Tuesday, October 28, 2008

At the moment...

Hi there. Remember me?
I'm back- at least for the moment.
Things with Jaysen seem to be status quo- which is erratic at best lately.

We have an appointment with his psychiatrist today though. she'll probably want to tweak his meds, which I have been opposed to in the past, but maybe that's not such a bad thing at the moment. I've been apprehensive about it in the past because with an increase in meds, comes an increase in tics. Although the tics are "harmless" in and of themselves, they bother Jaysen, and attract attention. People either think he's doing them on purpose, or think he's weird. Weirder than usual. Which causes his anxiety to raise, and well... let's just say it's just not on our top ten list of party games.

I still haven't been able to figure out what's going on with him. I know one issue he has is with his Nintendo DS. Blasted thing. The boy loves to play his DS, but because he's a perfectionist (when he hyperfocuses), when something doesn't go according to his plan in a game, he loses it. His frustration hits so fast and so furiously, that he's taken to self harming, and that's difficult for any parent to watch. It's easier for me to explain that he needs that proprioceptive feedback to help him regulate, but honestly, I'm not sure that's it. I had similar experiences as a kid myself. He needs help replacing those negative behaviors with more appropriate ones, and needs a lot of help learning how to regulate, but he's just not receptive to anything we've tried.

He's also been mean. Just plain 'ol mean. You can't talk to him without him screaming in your face, calling names and slamming things around. "Get me this" "You're stoopid!" "I SAID..." "Get away from me now!" are just a few of the gems that are repeated at liberty. He's also taken to breaking things. Mostly his things, but then he gets upset later when they're broken.

In school, they can't get him to focus on anything. As soon as they present anything academic to him, no matter how "fun" it is, he's Houdini-ing out of it. If he's in Gen.Ed and it's time to do a task, he says "I'm outta here" and walks down to the Resource Room. In the Resource Room, they present him with the same task (to show him he can't just get out of it by leaving the room), and he says "I'm going back to class", and walks back to his room. Back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. The most enticing reward is no match for The Will of my child. Riiiiiing! Oh? The school bell? School's over for the day and all he did was walk the halls? Again? Fantabulous.

Specials are no better. He liked P.E. last year (awesome teacher), hates it this year. Won't even go in the gym. Always hated music- understandable, and a lot of his classmates don't like it either. Art? If he goes in the room at all, he'll only stay long enough to do his project, then bolt.

The Team has been wonderful- they're in constant contact with me, and always ask my input. So much so, I am officially out. of. ideas. Totally. The creativity well is dry. Behavior plans haven't worked for him because it's so difficult to find a motivator. And, that baited hook is only good for one catch. What was motivating yesterday is not motivating today. That goes for home as well as school. Having an "on deck" motivator is one answer, however, there are so few things that Jaysen finds enticing enough to actually cooperate, that it's practically impossible to remain one step ahead.

He says things are "hard" or "boring", but he's using those words to simply say "I don't want to". Pairing him with a buddy hasn't helped- he's in a program called LINKS (non-disabled peer volunteers are buddied up with students for support in any area they need). Jaysen's Link program is to help foster relationships (remember, he's the new kid in school too), so every day Jaysen has a different Link that will approach him at recess, and ask him if he will play with them. Sometimes it's yes, sometimes it's no. The Link will always ask though. It's a really cool program.

My point is, this school is doing their job in trying to ensure that Jaysen will have a positive experience at school. I was able to go on a field trip last week (that's awesome itself since this was the first time Jaysen has "allowed" me to be at a school function). Since I was attending the field trip, they assigned his para to another child. The para approached me and said she was kinda bummed they didn't leave her with Jaysen because she really was hoping to take the day and observe how I interacted with him. I thought that was really cool. Here is a lady who gets mollywhopped by my son on a daily basis- and she hasn't given up on him.

The past two days have been on the better side. I'm hoping some of you are right and this is just a rough patch we're going through.

Thank you all for the support-
My readers RAWK.

Thursday, October 23, 2008


Sorry I haven't been around much lately- I am still popping in on you all when I am able, I just can't seem to be able to collect my thoughts enough to post, or the time to be able to do it.

I feel like things are exploding again.

I am in overdrive at work.
I am in overdrive at home.

Jaysen is not doing well,
which means neither am I.

