with the twist of it being the girl who won’t have her future ruined because of action at a party. Bravo.June 7, 2016 – 10:23 amReplyCancel

  • Don - This is brilliant, my friend!

    The whole case is sad, but people need to wake up to what’s going on, especially on college campuses. I can’t even imagine the number of young women who NEVER say anything because they’re embarrassed or fear they will be humiliated by coming forward. The problem is that they’re right! They will be.

    It takes a really strong woman to go through with what this woman has. I really applaud her and wish I could give her a “great job” hug. I’d give you one too.June 7, 2016 – 10:43 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw shucks. I know women who have never said anything and you’re right they might be humiliated if they do and that SUCKS. Thanks for giving me a hug too.June 7, 2016 – 4:58 pmReplyCancel

  • Sara - Right on, Kristi. It sickens me too. I read her statement Sunday morning and it changed the tenor of the day. And then the father’s statement? Ugh. It makes me so angry. It’s not just about teaching no means no (which is a good thing to teach), but also that yes means yes. Ask for consent. Before every step, ask for consent.

    Hugs and write on!June 7, 2016 – 10:45 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I didn’t read her statement until I was putting Tucker to bed last night waiting for him to fall asleep and felt like the floor dropped out. And yes, ask for consent. Good good point and hugs back.June 7, 2016 – 5:03 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Kristi, all I can say is wow and love how you flipped and turned this around. Definitely would be interesting if the shoe were on the other foot so to speak. But still I know in my heart of hearts, you are an amazing mama that is teaching and will continue to teach your own son how to be nothing short of an amazing man someday. Hugs and definitely left me with more food for thought than you know.June 7, 2016 – 11:03 amReplyCancel

  • Nicki - Bravo, bravo Kristi!
    Thank you for your brave response to this horrific story. So so grateful to you and proud to call you my friend xoxoJune 7, 2016 – 11:41 amReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - WHOA. Another powerful perspective on this horrific case. Kristi Rieger Campbell, this was as hard to read as many of the posts out there- but necessary. SO necessary.

    (I tried to post this to fb but it wouldn’t let me..?)June 7, 2016 – 11:42 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you Chris. I don’t know why it wouldn’t let you post it on FB. Maybe if you share from where I posted it? And thank you for wanting to post it on FB!!! I appreciate that!June 7, 2016 – 5:05 pmReplyCancel

  • Roshni AaMom - Thank you! If not anything else the role reversal just shows these people how ludicrous their thoughts are! The whole story and the number of adults enabling this young man is just sickening!June 7, 2016 – 10:55 pmReplyCancel

  • Abigail Zebrowski - Incredible, Kristi. I applaud you and your ‘rant’ which was SPOT ON!!! Thank you for this.June 8, 2016 – 12:37 amReplyCancel

  • Scott Hansen - Spot on.June 8, 2016 – 2:50 amReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - Do you know what happens to rapists in jail? He will be raped a thousand times bymurders who have Mothers, Sistersand Daughters. I finally read everything and you know I avoid news. He is out of the Ivy League. I will be surprised if he survives prison.June 8, 2016 – 3:42 amReplyCancel

  • Michelle Kantor Nahom - There are no excuses here. Drunk does not mean you can take advantage of the situation. I hope this makes people think…really and truly think. Just because someone has a bright future doesn’t mean that you excuse the behavior. But I feel like we excuse too many things in society today, in general, big and little. And when you excuse the little things, guess what follows? There is no accountability anymore. It makes me very sad.June 8, 2016 – 10:08 amReplyCancel

  • Layne - My daughter, never having spoken in the backseat of the car did one day. Many have found hope seeing the story. Feel free to share as you think.

    June 8, 2016 – 10:34 amReplyCancel

  • Tamara - What can I even say, other than MAKE IT STOP?
    And don’t ever MAKE IT STOP – now I’m talking about your writing.June 8, 2016 – 11:34 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, you… I know. Make it stop. For all of us. Sons, daughters, humans. xoJune 8, 2016 – 8:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - Wow Kristi. This was a take on the subject that I definitely wasn’t expecting, but well done for making your point and making us all think.
    I am speechless on this story. That shouldn’t happen, as a writer, but it has.
    Actually, that’s not really true. I want to say something and then I think, meh, what’s the point. I feel blocked by my outrage. I feel trapped and drowning by frustration and in our environment of selfishness and arrogance. So many are so so kind and want to do the right thing, but then there are those (like the punk in this case) who feel so utterly entitled that they hurt people and can’t even see it.
    After all, if a man who is this close to becoming President refuses to take any accountability, why would some privileged, college athlete take any?
    I am just glad, if I can’t manage to put my messed up thoughts down in any sort of coherent manner, there are pieces of writing like this, like yours.June 10, 2016 – 9:28 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Kerry,
      THANK YOU. I saw your comment while I was at a blogging conference and stepped to a private place to read yours and reply but then got sidetracked. This story disgusts me on so many levels. I understand feeling blocked by your outrage. I think many do and the ONLY reason I wrote about it was I was laying in bed next to Tucker while his breathing deepened, and I thought about how vulnerable HE is, and about this girl.. and it just came. Was a 10 minute rant post and yes, ugh you’re so right. Also you put your thoughts down really well.June 12, 2016 – 8:58 pmReplyCancel

  • My Inner Chick - Wonderfully written.
    No. More. Excuses.
    …for the abusers, murderers, & rapists.
    No. More.
    No F*ing More.

    xxxJune 13, 2016 – 7:54 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - NO MORE. You’re doing it. You’re educating. Helping. NO MORE. Love. Love wins.June 14, 2016 – 11:03 pmReplyCancel

  • yvonne Spence - Sorry that it’s taken me forever to comment on this post. I read it (as you know cos I tweeted it and added my link) and then I’ve had to deal with some family issues and other stuff, so didn’t get round to commenting.

