Saturday, August 17, 2013

New Month, New things to come ….



Well it is just that, a new month since I last posted a blog and lots of new changes taking place. Even though I can’t just yet spill my exciting news with you because it’s not 100% final yet … I’ll tell you all of the other great things that you have missed out on in the last month! Well as I think I may have mentioned before I have returned to work. As this was not a hard decision for me because I love my job it was tougher than ever to leave my sweet baby blue for a SECOND time! The first time he was 8 weeks old and it was much MUCH easier!! This time as I left him I had a million and one thoughts crossing my head … worried, paranoid mom starts kicking in. But as suspected he is doing just fine without me; but more excited than ever when I get to pick him up in the afternoon! To you this may not seem like a big deal …  but to me it’s a BIG DEAL!!!!! Not that long ago when I would go to pick Kiptyn up from the sitter he did not even care that I existed.  He would glance my way when I would call his name to let him know that I was there, and then drift back into his own world. When I would pick him up he would look at me like “oh yeah, maybe I remember you.” …. Now you see why his excitement is a BIG DEAL!!!! Now he lights up and usually runs my way for a big giant hug!! I always ask him how his day was and he babbles on telling me all about it. One day I’ll be able to write to you and tell you that I understand the words that he is telling me, but as for now I am grateful for the “words” only he knows and I appear to know! If you ever happen to see me after school hours, and I look like I am talking to myself, don’t mind me – I’m just an overly excited mommy babbling on with my kiddo!!!!

In other great news … we are SOOOO excited to share with everyone that WE FOUND A HOUSE!!! We will soon be homeowners again!! I can’t wait to feel like a real grown up again; however, I think I may stick around my dad’s for a little longer to continue enjoying the free meals!! I mean ya girl likes to eat and the fella knows how to cook! Who could blame me??

So besides the NEW working mom, and NEW house, we are also starting a NEW remedy with Kiptyn! Last month Kiptyn’s homeopath went on a vacation and it was the longest 3 weeks of my life. During that time the remedy that Kiptyn was currently taking became TOO strong for him and I had no clue! I knew something wasn’t right because the kiddo was bouncing off the walls. He was super hyper all day long – not sleeping – not napping – slowly wearing me out because I was attempting to get things back in gear for work, and he was beginning to lose focus like he had previously started to gain back. Immediately when Kari returned we contacted her to find out WHAT TO DO?!?! Fortunately, the miracle worker that she is, she immediately helped me to figure out the problems. Its weird how we know the answers that we ask professionals, however we look to them to assure that we are right. I don’t know why I’m so indecisive and not confident; by now you would think I would have this stuff down pat! Any who, I guess I am just a human after all!!!! Well, of course we now have started the new remedy and are seeing outstanding results! Kiptyn is picking right back up where he left off!! I laugh when I think about the saying “be careful what you wish for,” because that statement is so true! As you know we constantly wish for Kiptyn to live as typical of a life as possible; and now that he is changing ever so quickly he is requiring more and more of our attention. Previously he left us if we tried to interact with him – now he’s coming GET US to play with him!! Yeah – you read that right .. HE’S ASKING for us to play with him!!!! Boy I never dreamed that this day would come. However, of course just like a typical child, it’s ALWAYS in the middle of me cooking dinner or folding clothes that I have abandoned for 2 weeks. So this new exciting thing leaves me with the decision to LEAVE the food or not play with my baby and continue cooking! Needless to say …. We have almost had few burnt meals due to my taking advantage of this opportunity! Luckily, Joey or my dad, and Stacey are sometimes home and able to take advantage of this moment that we are not used of happening!!!! Something so small, amazes us all – but shows us how much God is in control of this entire situation.

So this month has been one of those months. One of those long dreaded months that you may read about if you read “Autism” stories or blogs of others. And for that I apologize to all of my friends and family if we have not seen you as much as we usually do, or we have not talked to you on a regular like usual. August is a new month with lots of new things to come and we are already excited about the new changes that are unfolding in front of us daily. With all of that being said I recently read an article about 7 Things you Don’t know about an Autism Parent, so I decided to tweak it a little bit and post it. I hope you enjoy and I hope you are better able to understand our world and our lives because of this!

7 Things You Don’t Know About an Autism Parent – by Maria Lin –Changed up a little by ME! J

1.       I am tired.
Parenting is already exhausting. But parenting a child with special needs takes things to another level of fatigue. Even if I have gotten a good night’s sleep, or have had some time off, there is a level of emotional and physical tiredness that is always there, that simply comes from the weight of tending to those needs. Therapies are daily. Paperwork and bills stack up, spare time is spent researching new treatments, trying to get him to eat and touch new things, advocating for him in the medical and educational system. This is not to mention the emotional toll of raising a special needs child, since the peaks and valleys seem so much more extreme for us. I am always appreciative of any amount of grace or help from friends to make my life easier, no matter how small, from arranging plans around my schedule and location, to watching my son while I am eating!

2.       I am jealous.

As this is something that is hard to come out and say, it is true! When I see a 1 year old doing what my son cannot do at 2 ½ , I feel a bit of jealousy. It hurts when I see my son struggling so hard to learn something that comes so naturally to a typical kid, like talking and pointing. Sometimes it’s hard to hear about the accomplishments of my friends kids. It’s not that I don’t want to hear all about your child, because I know you are just as proud of them as I am of the accomplishments Kiptyn makes on a daily basis, but sometimes it’s a little tough, and it makes it harder being around typical kids with him. Which leads me to the next point …

3.       Sometimes I feel alone.

It is lonely parenting a special needs child sometimes. I can feel like an outsider around moms of typical kids. While I want to be happy for them, I feel terrible hearing them brag about how their 2 year old has 100 words, or already knows their ABCs or can use the potty! Good for them, but it is so not what my world looks like. Sometimes it’s a lifesaver to read about and connect with people who are going through similar things.

