Monday, October 31, 2011


word parade day at school and I missed the parade. We stayed up late and fixed Sammy's costume for the parade. He was a present. We wrapped a box he wrote the word it was great. I put it into my head 1:30 be at the school. well I figured 1pm so I would find a place to park and I did get there at like 1:09. fed grace and started walking towards the school. I couldn't figure out how I didn't get a better spot. Then I discovered the parade started at 1 not 1:30. I wasn't there for Sammy. Nate was so sad to have missed it. I was heartbroken and drove all the way home in tears.

I thought Sammy would be mad.I expected a melt down and much yelling. What happened next surprised both of us. I asked him if he was mad and then again BURST INTO TEARS. seriously Something isn't right with me today. I told him how sorry I was and that I felt really bad. He hugged me and told me it was OK and that he loved me. he gave me a bracelet and a sticker.

what an amazing little man I have

Sunday, October 30, 2011

party time

We had a party and in true Sam form he was a mess all day leading up to it. Screaming and crying over the smallest things. His anxiety at the change in environment was almost too much for him to take. Once everyone got ere he was wild but containable and seemed to have had a pretty good time. He helped me prep food and it made him happy. His costume didn't stay on very long but who really cares about that ! We had fun.

By the end of the night Sammy had been sneaking so many pieces of candy and sweet things he made himself sick, but in the end he was fine really.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

To be fulfilled

I hope he feels some type of satisfaction as an adult. That he can make his own choices. That he feels heard and loved and cherished. I had intended to write a new post for each thing I listed but the more I thought on it the more I realised that they cannot really be separated. I just want Sammy to grow up and be Sammy. I want him to know how amazing he is. I can't quite find the words to explain what I am feeling. So I was sitting quietly in prayer this morning and this song came to mind. this really does say it all...


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

I want him to be happy

Sam ~I have no idea what that means for Sammy. I guess it goes along with being fulfilled. What does someone need to be happy?

It's difficult for me to imagine Sammy as an adult because I really have no idea how he will change over the next 10 years. There is no rubric for development in this arena.  So lets assume he continues to grow intellectually and emotionally because imagining he can't hurts too much. I can see him with a job he loves. As much as I would love to imagine him a doctor, lawyer or scientist I don't think that is likely. Perhaps he will be a video game designer,an architect, a musician or something that allows him to be hands on. He loves Legos and video games so I think either of those things will make him happy. He thinks outside the box and there are so many ways for him to blossom even I cannot wrap my head around it. He always surprises me and I love that about him. Maybe he wont be able to hold a job and will spend his days playing video games and making puzzles. Will that make him happy? I don't know really. Right now happy for Sammy means no socks,underwear,school  or homework.

I know that regardless of his choices further on in life I am here, in his corner, every day.
Nothing changes that.

Sammy's ideas ~
Mom  ~what makes you happy?
Sam   ~ I want to be a fire fighter when I am tall.I want to be a cop.  I'm going to have a job.
Mom  ~why?
Sam   ~Because cops have guns.
at this point Sammy was done.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

speed of thought

In the store today I was greeted by an adult male. I could tell he was special needs , and he reminded me so very much of Sammy. He wanted to see Grace and was so excited that she smiled at him. He and I spoke for a few minutes  about her and how she was a happy baby. He told me that he was a happy baby too and when he was little he hardly ever cried. He was so proud of this fact and was absolutely BEAMING. It got me thinking about Sammy growing up. His future and what that might look like. What do I want for him? What does he want for himself? How do I balance those things?

I want him to be happy.
I want him to be fulfilled.
I want him to know he is a good person, a gift from God Almighty.
I want him to know he is my treasure.
I want him to know how lucky we are to know him
I want him to be loved.

 this week I plan on writing about what each of those things means to me, and hopefully get Sammy to tell me what they mean for him. I need to get reconnected to him. I miss him. This week has just been so hard for all of us. So I'm taking a do over!

Monday, October 24, 2011

My husband is amazing

I have been majorly overwhelmed here lately. So much so that I have passed the baton to my husband in dealing with the behavioral issue at school. My amazing husband wrote our liaison  at the school. He did a better job than I possibly could have. He was clear and concise without sounding angry. I just wanted to share with all of you how very lucky I feel right now.

