Mom who wants to help her son, Ryan, go to College

I am a Mom. I am a Mom that has three great, no….make that awesome kids! I am a Mom that always intended to help her children achieve their dreams as much as possible. I am just like many other Moms. Actually, I am not just like many other Moms. Let me tell you why….

Currently I am 45 years old and I hope to see 50, but there is not a guarantee. Reason being, almost two years ago, I was diagnosed with Corticobasal Ganglionic Degeneration. It is an uncommon degenerative neurological disorder that is not curable and most people live only 5-10 years from onset of symptoms. CBGD is not a fun disease and symptoms include numerous horrible things such as alien limb syndrome, dystonia, walking and balance difficulties, muscle pain, speech issues……and more.

Since I was 17, working has been my middle name. At times, I even worked 1 ½ jobs to make ends meet. College was important to me and I made sure to put myself through school. While I went to College full-time, I also worked full-time to help pay my tuition. I worked long hours and always gave 150%, until April of 2014. My doctors wanted me to stop working prior to then, but I wanted to work as long as possible especially since I knew my son, Ryan Price, was going to start College in August, 2015. At the time, sacrificing myself was worth it if it meant financially helping my family as long as possible. Ultimately, I worked myself way too hard and all I managed to do was speed up my illness and end up in the ER with my doctors, husband and kids telling me that I was decreasing my time with my family by pushing my body beyond breaking. I stopped working which was so hard to do and I still have trouble to this day with coming to terms of not being able to have a job and feel like I am contributing.

Enough about me. This fundraiser is for my son, Ryan, not myself. The reason I have told you about my situation is so you can better understand when I admit I have failed. Failed as a Mother. I know that many would tell me that is not the case since my kids are truly great, very compassionate, caring, smart and talented, especially Ryan. The reason I feel that I have failed, I cannot financially help him achieve his life’s ambition to attend College this Fall. Perhaps, my last big achievement. I did not want him to struggle and stress to find ways on how to pay for College or if he can even afford to go. I failed to make this simple and fun for him. I failed by making him not only wonder if he will ever go to the College of his dreams or at all, but also the unnerving question of how long I will be around for him. I have failed to be his safety net.

Ryan Price is graduating High School in June, 2015. There are so many great qualities that I could recite, like most Moms, but he really is a good kid. Don’t get me wrong, he is not perfect and I have the typical battles regarding cleaning his room and taking out the trash. Regardless, Ryan is a loving son, awesome big brother, loyal friend, smart, funny with his dry sense of humor and quick wit, compassionate with animals (especially dogs and has even volunteered with animal groups) and very talented when it comes to computers. In fact, he wants to attend College to become a computer programmer and he has already proven himself highly skilled and capable by taking courses over the past couple of years while doing very well academically with programming classes. He lives for computers. Programming is his passion and his ambition. It is his goal. His, as I say, “computer, math and science brain” just clicks with it all and coding completely makes sense to him while I go cross-eyed as he attempts to explain it to me even in the simplest of terms. Plus, let’s face it, his handwriting is atrocious, so he needs to work in computers.

Financially, our life has completely turned upside down. Don’t get me wrong, we are making ends meet, but no extras. We have cut every possible corner, save as we can and creatively as trimmed down our bills while supporting a family of 5. It is still nowhere near enough to send him to College. Since our income has been drastically cut due to my inability to work and continual medical expenses, I felt the need to start thinking outside the box in order to right my wrong. It is now time to swallow my pride and humbly admit we need help (and you have no idea how hard it is for me to ever ask for help, seriously) with finding ways to raise the funds Ryan needs in order to be able to fulfill his dreams of attending the College he so desperately wants to attend and has already been accepted to start this Fall. Above all, I want him to be able to enjoy it. I want it to be his safe haven where he can focus on the beginning of the rest of his life while having fun. My illness will eventually punish him enough by losing me, but he should not be punished in the meantime by not being able to go to the College that he has worked so hard the past few years to attend.

