Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Good days...

We all have good days, with a SPD child, it makes you feel like the best mom in the world... Days where we wonder what was the special ingredient to make that day good.

Yesterday was a good day for us all. Aleq had no events where he lost his temper.
Ashlie joined in to have fun with us.

It was a perfect day for Aleq to go out and explore which helps him so much. The yard is his green playground. There was enough water in the ditch for him to find what amazes him.

Ten crawfish is his new record.

That was his special ingedient, he was able to go outside without melting from the sun to find his calmness.
Nature relaxes him, always has.

Popi was out there with him getting his treasures. Ashlie was having alone time. I was even able to sit outside and read sme more of The Challenging Child.
It amazes me that this book was published in 1996, Aleq was born in 2003. It states in the beginning that you can tell when babies are uncomfortable something is wrong. Why did Pediatricians not take this serious. To this day SPD is still not recognized. In the book they do not bring up SPD but talk about how senses that are not processing can really throw a child off.

After eating at our favorite Chinese place (he even ate good), bowling is what was on our agenda. The kids were so excited. Bowling is about the only activity Aleq can do and feel good about himself.
Ash and Aleq did awesome.

Aleq feels good when everyone is involved, not everyone understands that. He worries or it upsets him if everyone is not included. I know this is because he is extra sensitive to others. I think it helped him process and have fun because everyone was involved in bowling. If someone is over having "hang out" time, if everyone is not playing even though it may not be a time for Ash to be involved, the situation upsets him, he can not process the other way very well.

Simple things to consider that you know help your child process and be calm,can involve everyone. In return have a good day. Finding out what it is can take some time. Could nature, cars, drawing, or building calm your SPD child? Use that to help the whole family get involved and enjoy each other. You could have a great day as well. Will everyday be that way, nope, but that one great day makes up for a lot.

Full of hugs and love...cheering everyone! Ash was not sure about the hugs...

Live, Laugh and Love...

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sometimes there needs to be a breakdown...

I think today my daughter finally broke down about how difficult it is living with Aleq, losing some of her friends because of Aleq, and losing friends because not staying in touch. As she is getting older she needs that support of a good friendship.

It hurts to see her upset and full of anger because she didn't think she could talk to me. You hear it and remember as a child saying the same thing "you don't understand". So we went thru the list of why she doesn't think I understand. Come to find out she learned that I understood everything.

As a parent you feel bad because it is a lot of responsibility to take on as a child with their challenging sibling. Learning constantly on how to treat the SPD child.
No matter how much I told her that she is special  because God knew she could handle it, it didn't help.

So, I used Plan B (from my previous post) with her. I talked to her to find out what was really bothering her. What can we do to make things better....
As a sibling of a child with challenges you need to take that time to really talk about what you are feeling.
Ashlie opened up and told me she feels no one likes her because of Aleq. My response was that is not true. Others have a hard time understanding Aleq just like her at times. Real friends will be there for us and we are still looking for those types of friends. We have one family that really accepts us that I know of and I reminded her of that.

She wants friends.....friends that are girls and alone time with them. I totally understand. This is normal but I think it is more important when you have a child with challenges and one without. Ashlie needs to have "hang out time" and spend time with friends and in return it will give me one on one with Aleq.

We had two "hang out" events this week and I told her I was working my best to plan more "hang out" time for her and for Aleq.

I know in the future this will be very beneficial, there is some reason she is experiencing this. God knows she is a good sister and will learn just like myself on to handle Aleq.

I pray everyday that it will become easier for us. It has only been about a 4 months since we have started learning how to work with Aleq. I think she does well most of the time. It is hard on all of us and I reminded her that she is not alone, we are all in this together.
They do have a lot of good moments...

He found her hiding. LOL

Live, Laugh and Love every day!

The Challenging Child....

The book on my reading table now is The Challenging Child by Stanley I. Greenspan, M.D. and is has been really uplifting so far.

I have read The Explosive Child , which is very informative and helps you understand ways to talk to your children without having a meltdown regardless of there disability or just if they are an explosive child. There are reasons your child may get angry easy or frusterated.   The first step is finding that reason, ours is because of SPD.  Some may become explosive on a temporary term because of an event. Ours will be permenant term until he can learn to cope and make decisions. Before you address them not to become "explosive" it is good to find the root of it. I totally recommend this book to anyone that has a child that is frusterated easily.
We learned there are three ways to address anger. Plan A which is no alternatives, Plan B which is working thru it and letting the child help make the better situation, and Plan C which is both.
The better result is B...I have been doing this with Aleq and it really works. In the past it was Plan A and that is what created meltdowns.
Now, if I could get our friends that have stuck around to support us to understand this and communicate it with their children to use this form, it would be AWESOME. Lots of luck on that though.

