Potty Water Face

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I just got potty water… on. my. face. lol
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So… what had happened was…

I decided to leave the bathroom door open… hoping to encourage Justin to poo in the potty.

Well, he went in and a few minutes later I peaked around the corner. There he was with his diaper down holding the TP. lol Hmmmm….

Well, I knew he wanted the toilet paper roll, so I twisted it out from the center of the roll, had him sit down on the potty and went to the kitchen to clean up. Thinking he’ll be happy… he’s got his movie, his roll and hopefully that will keep him entertained long enough until he poops… and we can have a successful poo story for Justin.

A minute or two later… it dawned on me… he’s sitting on the potty………. with a dry toilet paper tube…. there’s WATER under him!!!!!

I ran to the bathroom and what did I find?

Justin….

With his TP roll and hand in the potty water.

He looks up at me with a grin on his face like:
“Thanks Mom! You’re the BEST!”

Yep… Mommy should have called that one sooner.

So I get him off the potty, and realize there IS SOME poo in the potty!

I tell him
“GOOD JOB Justin!!!! High Fives!!!”

*Splat*

Yep….. there was still potty water on his hands….. and now it’s on my face.

I have then since bleached my face (a few times) lol jk I did scrub it for about 10 minutes… And he’s had his bath…

And all is well with the world again.

Justin kind of pooped in the potty… and I’ve learned not to leave him unattended again.

If It Wasn’t For My Nana

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We’ve had a LOT of ups and downs and I’m not too ashamed to admit, we’ve had a lot more downs than ups. It doesn’t help that I HATE asking for help. It just really really makes me uncomfortable. Especially with money.

With my Nana, I never had to ask. She ALWAYS offered. I tried to turn her down a lot, but she never let me. She helped us out a lot. So, we tried to help out when we could to try to make up for it… Fixing a lawn mower here, helping with her truck there… Someday I hope to pay her back for all that she had done for us.

But one of the biggest things she ever did for us was getting the kids a Kindle.

“You know I saw one of those Kindles on TV! Do you think one of those would help the boys??”

“I don’t know Nana, they wouldn’t know how to work one if you did… and I don’t want you to spend the extra money if they don’t end up liking it.”

“Well, if they don’t like it, you guys could use it!”

“Yeah…. but….”

“We’ll call it an early Christmas present.”

She always did that… said she wouldn’t get us things for Christmas or a Birthday since she was getting us something else right now. But she did anyway.

I also had reservations, because I didn’t want to be “That” parent. The one who got their kids things that they didn’t really need, had zombies that didn’t actually do anything but be on devices, or have the 6 year old with a cell phone… they should be outside playing, not watching TV and playing video games.

Only……. my kids didn’t know how to “play” outside. Our version of “playing” outside…. was taking walks. Once the walk was over though, it was time to go inside. There was no “we took our walk, now lets play in the mud or with trucks”.

The boys loved their movies, especially after they regressed. I think it has something to do with the fact that they are predictable. They could watch the same movie over and over and over, and they were happy with that because they KNEW what was going to happen. For someone who can’t understand what anyone is saying, never knows what’s going on… something predictable for them is comforting and calming.

Tyler ended up loving the games and apps and they both loved that their movies could go to their rooms or while they’re climbing on the counters. lol It was a huge blessing. We still restricted their time on them. We were already getting a lot of grief about them watching TV while they ate or had it on as background noise (therapists thought that it would hinder their speech). Eventually Nana got us another one… so both the boys could have their own (they fought like CRAZY over the first one).

Then I got an iPad mini for myself when we finally had the money to do things like that… which, of course, Tyler fell in love with, so eventually we got a shock proof case and it ended up being the kids tablet.

After all the devices and all the tablets we’ve tried out there, our favorite is the iPad. The game types, the apps, iTunes for their movies ( you can go to chapters, see a picture of the beginning of that chapter and select it), is actually how Justin learned to control the device on his own (he couldn’t figure it out on the kindle and would get extremely upset).

NOW we’re using the First Nouns App with both of them on the iPad! Tyler can look at a word and recognise that it means the correct corresponding picture! Justin, for the first time ever, is using the app to match pictures! He NEVER played with the games/apps on ANY of the devices.

