Wednesday, April 29, 2009

So...I've let a few days go by without blogging. Since my last blog I turned 35! My son (and our family) survived a carnival night called "Fun Fair" at the kids' school. My parents took the kids overnight on Friday and my in-laws on Saturday giving my husband and I some MUCH, MUCH, MUCH needed time alone! So, all that being good, I still wasn't ready to be called on Monday for therapy. They had a cancellation and I said sure I'll come. So, I only had a few hours to have anxiety about going - ha!

Anyway, we spent this session talking about the "plan". It was kind of like and IEP goal setting session. Goal #1: I will not get mad at my parents or parent-in-laws 4 out of 5 times - that just cracks me up! So, even though the parents had the kids this weekend. I was still frustrated with the whole process of getting that to happen...comments made to me...etc.

So, this week I'm supposed to work on relaxation techniques. Of course they are basic ones I know but don't always practice. The therapist also spent a lot of time typing up notes on her computer/writing out our session note. I felt like a lot of the time I spent watching her type. Anyway, maybe it will get better after this preliminary stuff is set.

Okay, back to Fun Fair. My husband was supposed to fly in at 5:15 and arrive at our house by 6. Ha! His flight had problems. I got a text that said "engine won't start...going back to gate". Okay seriously not something you say to a wife who has been diagnosed with "generalized anxiety disorder". Anyway, that left me and the kids and my mother to head to the Fun Fair. I was glad she was there because she stayed with my daughter and I hung with Alex. By the time Korey got there Alex was showing signs of over stimulation so he took him home. Let him get a shower and then my mom headed home with my daughter and got the kids in the car to head off to her house. That left me at the Fun Fair to help as they were in need of volunteers for concessions. I met a nice lady while working (we just moved here in October so I'm still meeting people). Anyway, the principal started to do the raffle basket winner announcements just after 8:00. I was so glad that Alex wasn't there. He has the worst time understanding the whole raffle thing and gets so upset when he doesn't win.

So, now that we know how this Fun Fair thing goes, we will be even more prepared for next year but I was so glad that we had no issues!!!

My husband and I worked in the yard on Saturday it was hot but beautiful on Saturday and Sunday. I ordered the weather especially for my birthday weekend :) We went for a run/walk together through town. He fixed me dinner from start to finish...grilling steaks, etc. on Saturday. We went to the Y on Sunday and pumped some iron then he met his mother to get the kids giving me some time to work on transcription in peace and quiet!

I seriously couldn't have asked for a better weekend.

Well done Honey!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

So my little thinking brain was hard at work last night. I feel like Ellen Degeneres when she talks about how she is always thinking although I don't come up with the funny things she does. So, I digress....This therapy thing will work this time and I feel encouraged by yesterday although a hard cry does make you very sleepy. I had a hard time functioning the rest of the day/evening.

When I first went to therapy back when Alex was being diagnosed...Simone wasn't sleeping and my husband had had his seizure. The therapist diagnosed me with Depression...duh! Of course with figuring out what therapies Alex needed then subsequently getting him to the therapies/scheduling, etc. Oh and Korey lost his license for 3 going to therapy appointments was out of the question. So, she put me on an anti-depressant that helped but I don't like medication so I only took it for about a year. I'm not opposed to taking it when needed. I personally wanted to not take it as I felt I was at a better place. So I went off it for a few years then started having some major ups and downs (mostly hormonal) so my OBGYN put me back on birth control. ARE YOU KIDDING husband has had a vasectomy! Seriously though that has helped a lot and I think if I wasn't on that I would be back on an anti-depressant.

So, that is a little background that brings me to yesterday. She did the "assessment" and said that at this point she would diagnose me with "generalized anxiety disorder". The secondary diagnosis is "depression NOS". Ha! How many parents of Autistic children get the PDD/NOS diagnosis. The "NOS" means "not otherwise specified". I find that ironic. She said that if I wasn't on the birth control that the underlying depression would be stronger and probably warrant that as a primary diagnosis. She also reminded me that I have been dealing with this for over 5 years - ouch!

The last therapist I went to let me talk/vent and I think I needed that but I also feel like I needed a plan of action. At my next appointment she said we would work on just I can change my thinking/worrying, etc. So I am hopeful!

Now, I want to go back to the early therapy time for Alex. Some of you reading this feel like you may have been one of those people giving me platitudes. I don't mean to be so blunt but when anyone is going through a hard time they do not hear things the way you mean them. Most of my issues with the platitudes have to deal with people who I feel should be helping us more so when I hear the platitudes it just makes me upset. So many of you have been there for me over these last 5 years.

