Friday, June 29, 2012

Opinions.....

 What a week here! Lj has been doing pretty good actually. He has his moments of rumination and small bouts of depression, but otherwise pretty good. He is swimming on his own, with the use of armies, but swimming all the same and we are so proud of him! This weekend we were to attend an overnite ASD camp, but after a few week of strong ruminations about the stay, I emailed them and declined. I feel bad, but I just couldn't put him through that any more, and he has been a lot happier knowing he didn't have to go.
 Earlier in the week I received a comment from someone on my personal page about my son. I posted that I was strong for not punching a PT for telling my son he was bad while he was having a meltdown and someone commented that "he is a brat, and his meltdowns are bullshit!" (sorry, for lack of a better word, I am quoting the comment).
 I went off. First of all, he is my son, and NO ONE talks about him like that except for myself and his father! Secondly, unless you know about Autism, and have seen a melt down first hand, how the hell do you know?!?! This person has witnessed my son in a store throwing a fit over not getting a toy. Yes, bad behavior, HOWEVER, this was the day my son fell into the street, screaming and crying over the noises, this person saw us right after that. Sooooo, when my post read that Liam had a meltdown that day, THATS what I was referring too.
 I know I have nothing to justify to this person. It just burns my ass to hear how someone who has NO idea what MY life is like, say things like that. It was also stated that I baby my son, shelter him, oh and I want attention. Well, I may baby him a bit, he is my only child. I would like to see someone have 7 miscarriages, and NOT baby the miracle they are finally given. As far as sheltering him, we live in a trailer park. Do you know how many kids he plays with on a daily basis? 3-4 on average, some days up to 7 or more. As far as me wanting attention, couldn't be further from the truth. My blog was started so I could vent without annoying the pants off my hubby. A Legion for Liam was started so I could educate others, share my story, and be a part of the best damn circle ever. The autism parents circle! (yeah we ROCK!!!)
 Though my guess is this person will never understand where they were wrong. And yes, I know everyone is entitled to their own opinions. After all, opinions are like assholes, everyone has got one. But like an asshole, they should be kept to yourself. Unless of course you are asked to share. By that, I meant the opinion :)
 The only other thing I have to say, is I hope Karma is not pissed by this person's actions. She has a way of sneaking up on someone and biting one in the ass when they least expect it. Karma is a b!tch!!!

I made this pic in honor of my week:


To liven this blog up, here is a video taken by a friend, of Liam doing his dance. I call it his happy dance :)
video


On that that note, here are my lovely Ryan's for the week. Enjoy!




Happy Friday to you all. May you all have a wonderful, drama free weekend! And make some time to do a Happy Dance ;)
<3<3<3<3


Friday, June 22, 2012

I'm flappy and you know it....

 Yesterday, LJ's buddy came over to play. For the first time, I saw my boy flap. His usual stims are spinning, chewing, and vocal. He was so excited his buddy came in to play, he was flapping all over the living room. It was cute, he looked like a lil duck or penguin.
 The older kids don't play with LJ much. He is a very in your face child. He is a non stop talker. He likes to dominate play and direct everyone on how he thinks they should play. He also has a great imagination, and it seems many kids lack this??? Now younger kids, he's great with them, and they love him. He is a bit emotionally immature for 6, but thats ok with me. I am in no hurry for my baby to grow up.
 So his buddy came in to play. It lasted about 30-45 minutes. LJ was a motormouth from Hell. He talked non stop, was in his friend's face, and just off the wall hyper. I wondered how long it would last. Not long, as usual. His friend said he would be back, but hubs and I knew better. Lj is catching on though. He only looked out the front door 3 times, before he said, "He's not coming back is he momma?" I told him no, and quickly diverted his attention with a jello sensory bin.
 Meltdown avoided, go momma!!!! I was very happy that "A" took the time to play with Lj as they have been buds since he was born (only 10 months apart) but "A" is maturing emotionally faster than my boy, so its hard for them to play together now. Being a special needs mom, we learn to find happiness in the little things. For its the little things, that make our days!

Digging in! This is LJ's favorite sensory bin!

Creepy crawlies!!!