The situation I called you about is Sam's escalating negative behavior.  He is having a problem on the bus, in the classroom and at home.  His physical aggression is getting worse and we are looking into getting help in the home for Sam.  My wife and I are concerned about the behavior chart for the classroom.  He got marked down for not turning in the signed chart (our fault), not having his name on his paper, as well as the whole classroom being disruptive.  I understand he is being treated as all the other students are being treated but he is still a special needs student. If this system worked for Sam I would support it. However, the increased trouble Sam is having keeping himself under control tells me otherwise. We would like to meet with Ms. * about Sam's issues but we would like the support of the whole team who is working with Sam.  Please let me know how to arrange this.  The best way to reach me is by phone after 3:00 P.M.
Thank you,

He did such a wonderful thing not just for Sammy but for me. He took the reigns and helped me feel so much less stressed. I needed this. When the divorce statistics are so high for families of special needs children, I feel blessed to have him in my corner. Tell me about the people in your corner.

coffee and a side of sunshine

5am here is rather dark and my it's the time my husband is getting up and ready for work.  He often places at least one sleeping child, sometimes two back into their beds as I pump. I let him leave Nate so I had someone warm in the bed, but had him put Sam back into his. Sammy isn't usually in my bed in the morning but he had a bad dream sometime around 3 am.
 Twenty minutes after Daniel left I heard Sammy getting up. If you have ever seen those old war movies with the sirens and lights flashing then you have a pretty fair description of what was going on in my head.  My jaw was clenched and my entire body on red alert as he padded (thumped really) and I said softly and gently and happily "Hey Mister"  Sammy whispered back "hey soul sister aint that mister mister on the radio, stereo" as he climbed in beside me and kissed my nose. I continued with the next line for him ( I am a sucker for music ) and his eyes got really big. the conversation went something like this

Sam: do you work at my school?
Me  : no Sammy
Sam:  do you have another children at my school before?
Me   : no Sammy
Sam: then how do you know that song?!

apparently they sing it at school during morning meetings sometimes. That and We Will Rock You. He is also learning a new song about belonging together.
I really do love this school. his principle is such a gift to those students. I watched her greet every single student by name as they got off the bus in the morning.

We currently have a vote coming up in town to build a new school and combine the two failing, dilapidated, old schools into one newer school with therapy rooms (rather than no rooms now or closets) I just hope and pray we don't loose that small school feel. It still wouldn't be more than 400 kids total, but right now we are only half that at the school. Plus the issue of Sammy going to another school for third grade while they build the new school.  I don't even know if that would be a good idea

So today has started with sunshine before the sun has even gotten up. I'll take it!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Words for Sammy

My mother wrote a sweet poem for Sammy on her blog  Nanni's Notes  It's been hard on all of us dealing with autism here. It made me think. I don't know that I have ever written a poem or letter for Sammy.

My darling Sammy When you were born
placed in my arms cuddled close to me.
I saw for a second everything you would be
all the promise in your tiny eyes
I watched you in the nursery
all the babies around you were crying.
You my love, were content and quiet
How lucky a mommy I am
To have such a docile child
I watched you grow and held you close
You nursed so well.
You ate quickly never looking up
How lucky a mommy I am
To have such a focused child
We giggled at your quirks
and smiled at your focus
I watched you climb and toddle
so much more interested in movement than toys
How lucky a mommy I am
To have a child who entertained himself
You were learning and mumbling
You spoke slowly
but you spoke
You were just more focused on going
moving. running, jumping
How lucky a mommy I am
to have a boy who is so able
You stopped talking
You sat alone
Lining your trucks and blocks up
color coded

Your words disappeared
your smile went along
You screamed, you cried
where had my little boy gone?
We fought against the demons that followed
we struggled against an unmovable force
More discipline, less discipline.
more limits, less limits
nothing seemed to work
You stopped and so did our world
You railed against something I couldn't understand
then the words the doctor spoke
shattering me
your son has autism
lost and whirling
out of control
asking What can we do
being told nothing
and going home broken
embarrassed to tell my friends
with kids who really had autism
The doctors must be wrong
mistakes happen
not my son