Therapists are awesome...

My sister is my sounding board....

My sister-in-law is my sounding board and also our free housing when needed for summer camps...

My best friend from college is another sounding board....

And many other friends....

Wow! Looks like I've needed some sounding boards! Again, why I'm in therapy :)

So, when we started this intensive 6 week program at the Piqua Center. I was scared of Christine. Christine if you are reading this you already know this. She was Alex's neuroeducation teacher that he would see for about a half hour then later an hour. She is the bomb and helped him so much over the 3 years he was there. I remember him crying and her taking him "sternly" with her and I felt just awful as a parent when he misbehaved. Oh and the time he pooped on her pants - OMG! I grew to appreciate (that isn't even a big enough word) what Christine was able to do with Alex. I am SO grateful that we are also still in touch.

Alex also had "floor" work for about an hour each time he went. The therapists would work on patterning and tactile exercises with Alex (read about it more on their website as I cannot explain it correctly). Oh how he screamed and cried the first 4 days. He grew to love it and had a famous saying of "one more time" in a cute Alex voice that the therapists can imitate :)

Alex also had water therapy. Basically it was like private swim lessons with a twist. He had to listen to direction all the while totally obsessed with pouring water or seeing water fall when he flapped his hands. Water was very overstimulating for him. Jason was just awesome and because of him going to the pool in the summer is so much fun for us. I have heard stories about parents of children with Autism that have had to fish (no pun intended - maybe I am funny like Ellen) their kids out of ponds. Regular swim lessons don't work for these kids so having this therapy was such a blessing.

Now, during the "floor" work I was supposed to help Alex with the program. Most of the time, though (and thankfully) they had enough help and he often didn't want me there. This was such a blessing as I really enjoyed my time with books/magazines/journaling and sometimes napping! I especially loved it when they got the new building and the nice navy leather couch! I remember when we first started and Mrs. Hahn saw me sitting at the table while Alex was in therapy. She said she believed that the caregiver should get time to themselves. Oh how true!

Now the biggest stress I think during this time was finding someone to watch Simone for me while I went to therapy. I relied a lot of friends. I didn't have the family support I needed during this time. I don't think I even did the relying on friends very well. Looking back I think that I relied too much on friends and didn't show my appreciation well. Some of those friendships didn't last or make it through this time and that saddens me. I think this is also why I have a hard time relying on friends and family currently. I feel like I should have to ask or maybe should ask and I hope to work through this again in therapy!

So, thankfully we had this Piqua Center, music therapy in the home as well as preschool. Now what is "recommended" is 40 hours a week of intensive therapy such as ABA. When I researched the cost I was just blown away. So many of these families were scheduling round the clock therapist to come into their home. The cost to the families was $20K-40K. Often wiping out retirement accounts, taking out second mortgages, etc. Not to mention the toll on the marriage. I read a story that talked about the divorce rate in families with special needs children being over 80%. Wow! We spent an average of $7000/year the first 4 years. That was a struggle for us but we made it through. I couldn't imagine if we had to spend more and I couldn't imagine if Alex was more severely Autistic.

But...what did we do in the summer months when there wasn't school...??? We continued with a few days a week of the Piqua Center. However, he needed more structure on those off days. I remember feeling hopeless that so many summer "camps" were for older/school-aged children. It was so hard to find something for preschoolers. Then I heard of Stepping Stones in Cincinnati (about an hour and a half away). I can't remember honestly how I heard about it. They have a summer camp, Camp Allyn, in Batavia, Ohio, which ironically is less than 15 minutes from my sister-in-law's house. So, we spent a few summers going to camp there. I remember we would go for several weeks each summer.

The first time I went to observe, I just cried to my sister-in-law. I still couldn't believe that I was having to take my child to a special needs camp. She was there for me so much during those summers and I can't thank her enough.

Okay...I think I need to go treat myself to a fancy coffee at the coffee shop and read a good book. This Autism stuff is heavy.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Hmmmm....Had my first appointment with my third therapist (yes I have tried this 3 times now). Its been over 5 years since Alex was diagnosed and I still have problems dealing with the anxiety and depression that comes with everything. So, I'm promising myself that I will now focus on this and work through my many issues and the issues I have with other people's issues :)

We had a rough morning today. Alex got invited to a birthday party for a boy from school this weekend but we have plans so he can't go. So, he was upset last night and again this morning about not being able to go. I gave a heads up to the teacher and she said he mentioned it when he got to school but was soon distracted and moved on. Thank God!