LJ loved his blue green "hulk" hands :)

Well, its Friday! It wouldn't be Friday without some Special Need Ryan Gosling pics. Without further ado, here they are :) Enjoy!

Now, as we all know, the Special Needs Ryan Friday was Sunday's idea. She has been under the weather, as is her hubby, so she hasn't been able to take part. Please stop by her blog and show her some love, so she knows we are thinking of her! As for me, I made this Ryan, just for her!!!! <3

I love summer!!!! Swimming, cookouts, "schmaws" (smores in LJ speak) The best part, swimming tires my boy right out!!!

As always Ryan, you have the best ideas!!!!!!! 

Have a great weekend all. Stay cool and enjoy summer!
<3<3<3<3





Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Autistic Pride and Q & A

Yesterday (June 18th) was Autistic Pride Day. What a great day to celebrate! Too bad I was sick. I still explained to Liam what it was and he sported his Autism Hearts shirt in honor of the day. Good enough for now. Some days I have to take a day off from advocacy :) I did however make this pic for my facebook page:
For more info on Autistic Pride day, CLICK HERE

I am also very excited to report that after speaking with a wonderful woman named Margalit, and sharing with her some pics, and answering questions, she has posted my interview. Margalit is the admin of Autistic Globetrotting on Facebook. I had submitted a pic of Liam in a state park, and she emailed me and asked if I would like to participate in an interview. I was stoked!!!! Being of a low income, we have to be so careful of what we do for fun. Yet, we always make sure we have something to do. When Liam grows up, he may say, "we didn't have a lot of money when I was a kid..." but I do believe he will also say, "mom and dad always spent time with me, and we did fun things anyway." You don't have to be rich, or even well off to find fun things to do with your kiddos. Some of our best fun is free! To read more of my interview CLICK HERE


Friday, June 15, 2012

Spreading the love for Jackson

  So while I was going thru my news feed, a story caught my eye. The story of young Jackson St. Aubin. A young boy who needs us all to reach out for him. I found his story thanks to Living with Logan. (click here to read that story.)
  Here's the DL~Jackson is 9 and has cerebral palsy, epilepsy (ESES), autism and SPD and will be having major brain surgery on June 29th. I can't imagine what this family is going through. My heart goes out to his momma and daddy, and especially young Jackson.  For more info on Jackson such as updates or to leave the family a note of encouragement, please visit Jackson's Journey. The family is asking that we all send him pictures, cards, banners, poster,s words of encouragement, that the family can use to decorate his room when he is out of ICU. So get with your kiddos, make him something nice and then send it here:

                              Cards/care packages/ letters:
Special Happens / St. Aubin Family
 9609 S. University Blvd., #630303
 Littleton, CO 80163

Jackson LOVES trains. He likes dinosaurs and cop cars (from the 60's and 70's) His fave colors are blue and rainbow :)

  To follow Jackson's Journey on facebook, click here. 
There are also other ways you can help the family, even if you don't live in their area. To the right of their blog, there is an area where you can click to help. You can donate, send a care package, and so on. (If you are interested in doing this, I have a list of his siblings and parents likes, so feel free to contact me at A Legion for Liam
  Another momma is also reaching out to help the family, by selling her beautiful jars. She is calling it, "Jars for Gina." To visit her page, click here.
  Bottom line, this is a 9 year old boy who could use some extra prayers, love and support. So please, open you heart and reach out to this family in need.



                                                                      <3<3<3<3

The Good, The Bad, and Uglier Than Me....

  Sheesh! Where to start! The last week has been full of ups and downs. I guess I will start at the beginning, since thats the most logical place to begin....
Our neighbors and friends lost their lives tragically in a car accident  a few days ago. They would be celebrating their 50th anniversary in Sept, but God called them home to celebrate with him. I know blessings come in disguise, and please don't think ill of me, but the husband was just diagnosed with brain cancer, and was told he may not survive past 2 more weeks. My comfort is knowing they are still together. Yesterday was their viewing, it was very hard. The Mr. had his candies and his tea bag with him. Lj gave him a stuffed kitty since the Mr. gave LJ a kitty for his birthday. He also made them both a "love picture." They will be laid to rest with them. LJ bought the Mrs. a beautiful pink rose too, and gave the Mr. some candy. He loved when LJ would take him candy!  Hubs took it rather hard. The Mr. had become like a grandfather to hubs. Boy was he a pisser! We would be walking by and he would call out, "hey! Uglier than me!!!!!" To which hubs would respond, "hey to you uglier than me!" The Mr. always said, "don't you talk about my wife like that!" It was their thing.... LJ was a trooper thru it all. He was commenting on the Mr.'s nice sweater, and was so happy to see he had his candy with him. The Mrs. was laid to rest with her pack of smokes, and her bowling pin. Lj also thought that was awesome. Funny how well a 6 year old can handle death, compared to his two blubbering parents....They will be missed....Rest in Peace Mr. and Mrs. <3