I have read the Out Of Sync Child and The Out of Sync Child Has Fun. These were great and very knowledgable. However, these I had to read first so I could understand why he is  having a challenging life.
There are so many books I would love to read and need to read. Each one has something the others do not.  Thank goodness for these books. That is why I need to take a bookstore hostage, lol, the books cost money.
To this day, I could kick myself because he had all the signs from when he was born. However, at that time not too many knew about SPD or misdiagnosed. That is why my purpose for this is blog is communicate to others on  how common it is and what to do. It could be severe or very mild. You can do it! If you have any doubts always research.

So far I have learned that Aleq is a "sensory seeker", issues w/ some clothing, and has issues with food. We are working thru those because it means he can't get enough. Some children are opposite to where lights are too bright, touching them may hurt them, noises are too loud, things must be in a certain place and/or they can not be around too many people. Aleq has some of these for instance, he can not be around a crowd or he does not like any change.

As we were working thru different issues I noticed he didn't have the meltdowns as before but he would get frusterated almost to the point of very angry when he could not make a decision. It was different to where no more crying, screaming, hitting and running away as before. However, getting angry then hitting and pushing towards others. After talking with his OT, who has graciously said she is always there for us knowing I do therapy on my own with him, we need to address how to work thru those situations.

As I always tell myself and try to emphasize to others , this is not a quick fix. This is a slow process and will take much repitition and time.
So now I am reading books to help us get thru the journey of working thru problems and not getting angry towards others because they get scared of a bug or don't like animals.

Here is an insert that I really loved to here form The Challenging Child:
Being optimistic, that parents do not have to simply "live with it" or adjust to their child's temperament, but that by creating new parenting pattersn based on the child's characteristics, they can help the child overcome behavior problems and develop his or her emotional and intellectual capacities to the fullest.
I love this statement. You know I homeschool and I am really good with kids usually. My daughter I didn't have any issues until she turned 10 1/2 but that is more of growing up, lol. My parenting skills which I think are good, did not work with Aleq because he could not process situations. So no matter how good of a parent you are do not feel like it it is your fault or you are doing things bad. It is just adjusting your parenting pattern to help your child to where they can process things.

Here is another insert from the book , I like the way he describes these types of children:
Parents can make a dramatic difference in how children use their wonderfully different natural abilities. Children vary considerably in the way they use their senses and bodies and the ways they respond to the world. For each unique pattern, however, parents can create experiences that promote flexibility.
Imagine driving a car that isn't working well. When you step on the gas, the car sometimes lurches forward and sometimes doesn't respond. When you blow the horn, it sounds blaring. The brakes sometimes slow the car, but not always. The blinkers only work occasionally, the steering is erratic, and the speedometer is inaccurate. You are engaged in a constant struggle to keep the car on the road and it is difficult to concentrate on anything else.  needless to say, you would probably be irritable!
This is Aleq along with any other SPD child and it is put well . This is how they go thru in everyday life.....Think about it... our children are not bad or full of hate... They are trying to manage their way thru life trying to keep it together according to everyone else. Please, if you know children like this, the worst you can do is ignore them. They need that support not just from their mom, dad, sister or other relatives. They need to know they are loved and accepted.....

Love, Laugh and Live everyday!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The weather brings emotions...

It is HOT!
It is really HOT, not warm but hot! We are having a hard time keeping the house cool  enough where we won't have a 300.00 electric bill.

The first thing that happens when you are uncomfortable is you get irritated, frusterated, and rude. We all do, you have to admit it.
Is it right? No, but it happens. Everyone ends up grumpy taking things out on each other and being sarcastic, then at the end of the day, you realize why the mood was that way.

Can you imagine how much harder it is on an SPD child? Just not being the right temperature can cause a meltdown.  The summer this year is really hot and we are having to find extra ways to stay cool and occupied because Aleq is an outside boy.