One of the things people have said to me (many times) when I talk about Alex's issues is "typical kids do that too". Okay...seriously....that doesn't help. Yes I know that other kids have meltdowns or are affected but noise or fight with their siblings or want their shoes tight, etc., etc. Alex just takes it to whole other level and unless you are living with a child with Autism....keep you mouth shut! Sorry...I just had to say it. I have received a lot of platitudes from people that just rub me the wrong way. I know a lot of you are just trying to think of something nice to say but the old saying "actions speak louder than words" applies here. Do something thoughtful...don't say something that you think is thoughtful.

So, there you have it...a perfect example of why I am in therapy! I'm also hoping this blog can become a form of therapy for me.

Where was I on Alex. Oh, school. I have to say that once we got him into a structured school program, I felt relieved. I also felt guilty (and still do). These people know what to do for him and I didn't/don't. He does so well at school (with the exception of one school that I'll discuss later). He started preschool the day after he turned 3. He got to ride that bus (it wasn't a short bus either). He loved the bus and still does. He started going 4 days a week M/T/W/TH in the mornings. We would round out the week with music therapy in home and a trip to the "Piqua Center" on Friday mornings.

He did really well in the preschool program offered by the County but he probably had the class format memorized the first day. We found when he was eligible for Kindergarten (by age) that he probably could have handled it academically but his social skills were still lacking. So, we asked the school district for help in programing. They "tested" him for Pre-K. What!!?? There is a test for Pre-K?? I thought if you weren't going to Kindergarten you went to Pre-K. Anyway, they said he wasn't eligible and all they could do was put him in another preschool class (he had been with the same teacher for 2+years). Now, I knew he could handle more but we went with it. In addition to the other preschool class through the County, we enrolled him in some afternoons at our church's preschool hoping the additional structure would help. That school I mentioned above...this is it! They just weren't willing to make modifications to assist Alex. This was not a special needs preschool. However, by law they are not allowed to discriminate. So there were many things going on here. We decided (only after a few months) that both programs were not working for Alex. He needed a more challenging environment as well as modifications for him to succeed.

We took him out of both programs and right after Christmas break he started the Nicholas School Kindergarten Program 5 full days a week in Piqua.

More on that experience next!

Monday, April 20, 2009

So, Alex did well at school on Friday...much better than Thursday. Sometimes we just don't know what causes his misbehavior. It is so hard to get detail/information out of him on how he is feeling or what is going on in his little brain. I am so grateful though that the teachers/administrators are willing to work with him. Makes be happy to know he is in good hands. As I write this, he is still is almost 10:00...we have been struggling with getting him to go to sleep lately...hope this doesn't cause problems tomorrow.

Today I met with my Representative to the Ohio House. In a previous blog I mentioned how we had NO insurance coverage for therapy for Alex. Well, Ohio is trying to pass a bill to require private insurance companies to cover therapy for Autism. Now, I have strong feelings about government being too involved in the private sector. That being said...there is really no excuse for an insurance company to not cover these children. We are not expecting full coverage. We know that there are deductibles, copays, limited number of visits, etc. However, some of these families cannot provide services for their children at the cost (for 1 hour of Occupational Therapy it was over $100 at Children's Hospital). So, we were told that if Alex had a physical problem with his ears or mouth that caused a speech delay we would get 20 visits a year for speech therapy. Since he had a "developmental" disorder this coverage was 0. Why is that the case? Also, I heard from a mother at my support group last night that has coverage for her child through her husband's new work insurance. His old insurance didn't cover therapy but the new insurance does. She said that it doesn't cover everything they need but at least they get 20 visits. I just don't understand!

It was nice to talk to my representative and to have him see our personal story/side. Not to mention that I felt like I was doing something good today.

Now, what if insurance is covering therapies...??? I wonder what therapies would be covered. This is of concern for us because we utilized a wonderful organization in Piqua, Ohio called the Hahn-Hufford Center for Hope/Rehabilitation Center for Neurological Development and The Nicholas School. This is a non-profit organization that provides therapies for patients with neurological disorders. Now this isn't your traditional speech and occupational therapies. So, would private insurance consider this an out-of-network service? Anyway, the cost of these services for us was so worth the 30 minute drive one way and the time commitment. Alex participated in the rehab program for 3 years. His growth was amazing during this time. He started with a 6 week intensive program that then went down to 2 days a week then finally to 1 day a week as he was getting more involved with school. The work they do there is just so amazing I find it hard to put into words.