For a long, long, long time… I thought that my kids might not ever talk… that I might not ever hear their voices (that weren’t just screams and babbling). But after a year of Tyler using the iPad to watch his favorite (educational) TV shows more often that he had before, and then starting to watch clips on youtube (of the ABC’s, Shapes, colors, numbers), he can say and is now recognizing more words  than I can even count!!!

 He’s still non-verbal but I’d consider him more “preverbal” now than completely non-verbal.

Neither of them can tell me what they want, they still can’t understand me if I ask them a question, when they’re in pain they can’t tell me why or what hurts… and I still have never heard them tell me “I Love you”.

But because of these devices and these apps… I have hope for my kids that they will be able to live to their full potential.

I’m more than sure we would have EVENTUALLY gotten devices to help with the kids… but there would have been so many more grocery trips, outings, the 2,000 mile drive from PA to Texas… so many things that would have been a lot harder had we not had them. They probably wouldn’t be as far advanced as they are now if they hadn’t had them when they did. 🙂


And all of that has happened because of my Nana.

Regression doesn’t keep me from Celebrating

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Justin (6) and Tyler (5) both have Severe/Regressive Autism. Because we never know what could set them back or make them “regress”… regression can happen at any time. No matter how far we’ve come.

Sometimes we don’t even know WHEN it happens and other times it’s pretty obvious! Example: They slowly stop eating one of their favorite foods until they just don’t want it any more (for about 6 months to a year)… OR When, after MONTHS go by… one of them poops on the floor and smears it all over the walls. << THAT regression, we notice… right away.

Sometimes they’re major setbacks and sometimes they’re minor. Either way, it’s hard to take. Especially when we’ve worked SO hard to get them to that certain point, and all that work is gone.

BUT… that doesn’t keep us from celebrating the milestones. If anything, we celebrate them more, because we don’t know how long they’ll keep them.

When they were toddlers, we took everything for granted. I mean sure, we got really excited when they had all their firsts, but shortly after they did them, we were looking forward to their next milestone.
We didn’t know that we wouldn’t hear either of them say Momma or Dadda until YEARS later (they still don’t know that I’m Mom and Tom is Dad)… We didn’t know that the Vegetables, Fruits… and other things they WERE eating… they wouldn’t eat again for a long time or maybe not at all. That smile… or the eye contact we were given so freely… would be harder to get.

So now, we take NOTHING for granted. Every small little milestone gets praise and continue to gets praise!

Because who knows how long they’ll have it for.

Self Diagnosing

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I have Aspergers, ADD/ADHD, Sensory Issues and Food Aversions.
I plan on getting my “real diagnosis” once I have insurance again.

I’ve thought I’ve had these for a while now (some longer than others), but I’ve always been afraid to come out and say it. People can be incredibly mean and judgmental… I also keep second guessing myself (maybe you’re just crazy?), and there’s a bit of denial too.

For as long as I can remember, I had food aversions. Like sitting at the dinner table for HOURS because I couldn’t make myself eat the spaghetti my Mom made because it had onions in it (I still can’t eat onions). I can’t eat chicken off a bone (after it’s been cut off and I’ve dissected it, I can eat it, but like chicken wings – nope, isn’t going to happen…). I LOVE the taste of fruit/fruit juice, but most of their textures, I can’t stand. Like Bananas, oranges, soft grapes, pears, plums…. pretty much anything but watermelon and apples… and even then, I’m picky about those too. Eventually I did figure out that it was the texture of foods that I didn’t like… but there were some foods I just don’t like the taste of either.

Then when I met my husband, he gave me a name/phrase for the things I didn’t like that weren’t over texture… I also have “little kid taste buds”. 😉 I don’t like wine, beer or coffee… you know, adult things. lol

But I also have just texture issues that have nothing to do with food. Like if I get something sticky gets on my hands I need to wash them immediately. I can’t use lotion, going to the beach sucks for me. It’s not so bad while I’m there, but if I can’t rinse off and change before I leave, the feeling of the gritty sand and the sticky salt water on me drives me crazy. I don’t like wearing pants in general unless they’re lightweight PJ pants. lol Or socks with the stitching in the toe, but I don’t mind wearing toe socks!! lol

