Can’t sleep…

Been trying, but just can’t get to sleep.

Thinking too much about the farm, and how we’ll make it happen. Got turned down by the bank, and the bank that holds the house lowered the price even more. Of course, it’s a sign they’re a little anxious to be rid of the place, and our realtor says that’s not a bad thing, but a good thing. But that means we’re back to square one again.

Waiting on a good friend who has a friend that might be able to help us with a personal loan. It’s times like this that I know how close and good my bluegrass friends are. It’s funny, how close you become to total strangers over the beat of “Foggy Mountain Breakdown” and “Rocky Top”. Really super people. Musicians are super cool.

I think it’s the waiting, really, that seems to be the worse part. Seems like it was forever since we drove out there and saw the place and fell in love. Really, it’s only been 3 weeks, but it seems like forever. Every night I see the place, all beautiful and cleaned up, passing through the seasons, it’s like it’s haunting me.

I know that a lot of my need, my desperation, is for my youngest daughter, Maggie. We’re coming into a very hard time for Maggie. She’s becoming a young lady, an adult. And she’s painfully aware of how she’s different. How’s she’s just not quite in the middle of the bell curve. Her austism is just enough that she’s going to really struggle. I know this so painfully well. We had a little social mishap, really not a big deal and I won’t go into the details, but it brought out such painful shame on her part, and just tore my heart up to pieces. The mishap was only the teeny little tip of the iceburg looming beneath her fragile surface. We were running errands and ended up crying ourselves out nearly, trying to get her to talk and articulate her feelings. She feels “stupid” and “useless” and she says she’s not a people person and that she has no purpose. It just tore me up to hear her talk that way.

No one talks about Maggie going to college. No one asks her about what kind of job she’s going to have. No one asks about friends or how she’s doing in school. It’s like everyone has already sort of written her off. It’s terrible sometimes to stand back and suddenly realize this, and see the hurt on her face when she gets very upset over not being able to do something, like some math skills, or spelling issues. She just withdraws and won’t meet your eyes. There’s tons written about autism in little and young children. But not much for the young adults and adults. It’s hard to know what to do and what to tell her. Very hard.

She needs this farm more than any of us. She is SO good with animals and routine. She loves to fix things and create things, she so wants a workshop space and I know she’ll make some of the most delightfully Maggie things around. She has been reading all my homesteading books and asks me questions all the time about chickens and eggs and ponies and goats and fences and tractors and all that. We look stuff up online, we read about it, and we talk about it.

Unfortunately, the moby doesn’t give her much room to be challenged anymore. We’re done fixing it up for the most part. We have all our gardens in place, and especially now, in the middle of winter, heck, it only take 10 minutes to shovel out the sidewalk. Chores inside only take up a half hour at best to keep this small space all tidy and clean. People don’t talk about how living in a small space and keeping your expenses down, can give you a TON of leisure time. It’s almost too much time.

Well, I know that even if this dream farm doesn’t happen, or someone buys it from under us, there are others. And we will keep at it. May take us another year, and soon enough, it will be spring and we can do a super crazy garden this year. I think we’ll try and take all the clutter from our shed, and try hard to make Maggie a workshop space. Get her building something, anything. I need to help her to find things she’s great at and then encourage her like only a Mom can. We’ve started a little business idea, because I know that bothers her very much, the only one in the Moby without a business! It’s going to combine her drawings (which are awesome) and her ability to work with graphic programs on the computer and primitive arts and crafts! (Can’t spill the beans, but I hope that we can get it worked out soon enough and it’s a pretty keen idea…)

Still, I wish I could help her other issues, the social problems, the whole “not fitting in” to the big bad world. I finally this summer gave in and let her go on bike rides on her own around our area. That was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. We’ve had a few issues with it, but we’ve finally got good ground rules and she seems to be doing fine with it. I know that I have to give her these little bits of room… but it’s so hard. Autistics have their own way of looking at things, and doing things and sometimes it’s just not easy for them to understand social cues and things out there. It’s so easy for people to not understand and laugh and tease. People can be so cruel, we all know that.

I ordered two books off eBay tonight… both by Temple Grandin. She’s one adult with autism that writes and talks about it, so that we can understand. She’s a brilliant woman and is one of the leading animal rights enthusiasts. Some of the things I’ve read about her, remind me of my own daughter. I think it might be time for Maggie to read these books, or for us to read them together. I want her to see that she’s special for a reason, not a mistake. I want a safe place for her to live and explore and do for herself. A place that will nurture all that is so special in her. A homeplace that give her the time to grow up and love her life and all that it is to be Maggie.

