Monthly Archives: June 2012

Leaving

My husband and I do not go out often. Since giving birth to our first child I have gladly given up those carefree nights of going out. Our first child was born while we lived on post in Fort Sill, Oklahoma. We did not have family around at all and I rather throughly enjoyed being at home with Jade. Adrian came along 28 months later after my husband had finished his service and we moved back to Michigan. We had all of our family around and that is really helpful. Our Adrian was not your typical child. He did not want to be held by anyone but me and cried when even I picked him up. We left him with family members occasionaly until age 2.

At that time he started having a lot of anxiety about me leaving him. He would scream a lot of the time when I was gone. At this point I really had no idea what Autism was or signs. I was so clueless. I had a child who had just begun to walk and could not speak. Every minute was spent trying to keep him from destroying something. He had delays and our early on worker had quit without warning. They never sent another worker out.

I could not see leaving my son who was joined at the hip to me basically with anyone for any period of time. I loved being with him. We spent a lot of our time with me trying to engage him. At 3.5 he started a program at our district school for Special Education. He was immediately enrolled in speech therapy and it did not take long before he was speaking. He started voicing his disdain for my leaving him. He did not like being left with his dad. Any time we chose to leave him I would hear after about him crying for mommy the entire time. It always upset me. I opted not to leave him anymore. We rarely ever do. I always reassured him that I would be back. Now since he knows time I tell him what time I will be back.

After diagnosis we started receiving a subsidy check from our state which is for children with certain disabilities. The director offers us Respite services every year. I have refused because of Adrian’s extreme separation anxiety. Respite in our area requires that you find a caregiver who the state will pay to watch your child so many times a year. This week he made progress. My husband and I decided to go out for the first time this year and asked his sisters to watch our kids. When we left the kids were playing in an outdoor pool. We were gone 5 hours and when we came to pick him up there was no running to me to have me pick him up and he did not cry or ask for me once.

He is becoming so independent. Part of me is sad because he is the last child I will ever have, but the other part is so happy because he was not anxious worrying about me. This time last year he would have still been asking for me. I am so proud of him and how far he has come. He will always be my baby, but I am glad to see him improving a skill. It is important to want to be independent. Steve and I cherish every minute he allows us into his world but i do not want him to feel anxious every time I leave. It’s not good for him. I am more than willing to give everything I have to the two greatest accomplishments of my life. Our son letting go and having confidence means we must be doing something right. The photo below is of Adrian at 3.5 on September 22, 2007. Shortly after he started his Special Education program.
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Jenny McCarthy: Autism Moms “Fall in the the victim role…and they are loving it”

Jenny McCarthy: Autism Moms “Fall in the the victim role…and they are loving it”.

A response to Jenny McCarthy’s claim that mom’s who aren’t “Warriors” are “Victim’s” attacking any mom who parents a child with autism is pointless and harmful. Maybe your income level does not allow you to be a “Warrior” or maybe you simply can not reconcile spending thousands of dollars on treatments that may or may not work. I am not bashing anyone for their choice on how best to help their child.
Does anyone know if her child has autism? I know a lot of mom’s believe recovery is possible. I am not so sure. My son started with what our state (Michigan) calls Early On for early intervention. We do not have an ABA program near me. At 3.5 he entered an ECSE program completely non-verbal. We did not receive an official diagnosis until age 6. By that time he had been verbal for two years. Speech therapy helped him immensely. The school added in Occupational Therapy in 2009. He has SPD as well. The OT helped deal with his SPD. In 2010 when we received his official dx we took him to private OT. We also started him on A GFCF diet. I learned about this diet Through a book I won. Ironically it was Jenny McCarthy’s own Louder Than Words. He is now 8 and is going into a General education typical 2nd grade public school classroom. He still receives speech, OT, and resource room. He is verbal, but has difficulties communicating sometimes. A lot of the issues he had like super huge meltdowns, behavioral issues in a public setting, etc. have been greatly reduced with therapy. If you had met him at 3.5 and then saw him now at 8 you would never believe he’s the same kid. He has made HUGE progress and still he is in no way recovered by any means. Nor do I believe that if Jenny McCarthy’s son really ever had autism that he is recovered. She still refers to her child as having autism. If her child had recovered why would she do that? Autism is a brain based difference and I don’t believe any amount of treatment has the ability to change your brain’s functioning completely. And I most definitely am no victim. Just my children’s mom.

Summer is here!

Yesterday was Adrian’s First Grade Classrooms Celebration Ceremony. Steve and I went to school to see Adrian. I told Adrian we would be there at 9:45 and we would not be bringing his iPad with us. We arrived at 9:47 because the parking lot was packed and it took longer to get in then we expected. Adrian was using the restroom when we arrived. He was agitated. He always is when we are in crowds. Most of the parents and grandparents showed up. Too many people in the room for Adrian.

Mommy and Adrian took a break in the hallway. His teacher called his name for an award and we went back in the classroom. Adrian got a Word Maniac Award and a Reading Award. He excels in reading and spelling he always has. Then we were asked to wait in the hallway for an award which was for the First Grade Class as a whole. Adrian did not want to participate. We took another time out. The whole time he was asking for his iPad.

Since he has received it in December he has gravitated towards that iPad. Before we purchased the iPad he was the only person who could get on our home computer. Letting someone else use the computer was a pain in the rear. We would have meltdowns of massive proportions. We tried to set rules and have him.follow them. Sometimes it worked well other times not so much. His iPad does not cause these types of problems unless his sister tries to steal it. He knows the iPad is his and no one is allowed to use it without his permission. We give him time to use it after school. He knows he has to behave or he loses it for 30 minutes. I have pasted a link to where we bought his. We got him an iPad 1.Refurbished iPad deals.

Now that summer is here I plan to use apps like See.Touch.Learn Pro by Brain Parade See.Touch.Learn Pro, Teach Me: 2nd grade by 24×7 digital,LLCTeach Me: 2nd grade, and SpaceBoard digital workbooks by NeoLithix,LLC SpaceBoard digital workbooks to work with him and help him get ready for Second Grade. The last two apps I mentioned have grade levels starting at preschool. I did a lot of lessons with him during the last part of Christmas break to see how much he could handle at once. He does pretty well for 30-45 minutes at a time. We’ll see how it goes…

I thought I was going to have to fund raise to get an iPad for Adrian to use at school but I won’t need to because the Eastern Service Unit that is in charge of Special Education needs in our district has agreed to purchase the newest iPad and an otterbox case for Adrian to use while at school. I pray it actually happens. My child who almost never interacted with anyone before will ask his dad, sister, and I to help him with games and chooses to play math games often which I believe has helped in school. The iPad allows us to interact with Adrian in a way that just was not possible before. It has been the best possible tool for Adrian so far. If he can have such
success here at home I am hopeful that as long as he doesn’t feel threatend or forced he can have the same success interacting with peers at school. I got my first glimpse of how well this could work when I left Adrian in the resourceroom yesterday after the celebration with my iPod touch. There were three other children in the room and they gathered around Adrian while he played an app. I am not sure what else happened but when we left he was talking to kids about Where’s My Water?. His IEP states that he has only talked to another child without being prompted 3 times the entire school year. One iPod and he’s tell kids all about Where’s My Water? That’s definetly promising :). It also will make his writing tasks a lot easier with Microsoft Word instead of a labelmaker. I can not wait to hear how well he does next year. School ended today June 12 and begins September 4. I have a little wait to see. I hope it all works out!

smartappsforkids iPad 2 giveaway

I thought readers might be interested in this. It ends tonight though. Sorry for the late post I just came across it now.

smartappsforkids.com

 

 

iPad for School

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