Alex had so many sensory problems but by the time he was done with the program he would walk/play in sand at the beach!!! Now to appreciate the greatness of this....he would NOT walk on wet pavement even with shoes on before this. He didn't like to get his clothing wet...wouldn't get messy...had severe sound sensitivity...didn't like tags in his clothes. He still struggles with loud noises like at a basketball game (the buzzer) and is uncomfortable getting clothes wet at times but he has come a long, long way. Tags in clothes no longer bother him!!

He also attended the Nicholas School for 5 months and I'll talk more about that when we get to his schooling.

If anyone is reading this and lives near Piqua, Ohio, please check out the "Piqua Center"

Because of this organization we were able to provide Alex with almost 3 hours of programming for less than $60 (at the time we were taking him this was the fee). It still cost our family over $8,000 per year during this time to provide services for Alex but compared to what other families were spending, we felt very fortunate. Research shows families spending $20,000 to $40,000 for their children per year.

I just can't imagine. My heart aches for them!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Boy is my heart breaking right now. I'll have to hold on the "history" blogging right now as Alex is having a very rough day at school. We used to have a lot of issues with meltdowns at school but he has gotten better. Usually they are able to head off a meltdown or if he starts getting upset they can work through it or he can work through it before it gets bad. Well today I was called 3 times by his teacher. He has just refused to work. He had a meltdown in with his intervention specialist then a meltdown in gym...and gym is his favorite next to recess! So, what gives I am wondering? After the third call I headed to school (another reinforcement of why I am not working full time outside the home). Now he has been at this school for about 6 months since we moved here in October so I figure that he has done well not to have anything major happen with the transition to the new school. What being said, I went to the office and the principal (who I love) was there to greet me. Alex and his teacher were in his office so he talked to me first. They wanted him to try to work through it this afternoon. He would have to walk around recess with the principal and not play kickball...his absolute favorite thing to do. He seemed to be in a daze. He wasn't responding much and started to cry and told me he had a bad dream (he didn't mention that this morning). Anyway, I told him that he could have his own recess after school with mom if he started his day over and was good for the principal and his teacher. I'm hoping I didn't confuse him. We'll see.

So, I'm at home this afternoon not trying to think about it but keep thinking about his little face and those vacant eyes. Sometimes he acts out when he is getting sick (he had a little cough/froggy voice this morning) and other times we just can't figure it out. I am so grateful for the teachers and principals that are willing to work with him.

Okay....trying not to cry now. I'm going to figure something out that I can do to keep from thinking about this.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Now, someone other than my neighbor (which by the way she is a professional although I said in my last post that the speech therapist testing Alex was the first professional to tell us he had red flags for Autism)....anyway, I digress....has told us that Alex has these "red flags". Wow! Are you kidding me. Our sweet boy who likes to entertain himself may be Autistic. Now what do we do? Well, that was when things got difficult....really difficult...okay really it just sucked!

We quickly found out that to get into a Developmental Pediatrician that specializes in Autism could be upwards of 9 months on a waiting list. So, I quickly went to work getting him on the waiting list for 2 Children's Hospitals - good thing I love paperwork and forms - that's my paralegal training kicking in. Then, we had to contact the local county MRDD - again more paperwork. Really, my first thought was that my kid could be going to school on a short bus. Now admit it, you have all made fun of the kids on the short bus. I'm wondering if I am now beging taught a BIG lesson. The county came in and did their "assessment" while we were waiting on the big waiting list to get our official diagnosis and they said they could start services for Alex with just a speech delay while pending diagnosis. Our school district was also brought in...again more paperwork...and I was introduced to the world of Special Education and IEPS. So, the county immediately sent in an in-home intervention specialist a few times a week until he turned 3. Then when he turned three he went to preschool 4 mornings a week (and thankfully got picked up in a regular bus although it did say "Montgomery County Transportation"). More on the preschool later.

Thankfully the lady from the county who did our assessment had remembered that a wonderful doctor had once worked at our local Children's Medical Center but had moved to Akron she thought. She said that he was really good at determining if a child met the Autism guidelines whey they were "mild", which was what she though Alex was. So, I immediately started researching this doctor and low and behold he was in Akron, OH....I got Alex on their weighting list and they had a lovely cancellation policy that got us in in about a month. Now we had to make a quick decision to drive up there one Thursday night for a Friday appointment but it was well worth it. We got the diganosis and continued on our waiting list near home so we could have a doctor closer to home monitor his progress but the diangosis was most important.