For years We fought back
therapy at home.
therapy at school
nothing was simple
everything hurt
restraining and holding
rage and disappointment
No way out
The sun did not shine
We fought out from under the snow that had fallen
we woke from our slumber
fueled by anger and fear
I wanted my boy back
he was just within my reach
the words came slowly
quietly at first
so less tormented
so less frustrated
he whispered I love you
what a lucky mommy I am
to have a boy like you
no matter what moments bring
no matter the struggle
I am so very lucky
to have such a wonderful boy

Saturday, October 22, 2011

6 feet of snow

I feel like I've been buried alive and I am barely breathing, stuck under six feet of snow with no clue which way is up. I continue to claw at the ice until my fingers are numb and bleeding and all I have managed to do is get lost further in the snow.

Sammy during the spring snowstorm in MA
That's what this week feels like. I can't breath, I can't think... I feel like I am drowning. I feel like nothing I do is right and I can't win. It's time's like these that I wish I had a sign on my forehead that said "I am NOT as bad a parent as you think I am" Even though I don't really care what anyone else thinks, I still care what everyone else thinks. It's the same mechanism that keeps me from going outside in my underwear or picking up my son at school in a moo-moo. I can tell you I don't care until I am blue in the face, but I do care. I desperately just want someone near me that gets it. I am tired of feeling isolated and alone and frustrated when Sam lashes out at me in the middle of a store. I just want someone to get me , to understand how much this sucks. I want acceptance.

I feel lost in the ether, floating aimlessly. My son is very verbal and if it weren't for the behaviors he would be considered by most "high functioning". I feel like that label discounts how much he struggles ,how hard it is for him Sometimes I feel like we don't belong in the autism community because Sammy can often seem so freaking normal to people who don't get it. I have friends with completely non-verbal kids, kids still in diapers at 10 , kids who don't even acknowledge when their mother walks in a room. They seem to have it way more together than I do. How do I go to them and complain that I'm struggling?

So I don't. I sit here and I write.I fight the lump in my throat that threatens to bubble up when I speak. I am resigned  and beaten tonight. I sensor myself in the world and deflect the stares I get in the store when Sammy begins screaming.  I just continue to sit here and write.

Friday, October 21, 2011

SPD ~ Sammy Progress Derailed

Sammy is  a sensory seeker . He fights for them , finds them, abuses them. He crashes and whirls into everything around him so much like a tornado that it often leaves the rest of us dizzy. He is loud , he hates clothes, he stuffs his mouth full of food at every chance. He picks at his skin until he is one giant scab.   He gets OT in school and home is a sensory lifestyle. Heavy work like lifting back packs with books and moving the table are favorites here. Sammy loves mashing potatoes and vacuuming and he loves water. He wont swim but if the sink is full of water he gravitates towards it. Sammy crashes up and down the stairs , into bed, into the couch and into me. Could I stop him, yes probably but instead we redirect him to crash and bump and bang outside. I have given up the hope of nice furniture until he is much older. Sometimes people don't understand when they visit and will wonder why we don't try to "control him better". Even though he seeks sensory input he can easily become overwhelmed and anxious. It is like a fuse being blown because of overloaded circuits. There is no warning, no flashing red lights, nothing. It's like being caught on the tracks with a train coming. That is when he hits and lashes out or yells and screams or becomes abusive to himself. Those moments are so hard on him... and me.

It took a while for the kids in the neighborhood to understand why he acted the way he did. We had a bumpy road the first year. Thankfully the kids around us are just fantastic. One little girl helped him get his work done. They keep an eye on him when they ride the bus and explain things to him carefully . The other little girl is so very forgiving and sweet to him. They all just love Sammy and they all have fun together. We are lucky. It seems kids often "get it" so much faster than adults do.

Sometimes the neighborhood kids come over while we are having sensory play. Giant bowls of rice or ooblic, finger paints and play dough. They all love it and it's refreshing to see Sammy with his friends having fun.

