It’s like being kicked while we’re already down

Update: As of late yesterday afternoon, our power was restored. Thank you so much for your unbelievable everything. Please see my Official Update or more information.

We had a really, really interesting wraparound meeting this morning. The long and short of it is this.

Lizze is in crisis and we have to attend to her needs.  Gavin has to be home or its pointless to make all these trips to the doctors because we can’t provide accurate information about how he’s doing. 

The meeting was ending and one of the people asked a question that could only be answered honestly by revealing just how bad things are for us right now. 



I had assumed that they knew this stuff as they have read this blog before. 

Apparently they didn’t. 

I had to swallow what’s left of my pride and explain just how bad things really were.  It’s one thing to write about them and it’s something entirely different to have that discussion face to face.

I feel like a complete and utter failure. They assured me that I wasn’t but that doesn’t change the fact that I can’t take care of my families needs. 

You know, when I began writing this post, I felt pretty low.  I realize that I put a lot of that on myself, I really do.  That doesn’t make me feel any better to know that.  I don’t need anyone’s help to feel guilty, I’ve got that market cornered all on my own. 

To make matters worse, we just arrived home from all of our running around this morning. 

When I opened the screen door, I saw the tag on our door. I knew right away what that meant. 

It meant that I had failed once again.  It meant that life for my family was about to become much more challenging.  It meant that we no longer had electricity running to our house.

Read This  How automating the lights in my house helps my son with #Autism to sleep

Lizze had to run off to an appointment (just down the street) and I’m working with a very frustrated Emmett, who doesn’t understand what’s going on…

Despite how overwhelmingly negative this quite obviously is, people went without power long before this and they did just fine.  We’re gonna have to rough it.

To be completely honest with you all, I have no idea what we’re going to do. 

What’s really hard is spinning this in a way that doesn’t frighten the boys or increase their anxiety.  We have flashlights and some batteries.  I have three batteries charged for my phone. 

I think we will pretend that we have gone back I  time, to a point where we didn’t have power.  We’ll practice all the things that we would need to do I  the event of a blackout.  I’ll turn this into a teaching thing and try and make something positive.

This is my fault.  I don’t blame AEP for shutting us off because it’s my responsibility to pay the bill. Unfortunately, I fell behind and I’ve been trying to play catch up, obviously unsuccessfully.

AEP isn’t some big bad company, hell bent on making our lives more challenging. 

This is just part of being a special needs family and simply not having the resources left to maintain even the bare essentials. 

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  • lostandtired says:

    barney4170 Carlyoung Hucksgirl13 cldamp1 HopeYates KatMoody Thank you everyone. We are slowly getting this moving once again. Lizze has had a really bad day, but you have all made it better. Thank you so much for everything. Hopefully I’ll be back online later tonight. Truthfully, I’ve exhausted and may just go to bed early. 
    Thank you again.

  • you are definitely not alone. (((((hugs))))) for you all!

  • Louise Jones says:

    Thanks Christine, but I’m just happy I’m in a good enough place to help now 🙂

  • You are an awesome person Louise. 🙂

  • KatMoody says:

    We’re with you guys Rob. If we had the money right now we’d give in a heartbeat but we are definitely still in your corner and praying for you guys! {{hugs}}

  • maybe you can call…..i found this on thier site

    AEP Ohio will not shut off service for:
    • Unpaid bills if a physician or local Board of Health physician certifies that
    denial of service would be especially dangerous to the health of someone
    living in the household (limit of three 30-day certifications in a 12-month
    period);

  • Louise Jones says:

    I remember sitting in the dark as a child. I’ve donated what I can xx

  • I called to set up a payment arrangement and they told me I have to pay $250 down then they will break the rest up in payments for 3 months. Keep in mind that we called when we got behind and they told us that we could not set up a payment agreement then because it wasnt in disconnect mode. We waited for the disconnect notice and now, WHAM! They will not work with us without giving them $250

  • I know how you guys feel. I too have a autistic child and my electric service through Appalachian Power (American Power) is scheduled to be disconnected on the 2nd of May. We owe $500.

  • HopeYates says:

    You need to get in touch with pathwaysofcentralohio.com. I am in Kentucky and get a lot of help here. Its a mental health/private social services organization that is connected with the united way. They can either help or put you in contact with who can. We get help with all kinds of stuff through them and they have special groups and programs for kids. They have helped us with groceries,school clothes,you name it.