    It is, as everyone has already said, such an impactful post. Turning it around this way does make the point so strongly.

    I absolutely agree with you that there needs to be a mindset change in people like Brock Turner, and I think what you say about educating boys is so important. I’m sure you will make a wonderful job of guiding Tucker to be sensitive and aware.June 14, 2016 – 5:51 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yvonne, please never feel the need to apologize for the time it takes. I was at a Blog conference this weekend and have been focusing on IRL since the horrid news.. I think turning it around helps fuel the argument of how ridiculous his defense was. Because it was ridiculous. Here’s to educating boys… and the saddest part is that I’m years and years away from my boy even beginning to understand this type of lesson. He’s inviting his entire class to his birthday party because “he wants to make them happy.”June 14, 2016 – 11:06 pmReplyCancel

      • Yvonne - Kristi, it sounds to me that Tucker doesn’t need any lessons in respecting others and kindness. We could all learn from him instead. <3June 15, 2016 – 5:56 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - I felt physically ill reading this. I was away when this news broke and hadn’t heard all the details. Where the hell is the Justice? What a sad, sad world.June 15, 2016 – 8:24 amReplyCancel

  • [email protected] - Incredible, Kristi. This shouldn’t sound any more absurd than the news story, and yet …

    I focus on the behavior not only of the boy, but of the boy’s dad. What in the world? That’s where the problem lies. Men and boys who see things this way. I still see it in my contemporaries, men that see things in such a twisted way that I don’t want to share a gender with them, or rather have a sub-gender.

    And the boys who found them, and chased this boy down. Those are the men we need more of. I wish they’d gotten there earlier, as a dad of three girls, yes, and also just a man in this world. The first boy should have helped her home. End of story.June 15, 2016 – 1:41 pmReplyCancel

Somehow, I continually manage to be surprised and relieved when I realize it’s Friday night. “Surely I’ll have time to write about what I’ve been thankful for this week. It’s only Friday!” And each Friday night, I look at the clock and it’s 9:00pm on Sunday. “Oh right, we had baseball and swimming and life and building armor […]

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  • Louise - So wonderful that you got to meet blog friends in real life! And three cheers for Tucker and all that he’s doing now – that’s really wonderful.

    As for beating yourself up about blog posting – meh. This was perfect once you got to it and sometimes Netflix SHOULD win.June 5, 2016 – 12:58 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thanks Louise. You’re right. Sometimes, Netflix SHOULD win. I hear him calling again though and gah.June 5, 2016 – 10:38 pmReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - You do have a lot to be happy about. I know the middle land is hard but you are out of autism and I’d give anything to just hear my son talk. He is not improving. I am thrilled for you and Tucker.

    Btw, I drink a Kale juice every morning. It is very good for you!! You should give it a try!!June 5, 2016 – 2:16 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Well I wouldn’t say “out of autism” more that it’s not classic autism on the CARS test. So still in the middle. And I know about Alex, and am so so sorry he’s not improving but he’s also learning and improving all the time right? He knows all the bones and you’re such a great mom to him. And yeah, I actually (since my teeth) have had smoothies of superfoods that were Kale, celery, ginger, mango and pineapple and it was super delicious.June 5, 2016 – 10:58 pmReplyCancel

      • JT Walters - Well not out of “autism” but reason for optimism. Tucker is a cool dude and he is doing more and more typical childhood things. Like I said the middle is hard. Alex is learning but he also is a teenager with autism which a book should be written about it.

        So sorry to hear about you getting ill. As Mom’s we are so busy taking care of everyone else we forget to take care of ourselves.

        Lighting (That’s the name of the guinea pig, right?) now had to compete for his Kale in the morning.

        I do Kale, OJ, fresh giner, vanilla, 1 banana 1/2 cup cashews and 1/2 cup flax seed. Everyday as it is a great probiotic antioxidant way to start your day. I have been known to freeze a day in advance too.

        At three he was classic autism but through the power of motherly love he is getting better. I wish I had your super powers!!!

        Alex is more mature now. He sees the world through adult eyes and yes he loves medicine and understands it which is even more incredible.

        As long as you are on the mend…awesome post and yes, somedays Alex surprises me with what he understands about the world. He had been an observer of human behavior for 16 years. He understands people better than I do.