In Loving Memory...

Here is what LJ wanted to give his friends to say goodbye. The family was gracious and kind in letting LJ put this  with their parents.


  Ok, enough tears on the computer, moving on....The good of our week started with getting LJ a pair of noise reduction ear muffs at Kmart. I took him grocery shopping with them, and he was WONDERFUL!!!!!! He has NEVER behaved that well in the store! HALLELUJAH!!! The next test was town. They worked great!!!! He crossed the street with only minimal fear the first time. On our way back across, he did great! No crying, no screaming, no covering his ears, and no throwing himself down in the street! Score one for momma!!!!!
  More good news this week. I received a letter from the Department of Education, Office of Civil Rights. Seems they WILL be pursuing the school for NOT testing Liam appropriately due to his diagnosis. Even if the school now backs down, and does do the testing, its still a score for us. LJ deserves the proper testing, and at least they know, this momma will NOT back down when it comes to the rights of her baby. Score 2 for momma :)
  We also got a call the LJ was chosen as a match to participate in the Genetic/Social Study at CAR in Philly.  I finished the interview and all the questionnaires, and we are awaiting a call back form a clinician. Hubs and I think its great that we can possibly help others by taking part in this study. Also, we get all the info and data they collect, which could be beneficial in our war with the school. The only invasive part will be LJ has to donate a tsp of blood. At first he was NOT happy. Then they told him he will receive a Toys R Us gift card, and he was all in!!
  And last but not least.....After 6 years of fighting with the courts and 2 different lawyers. After 6 years of different doctors and surgeons. After one reconstructive neck surgery, and the latest reconstructive spine surgery, we FINALLY have DISABLED in writing!!!! After being told by all these Dr's that he can't work, being given restrictions, and then going to court and being told he can work in a sewing factory (good luck finding one of those in our area). Well, hubs went for another recheck yesterday. He was told he is doing great despite how invasive the surgery was. He was also told, he CAN NOT work. Not only told, but they filled out the form from his caseworker. Marked him as DISABLED and eligible for SSI/SSD. Please keep us in your prayers as we forward all of this onto the courts. It has been a LONG 6 years, and dammit, we deserve this break!!!!
  Today is also Ryan Friday!!! Sunday took a well deserved break this week :) I still made a few because Ryan has become an integral part of my week. Hey, we all need a vice :D So here they are:

nothing wrong with that :)

never thought I'd utter these words, but BACK OFF MISTER!!!

We are taking LJ and his cousin to the sensory friendly version of Madagascar 3 tomorrow~Circus Afro, Circus Afro, Polka Dot, Polka Dot, AFRO!!!!! I can't wait!!! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!
<3<3<3<3



Friday, June 8, 2012

Just my humble opinion....

So, yesterday as I was skimming my news feed, I came across this comment: ''I was just recently informed my son may have asperger's. I don't see him being autistic because he's very intelligent & functions properly for the most part aside from his behavioral & anger issues.. I'm so confused. What are the symptoms that stand out the most?''
My jaw dropped! I had to re-read it a few times to make sure my eyes were not deceiving me. I posted it on my page, and I think some may have felt I was a bit harsh about.
First of all, it made me angry because the way this was stated is like saying autistics are not intelligent. Thats a slam on my son, and many other wonderfully intelligent kiddos! When Liam was first diagnosed, I didn't know much about autism, but I sure as heck didn't think the doctor was wrong because he was smart! This is why I started my Legion page. There is not enough Awareness and Autism Education out there, if people still think this way! 
Now, there was a comment made that this momma is seeking more info. I totally get that. I used facebook to reach out to other parents and educate myself as well, BUT I didn't start by saying, "I don't see him being autistic because he's very intelligent & functions properly..." Thats like reaching out to someone, and slapping them in the face. This is JMHO, and I know not everyone will agree with me. I am ok with that. I just have no tolerance for ignorance, and in my opinion, to think your child can't be autistic because he/she is "smart" is just ignorance.
Now that I got that all off my chest, and my panties unbunched :) Let me move on to my Ryan's :D


*Gush* Ryan always has such great ideas :D

Like I said, great ideas! And he can read my mind!!!