The bus however has become a sensory nightmare for Sammy. Ideally he should sit by himself and in the front. The bus has become over crowded and Sammy ends up sharing a seat. The noise level, the chaos, moving and having someone touching him all create disaster. Last week he hit a child across the face on the bus. He reacted without thinking and just smashed the poor kid. I am mortified. I feel guilty. If he looses his bus transport I will probably end up fighting for special transport. I hate to do it but there is o way I can possibly get him to school in my van myself when he is combative. The principle understands where I am coming from and we have spoken about this before. Her job is to keep all the kids safe not just my son. My job is to make sure that we find what works for my son. period. I am glad we have such an awesome school system here and I hope it wont get ugly but you really never know...

For now Sensory issues derail him daily and I honestly can't seem to help him most days anymore. I just feel lost.

Tell me about your sensory kid. What do you do to help your sensory kids in tough situations?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

free falling

It seems we are free falling here Complete chaos and uncontrollable anxiety with Sammy tonight. I guess it was my fault. I changed the routine and it messed him all up.Yesterday Dan was home which has changed the Earth's axis.  You see part of the wrinkle in our universe is because Daniel had a tooth pulled and is mostly out of commission. Daniel usually takes AJ to soccer on Thursdays, however Dan couldn't drive tonight. I really had no other choice. My leaving was not acceptable to Sammy and he began to get edgy as soon as I left. Moments after , Tyler left the room Sammy was in. This left Sammy alone. Sammy has developed this weird fear of being alone, he can't even go in the bathroom alone sometimes. When Tyler left him to put away a toy, Sam lost it. He ran after Tyler and attacked him. I arrived home about an hour after I left to chaos. As soon as Sam saw me he began to settle, I did have to intervene to save some glass angels and to protect Nate . Suddenly all was well and the storm blew over and Sam sat to make me something cool.

It's so hard watching your child chased by a demon. To see his sweet face tortured. To know he just cant free himself from all the confusion and fear. I am powerless.It may be time for us to consider medication. I'm just so scared. How do I make this decision?

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

learning curve

I wanted to post something upbeat and happy  today.  Sammy had an awesome morning, smiles and school YAY. Then he came home with a note that he attacked someone on the bus. Well, I refuse to deal with it this very moment. I already called the school , phone conference tomorrow first thing. So for now, I will still write my happy post damn it! Just try and stop me

I was inspired a bit by my friends list over at Food Good Laundry Bad and I decided I need a list too.

The Things I have learned from Sammy

1. It takes 7 minutes flat to eat three pounds of jelly beans while hiding in a closet

2. Anything can be a weapon,yes even broccoli

3. Large stock pot lids make awesome captain america shields, and the paint comes right off with a scrubbie

4. I have more patience than I ever thought possible

5. It only takes seconds to connect and some days that is all you get.

6. Predictability doesn't always mean the same thing every day, sometimes you only need a fair warning.

7.  When a 5lb bag of flour falls from a 4 foot tall counter the entire room WILL be covered in a fine layer of flour.

8. Action figures melt in a stove that is preheating and that plastic takes forever to come off.

9. Just because something looks "normal" doesn't mean it is

10. Some things in life just happen and that has to be ok

11. If you can think outside the box you will accomplish so much more

12. Just because your expecting something doesn't mean your ready.

13. Sometimes your heart keeps fighting even when the rest of you refuses.

14. It is possible to love so much it hurts, to need so much you can barely think and to cry so hard you can't breath and sometimes that has to be OK.

15. Summer time rain showers can lift anyone's spirits

16. All life is special, yes even ants and worms. they all have a place.

17. Confetti + Sneeze = uncontrollable laughter

18. Butterfly kisses are magical.

19. Little girls aren't the only ones that really love pink glitter

20. Nothing in life is a guarantee so smile more, laugh more and try not to worry so much

Saturday, October 15, 2011

October 15.