I have Aspergers. I just always thought I was weird… “quirky”. I never really fit in with any particular group of kids. I’d find one or two people I liked and hung out with them. I used to think the reason I didn’t have many friends was due to moving around so much. I went to a different school every year starting in 8th grade (I moved in with my Aunt and Uncle and they are in the Air Force). I have a hard time keeping relationships. It’s not that I don’t want them! If anything, I get depressed over not having friends, but when I go looking for them… I have a hard time finding others like me. I try to make friends anyway, and try to find common ground, but eventually it gets too hard for me to keep up the friendship and I end up sabotaging it. I stop talking to them, then I feel bad for not talking to them for so long, so I continue to NOT talk to them. Even when I find people who ARE like me, I’m so drained from personal issues (like migraines, TMJ, Lower back pain, fibromyalgia…) and taking care of my three kids (two with Autism and a baby) that by the end of the day when I CAN talk to them, I don’t want to. Well… I “want” to, but end up zoning out watching a movie.

Movies/TV/Books are really the only way I can zone out and just not think for a while. Because I have ADD/ADHD, I have a really hard time NOT thinking about something. I’m usually thinking about quite a few things at a time, and when it’s really bad I can’t focus on anything, let alone the MANY things going through my brain. Which is also why it’s really hard for me to write. I actually write better than I talk… I have a hard time staying on subject when I’m speaking… I go off on tangents then forget what I’m talking about. But when I’m writing, I’m able to go back and reread what I wrote, so I can continue talking about what I need to. Or go back and delete a bunch of text that I thought was important, but really wasn’t (can’t do that in person). I often get SO distracted by everything else going on around me, I can’t focus long enough to write something. Which is also the reason I have a hard time finishing anything. My Aunt called it her “but first syndrome”.

I should do the dishes, but first, let me pick up these toys… but first I should pick up the food the boys dropped, but first, I need to get a trash bag… goes to the kitchen, but first I should make the kids their drinks, but first I need to go to the bathroom, I didn’t realize how bad I had to go, but first, look at all these dishes, I need to do these first. lol So, I DO end up getting things done, but probably not as much as I would if I could focus on just one thing at a time.

Having all of these has been hard. Especially because I didn’t understand why I was the way I was or why I did the things I did, until recently. I would look back at my life and not understand. Why did I have such a hard time making and keeping friends? Why did I make such bad decisions sooo often? Why did I have such bad relationships with my family? Why am I so emotional or really easy to anger? Why can’t I get good grades in school? Why am I SUCH a picky eater?!?!

There are so many aspects to my life that took me a lot longer to realize and work on… even before I realized I have ADD/ADHD and Aspergers. That if I had known why I did the things I did when I was younger, I might have had a completely different life. Better relationships… Finished college…

Although it does make me sad sometimes, there’s nothing I can do about it now.

Now I’m focusing on learning as much as I can so I can continue to better understand myself and really my kids. Although they don’t have the SAME problems I do, I’m understanding why THEY are the way they are… or why they do the things they do, because I better understand myself.

These are just a FEW of the problems I have and have faced… to give you an idea of how important it is to talk about family history and to learn and understand. Even IF my family had figured out I was different than other girls my age and had me tested, I probably wouldn’t have gotten a diagnosis. Even today women are still not getting the diagnosis they need. All because we don’t show the same “signs and symptoms” as our male counterparts exhibit or because we are better at learning to mimic “normal” behaviors.

That and on my mom’s side, “you need to go to therapy” was an insult they used often, not a helpful idea. We didn’t talk about mental health or genetic “problems”. So, even if someone in my family knew someone might have had a genetic disorder, no one would talk about it and we would deny it until the day we died.

I’m trying to break generational curses and trying to better my family. 🙂 And although officially I don’t have a diagnosis… I’m not going to be afraid or ashamed to say it. I have Aspergers, ADD/ADHD, Sensory Issues and Food Aversions… just because my Aspergers doesn’t look like yours, doesn’t mean I don’t have it. Just because I can make eye contact, have a conversation, go (back) to college, get married and have kids… doesn’t mean that I don’t have it.

Just because I’m a woman… doesn’t mean I can’t be Autistic.