What a guy!!

Woo hoo! Good thing, bc if I had to take him, I could not be held responsible for what I may do to that freaky clown!

My boxing gloves are ready Ryan :D

As always, don't forget to head over to Sunday's blog Adventures in Extreme Parenthood and check out her Ryan's and the other link ups for Ryan Friday.
Make it a great weekend all. 
<3<3<3<3




Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Eval, Sensory Overload and The Legion

Well, yesterday was Liam's 6 month Eval. Guess what????? He STILL has autism!!! Can you believe that Jenny McCarthy???? The diet change, the trial meds, the herbal meds, the therapy, and he's not CURED. WTH!!!!! (sorry, thats my slam against Miss perdy playboy bunny) All kidding aside, the eval went well. Liam spun in the chair most of the time, SHOCKER!!!! Really the only change we have seen is he is more social, as long as its small groups or one on one, and less meltdowns. He still has them, but I am not the wounded soldier I once was, from battling my son.
 After his eval, we headed back home with a few stops to make. In town we had to drop off some papers, and then I needed to stop at the craft store. They are pretty close, and since it was nice out, I decided he and I would walk. (Trust me, I can use the exercise :D) So we start walking down the side walk. Liam is pulling away from me, telling me to stop. I have to tighten my grip because he has been known to run into traffic. (of course I didn't have his restraint with me, wth was I thinking????) We get to the cross walk and he begins to fight me. "Please momma, don't make me go." He had no choice, traffic was stopped, waiting for us to move our keisters outta the way! He got behind me, latched on, and we started to make our way across the street. About 2/3 of the way there, he lets go. I panic and turn. Down he goes, hands over his ears, screaming and crying. I bend to scoop him up. Baring my butt crack for half of the town to see, I get him in my arms and rush him to the side walk. I set him down, wrap my arms around him and SQUEEZE!!!!! It all happened in slow motion, and I was so unaware of anything but the two of us. I kneeled there, face burried in his chest and sobbed. Thankful no one jumped the gun and hit us, thankful he was okay, and thankful he didn't take off. I dried my eyes, and told him he scared momma, and can't do that. His reply, "it hurt so bad momma, I had too!" Ugh!!! I felt like crap. He has small DJ head phones for things like this, but he refuses to wear them. They fall off his head, and are more of a hinder than a help. He hates the ear bud headphones, so he won't use them. Guess hubs and I need to buy him a different pair of DJ style because I do NOT want this to happen again.
Now that I vented, want to hear some good news??? I am having my first Give Away. The 500th person to LIKE A Legion for Liam will win a hand made Autism Awareness Paracord key chain. As well as the person who sent them my way. How to win???? SHARE my page, tell your family and friends to give me a LIKE, and TELL ME YOU SENT THEM. You could be the lucky winner!!!!! (I am sorry, but this contest is only open to individuals because Facebook does NOT count other page Likes, so I have no way of knowing if a group is LIKE number 500) So SHARE, SHARE, SHARE, and LIKE, LIKE, LIKE, and you could be the lucky winner.
                                            <3<3<3<3


Monday, June 4, 2012

Look Momma! No training Wheels!!!!