        You are such a beautiful person Kristi you would say those drinks are super delicious even if they were terrible. I do frozen fruit with Kiefer, whey protein and vanilla with a touch of honey from the groves. It is awesome before bed.June 5, 2016 – 11:18 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Oh I just love hearing all that good stuff about Tucker – baseball and board kicking…so so so great! We’ve had expectations exceeded too bc I think sometimes we are too afraid to dream otherwise OR in other cases, we had “experts” tell us certain generalizations (like, kids on the spectrum do better at individual sports) so then we start to believe them. How I wish I could let those “experts” know now that my kid will likely play college basketball.:) And yeah, can totally relate to the middle world and how hard that can be. It gets better as the kids get older, because older kids are more understanding of differences and aren’t as quick to judge. And, if we keep working on that land of empathy, let’s hope the understanding filters down to younger and younger ages (but it also needs to filter up too bc well, you know there are still some older people who just don’t get it still…)June 5, 2016 – 6:56 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - thank you huge, Emily!! I think you’re right about wanting all of it and dreaming of it but wanting to be realistic and not put unfair pressures on our kids… also the stupid “experts.” sigh.
      I LOVE so much that your kid is likely going to play college Basketball!!! I need to get back to Our Land. But energy and maybe a book would be better and and and, well, yeah. I so love your comment. And you.June 5, 2016 – 11:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - So jealous you got to meet Allie and her family. Seriously though looked like so much fun was had getting to meet all. Oh and Tucker in his little league pic had me smiling ear-to-ear to see him and here about his awesome experience with it so far!! 🙂June 5, 2016 – 7:49 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - You got to meet Allie! So awesome. And how could he not love Audrey?
    I’d be so proud of him too. A big deal.June 5, 2016 – 9:25 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, SW. I got to meet her a couple of years ago but yeah, she’s wonderful. I got to meet you a couple of years ago too and you. Are wonderful.June 5, 2016 – 11:00 pmReplyCancel

  • christine - IT WAS COMPLETELY AWESOME TO MEET YOU AND TUCKER!! The time went way, waaaaay too fast. So funny that you mention my laugh. It’s always the thing people talk about. 🙂 That feet in the fountain thing was the perfect way to spend part of our afternoon.

    Tucker is awesome. I hate that he has some trouble with kids, but I’m thrilled that he is doing so well with Tae kwon do and baseball. I cannot wait to hear about parkour class!June 5, 2016 – 9:33 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Ok I guess WP didn’t like my comment back because I tried to include a Parkour video but it was SO nice to meet you and Phoenix aka M… Of course people talk about your laugh – it’s like waterfalls and tinkling bells. So glad it worked out for us to hang out together. And yeah, I hate he has trouble too but here’s to parkour!!!June 5, 2016 – 11:09 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I am SO jealous of all the bloggy people I know meeting other bloggy people I know and NONE OF THEM ARE ME! 😀 Ugh!
    I can’t tell you how much I love this post because I know you know that I totally get it. Totally. Zilla played with cousins and friends of cousins at a party today – that was remarkable. There have been so many remarkable moments this year. How awesome are these kids?
    Board breaking – who knew, right? I can’t believe my kid does that and I can’t believe I don’t jump out of my seat when she does. I’m usually so nervous, but I have to let her do this. And you know what? She’s got this. She’s got so much of this. Her favorite thing, though, is her nunchakus. 😀
    Ha – that Facebook thing was funny. What the hell was he talking about? Clark-speak? 😀June 5, 2016 – 10:37 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - well can we meet this summer? Say yes. I know you totally get it, yes. I so very much want Tucker and Zilla to hang out. They will have huge big fun. These kids are AWESOME. And omg I can’t believe we have kids breaking boards in common too although now I realize I knew that and had forgotten so so cool. Also T won nunchucks or however you spell it and he was like “when they’re on the ground, they’re in this position, and when you hold them…” I was like WAIT WHAT but I guess they learned some stuff about them at TKD camp and he loves his too. Even though that freaks me out.
      Also yeah, Clark speak. lol.June 5, 2016 – 11:12 pmReplyCancel

    • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - Let’s make getting together happen this summer, yes! Things are much better for us in that regard than last year. (And HOW is it a year already that’s gone by?)Let’s talk about when and how and where and all of that.
      Yeah, Zilla wielding weapons is a little disconcerting, but she really seems to know what she’s doing. I think it’s in her blood. 😉June 6, 2016 – 8:17 amReplyCancel

  • Vanessa D. - So awesome to see your guy loving these activities! I love the Tae Kwon Do action series.June 5, 2016 – 11:33 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks Vanessa. It’s been such fun watching him figure out what activities he likes and doesn’t like.June 6, 2016 – 10:55 amReplyCancel

  • Carina Diaz M - I remember when both of my children broke their first boards. They were so proud. Oh good times. I’m sure you are cherishing every moment.June 6, 2016 – 1:08 amReplyCancel

  • Clark Scottroger - I repeat, I hate spell-fricken-check. (the Facebook is obviously out to turn us all into humourless Like-machines… except for those of us who clearly need little help at incoherence) Lol
    scotts laugh in way that make you hope to come up with something else funny*
    excellent with the sports and karate and indentifying the essential difference between boys and girls (hint: one of the two can be gross)

    always glad when you join us here at the ‘oT’

    *weird moment there, while true and accurate, in what I said about Christine, I was stealing a line from a character in my story Blogdominion (where a clark is talking about a scott)…. damn, infinite regression, anyone?June 6, 2016 – 1:58 amReplyCancel

  • Kerry - Wow, with the Tae Kwon Do”s and the baseball too.
    Living other people’s lives…I love to do that, if only to get a small break from living my own sometimes.
    Glad to see you here this week.June 6, 2016 – 2:03 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - It’s easy to get sucked into living other people’s lives – a welcome break sometimes. But sometimes, I take it too far with the “one more episode” thing.June 6, 2016 – 10:57 amReplyCancel

  • Deborah Lovel Bryner - <3 ohmigosh Kristi Rieger made me cry...again...but the Good Tears, not the Scalding Ones that lacerate the heart. And the dental thing? TOTALLY been there! I feel yer pain, truly I do...

