Tuesday, May 27, 2008

At my wits end

All bloggers out there, I need your help. I'm at my wits end with this issue and I'm not sure what else I can do.
Wes is spitting. Not saliva spit, but spitting water. He takes a big swig from his cup, and then lets it dribble out all over himself, soaking his clothes. He used to do this last summer (hhmmm, maybe there's a clue) but stopped when he started school. So far we've limited his cup use, put him in time out, he can only drink in front of us, made him keep his cup on the kitchen table, but nothing is working.
Today, after he finished his water, he stole Casey's cup and used that to spit. Do I have to take Casey's cup from him too? He only does it when we aren't looking, which drives me crazy because he's being sneaky and I can't watch him at all times. Is he doing it because he knows we will get upset? I give him as much attention as I possibly can, is he looking for more?
Someone help me. I was so angry with his actions that I sent him straight to his room after lunch. He knows I'm angry. I can tell in his face and it kills me that he sees me in that light. I know it shouldn't, I'm Mom after all.
I'll take any advice anyone has.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Casey has groupies!

I brought the kids to the park for some energy burning today. The weather has been on and off rainy and rather chilly for the end of May. Today was warmer so it was time to get outside.

We went to our regular hang out and to my surprise, it was very quiet. That's a good thing because it's easier to keep track of the little heathens. There were some older kids running around (and by older I mean 10-11) and these two girls would pat Casey's head as they ran by. A short time later, I was pushing Wes on one of the swings and noticed Casey trip and fall on the opposite side of the climbing structure. It's completely mulched so no chance he got hurt too bad. I see some feet run over to him, pick him up and dust him off. How sweet! But it didn't end there. Two girls and (how 'bout that) a boy doted on this child from then until we left. They followed him around, went down the slides with him, pushed him on the swings, tickled and chased him all around the park. I wondered if I should pay them for taking care of him. He ate up every second of their attention. All I could do was laugh and think to myself how he looked like a celebrity with his followers (or groupies) close behind.

My boy is such a ham!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

All Aboard!

We're very excited here in New Hampshire! Thomas and Friends are coming to town in July to the Conway Scenic Railway and we're making a date to meet them. Especially now since both boys are infatuated with Thomas. Casey flips out whenever we see anything Thomas. A couple months ago, I was in Toys R Us, buying some baby locks and on a shelf was a Thomas area with blankets and such. Casey immediately stood up in the carriage and nearly jumped out at the display, all the while hollering "Tas! Tas!" .

I'm really looking forward to bringing them and watching their faces. Wesley's especially. I'm not sure what he understands between t.v. and real life. Will he be excited or will it just be too much for him?

I'll be sure to blog and post pictures after the adventure.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Government Approved

A wonderful lady from the Special Medical Services called me yesterday to find out what Wesley really needs in terms of his care and what services they can help us find, or provide. It's the first (or maybe second) time that I felt like I was talking to someone who knew their stuff and could really get us more help with Wes' issues. His biggest is feeding and swallowing. Like clockwork, every time he eats, he stuffs his mouth to the point of gagging and choking. And just like clockwork, I have to fish food out of his mouth before he vomits. Yes, we cut up his food and we monitor him eating, but I can't sit down and watch him like a hawk. He also doesn't chew his food completely and that also can cause him to choke. Just another thing on the long list..

So this wonderful woman is setting him up with a feeding and swallowing specialist and not just a nutritionist. That is what we need to focus on before we can really manage his nutrition. I had been toying with the idea of taking him to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist because, to me, it seems like he has a narrow throat. I could be wrong though.

During our conversation, she asked about Medicaid and whether we had applied for it. There is a program affectionately called "Katie Beckett". This program was set up for children who don't qualify for Healthy Kids, but have a severe disability that impairs their everyday life. I had applied for this back in April and was told it could take 90 days to hear back from the state. She offered to check a list she gets with approved children and sure enough, Wes' name was on that list. WOOHOO! I got a letter in the mail stating that he was approved and that we will be getting all the documentation along with his cards within the week. I am sending Wes' new pediatrician an email letting her know we are approved so she can write prescriptions for diapers and for Pediasure . It will be a huge help for us financially as diapers are expensive (especially when you have two kids in diapers).

On another note, today Casey and Wesley were playing with their new ball pit . Casey was pushing against the back towards Wesley and at one point got a bit too excited. Wesley hollered out at him "No, Casey Joseph. Stop!" I looked at Tim in amazement. That's the most clear, and appropriate sentence he has ever said! The music really seems to be helping.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Socially Acceptable

I received an update from the school about what Wesley is working on with his 1:1. I couldn't be more proud of the boy. This report comes from the Behavioral Consultant for the school. He is the one that sets up the programs for all the special needs children. I want to share with you the report on the social piece.

"Wesley is showing an interest in his peers. He enjoys being part of a group; will watch his peers; and is just beginning to follow the lead of peers during familiar activities. Today, the children did Row, Row, Row your boat with a peer partner during circle time. Wesley initiated this game with the boy who was sitting next to him and the two boys played the game very well together. This is the first time I have seen Wesley initiate a social interaction with a peer and then actively engage with the peer for a period of time. "

Holy shit! He initiated! He took the opportunity to turn to the child beside him and engage in play. Again, holy shit! My one and only question about this scenario is, was the child Z? As I've said in the past, he has this awesome connection with Z and Z just seems to 'get' Wesley and accepts him for who he is. If it was Z, then that's good. If it wasn't, then that's incredible!

