A massive three months have nearly passed since my last main blog. Despite a few photos and paragraphs via other platforms, I've remained rather silent. Why? One word... change.
It is an inevitable part of life for everyone in the world that change will happen. From the major changes like getting married, to the smaller changes like having a hair cut, change comes in all forms to all people. It just so happens that I don't like it very much. This is common amongst all other Aspies I know. A fear of change or a fear of a break of routine can knock many an Aspie for six.
Change has always frightened but enthralled me too. I know it's going to happen at some level on a daily basis and I know a huge variety of coping mechanisms in order to struggle on through as an Aspie. There is a small part of me that looks forward to change. It's tiny, but it's there. However, these past three months have been a little different.
1. We bought a car.
2. We bought a house.
3. We had (and somehow are still having) a garage conversion done.
4. We're expecting our third child.
I'll deal with these in order.
Number One. Buying a new car. Apparently this should be a man's dream. A chance to reveal your inner petrol-head and get some perfectly optimised machine that drives on endless coastal roads with awesome precision and a soundtrack of smooth classical music. A vehicle that not only can accelerate faster than a jet plane, but doesn't knock your drink over from its holder whilst travelling at super sonic speeds (within the speed limit of course). There are a few problems with this image that has been so marvellously created by incredible marketing companies.
a) I have little to no interest in cars.
b) The Southport coastal road, whilst beautiful in its own way, is hardly similar to a Californian coastal road. It has more potholes for starters.
c) Marketers haven't met my family. The instant mess that a five and two year old can create in half a minute is insane. I'm lucky to get an opportunity to put a drink within the drinks holder. It's usually occupied by either a fairy princess doll or some form of pre-chewed crisp.
So I didn't walk away with a smooth machine that purrs like a cat and screams 'Grrr, arrrgh, manliness'. I walked away with a 7 seater Citroën. And I don't even own it. I have to give it back in three years or pay another whopping great fee. It does have a back massager on the driver's seat though. That's a plus.
Number two. They say that there is nothing more stressful than buying a house. And they are right. The end. Despite the best efforts of the wonderful and honest people we bought the house from, and a cheery, local estate agent who didn't try to rip us off, we still managed to make the house purchase last for what felt like a life time. Money seems to flow easily out of your accounts, but slower than molasses into your accounts. The quantity of hoops we had to jump through just to prove who we were. They stopped short of asking for bloods and a urine sample. I know many people have had slower and far more protracted house buying experiences than we did. It's more to do with how prepared we were and how ready and willing all buying and selling parties were to actually buy and sell and yet still it managed to slow down, delay and falter.
It began in January when I viewed the house we bought. Catherine came to see it the same day later on. With one more viewing and a little persuasion from me (I loved it instantly), we put an offer in. It was accepted and surveys and all the standard rigmarole began in earnest. We knew there would be a waiting period. Our chain was relatively short actually. People ahead of us in the chain made their moves, the surveys did what they did, the lawyers did what they did, the brokers did what they did and we should have been ready to move forward at the start of April. Cue stress.
Chickenpox from the kids, three tradesmen who thought it might all fall through so didn't bother to book us in despite assuring us they would, a problem confirming the removals company, someone in the chain sodding off to Spain on an ill-timed holiday and our Mortgage company not believing that we existed and asking for more ID than we actually have available to show them. It was like trying to get into a over 30s nightclub aged 50 with a driving licence and a passport in your bag but they want a council tax statement from a property you lived in back in the 90s.
All small potatoes looking back but living in that world for the five months I lived in it nearly killed me. To quote Cath 'first world problems'. How true, and how lucky we all are to have time to write blogs and introspect freely considering the global picture. However, from the Aspie perspective, and remembering that this is my reality, I was waiting around not knowing what was coming. A life perpetually sat on the fence with nothing but plans to make. No idea what was going to be, only what could be. An endless repeated cycle of analysis and number crunching. How much would this cost? Can that be done in two days, not three? It all seems so stupid now. But knowing what might happen, preparing for all eventualities, meant that I was comfortable and unsurprised when one of the potential routes was taken and the unpredictable outcomes came to pass.
Number three. Catherine and I always planned to have a garage conversion done in our new house. We work a lot from home and we wanted to create a space that was dedicated to that. As I don't care for cars and the house has a suitable driveway, a garage conversion was a no-brainer. Plans were drawn up, council approval and other approvals given and paid for and our building contractors started working a week before we moved in. We were delighted. We didn't anticipate them starting until after the summer. None of that though. Now we mostly have a garage conversion. The small little bits, snagging they call it, are yet to be resolved and bricks/wood from the build are yet to be removed. But we've been lucky with a nice bunch of people working on the property who are mindful of our young bears and explain to me what's going on the thousand times I ask them about stuff. It's so nearly there, I can taste it. But I've been saying that for a month now.
Finally, number four. The best of the bunch by far. It's really worthy of its own blog. It speaks for itself. Number three is due in early October and I can't wait. We don't know if it's a boy or girl and we really don't mind which it is. It's a pretty big change though. Moving to the realms of being outnumbered, having to deal with the potential of 'middle child' syndrome and marshalling the already excited kids. Lots to think about. Lots to anticipate. LOTS. Stop the world, I'd like to get off.
Hopefully, I've gone some way to explaining my absence. Change can be massively hard. Huge thanks to all the usual suspects for helping me through the tough times whilst making me feel as though I did it all by myself. But I'm back. And I've got some stuff to talk about. Brace yourself internet, Asperger Dad has just set up his new computer in his new study, built his new office chair with swivel backs and adjustable armrests, collected his Starbucks Frappucino from the not really clean drinks holder in his new car currently parked in his new driveway, and is ready to write some new blogs. BOOM!!!