Now, how were we feeling about the diagnosis??? Interestingly I felt calm when he told me that Alex was on the "Autism Spectrum". I remember my husband not really knowing what that meant and that we had to have a conversation about that on the way home. Yes, Alex was Autistic but on the "spectrum" of Autism this doctor felt he was mild to moderate. I didn't do a lot of reasearch on Autism prior to our meeting. Maybe I just wasn't ready but when the doctor finally said he was on the "Spectrum" and recommended some books, I was ready to hear it and ready to learn more. I remember reading one book that talked about the "signs" or "red flags". Things that Alex did or was doing now really made sense now:

He had hand flapping when excited since 6 months of age.

He knew his letters and numbers before age 2.

He could use language to communicate his wants and needs but didn't have functional converational language (remember this was January we got the diagnosis and he was turning 3 in March).

He loved to watch doors open and close even before he could walk.

He loved to put things into slots/holes. He put a lot of cards into or fireplace fent holes and money in our tape player in the car.

He loved playing with books, looking through them for hours and watching the pages turn.

He loved playing with cars/trains but would get down to the level of the wheels and watch them turn.

He was always lovey and affectionate with us. However, if I was sitting on the ground he would run towards me but when he as a few steps away he would turn around and backup into my lap (this was in the book as a sign and I was blown away).

We didn't have the lack of eye contact like many Autistic children do but he did often seem like he was in his own world. I personally thought he was like his dad and was ignoring me!!!

I thought he played well with other kids but later found out out that he played "around" other kids not with them.

So I continued to plug away at finding services. We quickly found out the most frustrating thing I think of this whole process....our private medical insurance would not cover services (therapy) for Autism. Yes I am 100% serious. I remember having some severe breakdowns on the phone over this issue. Those poor insurance representatives I talked to. Oh my was I mean. The "diagnosis" process was covered but once he was labeled Autistic they said it was no longer a medical issue but a "developmental" issue. Can you believe it. How more medical can a disorder of the brain be??? I will write more on this issue later for sure.

So, after many, many phone calls I found that traditional speech and occupational therapies would cost us over $100 per session. Are you kidding me...where are we going to get this $$? Now, the county did have some funding but it was limited (we never received more that $900 a year which seems like a lot but not at $100/session). The preschool was free through the county but the extra therapy recommended was going to put us in the poor house. In addition, summers were going to be really hard. How do we start school in March and then a few months later have no structure? Oh, now I am seeing why my mental breakdown happened. I thought the first year with Simone was our hardest. This may have been the worst year.

Okay so I'm having a mental breakdown. Seriously suffering from depression. My son was just diagnosed with Autism. My husband had a seizure (thankfully after much testing) nothing serious was discovered. It was attributed to lack of sleep and stress! My daughter was still a handful. I felt like I had little extended family support through this whole thing (oh definitely more on that later). I then find out that our medical insurance will cover 100%...yes 100% of up to 20 visits in a year for me to seek counseling for mental health. ARE YOU F#@!@** KIDDING ME! I'm going mental mostly because we can't provide services to our child because you won't pay but you'll pay for me to get help for something you are partially contributing to. Seriously!

But wait....there's more....

Monday, April 13, 2009

Now, where was I? Oh...first there were two then there was three and then four... So, when I was growing up I always wanted to be at home with my kids (not working outside of the home)...driving a yuppie car, volunteering at church...maybe take golf or tennis lessons. Well, for the first 3 years after Alex was diagnosed it wasn't all that fun. There wasn't (and still isn't) a yuppie car, not much volunteering and I still don't know how to play tennis or golf! Most of this is because we didn't have the $$ for extra things like tennis and golf or the yuppie car. We quickly found out that health insurance that we pay almost $400 a month for doesn't consider Autism to be a "medical" issue. They consider it "developmental". So, once we finally got him diagnosed and set on our way to find services/therapies or him...boy did we find out that we would spend a lot of $$ on that child!

Sorry, I need to back up. How did we come to the diagnosis? Alex was our first child so we didn't really have a benchmark to go by for developmental milestones. Although I still believe that if Simone was our first child people would have said that we couldn't compared him to her because she's a girl. In fact we heard that a lot..."he's a boy" Einstein didn't talk until 3".... Anyway, our neighbor is a special ed intervention specialist/special ed teacher and she was the one to first mention something to me. Now that was extremely hard for her and for me. I still don't know when she first noticed something was wrong with Alex but when she did finally say something to me she knew it would end our friendship or at least stress it greatly. And stress it it did!! It took us about a year but we finally got back to each other.