    I love that Tuckman is growinto his OwnSelfNess!!! My Kate will be graduating from the Tapestry Uaa program this Wednesday...I am SO PROUD of her my heart could bust... Yay for our AUSOME kids!!!!June 6, 2016 – 5:32 amReplyCancel

  • Abigail Zebrowski - I almost cried reading this!!! Such wonderful thankfuls and just YAY for Tucker!! And hey, I didn’t get to see Lizzi either. In fact, I’ve never met IRL so you’ve got that over me 😉 But I know she loves us just the same! Have a great week!!!June 6, 2016 – 3:24 pmReplyCancel

  • Quirine Gladwish - So wonderful to hear how great Tucker is doing! When I first found your blog we were on the verge of an autism diagnosis for our son who had been a speech and language kid in early intervention for a year and a half. I wrote you about how describing your son mirrored mine and asked if you could tell me how our road might go. Once again, your blog post completely resembles our life. Our son too has exceeded our expectations. When his autism diagnosis first came and his speech was still not there, we asked ourselves if he would have friends, if he would be able to participate in things, etc. Jackson is finishing his kindergarten year and doing amazing, he is in Little League (first season was rough, but season 2 is going great), and he has friends. We too fall somewhere in the middle, his neurotypical friends sometimes aren’t sure where he is coming from and he is sometimes not sure where they are coming from, but we are so greatful and feel so blessed to be where we are. I continue to enjoy reading your posts- thank you for sharing your story and how wonderful for your family too 🙂June 7, 2016 – 3:34 amReplyCancel

  • Ivy Walker - I am of few words this eve/am so forgive me…but all that Tucker news….sigh…love….look at him! Oh and youre such a weeniebutt….June 7, 2016 – 7:53 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - LOL I swear one of my cheeks has been bigger than the other for a month because my gums aren’t agreeing with my temporary crown. I get the real crown on Thursday and I can’t EVER think of a time I have been so excited to go to the dentist. That tooth has been talking to me at 1am like your Netflix.

    Love the pics of Tucker kicking the boards. That’s awesome that he exceeded expectations.

    I’m going to have to google parkour. Sweet that you met Allie and Christine!June 7, 2016 – 9:11 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - UGH the crowns!! The temporary crowns!!! I’m so glad you get the real one on Thursday and UGH to that tooth talking like my 1am Netflix. Oh the parkour. I bet Christopher knows what it is. I had no idea…
      And ah hem… I could meet YOU ya know. Have any trips planned near here this summer???June 7, 2016 – 9:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Yvonne Spence - Aww, this is lovely Kristi. It’s so great to see how well Tucker is doing. No wonder you feel pleased and proud. (To be honest, I’ve always had a feeling he’d exceed expectations, right from when I started reading your blog. Not sure why, but I just did.)June 7, 2016 – 8:40 pmReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - Can I freaking COMMENT YET? Douchey FB ban 🙁June 8, 2016 – 10:11 pmReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - Okay I can. Good. Cos I’mma let rip because *imagine T voice* Come ONNNNNNNNNNNNNNN! Seriously? You’re suggesting I have favourites? Even though I’m BlogMarried already, you KNOW I’m quite happy to take mistresses. SO! There’s that. And there’s also planes, which stupid spensive but couldacouldamaybe, and also NOVEMBER so there’s that too.

    And also, SUCH precious pictures of young T, all snuggled and asleep…and he really stopped the head on the stomach thing? He really is growing up, I guess, and GO HIM with all the amazing sports…but yes, I understand you crying.

    SO happy you got to meet Christine, and SO GLAD you love her so much. She’s amazingly brilliantly wonderful, and you both look gorgeous 😀

    For the record, I’m still confused about the army clark thing.June 8, 2016 – 10:16 pmReplyCancel