He has been trying to raise money already. Ryan has applied for many scholarships, but none have been granted. Because of our predicament, he is having trouble getting student loans and has been denied which has done nothing but increase the desperation. Unfortunately, Pell Grants are not an option for him and he was turned down. Options are dwindling quickly.

Ryan’s dream has now become my dream, for him to attend College and hopefully, I will be able to watch him graduate. Even if I am not able to see him graduate, it would make me so proud and rest peacefully to know he was well on the road to success and beginning the career he has fought for and more than deserves.

ALL funds will be strictly used for his College tuition, campus living expenses, books and school supplies. Every penny will be for College. The initial $35,000 is what he still needs for his first year in order to attend. Ultimately, he needs approximately $120,000 to complete his degree. Any amount will be very much appreciated and help a deserving young man smile a little bigger.

If you are willing to donate, please visit:

Thank you.


DNA is funny

I have identical twin daughters that look very much alike, but are so opposite in personality, likes, dislikes, etc., that you end up in disbelief that they are even related, let alone ‘identical’ twins. Earlier today, one was acting like a….oh lets just say for lack of a better term; an idiot. Her sister on the other hand, who felt her superiority climbing higher and higher by the second on the ladder of life, decided to turn to me and say (while doing an extended arm wax on wax off maneuver), “Hey Mom, aren’t you proud?! Just think, 50% of that DNA is allllll youuuuu.” I casually turned to her and said, “Yep, you’re right. I cannot deny that. You got me there.” As I intentionally turned my back to the situation while hearing snickering behind me, I then timed it just right to drop the bombshell with……”Too bad for you that 99.999999% of that DNA is ALLLLLLLL YOOOUUUUUUUUU.” I closed with the wax on wax off.

Mom still rules in this house. Thanks DNA!


Many, many years ago, I studied for the dreaded SATs and after I took the test, I am not sure if I was more relieved that they were over or at the thought I would never have to do it again. But, either way….goodie for me!

Fast forward to 1996. My awesome Son, Ryan, was born. Did the thought of SATs ever cross my mind? Not really. Actually, not at all. Perhaps the shooting pains as my body was physically separating while bargaining for methods to just blackout and trying to pass a watermelon with huge feet blocked out any visions of the future. Looking back, if I would have realized about the SAT studying that would be involved in 2014, I might have told the doctors to just leave him in there. Permanently.

Moving forward. Welcome to October, 2014. Between 1996 and 2014 are not important, just your usual toddler years involving projectile vomiting in Toys R Us (him, not me. Though I just about joined him once he was done. Curdled milk anyone?), potty training (peeing on cheerios, always a good time. Again, him, not me), typical preschool years of adjusting to his new twin sisters and wondering why their “parts” were missing, onto the early elementary era which involved the usual childhood events like a traumatic bike accident that took place on a flat cemented sidewalk and causing him to be hospitalized for a week with spleen and liver contusions and bruised ribs. Did I mention the bike had training wheels? I swear, you had to have seen it to believe it and no, he will never live it down. Yes, he had his helmet on. Then onto Middle School, where all preteens are kidnapped and invaded by moody, mouthy and irresponsible body snatchers while your child inwardly goes dormant only to resurface once puberty is over as a beautiful butterfly or young adult. They both drink a lot of sugar water, so whichever. We refer to those as the Dark Years. Which brings us to High School where he reemerged once again as my long lost Son and my reward for all those years of insanity? I now get to help him study for the SATs. Wait, what?! Can there at least be some wine involved (Ok, this time, me not him).

Who invented the SATs anyway and my other question is, why?? Oh sure it makes sense as a young person hoping and praying to get in the College of your dreams. That is all you and your friends talked about. But as an adult and having to be on the other side of the wallet while you schedule the exam, pay for the test, order books for studying, flash cards for reviewing and spend hours trying to get your child to study and/or helping them study? Oh and the icing on the cake, I can only imagine the conversation between the SAT inventors, “Hhmmmm, how can we make his even more irritating for all involved. We already got their money, increased the stress the household. Gave their moms’ a few more gray hairs. Huh. Wait!I know, let’s make the test start at 7:00 am on a Saturday! There, that should do it!” It is obvious, the whole thing is a scam for money and just another way kids can drive their parents insane. One other explanation, Karma.

