Wednesday, February 17, 2010
It's been a busy 6 months. We are in the 19th week of home school with two straight A report cards behind us. We seem to have gotten our medication straightened out after about 4 tries. We see the phychiatrist about every 6 weeks and the therapist about every 2 weeks. I'm even starting a yahoo group for home schoolers in Yadkin county. Sounds like we've got it all worked out, huh?
Wrong again! Our middle son, Christian, is now being tested to find out where on the spectrum he lies. He has a signifigant language delay with only about 50 - 75 words at 3 years. We also have more of the anger issues with him than we have ever had with Will. He is now seeing the therapist weekly. We are on the waiting list for speech services and in a holding pattern waiting on test results. The only results we have gotten back so far are from the hearing. Hearing checks out OK. I know it's awful to say, but I was actually hoping that maybe he had diminshed hearing and that's where the frustration and anger was coming from. At least that would be something we could do something about. Simple tubes or a hearing aid and voila! Instant fix! I guess I should know by now that there are no quick fixes!!
He is making vast improvements. Six months ago, as we went to the beach, he had less than 20 words. I am hoping that the anger issues he is having are connected to his inability to communicate.
I am fully blessed in our lives and I wouldn't change anything, so please don't think that when I say that I am praying that Christian is not found to be autistic. Will is on the spectrum and while it has taught all of us some invaluable lessons and I feel certain that we could handle anything that comes our way, I just don't want him to have to struggle. I see now that even thought there are many blessings that come from looking at the world from a different point of view, there are a lot of hardships too! I wouldn't trade any of our newfound joys that have been brought into our life by being on the spectrum, but any mother worth anything will always want to protect their children from being hurt. That's the part that we struggle with. Not the autism as much as the other people!!!
There is an awesome site that I order from frequently called Cafe Press. They make the most awesome t shirts. The latest I am ordering is to wear to Wal Mart. It says:
My kid's autistic. What the H*&& is wrong with yours?
Maybe if you stare long enough it will cure his autism. Then we can try to find a cure for your stupidity!
Needless to say, I hate going to Wal Mart. We don't stim in a physical means, so to say. Will does something that we call "Dootey Dooing". It is his own personal soundtrack to his life. He sings it almost costantly, some days. Most of the time he has no idea that he is even doing it. On really bad days, like when we have to go into Walmart, it gets progressivly louder until I remind him that he is doing it. Then he stops for about a minute and then starts low and again gets progressively louder. Now imagine me trying to grocery shop. Pushing one cart with Matthew in the seat,who is teething, biting my hand while I try to push. Pulling one cart with Christian in the seat, occasionally biting or kicking or just melting down if you tell him no and screaming at the top of his lungs. Then you have Will, trying to help guide the back cart and avoid being kicked or bitten by Christian singing "Doot, doot, doot, dootey doot, doot doot..." Now tell me how I could possibly forget the bread!?!?!? Thank goodness, sometimes Craig stays up and lets me run quickly to the store by myself, or my bff Melissa braves the trip with me!
And when I say Melissa is brave, I mean it!! Last Satruday for Valentines Day, her and her husband Phillip came and brought their two girls to our house and watched all 5 kids so that Craig and I could go out on our first date in 2 years. Anyone who can watch my children and come out even somewhat sane on the other side is either crazy, brave or just a pure saint. Melissa is all 3!! I don't think she even realizes how much I love and depend on her. She genuinely loves my children and me, warts and all. She is patient, kind and understanding with each one. And God bless her she's listened to 1000 stories of Funkeys, Puffles, Penguins and Video games. Not to mention, she is our very own model, whether she wants to be or not, for teaching personal space and proper touching. Lord, somedays he pats her on the chest to get her attention probably more than her husband ever has!! She just takes it all in stride and counsels and instructs him just like I would. We're truly blessed to have her!!!!
Well like I said, hopefully, I will be blogging more if I can figure out how to link to my mobile. So if any of you know, text or call me!!!
Friday, June 12, 2009
He's doing a lot better now though. He sees a psychiatrist in Statesville once every 4-6 weeks for medication and he sees a therapist every 2 weeks in Elkin at the Dr's office. I think the combination of things has made a big difference in him. I was shocked but it has really made a difference in him as far as helping him focus a little better on what you're saying and completing tasks you give him and it has calmed him down some. It didn't change his personality like a lot of people told me it would. He's still him, just more in control. We don't have as much whining and as many outbursts, but he still doesn't understand social graces, and probably won't ever. He's just Will. It's just part of who he is. He's matter of fact and sometimes blunt to a fault, but he's honest and kind to others. In the end, I just want him happy. I think all good parents want to raise their children to be happy, healthy and kind people. I know that we may not be the best parent always, but I also know that no one could try harder or love their children more than their father and I do. At the end of the day we have to know that we did the best we could! I may not be very good at much in my life, but I will toot my own horn and say I AM GOOD AT LOVING MY FAMILY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sunday, June 7, 2009
- We no longer ride the bus. The bus driver that we did have quit. That was change, we don't do change well. The new bus driver is an a@* from Deliverance, nuff said. And a boy on the bus told Will that he was going to cut his head off with a knife and bent his finger back until it was red and swollen. And when he screamed in pain what did our wonderful new bus driver do? She told him to "Shut up!" OK we don't use those words in our house! Will considers those 2 words to be as bad as any curse word. I consider them ugly, rude and a poor choice in general. So when I called the school, they assured me they would get to the bottom of this. Three weeks later, nothing.