I promise I will post details when I am able.

*Update* To clarify, I have not reached 'point break'. Jaysen has been having hella difficulty with it seems like everything lately. He's back to having some significant behavior issues, problems at school, defiance, self abuse, etc. Nobody seems to be able to assist me in finding out what the heck is going on- but everybody seems to have answers. He needs ABA, he needs more meds, he needs a good ass beating, he needs more therapy...it freakin does not end.

There are some legit thoughts in there (particularly exploring the ass beating?), but then people want to know when you followed up on their suggestion. Oh? You haven't yet? But this is imporrrrrrtant! Money is not an issue when it comes to loving your child. Don't you want to help him? When you care enough about your child, you'll do it. You could take FMLA leave. Erp?

So, I'm trying to concentrate on Jaysen's behavior lately, and trying to add, tweak, and enforce some "new rules" and such. It's not going over very well, but they're still new.

Advice appreciated from moms of volatile kids!

Saturday, October 18, 2008


So, you're telling me that you did not lick the cake before we did Happy Birthday?

Because really? I just don't know.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

To my son,

Dear Jaysen,

Remember when you said that you would sleep in your own bed, by yourself, when you were seven?
Remember when you said that when you turn seven, you would wipe your own butt?

Happy 7th Birthday Sweetheart!

I am so proud of you, and love you so very much. You have brought so much joy to my life, and I wish you much health and happiness. You truly are my ray of sunshine. I love you with all my heart. Happy, happy birthday- and yes, you still have to go to school.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Say what?

Y'know the phrase "I'm a (insert adjective here) person stuck in a (insert opposite adjective here)'s body"?
Well, I realize how ridiculous this may sound, but I think my son may be an Aspie stuck in an Autie's body. Or however I should say that so I'm PC. Okay- stop laughing, I'm only half joking. My son is Autistic. Has Autism. Whatever. He has a language delay, but there are times when his chatter will make your head spin.

Jaysen has the desire to have the lengthy focused discussions characteristic to Aspergers, minus the ability to be so loquacious in doing so.
And when he gets geared up, he often sounds like this:

So...mommy. I was thinking.
What were you thinking, sweetie?
I was thinking... I gonna moooove to America.
You're in America.
No, I gonna move to America far away inna trees and sand.
(America is apparently an island?)
Do you mean Australia?
Australia. I go there and soupcase and veeo and DVD and plaaaaaay...(he usually trails off here)
..and then I be there, and sand and trees and veeo, and...

Get the idea?
It gets even more interesting when he talks to himself (sans moderation):

Hey Jaysen-
Yes, Jaysen?
What are you do there?
Oh nuffing. I just here to go to see.
Okay! Let's go!
Okay! What you do now?
Oh... couch, and horses, and juice, and pillows.
Hey- do you like Baby Einstein?
Yes- I like Baby Van Gogh. C'mon, let's see.
Look! Over there!
Beethoven?!? Beethoven! What are you doing with the kraz...nickerflay?
I don know there!
Well...beideroud niff carts.
In pants?!?
Yes! In pants!
Oh no!

And the beat goes on.
Once he gets ahead of his internal "script", any word is fair game- even made up ones.
He'll talk to me, he'll talk to himself, he'll talk to his tapes, he'll talk to invisible friends (not imaginary because they're real people, just not present at the time), it just doesn't matter.
He will talk and talk and talk, and the more he talks, the less sense he makes.

And if he's talking to you? You better have some kind of answer for him if he asks you a question- even if the answer is "floor wax".

Friday, October 3, 2008

I feel a healin' coming on.

I have tried so hard to suppress what I am about to post, but it's just not working.

*Disclaimer- I truly mean no offense to anyone here. If you are easily offended by religious parody, please stop reading not and come back another day.*

Barbara at TherExtras is hosting a blog carnival on October 6th- the topic is Healing. I cannot resist. I have a game that I play with my kids.

We call it Faith Healer.

How do you play?
I'm so glad you asked, fellow heathen. Checkitout.

First- position child of choice standing on bed. If child is tall enough, they may stand in front of bed or couch.

Raise your hand high in the air and announce child's affliction. Use your best Television Evangelist voice.
Example: If yooou have a dirty face... and are suffering from did-not-use-my-napkin-at-dinner-tonight... and are covered in ketchupy crumbity eeeee-vile... come forth to me now.