Yesterday, we ventured to a new park in the next town over. Casey was babbling away to this adorable little girl who looked at him like he was speaking Chinese. Wesley came over and patted her gently on the head, giggled and took off running. He again initiated social contact. It may not have been appropriate, but it happened. I was so proud of him.

I'm looking forward to the next two years of preschool and he can accomplish during this time. It's a very important time because this is where he will build most of the skills he needs to move onto Kindergarten and beyond. This is where he'll be pushed and protected all at the same time. There is nothing this child can't work through.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Church Goer's

We don't always go to church and I wouldn't say it's a number one top priority given Wes can't handle all the sights and sounds, so we go very little. We'd like to go more, but again, Wes has a really hard time. Yesterday we wanted to go to see family and make an effort, but Wes came up again. What could we do to make it easier on him and us. Then it hit me! I have Jerry Grasso over at My Autistic Boy and Other Adventures in Fatherhood to thank. I remember reading that his son Demetrius has an MP3 player that he uses at school to get through the lunch period. Maybe, just maybe that would work for Wes in church. I was 95% sure that it was the organist and the singing that threw him into a tizzy. So we set off to church with bags of snacks, fidget toys, and the CD player with Laurie Berkner thrown inside. When we pulled up to Church, Wes started to get upset. We managed to get him into a pew and threw the headphones on. As soon as the Laurie started belting out her folksy tunes, he immediately quieted down and remained that way for about 45 minutes. Once the CD had gone through it's rotation, he took off the headphones and did a bit of echoing, but was great!
We finally found a trick that we'll keep in our bag. The boy (only being 3) might be spoiled with his own MP3 player filled with his songs. It's smaller and easier to carry around. We'll have to get him used to smaller headphones I think because we used the ones that went with the Therapeutic Listening CD and they are huge.
Autism is such a learning curve for everyone involved.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!


I received my first homemade mothers day gift from Wes. They are such beautiful flowers. Tim and the boys made me French Toast for breakfast and we were able to get Wes into church without much fuss. More on that later.

Happy Mother's Day to all the special mom's out there. I hope you all have a terrific day today!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

What was I thinking?

It was another beautiful spring day, and despite my migraine, I wanted to take the kids to the park. I think they're getting bored of our usual park which is fenced in and just big enough for lots of play. Because of that, I wanted to take them to one we haven't been to in quite sometime. Whites Park is one of the many parks in our city and it's the largest. It has a huge wooden climbing structure and it's hard to keep an eye on the kids at all times. I thought that Wes was really good at staying in one area and has been coming to find me if I call him, that we would give it a shot. Bad idea. It wasn't busy by any means, but it was brand new for Casey and he wanted to explore every nook and cranny. That made it more difficult for me to keep track of them both. Mind you, I'm not one of those mom's who sits on her butt and talks on the cell phone from the time they arrive until it's time to go. Casey was off on an adventure and I couldn't find Wesley, nor could I hear his ear piercing "eeeeeee". I called him a couple of times, and then I heard it. He burst into tears and starting nearly hysterically crying. I grabbed Casey and ran to find him. He ran towards me crying and I just scooped him up and looked him over from head to toe. I couldn't find anything wrong with him, and of course I couldn't ask. Well I did ask, but didn't get a response. We left after I got him to calm down a bit and he settled all the way on the drive home.
I have no idea of he hurt himself, if someone hurt him, or if he got scared at a kid yelling and running. That really sucks! My mother instinct tells me that I'm nuts and should have been watching him at all times, while my realist side says that you can't watch him 24/7 and he has to learn. Which side is right? He can't explain to anyone if something is wrong or worse if he gets lost. It certainly is a park where you need two sets of eyes, especially if you have small children. Needless to say, we won't be going back to that park anytime soon unless Tim and I go together. And again, I feel sorry for Casey because he was loving it.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Nothing like Home

Taking two showers a day - Wonderful
Sleeping in late - Tremendous
Eating adult food - Delicious
Seeing adult attractions - Exciting


Returning home to our beautiful boys - Priceless!

Leaving Las Vegas

We're back from our excursion to Las Vegas. It was a great trip. Tim had quite a few sessions for work so I did a lot of sightseeing myself. Las Vegas is great! If you've never been, it doesn't seem like there's much to see except hotels. You're wrong. There is so much to see that 4 days just didn't seem like enough. There's much more on the outside of Las Vegas that we didn't get to see. The Hoover Dam , Lake Mead , and a bit of a drive but The Grand Canyon . We certainly plan to go again.
We stayed at the Retro Chic Imperial Palace Hotel and Casino . Tim thinks that within a couple of years, it will be the next hotel demolished or revamped big time. It was um, antiquated to say the least. The price was great though and all we really did was shower and sleep there. Otherwise we were out and about. We saw Cirque Du Soleil Mystere at Treasure Island Hotel and Casino. Fantastic! I highly recommend seeing one of the Cirque shows if you go to Vegas. You won't be disappointed!
It's nice to be home, but it was hard to leave. It really is a wonderful place to visit!