Pregnancy and Birth Loss Remembrance Day

You are not alone. I desperately wish that this club did not exist. That there was no need for it. That babies never died. It does happen, and no matter what each of our losses are important. There is a fantastic group on facebook where you can get some support

My darling Emma, how I miss you so. some days it all but takes the breath from me. <3 momma

Friday, October 14, 2011

Sam Says

I asked Sammy if there is anything he would like me to put on his blog. I won't edit this and it will be only what he tells me.. OK *breath mom and release control*

I am Sam. I am Autistic ,my friends think I am not autism...autistic. I have 50 children in my friends book I read to my friends a lot of times I sometimes when they fall I help them get up and they say thank you Sam and get up. Maybe next time I don't need you help.maybe next time. the end. That's it that period that is it period it. the end

 Every once in a while I like just asking Sam to do these things. To help him see there is more than just our house and school in the world. It lets me peek inside his head and what he thinks. We told Sammy this year that he does have autism. That it means he has strengths and weaknesses and it means his brain works different than others. He has since tried to use having autism as an excuse.  He hit his brother and said "I can't help it I has autism" I'm not sure where he got this from but someone let him get away with something. I am sure it was probably a neighbor kid, because they are always asking what Sammy really understands and what is ok for Sammy to do.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Dear Sir or Madam

Dear Sir, While I understand full well the obnoxious noise my son is making I do not particularly care if it bothers you. You see it bothers me too, but neither of us can stop it. He has as much right to be in the grocery store as you do. Please understand that this in no way entitles you to roll your eyes and whisper what a bad parent I am. Come spend a day with us, then make your judgement.

 Dear Sir, When you say things like "better you than me" your right. Congratulations.

 Dear Madam, Before you whisper to your husband that I cannot handle my children and shouldn't have had another one, please check your hearing aid. Everyone in isle three heard you.

 Dear Sir, I did not share with you my sons autism because I wanted pity. I told you because your child is trying to talk to him and being ignored. Your child is getting upset at this. Perhaps if you concentrated on your child and not what mine was doing we could fix this.

 Dear Madam, My son being autistic does not magically make him a genius any more than asking stupid questions makes you a game show host.

 Dear Madam, Please let me decide if we can handle it. What I can handle is none of your business and your opinion does not matter

 Dear Sir, When I ask my son to look towards you when speaking , do not tell him it's fine. He has been working very hard to be more social and he needs these skills.

 Dear Madam, If you are uncomfortable with my child playing with yours then by all means leave the play ground. My child is autistic, not dying or diseased. Your child will not catch what he has.

 Dear Madam, Behavior chart means just that BEHAVIOR. That does not mean turning in your paper. While I can truly appreciate your wanting to teach independence to your second grade class,my son does have autism. He still struggles with hanging up his coat, eating with utensils and remembering which stop to get off the bus. Lets work on those first.OK?

 Dear Sir, I am as offended by the overpowering smell of your cologne and your back hair peeking of your shirt as you are with my son hopping up and down saying the funny thing he smells burns his nose. That would be your cologne creating this . Thanks again.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Fighting to Breath

So I decided to link up with for this

 When the weeks are like this I feel like I am stuck in quicksand. I wonder if the world around me can see the toll being a mother to children with autism has taken on me. I feel as though my life is some form of algebraic word problem "If Sammy ages as half speed and Mother ages at three times Sammy speed how fast does Mother age?" The answer is too fast.

there is a blog I follow, A Diary of a Mom  and it helps me. I don't feel as alone when I read things like this post here and this post too. I have them on quasi-speed dial and re-read them on days like today. Days when I feel like I have climbed backwards into some dark sink hole. I try to keep things light here, I don't ever want anyone to think I feel hopeless or over stressed. I don't want anyone to think I don't love my sons with all I am and all I have. I do. He is forever intertwined into the fibers of my being, wound so tightly around me that you cannot tell where he ends and I begin. Perhaps that is why this is so hard for me? Perhaps I am too close? Can I be too close? In order to reach him I have to be close, constant and unwavering. I can't be near and far at the same time, just ask Grover. He did entire dialog about that on Sesame Street I just can't. I haven't written in a few days simply because I couldn't muster the energy to put on a happy face and pretend like things are OK. They aren't and I am scared to death because I have no clue what to do. So if you are looking for a happy "i love my life" kind of post  here are some suggestions
feel free to wander backwards to untagged posts to all sorts of good stuff

Its been a long few weeks and it isn't getting better. Anxiety brings this poor child to his knees. Sammy is so much like a stick of dynamite with the fuse always lit. The level of anxiety  determining the speed in which the fuse burns. It fuels the fire, creates the burn and destroys any progress. I hate it.