Deliver your message.
Example: My son. I can seeeee that you are afflicted. I can seeee that you have... the dirty face. Can I get a witness?

Arch back and raise hand into air, hooting and hollering a bit.

You: Okay child, now repeat after me (bonus if child has echolalic tendencies)
Don't forget to raise your arm, shimmy hand around and undulate (yes, undulate) into the air with each exclamation.

You: Hallelujah!
Child: Halla-loola!

You: I said Hallelujah!
Child: Halla-yoola!

You: Glory Be!
Child: Glory Be!

You: Mekka-lekka-hi-mekka-heiney-ho!
Child: Mekka-lucky-mucky-mo!

You: Hal-le-luuuu-jah!
Child: Ha-lay-looooooooola!

You: Can I get a what-what?!
Child: Can I what!

You: I feel it child! I feel...(quietly) a healin'.

Blasphemous child is laughing hysterically by now.
Continue shaking your hand, bringing it closer to your victim, er child.

You: By the Holy waters of the Holiest Bathtub... and all that is soapy and good... walk with me in the beauty of all that is clean. I condemn that dirty face-ed-ness of eeeee-vile, and you...will be...(dramatic pause)...HEALED!

Smack said child in forehead and send them backward onto the bed.
Be prepared to do this repeatedly.

I started this as a joke when Jaysen was 2 years old (and often afflicted with "stinky-diaper-pants). He still loves to play it to this day. Nowadays, i just have to raise my hand and give him that "I feel a healin' " look, and he runs and jumps on my bed laughing. I also ask him what his affliction is since he's a big boy now and can think of what he needs cleansing of. usually it's "I stink" or "My unnerwear is tight" or something like that.

I do have to caution you though, when the kids try to heal you. Especially the younger ones- they'll often try to heal you with things like firetrucks and sippy cups.

I have tried this game with adults too, but they just don't get into it like the kids. Go figure.

And just to clear up any misconceptions-
this isn't the only thing I'm probably going to hell for.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Two days.

That's about how long Jaysen was able to pull off this ohmigod-my-leg-is-broken-and-I'm-gonna-gimp-around-if-you-make-me-go-to-school charade. I have to admit- the boy is good. He's tried to pull off less than crafty attempts before, but this time, he stepped it up to a whole different level.

For over two days, he gimped around, at home and at school- sometimes with his leg bent, sometimes with it stiff as a board. He never broke character, even when he thought he was alone. He didn't break character when enticed with super-fun things like riding on the zip line. He sat out for recess. He has refused baths due to the pain level. He screamed and cried real tears anytime anyone touched it.

I think it actually got to the point where he believed he really couldn't move his leg, and that it was hurt. I told him that if his leg still hurt that much, he would have to take some medicine. He clamped a hand over his mouth and started bawling how his leg was better. It was fine, he could move it, and look! He did these jumping around moves and things to show me he was once again mobile- with his leg still stiff. But he really looked like he was trying!

Fast forward to last night.

"Baaaaath time!"
Kids magically show up in doorway of bathroom- I swear, I don't know how they do this.

"Okay, you guys are going to have to take a bath together tonight."
I undress both kids and Jaysen gets into the tub.

Wait for it, Mom...

I scoop up Rylan the Red One, who likes nothing better than to run around nekkid, and plop his chubbiness into the tub.

"Jaysen, Rylan's scared of the faucet. Could you switch places with him?"
Jaysen obliges.

Waaaait for it...

The kids play around for a bit- hair washing and body scrubbing ensue, and I enlist Jaysen to assist me in the washing of the fidgety Red One. Again he obliges.

Waaaaait for it...not just yet...

I get Rylan out of the tub and start to drain the water. When the water's almost gone, Jaysen pulls up the stopper again and launches himself from one end of the tub to the other (he loves to do this despite the several times he's hit a body part on the soap holder).

Now!!! Do it now! Go in for the kill!

"Oh wow, Jaysen! I am SO glad your leg is better!" (this has to be done as nonchalantly as possible, as over-enthusiasm is unacceptable)

"Yeah! (sort of shocked himself) My leg is all better!" Jaysen steps out of tub.

Okay- now reinforce it!

"Would you like a treat for your leg being all better?"

"Yes! Can I have a gumball?"