Helping my son study for the SATs is even worse than the first time I had to study. No one told me I would have to do it twice in a life. Then, I realized; wait, I have 2 more kids……..I need Advil. Or more wine. Maybe wine with Advil.

Update (kid you not)-

While using the flashcards: “Ryan, what is eclectic?” “When you have seizures.”

Also, the card for “dubious,” the example sentence is, and I quote, “Many critics of the SAT contend that the test is of dubious worth: they doubt the test accurately predicts which students will succeed in college.” Finally, someone with some common sense! And yes, he got that one wrong too.

Leprechaun, Invisible Money Tree or the Cash Fairy

Not sure which one my Twins are hiding in their room, but it has to be one of them. They literally find cash in their room, just laying around under the beds, in pockets, pajama drawers, etc. It doesn’t matter. They are never actually looking for it, money just appears. Nice, huh?

Not too long ago, I forced them to do a deep clean of their room. Within a couple of hours, they found a total of close to $100.00 by the time they were done. Honest. It was a combination of coins and bills, scattered about their room in miscellaneous places. I quickly realized after they started doing the happy dance and talking about how they were going to spend their newfound fortune, I should have cleaned their room. It would have been the quickest and easiest $100.00 I would have ever made.

Just now, one of my girls was looking through an old backpack she found in her closet and pulled her hand out of a side pocket and exclaimed, “Oh look! $40.00!” WTF?!?! Are you kidding me?!?! I ask, “When is that backpack from?” Her response, “I think 6th grade. I dunno can’t remember.” She is currently in 8th grade.

I swear, if they were not so young and naively innocent regarding life, I would wonder if/what their side job might be. Maybe they just enter their room and ask for money and the Cash Fairy leaves it like Easter Eggs here and there, ya know, to at least make them work for it. Perhaps their furniture was made out of a fallen money tree. I would be freaked out though if some small man in pointy shoes was actually hiding in their room; money or not. So, we will pretend that is not an option. One last possibility is that they are just slobs who both suffer tragically from STS (shiny thing syndrome). My hunch is lazy STS sufferers. Who knows? Either way, I know what room I am going to be talking to myself in tomorrow.

The Color Purple

I will be the first to admit, inside of my van gets messed up easily and usually needs to be vacuumed, Febreezed and is generally begging for a good clean. I am not ashamed, I am the owner of 3 big dogs and 3 teenagers. Need I say more? I try to offset any smells by hanging a Scentsy ring to fight the battle of doggie/teen stink. Today, E got into the van and had this conversation with me:

E-“Hey, what’s that smell?”
Me- “Probably wet dog.”
E- “No, it smells good.”
Me-“Oh, it’s probably the new Scentsy ring that’s hanging back there.”
E- “I like this one. It smells good. It smells like purple.”
Me-*sigh* “E, your world must be so pretty. Unicorns fly, rivers are flowing chocolate, trees are made of licorice, houses are built with gumdrops and everyone farts rainbows.”
E-“Yeah, it’s nice here.”

Handle With Care

My son got in the van before me. While conducting my Mommy Safety Check, I glanced in the back and this is what I saw.

Ignorantly, I thought maybe he was wanting to make sure his books, binder and homework were safe. Knowledge is a valuable gift and all. But, turns out his old school Gameboy was in there and that is precious cargo apparently. Silly me.

Can you hear me now?


Much to my dismay, even after numerous lectures, speeches, rants and raves (perhaps even a powerpoint presentation or two), bribary and discipline, my kids will unintentionally blow their allowance on foolish things, have the habit of wasting food and may not wear certain clothing items very often before they outgrow the garments.  But by golly, they make sure we get every last shiny and dull penny out of our cellphone service! *sniff* *sniff* They really do care.