Before I Tripped Over a Stone, Fridays, #14

I am continuing my story about working with “A,” a nine-year-old little boy with autism.

“A” and I successfully moved to Mrs. O’s classroom. Mrs.O was a proper lady, she was repulsed by “A’s” spitting, but as he settled into the routine, this became a coping mechanism “A” used less and less. “A” bloomed in Mrs’ O’s class. He was beginning to talk in class, he was able to do his reading out loud to me instead of me reading to him. We continued to go to the computer lab to do his math assignment, the tactile defenses of chalk and pencils were still very much intact. I was incredibly pleased with his progress as were the teachers.

As I worked with “A” during the week at the school, my weekends were spent as a live-in counselor at a group home for the mentally challenged. I seemed to always pick up a position as a live-in because you were paid for sleeping time, not as much as your hours awake at the house but when you had to get up with a resident, you just punched in. We were then told the sleeping hours would no longer be paid, because they would be bringing a cleaning person in at night. You could still sleep there, but you would no longer be paid.

I needed to go back to college. I needed a degree, and I needed to work in a position where restraining clients was a thing of the past. I was close to requiring surgery on my right shoulder unless I could give it the proper rest it needed. So I made a plan. I enrolled in college. Again.

The school year had ended, and “A” and I were parting ways, my live-in position was cutting hours, so I resigned. I headed to St. Cloud State University. I would be majoring in social work and minoring in criminal justice. I called back to check on “A” the following year. I was told he often got in trouble for talking too much in class! (This was a child who was non-verbal the year before.) He was brilliant and was completing his coursework and continued to move up academically. My “A”! I knew he was going to be a delightful young boy and smart! Oh, did I miss him!!!

Now it was on to college and a haunted orphanage…

(Would you like Before I Tripped Over a Stone, Fridays to continue??? Please leave me your vote in the comment section below.) 

(OK! Continued! Before I Tripped, #15)


Before I Tripped Over a Stone (Friday Series #1)

I have been writing this blog for about 15 months… my goal has always been to raise awareness about fibromyalgia, answer questions and bring any helpful tips I find to you! Recently, I have been asked to tell more personal stories. I don’t think I am that interesting but other people seem to? OK, about three people! Or was it four…

In response to the “masses,” I will start writing a little bit on Fridays about my life before I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. Just tales about me before I tripped over the fibromyalgia stone!

(Let me know if these off-topic stories are interesting to you?)


(Warning; Domestic Violence Content.)


In college, I was dating a guy who was sexy, passionate, funny and utterly involved in every aspect of my daily life. “R” knew my schedule better than I did. (That is a red flag, by the way.) ALL the girls wanted him, but he wanted me?!?! We dated for about a year, even took him home to meet the family for Thanksgiving. By the time I got out of that relationship I had a restraining order on him, an armed security guard escorting me from campus parking lots to class, and a cold heart.

I thought if I just could’ve figured out how to love him the right way? Yep. It was my fault! I deserved to be thrown into walls, pushed on the floor, verbally abused, and sexually abused. I wasn’t a virgin when I started dating him, so he let me know having sex just because I didn’t want it wasn’t rape. (He reminded me many times that I was, after all, a whore.)

Somehow I was entirely in love with him. I think I got so used to being in such an emotionally charged relationship. We were fighting or making love… there was no pause button. Every minute we spent together was like an adrenaline rush. I was completely his; mind, body and soul… he made sure I knew it!

After yet another harrowing domestic disturbance leading to “R” fighting with the officers, getting wrestled to the floor, getting cuffed and, getting taken to jail … one officer took the time to sit and talk with me. (I knew most of the officers by name now as they ‘visited’ us regularly.) He said this guy isn’t going to ever stop hurting you. He told me I needed to leave “R”. He said this guy is going to kill you! I knew what the officer was saying was true. I also knew I could not just leave “R”. He had told me many times that he would kill me and my family if I ever left him. He had said to me many times that would be my ending, and I had no doubt he was telling me the truth.

I thanked the kind police officer and said I knew what he was saying was true.

So I started driving across bridges, I was going to kill myself, making it look like an accident because I would never give “R” the satisfaction of knowing he drove me to suicide. Never! None of the bridges seemed high enough. I wasn’t sure if it’d just mess me up or what if it just paralyzed me? I’d be at his mercy then! I changed plans. I would buy a gun! Off him, then do me.

On my way to the gun store, I ended up at the women’s center on my college campus. How? To this day I do not know. I had never been there before. I walked in, and the woman at the desk came around it to me and said, “You’re safe here, you are safe.” ( I must have looked a fright!) Then I met the woman who’d change my life…

To be continued… Life, Before I Tripped Over the Stone, on Fridays.


  • Domestic Abuse Hotline 1-800-799-7233
  • TTY 1-800-787-3224