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Apr 24, 2013

Be Still

As an autism mom, I'm grateful for this song,Be Still, by The Killers.  I was driving home from getting my son's prescription last night.  I was feeling overwhelmed and discouraged, and this song started playing.  I felt like the message was for me, and it also brought to my mind that wonderful scripture, Psalms 46:10, "Be astill, and bknow that I am God..." that reminds me to give my worries to God when I am unable to do anything else.

Apr 21, 2013

Autism and Dental Work

As an autism mom, I'm grateful for pediatric dentistry.  The dental aspect of autism is especially hard for me. My kids are not so good at letting me brush their teeth, and they'd rather chew on the toothbrush than brush their teeth themselves.  Their school OT suggested vibrating toothbrushes.  I had never tried them before because I thought the noise would totally bug them, but actually, they really like those.  I'm grateful for their ABA programs for implementing tooth brushing.  They are starting right at the basic, desensitizing them to the feeling of a toothbrush in their mouths and working up to total brushing of their teeth.  This might not sound good to those out there who don't understand because how long will that take?  But, I'm glad they are doing it a little at a time, so toothbrushing will no longer be so aversive to my kids.
Needless to say, my kids have plenty of cavities.  Also needless to say, they will not tolerate any dental work (xrays, teeth cleaning, procedures).  This is why I'm grateful for pediatric dentistry.  Our primary care doctor referred them to the pediatric dentistry clinic at the hospital.  For those of you who are curious how to get this kind of dental care, the primary care doctor is who I would start with.  Most know where to refer your child for specialized dental care.
Our pediatric dentist wants to see my kids every four months for checkups.  This is basically so that they can get used to him and more comfortable with dental visits.  He does a visual exam of their teeth when we visit.  If he sees any visible cavities, that is when we schedule an entire day for dental procedures.
For Jason, in order to even be able to have this done, he first had to have a physical exam.  The day before the procedure, we had to go to the hospital for preop.  The morning of the procedure he couldn't have anything to eat, and he could only drink clear fluids up until 2 hours before his scheduled procedure.  After that, he wasn't allowed to drink anything.
When we got to the hospital, they changed him into some nifty hospital pajamas.  I like those a lot more than hospital gowns...even if Jason does have a cute little bum.  Jason was super comfy in his pajamas, and he was lucky because Aunt Michelle sent him with his SUPER SOFT blankie.
While we were waiting, the anesthesiologist came to talk to us.  He explained how they would put Jason under for the procedure.  The procedure would last anywhere from 2-4 hours for the xray, cleaning, fillings, any major dental work.
I was so glad they had the swivel chairs in the room we were waiting in.  Jason was very entertained and resourceful, using the sink and the hospital bed to propel his spinning.  :)
Anyway, the anesthesiologist came and got Jason and told me where the waiting room was.  I waited forever for them to finish.  They ended up doing three mini root canals in the back of his mouth and pulling one tooth.  I'm so grateful that they could do this all in one visit (even if it did take all day).  I'm grateful my baby boy was asleep and didn't have to freak out about what was happening.
We spent a couple hours in the recovery room waiting for Jason to come out of anesthesia, and then we were discharged to home.  Jason now has a much happier mouth.

Apr 18, 2013


As an autism mom, I'm grateful for the zoo. We have zoo passes for the kids, and one great thing about the zoo is that if your child is disabled, the accompanying adult is free. This was also true at Sea World and Birch Aquarium, so it's always a good idea to check these place's policies to see if you might save some money that way.
Today was a good day to take Jason to the zoo. He had a pediatric dental procedure this afternoon where they will be using anesthesia to put him out, and he isn't allowed to eat anything at all or drink anything after two hours before the procedure. The zoo is actually only about 10 minutes from the hospital, so it was a convenient way to distract Jason from his growling tummy.
He was so happy to be at the zoo and have his mommy all to himself. He especially LOVED the Skyfari tram ride. Me...not so much.

Apr 10, 2013

Hungry and Swing

As an autism mom, I'm grateful for any new words that come out of my kids' mouths.  Caiti and Jason are "nonverbal."  They definitely make lots of "words" with their mouth, but not words that I understand.  Caiti is adorable when she plays with her toys, and she has them talk to each other in Caiti jabber.  Jason is so sweet when he's just sitting there doing actions to the songs, so then I know that in his brain, he's "singing" Eensie Weensie Spider.
Yesterday Caiti came up to me bearing a plate.  She has always done this when she wants something to eat, and I usually prompt her to say something by asking, "What do you want?"  She normally will respond with her go-to word, "Drink."  However, yesterday, I didn't even have to ask what she wanted.  She came up to me and said, "Uh-bree."  So, my baby girl said "hungry" to me.  That made me so proud and happy to hear her using a word spontaneously and correctly.
When we were at the park, later in the day, I asked Jason what he wanted, and he said, "Weeb"  which in Jason terms is "swing."  He's so cute and sweet, and I gladly took him over to the swings and gave him a push.
It's the little things, that are huge in my house, that make it all worth it.

Apr 3, 2013

Sewing Machine (for the DIY Hammock Swing)

As an autism mom, I'm grateful for my sewing machine.  It took me a while to like it cause I didn't get how to work it, everything I made looked like crap, etc.  And it still does...but it has proved useful.  For instance, if you saw our earlier posts, you know that my kids LOVE swings.  We were fortunate enough to be given a swingset for Christmas from a local charity.  Unfortunately, my kids have already broken all the swings because they use them constantly...and they're pretty big kids.
So this morning I got on pinterest and looked up DIY hammocks.  I figured maybe my sewing machine could help me out on that one.  And it did.  I found an old blanket and followed the directions in one of the pins on pinterest to sew hems on both sides of the blanket.  They said to then thread rope through the hems and hang it from a tree.  I don't have a nice big tree to do that, and I've used rope before, that soooo doesn't work out at my house.  I did have the chains from the broken swings, so I connected two chains together per side and threaded them through the hem.  I then hung them from the hookie thingies on the swingset.  It worked great.

But I got to thinking that maybe the blanket would rip...especially if my kids can break the plastic swings.  So I got a scrap piece of leather (Yes, I cut the leather off of my old couches for future projects).  and sewed it to the back of the hammock to provide reinforcement.  I also realized my kids were looking super hot when they'd come in for swinging.  So...
After thinking how hot fleece would feel surrounding you, like it does in the hammock form, I used one of our worn out sheets and sewed that the front and over the hem to provide a cooler seat for my kids.

And hey, it worked least for now...or until I have extra money to buy the expensive swings that will hold the weight of three enthusiastic swingers.  :)