Sunday, it all fell apart. We went to church, Sammy ended up restrained in the crying room. He was trying to put his head through the door. I couldn't even get him outside. I couldn't move him, so I sat down with him, held him tight, and let him scream and flail safely.  He was clawing at his face and arms, screaming and yelling. Nothing I could do would soothe him.  I wrapped him up in my arms. The same arms that held him and rocked him as a baby now hold him hostage. He hates to be restrained but some times that is all I can do. I have to keep him safe.

It's now Wednesday. Today he was carried to the bus stop because he refused to go. His socks upset him and he refused to put on his socks. His behavior at school is getting progressively worse, and the behavior to get him to school is as well. he comes home and explodes like a bomb. The entire week he has been going off like a loose cannon. each time worse than the one before. There is nothing creating the issues that I can change. Unless I can get God to keep it warm all year long. The weather change, the back to school, the teacher he doesn't like, the shorter days, the longer nights, and the dryer air all contribute to my boy and his melt downs. I have no control, I have no clue, and I am tired.

I am so tired. I use to compare this feeling to having spilled soup in your lap. I don't even like soup. I feel burned out and frustrated. I am tired and alone and I don't want to do this anymore. What was supposed to be respite turned into chaos and I am at the end of my rope. I am going to have a battle on my hands with his teacher (more about that another time) and a battle here. Sometimes I just don't want to fight anymore. I just can't breath because the air around me is so heavy. It feels like 100% humidity in an oven or being underwater.
I wonder if people can see it. Even people who don't read this blog have noticed. I miss life before autism. I miss being able to go out as a family and enjoy the whole day. I miss going for car rides without disaster. I miss being able to make one meal with no gluten free options. I miss being able to make and eat whatever the hell I want without worrying if Sammy is going to steal it and eat it. I miss being me, feeling good about myself and having "good mom" moments. I don't feel like a good mom. I feel like I failed. I am having a pity party and I apologize. I just miss the parent I was before it revolved around autism. I miss being carefree, because here, in this house, carefree can never happen again.

Tomorrow, I will wake up. I will smile, put my feet on the floor and do it all over again. Because I love him. Because he deserves it, and because I know if I don't no one else will. He didn't ask for this any more than I did. Nothing changes how much I love him, I just wish I could figure out how to HELP him.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Dogs for autistic kids

My mom is going to school now. It seems if you are over 60 you can go to school for free here. How exciting for her. Shes taking English and PortugueseII and another class. I forget which one really but there is a third. She also works at sears and is a LMT. pretty cool to have a mom that can come and give you a massage when you need it , don't you think? Anyway ,I digress. She wrote a paper on dogs and autistic kids. It got me thinking.
my mom and Sammy

It seems for some autistic kids there is a huge imbalance in cortisol (stress hormone) and circadian rhythms (sleep/wake cycles). Sammy seems to be one of those kids. He has a hard time both sleeping and waking , resting and regulating.  He becomes anxious easily and stresses over things beyond my comprehension.  Kids like Sammy struggle with a higher level of cortisol and have difficult with day to day regulation.

"Cortisol rhythm is extremely out of sync in children with ASD, due to imbalanced melatonin and ACTH production. The more severe the autism, the more abnormal the diurnal rhythms.9 The need for cortisol is so great however, that cortisol suppression is resistant to dexamethasone-suppression testing.10 While there is a huge cortisol dysregulation, DHEA-S and testosterone seem to be similar in children with autism and those without.11" read the full article here

There is evidence suggesting that animals, like dogs, lower cortisol in children like Sammy. It can help them adjust to new environments and new people. The mornings are the hardest part of our day and it seems some ASD kids have a spike in cortisol about 30 minutes after waking in the morning. 