  • Karen Loren - It’s such a relief to know that I’m not alone in my difficulties with my 6-yr old son. He has been tentatively diagnosed with Social-Communication Disorder (I think it’s one of those things under the huge umbrella of autism). Thank you for sharing your stories, my son started with first grade this year and so far he has been on the same level with the other kids in terms of academics, activities, etc… His conversational skill though is currently the level of a 4-yr old, so I guess it’s not too far off from his current age. He’s in between worlds too, I totally get what you mean when you said that. And my son also went through the whole Taekwondo thing for about a year last year and it was awesome. Hope to read more of your stories about your journey in conquering your son’s development!June 9, 2016 – 5:11 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Karen thank you thank you for taking the time to comment. I so very appreciate when like mamas let me know that I’m not alone (and that you aren’t either). I promise you’re not alone. My son is going to do All The Tests this fall (EEEP_ scary but also I’m looking forward to them) for what he “actually” has. When he was three I thought “no it’s not autism,” but then Preschool Autism Class helped him so much and he had so much in common with his classmates… Then when he was five, I freaked out and he thrived… but then he was bullied and told me his mouth is broken…. ugh. Sounds like we’re living very similar situations.June 12, 2016 – 11:18 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - Can you believe that I am only just now seeing this?!?!?!?!?!? I’m so sorry. I check out well on vacay and I’m been scrambling at work, ever since I’ve been back. Please tell Tucker that I am super-proud of him – and that Audrey is too:)! Our visit was way too short, but I know that we will meet again!June 16, 2016 – 9:39 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I can believe you’re now only seeing this. I check out well in RL always and am just reading Summer Sisters thinking about your books of life. I think Tucker loves Aud in a good way but maybe um, more than. And we will.June 16, 2016 – 10:37 pmReplyCancel

  • Robin Digrigoli - Earlier I happened to run across your speech about being a special needs mom. The post had made you the voice of us. Many agreed with you. I, on the other hand, did not. You used words like….mourn and jealousy. If only you could have seen all the great things your son would end up doing….maybe then you wouldn’t have felt so bad about him. You wouldn’t have had to “mourn the son you could have had” or be jealous of the “normal” kids wishing you had one too. I’m curious as to what your thoughts are now. Do you feel differently?June 25, 2016 – 9:25 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hi Robin,
      Thank you for your comment. Did you watch the whole speech? Because the end message was supposed to be that life IS very beautiful with the children we have, no matter what. I cherish my son, exactly as he is. There was a time when I felt sad for the things I’d imagined doing with him that I knew I wouldn’t be but yes – life is beautiful and he’s perfect as he is. Feel free to email me if you’d like to chat.June 25, 2016 – 7:26 pmReplyCancel

  • Christina Valdez - Earlier I happened to run across your speech about being a special needs mom. The post had made you the voice of us. Many agreed with you. I, on the other hand, did not. You used words like….mourn and jealousy. If only you could have seen all the great things your son would end up doing….maybe then you wouldn’t have felt so bad about him. You wouldn’t have had to “mourn the son you could have had” or be jealous of the “normal” kids wishing you had one too. I’m curious as to what your thoughts are now. Do you feel differently?June 25, 2016 – 4:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Robin - I would like to say that I’m not judging you for your feelings. I think it seems that way but I’m not. The part I’m having a problem with is that your feelings have been chosen to represent all of us. I don’t feel anything like the way you did. I dont know what health issues your son has but from where I can see he seems like he is doing everything little boys do. He seems happy and he carries himself well…I can imagine thinking you somehow missed out on anything. But what do I know. I can only hope my kids never see your speech. I hope they never fear I felt the same. That’s really my only concern.June 26, 2016 – 3:25 amReplyCancel

Each night, a girl dreams of being back home in the kingdom. She can’t quite picture the faces around the late evening feast but it’s large and loud. Viking hats litter the table next to their owner’s plates. She’d never been here before, but had somehow, and knew that it’d be disrespectful of the men […]

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  • JT Walters - Beautiful metaphor of the tree and so true of our existence. The tree of life…we have past, present and branch out into the future. We choose those branches as you so eloquently put. Our branches can be full of love and acceptance or our branches can be narrow and unaccepting. In life all these trees exist. It is natural.

    The hardest part is deciding what kind of tree you wish to be.

    You my friend are a beautiful strong oak with wide strong branches that are open, loving and accepting. You make the world a more beautiful place with each blog.

    Thank you, Kristi!June 2, 2016 – 10:46 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Wow to the idea of all these trees exist. So very true and YOU are a beautiful strong oak with a knot on one of your branches that I’m so glad you’re taking care of to grow stronger and more rooted. Here’s to sun and shade, friend.June 3, 2016 – 7:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Roots can be a tricky subject, right? I know what you mean – on the one hand, it’s interesting to learn about our past and our roots, but on the other hand, sometimes it might be better to focus on the future more. Our personal history can help us understand ourselves more in certain contexts (for ex, my mother used to reuse the same paper towel over and over again until she couldn’t reuse it anymore. It kind of drove me mad, but she always said that behavior was driven by the fact that she was brought up during the depression), but in other contexts maybe it’s better not to know too much, right? I don’t know, maybe I’m overthinking it??June 2, 2016 – 10:51 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Emily, the Depression behavior is huge – my Grandma used to wash out ziplock bags which drove me crazy although now, I’m like “huh, they are kinda a waste” but more from a landfill standpoint. I guess each decade gives us new knowledge of roots and pasts… and no I think you’re just right thinking it. Sometimes, it’s truly better to not know, I think.June 3, 2016 – 7:24 pmReplyCancel

  • Marcia @Menopausalmom - Your writing skills never cease to amaze me. This is exceptional. And it resonates with my family because my husband is adopted—as was his biological mother, who took the secret of his father’s identity to the grave with her 10 years ago. My hubs always says his side of the family tree has root rot…..June 3, 2016 – 12:33 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Oh Marcia, that is SO nice, thank you huge. Wow to your husband’s bio mom taking his father’s ID to the grave. I did meet my bio mom and sister but the father refused to meet me. LOL to root rot. Sadly though, it’s so often the case, in many families with adoptions and without. xoJune 3, 2016 – 7:29 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Absolutely loved your ending here and just couldn’t agree more that it is acceptance first and foremost and the branches, too that bring us new life. Beautifully and perfectly said ❤️June 3, 2016 – 2:08 amReplyCancel