  • cldamp1 says:

    Dialing 211 should put you in contact with agencies who can provide assistance with utility shut off and other social service programs.  I know you have a lot on your plate already, but I’m hoping the agencies can provide some breathing room for you and your family

  • Hucksgirl13 says:

    Try calling Catholic Charities?

  • Carlyoung says:

    Rob, If I had the funds to lend a hand, I would.  No need to ask.  Sadly, my family is in much the same strait as yours.  The difference being, I get disability, while not a lot, it has helped even out some of the valleys in our lives.  My thoughts and prayers are with you, Lizzie and the boys.

  • Thanks everyone. My Internet connection is really spotty cause T mobile has 3 towers down for upgrade at the moment. I have a signal and just wanted to say thank you while it lasted.

  • I left a comment on your post. (Courtney) Check with your local salvation army and even Children and Youth. They have helped us keep our power on by paying our past due. as long as you have that shut off paper, they should help you. Good luck!

  • barney4170 says:

    Sorry to hear Rob. I know how hard this is. We live BELOW the poverty limit and it’s so hard to keep the basics going. Are there any churches in your area whom can help? we have been helped by the Salvation army and by Children and youth. If you have a shut off notice, which obviously you do, you should be able to take it to them and they will help you to get it back on. I know it sucks to ask for help, but with a special needs family, help is a must. I wish you all the best of luck <3

  • Candy Moyer says:

    So sorry I really wish there was some way I could help not just you but everyone in this situation. We manage to get by but nothing extra I can understand the juggling of things and kind of getting lost in it all. You are doing an incredible job, keep up the good work.

  • I’m sorry, Rob, that you are going through all this. Some days it really feels like life just keeps getting harder and harder. Being a special needs parent is especially hard and financially draining. Then to add your wife’s needs on top of it all, it’s heartbreaking. Keep the faith and keep your strength up. You can do this!

  • Jenna Burns says:

    Sorry for the typos..

  • Jenna Burns says:

    have you contacted social services.!? THere is a fund for these things…and look into the law about your meter bring shut off. Ithink they have to leave it on enough to run your refriderator at least. My husband and I have been right where you are at. If you can invest inoil lamps for lighting…Walmart sells them..best things ever for these situations!

  • While I’m sorry you all go through these things, it’s nice to not be alone or even judged. Thank you all so much. 🙂

  • I get it. We’ve had a week where everything is going wrong as well. We can barely afford gas in our car when my husband’s carpool person and now former friend demands I drive him all the way to her house because it is too inconvenient to pick him up. I send her a message on facebook and asked her to consider that she is off at 7 and I work a later shift until 10 and have a child who has therapy in the mornings, special education preschool plus a parent teacher conference this week and either she needs to give him notice or meet us half way between our home and hers because she is demanding I give up 40 minutes of time with my child to grant her 20 minutes with hers. My child does not do well in the car either. Instead of a response to explain or an apology she defriends me and my husband without one. And that’s just the first thing going wrong in a long list. I know the stress my husband and I are under with having one child on the more mild end of the spectrum and cannot imagine how hard it is for you with three children plus Lizze being so ill. People truly do not get it either.

  • Court Ney says:

    Oops. Sorry for the typos. My fat fingers and this tiny phone dont work well together. 🙂

  • Court Ney says:

    Bless your heart. This is si heartbreaking but I see it hapoen so often. I know we pay MORE than my 300.00 car note a month for Hunters (my asd child) therapy. Thats with insurance covering some. My son actually didnt go to therapy this month because I thought I paid the last payment on the car. I was off by a month! Go figure. Anyways, hope things look up for you soon!

  • Have you heard of LIHEAP? We get assistance with heating based on both income and special consideration to the fact we have a disabled child in the home. They often have funds to assist with disconnections, getting caught up and also lowering the bill so it’s more affordable via a grant system. I know this just adds yet another thing to that ever growing “to do” list but it might help?

  • Well said April I feared my car being repo’ed many months till my taxes came in ironically my late payments equaled my pay off amount so I did just that. Its very easy to say I’ll just pay it later but without fail something ALWAYS comes up.

  • It’s so easy to just get a bit behind…and then life gets hectic and you get further behind as the days blend together running from one doctor to the next until the world beyond our own home forces you to stop and pay them some attention. I have been there on the morning you wake up and realize the car is gone as it has been repo’ed since you paid for your child’s meds and thought you were only a bit behind.