- Will has had a substitute for the past 2 weeks due to vacations and EOG testing. His teacher is proctoring. His sub is a lady that we used to go to church with, who has told several members of the community, who in turn have come back and told me, what a nuisance he is to have around. I've seriously considered telling her what a nuisance she is to the human race in general, but again, I'm hanging on.
- On a better note, we have found some wonderful materials, both textbook and computer programs to use next year! (Thanks Christi!!)
- Planned and pulled off an awesome baby shower for Misty!! Yea me!
- Will's cookout this past Saturday for the grandparents and his best friend went wonderful. Great fun was had by all!
- We are packing this week to leave for the beach next Saturday, on his actual birthday with Melissa, Phillip, Madison and Megan and Josh, Jessica and Tyson. Folly Beach here we come!!!!
- Thanks to my wonderful hubby looking out for me, I am a darker shade of pale, so maybe I won't fry like a 'tater at the beach. It's always SPF 50+ for me!!!
I think that gets us up to date for the most part. I have come to the conclusion that I need this vacation a lot!! I have also decided that maybe Craig, Melissa and Mom are right and I take on way too much for my own good. Maybe I'll make that a mid year resolution, not that it will probably work. It's just my personality to constantly be busy. I think I do my best work under pressure! But I do think it is catching up with me. We'll just leave it at that for now. Seriously, the vacation is well needed and deserved for all of us!!
Remember to keep us in your prayers and please pray for my cousin Bonnie. She is fighting Lupus. She's in a lot of pain daily and needs your prayers.
Love & Hugs!
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Matthew had to get shots today and Will had an appointment with the therapist too. While me, Craig, Christian and Matthew waited for the shots, Will went to the back office to talk to Cindy. While he enjoys these times, I couldn't help but wonder how we got here??
I remember when he was Matthew's age thinking how bad it was for someone that little to have something as painful as a shot, but I could fix that. A little Tylenol and some kisses could make it all better. Now almost 8 years later, I'm up at night crying and praying for my little boy's peace of mind. How did that happen?????????????????????????????? I swear I just want to scream! If he had a broken bone, we could put a cast on it. If he had an ear infection, we could get him antibiotics. But how do I heal his tiny spirit that seems to be crumbling?
He does a good job at hiding his emotions at school. I guess he's learned that at school a breakdown just makes things harder. It makes the kids look at him even more differently. He may not understand others emotions well, however, he does understand what things draw attention to the fact that he's different. I like to say that there's a line on our driveway. Almost everyday he gets off the bus and starts down the driveway towards me as I and usually his brothers wait at the door. When he hits this invisible "line" his tiny face crumples. You can see the weight of the day crushing down on him. By the time he hits the threshold and steps into the house, he's in tears. We still have 30 more days of this torture!
Today it was PE. Tomorrow it could be lunch. I hate to wallow. I never do it in front of him. Tonight, after he finally dozed off, I went to turn off his lamp. As I looked at his tiny body that's dwarfed even in a twin bed, his brows were knit together. Why does he have to carry such weight at 7 years old? I prayed for my answer to what to do next year and got it loud and clear, see previous post, we will be homeschooling next year. But what do I do for the next 30 days to keep my child from becoming clinically depressed?? I am trying to pray and be patient for the answer, but I need strength. I could stand it, if it were me hurting, but I can't take seeing him hurt. Especially when I can't "fix"it. He looks at me and I can see the words his mind is thinking,"Why do you make me do this? Why are you sending me to be miserable? You're supposed to protect me!" I have dreams about him saying these very words to me. It makes my heart ache so badly that it feels like it will quit beating.
I've become short with Craig and the boys. I've spent all my energy fighting against the school that I sometimes feel like I don't have any left to actually give to them. It's the only way I know how to help Will. But that just leaves me ill and cranky and then I loose my patience with all of them. So, if I talk to you and bite your head off, just let me apologize now and get it out of the way. I just don't have much left for anybody these days. I just don't know. I'm spent for the night. This day has gone on too long as it is. Tomorrow I will wake him up and send him back to the nightmare with a smile on my face, wishing him good luck, have a good day and telling him how much I love him. And I will be waiting for him to get off the bus and cross that line to drop all of his burdens from the day as he walks in the door. I guess we will do this for 30 more days.