  • Deborah Lovel Bryner - <3 What a beautiful post! I love your Thanks for sharing this.June 3, 2016 – 2:49 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - After seeing you and specifically talking about adoption, I am amazed at how you can spin all these feelings into such a beautiful and introspective post. You are amazing Ms. Campbell, and Tucker is extremely lucky to have such strong and interesting roots for his foundation. He will grow big and tall!June 3, 2016 – 9:22 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Allie! I think our talk was brewing in my brain because when I sat to write this last night, it just made sense. OH and I thought of the sentence prompt right after seeing you so BOOM thank you!! Also YOU are amazing. He will grow big and tall. Maybe, he’ll get to marry Audrey because STILL TALKING ABOUT HER. <3June 3, 2016 – 8:36 pmReplyCancel

  • Scott Hansen - This is a beautiful post, Kristi.June 3, 2016 – 10:09 amReplyCancel

  • Tamara - I’m not adopted, but I still don’t really understand my biological roots. I’m learning Cassidy’s even more so, because there’s a bit more clarity there, and we have two kids together. Fascinates the heck out of me.

    And oh! That poor cow without a heart.June 3, 2016 – 5:17 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I know yours are complicated too Tamara! Fascinates me too. And yeah, poor cow without a heart.June 3, 2016 – 10:02 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - This is all so beautiful, Kristi. You express those internal dialogues so well, so beautifully. This is very special for me because my Husband is adopted and I often think so much about what that means, how it does or does not affect who he is today, what it means for Zilla’s life…lots of thoughts. So glad you wrote about this.
    The cow hear thing? Eew. Just eew.June 3, 2016 – 10:22 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Lisa <3 I don't think I knew that your husband was adopted but it sure comes with a lot. I don't feel comfortable even writing about so much of it but would be happy to talk to him/you anytime. And THANK YOU so so much for your sweet support. It means more to me than I know how to say.June 3, 2016 – 11:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - I like your toes. And your goofy penchant for flip-flops (in spite of them being the most impractical footwear, like, EVER). And your Viking spirit, and that you might have licked the floor (I *did* lick things like walls, that I probably shouldn’t have, but wanted to know…), that you forgot about the desert, and that you felt the heritage in your schooldesk. I love that you share so much with your son, and that you’re leaning on the best of all your roots, and adding in so much that is *just you*, to make the best world possible for him to grow into <3June 3, 2016 – 11:53 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons - I think I’ve told you before that my hubs is adopted. It took on a whole new dimension for him when we had kids. Trying to explain genetics and that he doesn’t know his etc. I wonder sometimes about his biological mom and if she ever wonders about him.

    Every summer, we go to 3 or 4 different family reunions. Just yesterday, one of my girls was asking why we do that. I found myself stumbling over the explanation of family and why it’s so important even when they don’t really know half the people at these things. My answer should have been ROOTS – because roots run deep and family reunions are like giving the tree water and sunshine and love.June 4, 2016 – 11:12 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I do remember you telling me that before and I so get how much it changes after kids. I honestly didn’t have much desire to find out more before Tucker was born. I figured I had a family and a decent life with love and the essentials. But after Tucker was born, there was a doc appointment when they were asking about history and I got obsessed with finding my bio mom.
      Aw poor girls – family reunions can be boring when you don’t know anybody but I love your words about them being like giving the tree water and sunshine and love. I bet they’d have more fun at them if you told them some funny stories about people there 🙂June 4, 2016 – 2:00 pmReplyCancel

  • yvonne - You already know I think this is an amazing post, and that your speed at writing it is amazing too.

    What you say about adoption is fascinating. that you feel as if you have dual roots. You seem to have such a strong connection with your dad, which is lovely to see. And of course, you are right that what’s here now is what matters and of creating new roots for your son.

    I wonder if anyone actually has roots they can trace all the way back? Thought I don’t know of any adoptions in our family, my grandfather’s mother wasn’t married and his father disappeared. The whole thing was shrouded in secrecy and we have no idea who our ancestors or relatives were on his father’s side. My grandfather was brought up as if he was a younger brother to his mother’s siblings – she was sent away to work as a maid.

    I love that you have Vikings in your past – I do too!June 5, 2016 – 5:58 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I so love your post, Yvonne. I just shared it on FN facebook’s page (which I don’t do often as you know). I think some families can get part of the roots maybe. My dad’s mother and my cousin (not bio) took the QE2 to trace back years ago and actually found an impressive amount of history for a long line back. The missing part though is that there are no roots or branches. It’s like following one line and what is one line in a family anyway? That’s like tracing me back with my adoptive family and saying “oh her relative was so and so” or same with bio family. Sadly, I think the women’s history is frequently left off, and the deaths and the giving the baby to an uncle was less documented even in the 60’s than today. Imagine 300 years ago… well, you can, I know, because you wrote it perfectly…June 5, 2016 – 10:50 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - Fascinating read, my friend. So so thought provoking… I once again just dove into your world and got lost in it and found too.