In the two weeks before the dogs were brought in, the children's cortisol levels rose 58 percent during the first 30 minutes they were awake in the morning. But when the dogs were present, this awakening response was reduced to just a 10 percent rise. And when the dogs were taken away after four weeks, the cortisol awakening response jumped back up to a 48 percent increase. read the full article here

So maybe a dog would help him. I don't know that I interested in an actual service dog but maybe more a companion dog. There are tons of articles supporting companion dogs for kids like Sammy. He melts around dogs and babies. The barking doesn't seem to bother him and maybe I could teach the dog to wake him in the morning rather than me. I don't know whats best for Sammy yet.  I know an older dog would be best for us and it has to be a bigger breed dog to not get lost in the shuffle. Of course there is cost, vet bills,upkeep and grooming. Does the cost negate the benefit? How do I make this decision

I just want to make things easier for him. I hate seeing him struggle in the mornings and cry about everything. Maybe if his stress levels were lower he would be able to get dressed and enjoy time in the morning without all the tears. Like everything else it is simply about making t better for Sammy and the rest of us. His autism affects all of us in this house. 

What do you think , would you consider a dog to help your child? whats the down side? Is there anything I am forgetting?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Signs everywhere

There are signs for things everywhere. No parking, No soliciting, No smoking. They encourage or prevent and create all sorts of situations.Some are Funny some are very important and some are just plain Stupid.

Today while driving home I saw THIS in Rhode Island. I live directly behind a school.It's a high school and a really slow street. we only have maybe 8 houses on our street.However lots of teens drive to school now.they whip around before and after hours. On many occasions our neighbors have alerted us that Sam has run into the street. We watch him. Our yard is fenced. 95% of the time he wont leave the yard and he is never alone outside. However, Sammy is fast! really fast. He can and often does get out. A sign alerting these teens to him might help them slow down. Maybe we can educate at least one of them? It's no different from a Deaf Child sign or Children at Play sign...right?

What do you think. Would you put a sign in front of your house for your child?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

sibling sacrafice

 This post here ~~> What Autism Means to Me: Natalie Davis « Autism Speaks Official Blog:

'via Blog this'

How amazing it is to hear about this side of the story. I often worry about how the other children perceive Sammy and Tyler.

Tyler is best buddies with Sam. They have a deep link that I can't even begin to comprehend. I often find them engrossed in the same stim or Tyler leading Sammy into a calmer place before he melts down.The both of them enthralled with our stim pot and their reflection.

Nate started as the baby brother and is now almost of level ground with Sammy. As Nate changes every day and matures and figures things out Sammy often get's left behind. Sam will often bully Nathaniel , but lately Nate strikes back and reprimands Sammy. It's hard to watch the younger children passing him.

AJ and Sammy fight constantly. In fact even if AJ has nothing to do with whatever it is, Sammy finds him and takes it out on him. I have no idea what that is about. My best guess being that he feels really safe with AJ. AJ is the softest squishiest most lovable kid. AJ also has sensory processing issues and often kisses too hard, touches to fast and moves with some awkwardness. That translates into Sammy feeling as if he is under attack. Not a good way to feel and I am sure AJ often feels like he gets the raw end of the deal.

Grace and Sammy are a different story. Sammy is the baby whisperer and Grace adores him. She also adores Tyler.  The three connect on awesome levels. I am not sure if it is just because she is a baby or if I will someday in the not too distant future be told Grace is also an ASD child.

Who knows what our house will be like in 5 years. I don't know how many kids we will have by then if even any more. However many we do have, Sammy's autism doesn't just change him it changes us all in ways I never would have imagined 

Monday, October 3, 2011


Today after reading this this post here it's come to my attention I may be overlooking how blessed I am It's really easy when things get really hard to feel like you have it bad. I do try to remind myself that it could always be worse.

No one knows what tomorrow brings and people loose children all the time. So today I am making an effort to think of all the blessings Sammy brings to my life.

1. When he smiles he lights up the world.
2. He is amazing with his baby sister
3. He has an amazing soft heart and gentle spirit
4. He can be really silly
5. His laugh always makes me laugh
6. Sammy has taught me so much about the kind of parent I am
7. Sammy creates in me a urge to do better, be better
8. I will never take going on a family outing and having it go well for granted again
9. I will never take speech and stories from my children as an absolute.
10. I will always be grateful even if for only one moment each day from now on

those are just a few amazing Sammy things. What makes you feel grateful? What are you proud of? How far have you and your kids come?