Okay, so she tells me she thinks there is something wrong with Alex. Oh no she didn't just say that there was something with wrong with my child!!! We did the "right" thing and went to our pediatrician and wouldn't you know he said he didn't think there was a problem and that she was just a nosey neighbor. Great...that's what we wanted to hear. Then, since I worked at the Y and Alex had been in their childcare when I worked teaching classes since he as a baby they knew him well. One of their workers was going to college for special ed and said that she thought Alex wasn't responding to them and that he may have a hearing problem. Okay, back to the doctor we went. He still didn't think anything was wrong with Alex - "he isn't in the corner rocking so he isn't Autistis but I'll go ahead and order some hearing/speech tests since this is now not a nosey family member/neighbor questioning but someone else questioning his development". Needless to say he was WAY OFF!!! We later found out he didn't believe in the "spectrum" of Autism. The worst is that he to this day is missing diagnosing children. We have friends that see him and their child was in 2nd grade before they got a diagnosis....same doctor!!!! He should have his license taken away!!!!!!!

As we headed to the testing, we still thought that he was okay but boy was that first hearing/speech test an eye opener. He didn't do too well in the hearing test (very distracted/meltdown) and when we met with the speech therapist, all his "autistic traits" showed. I remember being in this small room where there was a clock and he started watching the second hand go around the clock and saying the number when it reached it...1...2....3...4.... Then she pulled out bubbles and he was so amazed and his hands flapped like he was going to take off. This is where we heard for the first time (from a professional) that our son had "red flags" for Autism.

Our next step was a sedated hearing test to rule out hearing problems. Boy that was fun...NOT! I can't even write about that!

The next step was trying to get into an autism specialist (developmental pediatrician). More on that process next.....

Saturday, April 11, 2009

In the beginning....there were two of us. My husband and I met the summer after my freshman year in college and the summer after he finished college (yes I married me a sugar daddy). We met at his hometown hometown too but not my church. Anyway, he says I stalked him for a few weeks then he decided he would ask me out. I remember us spending a lot of time (hours) on the phone together while I was home that summer. I also remember that my dorm room phone for whatever reason was listed as a "local" number...I was in Cincinnati and he was in didn't charge us for long distance so our long phone conversations continued. I also remember for the first year we dated he gave me one rose for the first month, two roses or the second month and so on. So romatic he was!

We dated from 1993 through 1996, marrying on September 14, 1996. He continued to work in Springfield and I began working in Dayton for a "large" lawfirm after graduating. I worked full time until I had Alex in March, 2001. I had a hard time convincing my old fashioned firm to let me work part time and, even when they did agree, I didn't feel right going back there. I think I only ended up working part time for about a month after having Alex then made the decision to stay home full time.

Okay so this making the decision to stay home full time thing....I'm going to have to come back to that.

Our daughter, Simone was born in December, 2002 (yes that was less than 2 yers apart!!). Now, she was an AWFUL baby. Alex was such a wonderful baby for the 1st year of his life. Simone was so the opposite for her first year....cried all the time!!!

That first year with Simone and Alex being 2 was probably the hardest year of our marriage. It also lead to our famous "breast feeding pump argument". Korey and I don't argue much at all. However, the breast pump broke and, like any man, he thought he could fix the situation. Me with my raging hormones was so mad at him for trying to do anything. Wow....that was a bad time. Also the worst part was without good sleep for a full year it seemed...Korey ended up having a grand mal seizure at work. YES! This was a hard year for us!

Also, during this year we were starting to have people question Alex's development (between age 2 and 3). The story of how we came to the Autism diagnosis will continue....oh and also that deciding to stay home issue...

Friday, April 10, 2009

Here I am. What to write? I love to read and am totally in awe of those that write fiction. For me, I think writing non-fiction would be easier as my life has so much that I could write about and my creative gene just isn't there. The reason I am starting this blog is to journal my days as a mom of a child with Autism. Oh how somedays I hate that now I am known as a mother of Alex, who has Autism. Some days I am in awe of him and how he has progressed since learning of his diagnosis in 2004. Other days I am so frustrated I could cry all day. As I write this I have my typical child standing next to me pouting that she can't color easter eggs RIGHT NOW! The eggs that I just remembered to boil are cooling. What a bad mother that I don't have them ready RIGHT NOW! Wow is she good at pouting. Okay, I think this is a good start. I'll elaborate on my story in future blogs.