    When and how did you finally meet your biological mom and the rest of your biological family? I don’t remember ever reading about it, but maybe this is my own forgetfulness. #Dementia lol

    I’m so very interested in your story, love. There is SO much there. Much like anybody’s story really.June 7, 2016 – 4:42 pmReplyCancel

Sometimes, I wonder how I got to this place. This job, this city, this moment. This family. This house. These clothes, these friends, these neighbors and these beliefs. When did I start becoming offended by certain words? Was I not always offended by them? When did I grow up? Am I grown up now? It’s […]

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  • JT Walters - How did any of us end up here? Brilliant metaphysical topic to talk about. My answer is we are the survivors and chosen ones who lead and follow your lead.

    I believe you quit your job 4 seconds after having Tucker. Your nose is growing you lasted four minutes.

    Is it the most amazing thing in the world how our children bring out the very best in us? We want to be better people, pro society and so selfless because that is the world we want our children to live in. Our hearts dance in our child’s laughter and our hearts die in their pain. We see the umbilical cord cut when they are born but it never really is. Once a Mom always a Mom.

    I have become a stranger to myself in Motherhood. Having a child with two rare disorders will do that to you. I know biochemistry like the back of my hand. To have become so specialized in rare diseases that I am correcting biochemical analysis for doctors so they help my son is totally not what I expected in life.

    To love someone so much, I only buy for him or, if it comes to it, I will skip meals so he eats healthy is also to be a Mom. I did this as a child when we were short on groceries so my younger siblings could eat. Joke in our house was you never had a sandwich without a bite out of it. By the time the little ones got the the sandwich it was gone so I’d skip a bite so they could eat.

    We are here as parents/caregivers of children with special needs. Thirty doesn’t matter nor does any other age but what we contribute to society. This website is a tremendous contribution to our community of really awesome special folks of every kind. Our stories are unique but we find solace and solidarity in the sharing of our experiences…sometimes through tears of grief and sadness and other times through joy and happiness.

    In a hundred years when they find the great internet dig (it will be archeological by then), they will come across as his website and read about how all these brave courageous champions of children who were not cookie cutter children ( a little different) and how their care provider/parent struggled for the playing field to be leveled and these children, arguably they last minority to be accepted, families came together to help every child around the world in need of it.

    We are here and we will never surrender!!!May 26, 2016 – 10:40 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - We ARE here and hellz to the yes for never giving up with our kids. Heres to contributing to society and to you who is doing such a great job with Alex. xoxoMay 28, 2016 – 1:11 amReplyCancel

  • Kerry - This is amazing stuff Kristi. I like your dream catcher substitute.
    This particular prompt is going to take a lot of consideration, as I don’t want to repeat things I’ve written for FTSF in the past. Hmm.
    Life never turns out how we imagine. Isn’t that great?
    😉May 26, 2016 – 11:46 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Kerry,
      It really is great that life never turns out the way we’d imagined and I find myself repeating myself often with these prompts. Maybe I need to shake it up a little and come up with a wackier one! Hope you’ll join this week.May 28, 2016 – 3:46 pmReplyCancel

      • Kerry - Oh, no. That’s not what I meant.
        Well, we all tend to repeat ourselves, now and again, but I always find your posts enlightening and heartfelt, all unique pieces of your life.
        I have just been thinking on a lot these last few weeks, it seems. I think I can approach this from a first-time angle. I think I know just who to give the credit, for how I got here.
        I would love to host this with you again one of these days, if I could come up with an interesting sentence starter to contribute.
        🙂May 28, 2016 – 7:24 pmReplyCancel

        • Kristi Campbell - No I know – it’s just that I was thinking the same, that I repeat some of these stories, especially when the prompt is related to how life’s paths bring us to where we are or what we dream or how we’re here… and I’d love to host with you again! Some weeks, I just think of something because I forget to ask. You’re welcome to host one of those with me if you’d like to!May 28, 2016 – 9:19 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Aw, what a perfect note to end your night on with Tucker and btw I constantly wonder how I got here and the years just keep flying by, as well. But I am thankful for all I do have and guess that is all that does indeed matter. Hugs <3May 27, 2016 – 1:58 amReplyCancel

  • Deborah Lovel Bryner - I love the idea that the bottle of gold flecks contained both of your six year old selves…<3! Makes me think of Jim Croce's "Time in a Bottle"...<3May 27, 2016 – 2:37 amReplyCancel

  • Deirdre Conran - Wonderful posr! So a lawyer! My mom wanted me to be a lawyer but I can honestly say I could never see myself in that role! Love the ending by the way!May 27, 2016 – 4:40 amReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Lewis - I’m glad for the six-year-old-selves in a bottle that you and T can share. I’m glad for now-you and all the then-you’s that led to now-you. I’m super glad for tomorrow-you, because tomorrow-you will go on to greater and bigger things than ever before 🙂May 27, 2016 – 5:14 amReplyCancel

  • Upasna Sethi - This reminds me when I first told my Parents that I will be a Teacher, then Doctor, Artist ….ended up being an Engineer.The silence before he said goodnight means something. Hats off to the now-you.May 27, 2016 – 9:29 amReplyCancel