I'd like to just ask you, if you are reading this, please say a prayer for him.
Monday, April 27, 2009
Friday, April 24, 2009
I had no more than finished my prayer and looked up and saw that I had several new emails. When I checked them, there was a post for free home school materials. I tell you I almost fell off my chair!!!!!!!!! I emailed the lady back and told her my situation. She told me to meet her at her church in King the next day, Tuesday, at 4:00.
Well Tuesday, my mom had come over so she could be here to watch the little ones on Wednesday when we took Will to see the psychiatrist in Statesville. Mom rode with me and the boys to King, Craig had to sleep for work. I thought, you know if they have 1 or 2 books even that would be awesome! Maybe we could work around and be able to purchase the rest of what we need, or borrow them from other people. Well when I got there, I have never seen so many books, workbooks, videos and cassette tapes in all my life. I got curriculum for 1st through 5th or 6th grade. I just about fell over! I started crying as I was going through the books. They were all mixed up, so you had to kind of play hunt and match, but I found probably 5,000 or more dollars worth of materials for FREE!!!!!
The lady from the church said that the pastor had gotten them from King Elementary School over a year ago for a mission trip that just hadn't worked out, so they decided to see if there was a need in the community.
Isn't God good!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
He used this random church that I had never even heard of, freecycle, my friend who introduced me to freecycle a few months back, a schools generosity, and a woman's thought for her community to answer my prayer!! Just think about how many different things had to happen for us to receive those books. You can't say that was coincidence!!! This just proves that God knows our every need. Over a year ago, things were set into motion to answer a prayer that I hadn't even prayed yet!!! I have to say I once again stand in awe and amazement of just how awsome God is!!!!!!!!
So needless to say, we are going to home school Will next year. I don't think there is any way to deny that I got the answer that I was searching for!!!!!!!!!
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Tips for Teachers, Principals and School Support Staff from Students with Mental Health and Behavioral Disabilities
are often sensitive about their disabilities
and may be uncomfortable talking directly
to school professionals about the challenges
they face. The following ideas are to share with school staff.
Please treat me with respect:
• I learn more by what you do than what
you say. Please model the attitude and
behavior you would like me to imitate.
When I hear positive things about myself
and feel respected, I treat others the same
way. I learn from positive examples of
how to be patient and resolve conflicts.
• Your encouragement builds me up.
Unwarranted criticism and harsh words
can hurt and affect me. When I lack selfesteem,
it is easy for me to believe others’
negative remarks about me—even if they
• Privacy is important to me. I
feel embarrassed if someone points
out my disability and need for special
accommodations or medication in front
of my peers, and I worry that an adult
will ask, “Did you take your medication
today?” when I’m with other students.
• If I receive special education services,
it is because qualified professionals,
through evaluation, have determined
that I am eligible for them. Please
consider data and documentation, rather
than personal opinion, as we develop my
Individualized Education Program (IEP).
Please take to time to know me:
• Please keep an open mind, as we be
come acquainted. Sometimes statements
in records or others’ opinions are based
on the past, and they may not accurately
portray who I am now. Everyone needs
a second chance; help me to develop a
• Please tell me what you like about me
and what you see me doing correctly. I am
already very aware of my faults and
of what I do wrong.
• If there is an incident in school, please
listen to me. Let me tell my story before
making a judgment.
• Try to understand my mental health
disabilities. Learning about my disability
through training or other resources will
equip you to assist me with empathy if I
• The medications I take may cause side
effects like dizziness, sleepiness,
or needing to use the bathroom more
frequently. I appreciate your
understanding as I deal with the issues.
• Sometimes my disability makes me
feel like I am out of control. I probably
need structure, but please allow me
some choices or participation in making
• Usually I am not trying to misbehave.
Sometimes I have simply not learned
the right way to handle things. My mental
health disorder can have an impact
on how my brain works, and I may
have difficulty controlling my thoughts,
emotions or actions. I need to learn
behavioral skills, much as I learn math.
With your help, I want to improve things!
Please help me feel safe:
• Advocate for me at school. I really need
an adult at school who will support me
and look out for my best interests.
• If I come to you and say that I am being
teased, bullied, or harassed, please help
• You have the influence to provide
a positive school environment
among students and school staff.
Two suggestions: Discourage gossip
about individual students and respect
their confidential information.
Please help me learn:
• Remember that I DO want to learn, feel successful, and
be liked by others. Sometimes my disability and resulting
lack of skills interfere.
• The accommodations on my IEP or Section 504 plan
affect us both. Together with my positive behavior
intervention plan (if I have one), they are designed to
help us succeed together.
• I usually learn more through positive instruction than
through punishment. I know there are consequences for
my actions, but please teach me how to replace unaccept
able behavior with what is appropriate.
• Work with me to create learning or coping strategies.
Include me in developing interventions.
Please know that I appreciate your efforts:
One teacher’s positive impact can help move my life in the right