Monday, May 23, 2011

The Look

Out in public we have all gotten it. You know the look I'm talking about. The look from other people with and without kids who think we should just disapline our child better. The ones that wonder why we don't do more to make them be quiet at the grocery store or give us odd looks when they are running around in thier own special way.

Yesterday Butters got to try a TOP Soccer program and during practice I got to talking to one of the other parents and she said they had thier son in The Little Gym until the looks and comments from other parents got to be too much and they pulled him.

Now I honestly never thought twice about the looks I get at the gym until now. I've always gotten more odd looks from the other kids when I come in and re-direct him to his correct group. I probably have gotten looks and whispers from the other parents, but I can't say I care. Most of them talk to one another quite a bit while I stay to myself with my decaf Starbucks drink and my book. I stay out of his sight as much as possible because if he does see me he wants to show off.

So the question I have for people reading this. Have you ever dealt with other parents acting like you and your child were not welcome at a neruotypical or more of a mainstream event for other kids? How did you handle it?

Sunday, May 22, 2011

progression/ regression

Since our move across the country from AL to WA we have seen many things out of Butters. In some ways he has progressed with amazing pace, and then there is the unexplained regression.

One thing that I have learned lately from someone I follow on twitter is to not judge a child on what he has done in the past bad or good, but for what he is today.

Lately I have come to understand this very well. Since starting preschool I have seen many ups and downs. Lately he has all of a sudden become very verbal. He goes up to his teachers at The Little Gym and calls them by name. He tells me on the way to the gym who he is going to see. At home he even calls myself, W and Peanut (as well as the dog and cat) by their names. He's coming home from school singing songs and even showing us art work he has made. It has been amazing to say the least.

The problem is that just a week and a half ago he was socially doing better. He was staying with the group in the gym, listening and following instructions better. This week though he was aloof most of the time but very intent at learning everyone's name. At the gym I saw him away from the group but watching everyone and what they were doing. His main interaction was to run up to his favorite teacher was to run up to her, say her name then run away.

So my question to everyone is how do you deal with the progression/ regression cycle? Any tips or tricks on how to get back lost skills other than just being patient?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Making sense of the puzzle

I just read this article in the Charlotte Oberserver and it brought me to tears. What I read is exactly what happened to us in a way, but about a year and a half earlier. I felt the same way, angry, sad and just frustrated that I hadn't noticed the signs earlier!

If you have a child with Asperger's or on the autism spectrum at all please give it a read.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Denial, I has it

About a week ago we sent Butters to a parent's survival night. I dropped him off and one of his favorite teachers was there. He went right to him and started playing with shakers in the gym. When I returned to get him Jesse (favorite teacher) told me that he was rambunctious and ran circles between the gym and lobby but other than that said nothing else. I got a call Monday from the other teacher that was there (also a program director) who told me that when her husband showed up to get her kids he ran out of the door. The entire staff now knows what he did and they are all very worried. Her tone was also of that he really wasn't wanted there anymore. I know she probably didn't mean it but everything that she was saying just made it sound like she and the staff don't want him there. She said he could still do them if I stayed but then what is the point. She also then informed me that she and many others had never worked with an autistic child like him.

Since this happened I've talked to the owner of the gym but I've had some hard decisons to make regarding him staying in the gym. He is signed up for summer camps but after this incident I start wondering if its even the right thing.

I say all of this because on Saturday we were at the Seattle Children's Museum for their early open for autism. I got just a couple of minutes to speak with the intake coordinator for the University of Washington Autism Center. She gave me some more resources to go through and asked what we were doing. I told her and she suggested ABA therapy through UW. She also said she would be happy to send me more information regarding summer programs.

Ever since this meeting I've had a lot on my mind. We are close (45min) away from a great resource but yet we haven't really pursued it.

I finally came to the conclusion that a part of me is still in denial about what is really going on with him. If we aren't pursuing private and intensive autism therapy I just can ignore things. Yes he is in a special education classroom but everything he does just seems normal.

I guess the thing is that we don't baby him or treat him any different than his sister. Maybe the denial all comes from feeling in many ways that he is a normal 4 year old.

I'm honestly not sure what is going on. I did decide one thing this weekend. I am pulling him from summer camp at the gym. I just don't feel like its the best thing for him. I think that if he gets more intensive autism therapy through UW it will help a lot more than just going to the gym and not really being forced to work on things.

My question for anyone who reads this is simple.Did you go through a stage like this? How did you come to terms with what was going on and really begin to move forward?

Monday, May 2, 2011

My name is Butters

My name is Butters. You label me as aloof

  Label me as a flight risk

Label me as in my own world.

But the truth of it is you don't know me by first glance. I'm so smart and love my dog cat and even my sister.  I love playing  and watching hockey at home. I'm different yes, but weird no. I'm just like you but with one small difference. I see the world differently. Most people think I see the world in numbers since its my favorite thing and I am already starting to master concepts at a second grade level at 4 years old. My mom and dad take care in public to not expose me to too many new things at one time. Many times you might see me in a stroller in very crowded places. I get really scared around a lot of people I don't know and tend to try and run to a quiet place.

You see I just want to be like you in so many ways but I need you to understand. Please don't get upset when I don't talk to you or make eye contact. Its not you, its just me. I have Asperger's and I just would like to be understood and accepted.