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Autism Awareness


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Autism Never Sleeps


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This statement is so true – at least for my family. My dear son wakes up around 3:30 am most days. He likes to have himself a snack and run upstairs, jump in my bed and giggle his butt off. I tell him this is not funny but he doesn’t care. He goes in the bathroom and dangles necklaces and comes back in the bed to jump on me some more. It’s very tough to sleep thru all of this, but I can nod off inbetween jumps on the bed. This last week though was unbearable. We changed up his meds and it made it so when he woke up at 3:30 he screamed bloody murder till it was time to go to school. This broke my heart! Nothing would comfort him or stop his tantrums 😦 After giving the meds a chance, it was clear these were making things so much worse. Within 2 days of being off the new med, my kiddo was back to normal. I missed him and was thankful to have back giggly night owl instead of the miserable devil child he was becoming.

It just goes to show you things can be so much worse!

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Signs


I wonder if this will stop my kiddo from helping himself to a 4am snack. Lately it’s consisted of Crystal Lite packs and shredded cheese. At least he puts the wrappers in the garbage when he is done – but doesn’t do quite as good of a job getting the crystals in his mouth. My kitchen floor sometimes feels like the beach. 

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I keep moving things to places I can’t even reach. Soon, all of our food is going to be in the trunk of my car 🙂

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Rainman


Post#3 from my very short-lived life as a blogger in 2011. That’s all she wrote! Starting fresh with new posts in 2012!

 

Rainman was on TV tonight. I was explaining to my daughter that when most people hear the word autism, they think of Rainman.  I know I did – back before my son was diagnosed with Autism.

 

I’ll never forget the day Alex was officially diagnosed. His neurologist was trying to establish the severity of his disorder by asking me questions like, how do you communicate? How do you get him to make eye contact with you? Tell me about some of the strange behaviors he exhibits. I remember getting defensive (even though I knew in my heart he was autistic). I said, “Well, it’s not like he’s Rainman or something!!??”

 

The doctor got really angry with me. I must have been the lucky 1000th customer that compared Autism with Rainman that day.  He said, “Rainman does not equal Autism! Everyone with autism is different – no two are alike, that’s why we call it a spectrum. You can not compare your son to Rainman!”

 

I felt stupid. Felt like I offended the doctor – AND my son. I thought Rainman was the very worst it could get – little did I know…

 

But you know what, watching Rainman tonight, I realized he had a lot of advantages that my son doesn’t have. He can talk and communicate and explain some of the “whys” for his behavior. For God’s sake, he gets to drive!! We don’t have that luxury. We have pictures, some yes/no recordings, simple signs and the pleasure of translating what various tantrums mean.

 

I have hope that one day I can compare my kiddo to Rainman. I hope he communicates and shows his emotions and has good childhood memories he can talk about. I hope he’s able one day to tell me why he does the things he does. I hope he learns to dance with a sparkly hooker and drives in a circle on the driveway 🙂  No matter what, I love that boy – whether he’s ever lucky enough to be like Rainman or not.

 

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Autism Awarness at the Park Today


So, I started a blog about a year ago and wrote 3 whole posts!! Impressive, I know 😉  I can’t even remember my password to get back into it, so I figured I’d just copy them over and start fresh here! Here is post #2:

 

Autism Awareness at the Park Today

Autism Awareness can happen in everyday life – We’re at the park today and several kiddos went up to my son Alex and said hi and asked him his name. Alex continued to delight in his sensory heaven – walking around barefoot, screaming to hear himself scream and picking up the sand and sprinkling it on to the swing. The kids had no idea what to make of this kid and for sure their parents didn’t either. But then something cool happened – I told the kids his name and explained he had autism, but that he was just like them – 8 years old and liked to play outside – he just acts a little different and can’t talk. Attitudes changed. Smiles came. And then the questions started – why can’t he talk? Does he do sign language? Does he go to school?  And so it began, right there in the park with a few kiddos – Autism Awareness.  Maybe next time our new friends encounter someone that acts a little different, they will think of Alex and realize he’s a kid just like them.

Spread the word. A little goes a long way 🙂

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It’s All Good, Baby!


 It’s All Good…
 It’s All Good…. one of my favorite sayings. It’s my go-to. My backup. My one and only. If it’s not true at the time, it was before, and it will be again. So, that’s what I say when someone asks, “How are you, Jenn?”  “It’s all good” I usually reply. This is more than an answer to a simple question posed in the hallway to me. It’s a way of life.

By all accounts, I would say, I have had a good life. I’ve had my fair share of challenges, tragedies, disappointments and sadness, but more importantly, I’ve had tons of fun, true silliness, hope and plenty of love. I’m so glad that I choose to look at life this way – and see the positives – or I’m not sure how I’d wake up in the morning.

I decided to start writing this blog to show other moms out there that there usually is a bright side to everything… and to remind myself of that very same thing.

Not sure where I’ll start, but I will talk about my kids, one of which has autism and our adventures in life. It won’t always be pretty… but It’s All Good to me 🙂

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