4.       I am scared.
I worry that I am not doing enough. What if I missed a treatment or screwed up something I was supposed to give him at a specific time. I am scared thinking about the hurts that he will experience in life because he is “different” in this very cruel world we are living in. (Not to mention I fear for the safety of ANY person who would inflict HURT on my child) I am scared about finances. Finally, I am scared of what will happen to Kiptyn if something happens to me. Fortunately because of my good faith many of these fears are slowly beginning to subside as God shows me he is in complete control – however, they still surface every now and again.

5.       Please watch you words.

Using words like “retarded” or telling me “at least he’s not THAT bad,” or “he looks normal, like nothing’s wrong with him.” Likewise, I have probably used these words in my lifetime before Kiptyn; however now when I hear these words I cannot feel anything but hurt. And when I feel hurt sometimes I may say things that will probably hurt you too! And what is THAT BAD? Every child with Autism is very different; however, who are we to decide that one case is better to have than another. REALLY? …. And my personal favorite “he looks so normal”  ... really? Does he? YOU LOOK SO SMART TOO, but obviously sweetheart that ain’t true because if it was you would not be telling me such a thing! WHAT DOES NORMAL look like again???? MmKAY thanks!

And for all you preggo friends …. “as long as it’s healthy” ….. Don’t get me wrong, I share your wishes for a healthy baby, but sweetie let’s start thinking for ourselves and stop using that age old saying! My thought as I hear this still remains “and if it’s not healthy?” (My reply would be to you: YOU WILL BE OK. You and your child will still have a GREAT GREAT LIFE)

6.       I am human.

I have been challenged and pushed beyond my limits when it comes to raising my son. I’ve grown tremendously as a person, and developed a soft heart and empathy for others in a way I never would have imagined without him. But I’m just like the next mom in some ways. Sometimes I get cranky, my son irritates me, and sometimes I just want to get out or go shopping! I still have dreams and aspirations of my own. I love to travel, hang out with my friends, have a drink with the girls, spend time with Joey, love good food, love to entertain guest, love my Scentsy family and all of the amazing people I have met through Scentsy. Sometimes it’s nice to escape and talk about other things.

7.       I want to share with you about my son/ I want to help you.

Kiptyn is the most awe-inspiring thing to happen in my life. Sometimes I want to shout from the top of the Empire State building how funny or cute he is, or how he accomplished something new. I want to tell you all about it – and I know to those of you with kids that are “typical” you may think “my kiddo has been doing that” but please don’t shoot down my good spirit. Yes your kid may have accomplished that on target however; mine didn’t and I am more than ecstatic to share it with you now! If you have questions for me – don’t be afraid to ask! I want to help make you aware of what millions of us are facing on a daily basis. The only way to find out is to ask! If you or someone you know has noticed similar characteristics to what you read I say about Kiptyn – I’d love to help you – however, only if you truly want the help! I can talk about this until I am blue in the face, but unless you are ready to face that you may be facing the same challenge as I am – and you are ready to do what you have to do to help your baby boy or girl. If you are truly not willing to do ALL that it takes, or just can’t accept it because the “doctors” told you something different – I ask politely that you DON’T waste my time!!! I do have others that I help and I would hate to take time away from them or my own sweet baby blue to help you if you are not willing to help yourself!

Raising a special needs child has changed my life. I was raised in a family that valued performance and perfection above all else (not completely but I didn’t write this entire article), and unconsciously I’d come to judge myself and others through this lens. Nothing breaks this lens more than having a sweet, innocent child who has impairments that make ordinary living and ordinary performance difficult or even impossible.

It has helped me understand that true loving is meeting someone (adult or child .. special needs or not) exactly where he or she is – no matter how they stack up against what “should be.” Raising a special needs child shatters all the “Should be’s” that we idolize and build our lives around, and puts something else at the core; love and understanding. So maybe that leads me to the last thing you don’t know about a special needs parent ….. I may have it tough, but in many ways I feel that I am so very blessed!!!!

 

And this stands true for both Joey & I. Of course when I write you read lots of “I’s” in there but I can tell you I am one of the fortunate ones that has had a supporting husband to stand by Kiptyn & I every step of the way. Autism has changed us – and weather Kiptyn eventually outgrows his diagnosis or not it has already taught us so much!

I have developed a greater patience because of autism. I’m still very far from the most patient person on the planet but I have learned to wait and to bide my time in order to best help my kid. I know I am definitely a better person now than I was pre-diagnosis.  

I have a stronger bond with my kid because of Autism. I have had to take the time to get to know him better, to understand how he responds to the world, to read his signs of stress and anxiety. I am his daily go-to person. I help him interpret the world so he can know what is coming next. I am his guide yet I always follow him. Always.

I appreciate the opportunities and experiences that I have had to face along the way with Autism. They have given me the ability to not only be able to help my sweet baby blue, but the ability to help others help their kiddos.

I am thankful that autism has forced me to take the time to understand the little, seemingly insignificant things that so affect my baby boy. I am glad that the million different therapies have taught me how to make small changes in order to encourage huge strides in Kiptyn’s development.

Most of all I feel lucky to have been given the chance to see the world through very different eyes. These are just a few of the positives that I have experiences because of Autism.

 

 

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