Yesterday was a very big day for us!!! LJ rode his bike with no training wheels, ALL by himself. Last year by the end of summer, I took his trainers off, and he was able to ride it, but he would freak out and dump his bike. Thank God we were in the grass!  The other day, he was on his razor scooter, coasting downhill like a big boy! So yesterday hubs says, "Liam, we're gonna take the trainers off your bike, if you can ride a scooter like a big boy, then you can ride a bike like one." Liam was adamant this was not happening. Momma steps in. With a promise of taking him for ice cream today, off the training wheels came. Ahh, the power of positive incentive :) The first 2 times, I held his bike, let go and ran next to him. I was beaming with pride as he rode like a big boy. Then, out of nowhere, he takes off on it, all by himself. No push start from momma, no dumping his bike. He did this quite a few times last nite, each time going a little further. I am now the proud momma of a BIG BOY <3
video

I don't know what happened to the pics I took???? Never the less, here is a video. You will hear my crazy hubs tell Liam to stand up, and its all over from there. My boy can't do two things at once. Why hubs would say that is beyond me. GAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! What was he thinking???
Anyway, we still couldn't be more proud of him and all he has accomplished. He has to work a bit harder than some, I guess thats why even the little things are huge in our eyes <3<3<3<3

Friday, June 1, 2012

Autism Screams at Dollar General!

It sure does, I found that out yesterday! Let me back track a bit before I get to my point.
In April, we stopped at DG and Liam started yelling. "Momma, momma, I see autism puzzles!!!" He was right. There in the window was a sign with the Autism Speaks logo on it. They were taking donations for them. Of course, they didn't ask me if I wanted to donate. I had to ask them, and then the cashier had no idea what I was talking about. Pfffttt, I was irritated. Anyway, Liam donated 2$ of his own money, he insisted. He is becoming such a wonderful lil humanitarian and advocate :)
Yesterday after his SSP, I had to make a quick pit stop at DG. Of course, he wanted to come with me. He was on a mission for chocolate chip pop tarts. Once inside, half the food aisles were packed from various vendors. Needless to say, we couldn't find pop tarts. He was NOT happy. I got what we needed and took the closest aisle to the register. WHAT WAS I THINKING??????? It was the freakin' toy aisle. Liam spied some fake money, and the downward spiral began.
"Momma!!!! I want this money." "No Liam." "But momma!!! You stole mine and I want more." "Liam, the last time I bought that crap for you, it was ALL over the living room. I got tired of picking it up and made a game out of it." This conversation would have went on and on, but we had to go. I started to walk away.
Autism started screaming!!!!!! Down on the floor Liam went. Tears, fists, and feet were flying! All over some damn fake money!!!!!
I dodged his limbs and got him to his feet. Sticking to my guns, we got to the register, and of course had to wait. The guy in front of me was chuckling. Liam was still screaming and crying. The cashier looked at me with such compassion and smiled. She said to the guy, "oh I know how that feels, I have 2 children." Whether they have ASD or not, at least she was caring, and not upset by the whirlwind of a child standing before her. He still had the damn money clenched in his sweaty little hands. I managed to pry it free, and she graciously took it from me so I could get the hell out of there!
Once outside, Liam started to vomit in the parking lot. Oh how I love puke~NOT!!!!!! I can do poop, but puke, not so much!!!! After the gagging, I calmly tell Liam we have to leave, please get in the car. Yeah right, like that was gonna happen. More shrieking, tears, stomping. I had to pick him up, get him in his booster seat, and get his seat belt on. I did it with so much finesse, I amazed myself. Autism surely is making this momma stronger and more graceful :D (I joke because that is how I deal with life)
He continued to scream and repeat "money" about 200 times before he finally calmed down. Thank God his special blanky "stripey" was in the car. He did what he often does, and covered his head and was able to calm down.
So yesterday, Autism not only "spoke" at Dollar General. It kicked, shrieked, punched and cried. Liam gave the customers, the cashier, the pepsi guy, the coca cola guy, and the tater chip dude a quick lesson on Autism and meltdowns. See, he advocates even when he doesn't realize he is doing so.......Okay not really, but thats how I am choosing to see it. :D

Liam after the "fun" at DG...


I guess you mostly came here to see my Ryan's. Okay, I will give them up now. I had a hard time with these last nite, my brain was mush after the days events.......

Woo hoo! Someone other than a stranger is staring at me :)

He sure does. Can't turn your back on the lil booger for a sec!!!

Oh Ryan, you read my mind!!!!!!

Don't forget to head over to Adventures in Extreme Parenthood to check out Sunday's blog and the other Ryan link ups today!!! 

Have a great weekend!! 
<3<3<3<3