Guess that’s why I can’t sleep. The what-ifs and waiting is just killing me.

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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.


Can’t sleep… — 9 Comments

  1. You have so clearly articulated your pain, it is almost painful to read. I do not have an answer, but I do know that your daughter is in a safe place with you. You love her so much and understand her better than many parents understand their children. I will be praying for you, I know God has a plan.

    • Thank you… it’s rare that I talk about my feelings about this, but I guess I need to a little more than I do. I know it will all be okay, just a rough path of road to travel at the moment. Hard on the heart and makes you think too much about stuff… I think that I need to just let Him and His plans unfold and mature. I KNOW He has a plan… just hard to wait!

  2. Thank you for sharing all of this. We just got done watching Temple Grandin the movie. It was great. Maggie will find her place in the world……it sounds like she has a great foundation and a very supportive mother who seeks out opportunities and gives her the freedom to experience the world around her, sometimes cruel as it is, but allows her to spread her wings a bit. I used to be a case manager for adults with developmental disabilities and worked often with people with autism……such a wide range of abilities and talents. best wishes for the homestead – I hope something works out for you! Hang in there.

    • She wants to start driving soon…. haha…. that scares the heck outta me. I know she’ll be a fantastic driver, but yet, wow…. that just worries the heck out of me, how far will my heartstrings reach to keep her safe? Well, just a little at a time, I promised her a riding mower first. We’ll see how that goes. Thank you for writing!!

  3. Sending good vibes to you and your daughters on finding financing for the homestead. If it’s meant to be, it will happen OR something better might be around the corner. Hang in there, Mobymom. :)

  4. Thank you. It’s so hard to think that everything will work out when it seems like it’s not. But I have to remind myself that this was a goal we had for next year and that this sudden flop of our perfect homestead in our laps at such a perfect price and everything, in itself is a Godsend… I hope that He wouldn’t tease us without giving us a way to make it happen…. so I just have to be patient. Until it’s sold, we’re still in the game. Isn’t terrible how much we torture ourselves when we can not be patient? I try and remind myself of this all the time… We’re not giving up, we are moving ahead, and getting an education… there is a reason for all things! :-)

  5. Thanks for sharing your feelings with us. That is no easy feat. My hubby and I just watched Temple on TV a few weeks ago. I had never heard of her before. What a remarkable woman. She does a lot of work with farm animals and has invented some incredible things on their behalf.

    I wanted to mention a book that I think might also be helpful. It is called “Breaking the Vicious Cycle” written by the late Elaine Gottschall, also a very remarkable woman, just like you. Her daughter was painfully ill and probably would have died and no doctors could help her (except one, who she studied under) and she went back to school to figure out what was going on and became a nurse/scientist. You can also find her on some videos online. I discovered this book years ago because I have Crohn’s disease. The diet in this book has healed many, many people and there is evidently a connection with autism and intestinal health and many with autism have been successful with this diet. Please read the reviews on and see what you think. You can see what others have experienced with this diet. Here is the link.

    I have tried this diet myself and it is not terribly hard to do but you have to do it 100%. Soon it becomes a lifestyle and it is very healthy so that anyone would benefit from it. I’ll keep praying. Maggie sure has a wonderful family and must be a very special person. God Bless.


  6. I will pray for your daughter!! Thank goodness she has such a creative, loving mother and a loving environment.

    My cousin’s 12-yr-old son struggles with autism, and he recently danced at a parents of kids with autism conference–enjoy!

    Also, written up in the news:

  7. My friend gave me your site. Thank you for sharing. I also want to tell you that you are so blessed that Maggie is as far along as she is. I have my own pain with my son who has cerebral palsy, but a far greater pain is my sister’s who has a 21 year old son with autism. He was holding his own, even though he was basically non-verbal, until he started to have seizures at 16 years old. He now head bangs, is abusive to himself, and screams and screams. He has grand mal seizures and petit mals. My sister is a saint, but I worry about her. If the caregiver burns out, what happens to the one being cared for?? There is more to the very long story, but I just wanted to tell you that God has a plan…for you, your daughter, your family, and all those who are part of this world, but really not part of this world. Be assured the “Maggies” and “Michael’s” of this world will be in the front of the line in the next, and at the head table. Blessings, Rosanna