If you're a Mac user, you'll know what I mean when I talk about the beach ball -- that colorful spinning disc that means something's not going right in your computer's brain. It might be a momentary hiccup or a few minutes' delay to tolerate, or it may just spin and spin and spin until you can stand it no longer and force a restart. I'm sure PC users have something similar -- an hourglass, maybe? Whatever, it's the spinning symbol of doom. And if you look hard, you can see it in a lot more places than your computer screen.
I see that spinning ball when I try to help my son with his math homework. The information is in there on the hard drive somewhere, but there's obviously a glitch in the system. Will it just take a moment for the right process to kick in? Or will the ball go round and round until we have to do the human version of a reboot -- maybe a break or a switch of subjects or a different way to explain. Sometimes the system just crashes, and one or the other of us has to have a little meltdown before work can proceed.
I've certainly felt that beach ball spinning over my own head when I've tried to research a complicated diagnosis, or process some serious news about my kids, or decipher an IEP. Some stuff just does not compute, you know what I mean? There are times when things eventually fall into place, and times when I just have to shut down that corner of the drive and avoid those particular circuits entirely.
What's got your beach ball spinning at the moment? School issues? Behavior struggles? Medical quandaries? The complete inability of your family or church or society in general to get it? This site has a lot of information to get your brain moving again, in manageable bits that won't overload you. Depending on your particular processing speed, you may want to start with my article on how to research a disability; or browse through the topics in the left column of the homepage; or cut right to alphabetical indexes of articles on diagnosis, early intervention, school, future planning, family, and medical, behavior, developmental, learning, and mental-health issues. Need to crash first? These may help you recover your data and move on.
Photo by Terri Mauro