Thursday, December 29, 2011
The title of this post came from my aspie tonite. Boy is he spot on. Since his diagnosis in October our life has changed drastically, actually for better not worse. At the time of his diagnosis, aspie was out of control. Horrible temper tantrums and meltdowns occurring a few times daily left us all exhausted, mentally and physically. After 4 days in kindergarten, aspie shut down. No eating, vomitting, constant crying and begging to stay home. We were at a loss. Then we met with the psychologist. Aspie was diagnosed with AS, ADHD, OCD, ODD and SID. We were shocked, grief stricken and scared. First I thought, what did we/he do to deserve this? Now what? How can I help him? What next? My mind was bombarded with questions, my heart bombared with emotions. However, now, just a few months later, there is light at the end of our tunnel. I came to realize Aspie was meant to be our son, and we his parents, his advocates. After much research online and speaking with his doctor, we removed Gluten from his diet. What a change! We went from 2-3 meltdowns/tantrums a day, to 1 or 2 a week! The intensity has even decreased. If he cheats and eats something with Gluten however, we pay for it shortly after. His whole demeanor changes. Thanx to his TSS and her great ideas, I have created and implemented behavioral and activity charts, that aspie loves and makes sure I remember to update. He is still being home schooled. He eventually told us school was "too loud, and too stinky." We hope to integrate him back into school next year. He needs occupational therapy that the school will provide when he is enrolled. We also think he will benefit from being with other kids on a daily basis. My fear is another shut down, him being bullied, or him being bored and acting out. I guess we will cross that bridge when we get there. For now I am happy with the progress he has made so far, look forward to the future progress and will deal with set backs when they come. Until then, we take it day by day, mood by mood,and we're enjoying our "whole new world with Aspergers" and the wonderful little man we call "LJ."
I have read a lot of articles and opinions regarding people with AS lately. I think the one thing I am struggling to believe the most is the lack of empathy that is associated with someone with Aspergers. The definition of Empathy is, "the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another without having these things fully communicated to the individual." I struggle with this "assumption" because though my aspie doesn't always pick up on, or understand why someone is angry or sad, he does however express extreme emotion over a sad movie or a song. So much so that if he feels a movie is becoming too sad (either in dialogue or in the background music they use to create the mood) he will insist, (and sometimes angrily I might add) that his father and I turn the movie off immediately. Same goes for music. If a slower song comes on, it seems to spark sadness in him, and he will demand the song be changed. He has told his father numerous times, "I don't like your country music crap, because it is too sad for me." I also see empathy in him at times in public. If LJ happens to see an elderly person having a hard time or struggling to do something he will say, "mommy, look at so and so, they are making me sad." So, I am left wondering, how can this child, who I am told can not express sympathy or empathy, who can't dinstinguish body language or facial expressions, who can't understand why one would be mad at him for dominating play, or being bossy. How then, can he empathize with perfect strangers, or be so affected by a movie or music? How can they generalize something so big and spread out as AS, and how can they say our children feel nothing?
I have read many things lately relating to AS and the signs and symptoms one with this disorder will have. I think the one I struggle with the mot is Empathy. The definition of empathy is, "the action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feeli
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
So last nite before bed, our aspie comes to us and says, "mommy, I am having trouble walking." When asked what he was talking about he replied, "when I walk, I have to back up and do it again, and tell my brain to erase my footsteps." I was shocked! My aspie is 5 and a half, and is like talking to a grown man, but I was more shocked because he seems to be becoming more self aware of his "issues." Hubby and I try not to talk about his obsessions and compulsions in front of him because he is so bright, and we don't want him to pick up on what we say and then do them for attention. (Aspie loves attention!) I was also bothered because it wasn't something I had picked up, and I always notice aspie's quirks, I'm his momma, its my job. As I said before my aspie is a busy body, and seems to be in perpetual motion, which may be why we didn't notice. The fact remains, HE noticed, and it breaks my heart that he has to "tell his brain to erase" anything. The fact that he knows it's his brain telling him to retrace his steps astonishes me and makes my heart wrench. I have been saying I hate not knowing what goes on in his brain, but maybe now, as I am beginning to realize, I hate KNOWING what is going on in his brain. His father and I are against medicating him for any of his "quirks" so I guess this means more research for mommy in ways to help him nip the obsessions and compulsions in the bud, if that is at all possible. I hate feeling like I can't help my baby, its one of the worst feelings in the world!
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Today my aspie got up at 630 am. Usually an early riser, this is still quite early for him. It seems that since his eyes have opened,so too has his mouth. Normally quite talkative, today has been over the top! I feel horrible because I know I should be happy my aspie talks, but as he is high functioning so too is his talking! I feel my brain has no time to absorb what it is he keeps telling me. Its not only the amount of talking, its the repetition of his talking. Having OCD as well, I have come to notice my aspie feels the need to repeat things 3 times. So not only is it non stop talking, but its non stop repetition! Am I horrible for wanting it to be bed time already?