  • Nicki - Aaah Kristi, so adore visiting your memories with you. And this line: “I didn’t come here easily, although in hindsight, I’m easily here.” A bottle full of gold flakes… truly magical! <3May 27, 2016 – 12:41 pmReplyCancel

  • My Inner Chick - ~~~He looked at it. “Why?” he asked
    “Because this holds the six-year-olds of both of us,” I said.~~~
    Kristi, you continually manage to pull at my heartstrings.

    xxx from MN.May 27, 2016 – 8:01 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa Moskowitz Sadikman - I love all the places you go with this Kristi and it makes perfect sense becasue we are so many different selves as we discover who we are. Guess what? It’s STILL going on, isn’t it? MIss you. xoMay 27, 2016 – 9:11 pmReplyCancel

  • Paul D. Brads - This is great!May 27, 2016 – 10:50 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - I didn’t know you went to a “women’s college.” How did I not know that!? You’re 30 sounds sad. And how clever is Master Tucker? Those are the moments.May 28, 2016 – 8:14 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Did you ever read the post that talked about the Fruck? It was a van that drove us into Berkeley for the boys. hehe Anyway, I left after freshman year. There was the fact that I hated it. Oh and the fact that I used all my college money for that one year – that’s how badly I wanted to leave home.
      And yeah, 40 was better than 30 for sure.May 28, 2016 – 3:49 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - Oh gosh- every time I come by to read your words, your heart- I smile, I sigh, I nod, all with that deep aggreement and nastalgia of years gone by for you, for me, and all the years to come for you, and for me- for our children and all this life brings us.

    “Because this holds the six-year-olds of both of us,” I said. < --- Oh my HEART.May 28, 2016 – 1:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Scott Hansen - Sounds like you got where you are by taking the scenic route, but you’re right where you’re supposed to be. Tucker is lucky to have a mom as amazing as you are.May 28, 2016 – 2:07 pmReplyCancel

  • Wendy Harris - I found this to be peaceful read that left me smiling… a story about a woman who has come into her own and is content with the life she has made for herself, at least as content as any of us ever can be. No, not the life you envisioned as a child, but a very good life all the same, and a little boy who loves your dearly. It just doesn’t get any better than that!May 29, 2016 – 3:33 amReplyCancel

  • Tamara - I love that so much: “Because this holds the six-year-olds of both of us,” I said.
    I do want a bottle of gold flakes and to keep hearing the dreams of my kids, and remembering my own, and how they turned out. Some great. Some not. Some still just forming. Many.May 29, 2016 – 11:28 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Your bottle of gold flakes can be moose sightings maybe or that you guys there KNOW GROOT. By the way, I showed Tucker Cass’ Groot costume again the other day like a billion times if you’re wondering about the hits. And yeah, here’s to the ones still forming.May 29, 2016 – 11:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Jack Steiner - Man, I wish I had a bottle that had the six-year-old I used to be and my kids. That is very cool, love that more than I can say.May 29, 2016 – 2:57 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I love it too. So many nights I feel like I’m flunking but this one, I was like “DUDE, here, we both win!” Thank you!May 29, 2016 – 11:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - I love the bottle that holds the 6-year-olds of you both…I agree, better than a dream catcher. I love reading all of your reflections about the past and how they made you you and how you don’t over-analyze them either. Those experiences were just how they were meant to be and brought you here to the now you and your now life and and even though we can look back at our pasts and wish that maybe we didn’t do certain things, I’m all about fate and believe that these past events were supposed to happen just the way they did.May 29, 2016 – 4:14 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - So much better than a dream catcher (although he still wants one and I still can’t find the one I had when I was his age). Em, your comment is amazing. For real. Sometimes I think there’s no point (and really there isn’t if you think about it) but I believe in fate too. Maybe we type to connect. I think that’s why we type. I also think that we type about the things that happened because we know the same stuff was in other’s worlds right?May 29, 2016 – 11:26 pmReplyCancel

      • Emily Cappo - Yes, that definitely explains it. And yes, we absolutely type to connect — it’s a lifeline for me, for sure.May 30, 2016 – 9:31 pmReplyCancel

  • Yvonne - Like so many other people have said, that bottle of gold flakes from when you were six is wonderful. Because of what you said to Tucker, but also that you kept it all these years. The earliest things I’ve got are some stories I wrote aged 10 and some other school notebooks. This whole post has a lovely almost magical feel to it. I enjoyed it!May 29, 2016 – 6:44 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I can’t believe I still had that bottle, although obviously I do because GOLD but that it worked, yes, there’s something about karma and life and moving on and gathering in. Or something. THANK YOU.May 29, 2016 – 11:27 pmReplyCancel

  • Roshni AaMom - What a lovely walk down memory lane!! Thoroughly enjoyed it, Kristi! We all have such grand ideas of what we will be when we grow up but somehow, most of us are pretty satisfied even though (or probably because) it doesn’t work out that way!May 31, 2016 – 10:25 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Awwww how sweet. I don’t have anything like that I’ve saved from my childhood. I’m super sappy today. You just got me with the closing!June 2, 2016 – 12:02 pmReplyCancel

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