The key word it PATIENCE. Hmmm, it seems you need patience for everything. Do you think it helps if you are irritated because it is hot and your child is irritated then all it takes is the wrong tone of voice to set them off.

Patience  is quiet, steady perseverance; even-tempered care; diligence: to work with patience.
So if we are trying to teach our children to be patient and learn how to cope with things, do you think we as parents should do the same. I almost became impatient a couple of times today and had to step back to regain my thoughts.
We must do what we teach! So no matter how uncomfortable we are we must practice patience. Especially if you have an SPD child or actually any child.

My sensory seeker watches what I do when I have patience and I have seen him practice it. That is a good thing, yeah! So I know it works to be that role model of patience.

So whether it is the HOT weather or you are in a rush. Perhaps something didn't go as planned.
Don't lose your patience remember you have a SPD child that is watching you. Aleq does not like the temperature to be uncomfortable , to be rushed, or things to change.

SPD children feel it 10 times more then we do so you can imagine how they feel. Being impatient will only add fuel to an upcoming meltdown .
The most important thing is,  there is no reason for being impatient, God will handle it. Nothing is worth for us to become impatient about and that is the key to teach our children. Enjoy life and the change of plans might be better. My saying to Aleq is  "it will be okay" and "it will work out".
Remind me of this if you see me start to become impatient. lol

We had two "hang out" days this week, it has been a long time because I had been working with Aleq.  There were no meltdowns but a couple of events that he could have made better choices. The heat comtributed to one and I had to help him decide that when he is overheated instead of getting angry to come and sit down to cool off. The other event was to walk away if someone does something he does not like. It is a long journey but as long as we have friends that are there for us with patience and help us by still accepting us we will make it.

Have a great weekend and have faith that God is there for you to remain patient.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

They kept acting CRAZY!

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Today was great. It was the first time in a long time that my daughter had a playdate.
Not just any playdate but with a girl that was like her.

I will explain, my daughter is not a "girly girl", at one time she was but she is Tomboy. Ashlie is a dedicated Pokemon and Bakugan fan. She loves animals as well.

It has been so hard to find someone who clicked with her. Someone that gets excited to see or talk to.

It was a joy to see her smile and have fun the way she did. Things were to the point of her hibernating in her room  and not wanting to do anything anymore. I know we have all had children do that at some point.

It was good for her to have her own "hang out" time and it not be an Aleq time.

It is hard when you have one child that is challenging and one not. Remember, it is extrememly important to let each one have their own play days.
I know it is easy to just focus on the SPD child. However, it is a must to let your non-challenging child have their own time with their friends. It helps everyone feel refreshed.
Watching the other child play with their friends will also help the SPD child learn how to play.

We are at the point where one on one play is needed. That is where you need to start before you have a crowd. It is a slow process but if you take your time, playing correctly will fall into place.

Oh the CRAZY part was watching the Ashlie and Brianna go CRAZY from having fun!


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Don't give up!

Do you ever have so much going on that you are so overwhelmed that you want to crawl in bed?

It happens and it happens a lot to everyone.

It is harder when you have another thing loaded on your list, like an SPD child. Sometimes you wonder why this would happen!

Sometimes you think you can't do it all! The OT or going to a dr. is easier, it isn't though.

For those out there that have a hard time and daily challenges, it is going to be okay. I promise it will all work out.

Sometimes you have to alienate yourself from everyone and work on the challenges between your immediate family. Then one at a time let others in slowly.
It is hard because you start to feel alone and as if you have no one. I feel like I have no one except my husband at times. Sometimes it is hard to have friends or accept others in your life because they don't understand the situation with your child. They judge or feel your child is a threat. It makes you want to run around with hand outs on SPD.

If you have other children it can even be harder. I know my daughter goes thru a lot because some of the so called friends she has had are not comfortable around her brother because they don't understand.
If you think about it, it is not their fault as a child to understand what SPD is. However, if the parents really want to help and be there then they will help their children understand.

You can make it...That is why I have not had a post in a while. I have been working with Aleq on my own still without going to an OT that wanted to see him only once a week.

Your tools thru the process are your patience, faith, and resources thru books internet.
With these listed you can help your SPD child. He is doing so much better. We are even working on his aggression that he gets when he cannot process what to do.

The bad thing is for some reason my child seems to be the bad one when he melts down because others do not understand and when other children are picking on him. I has happened and it hurts when others make comments that it is my child that is the bad one. Those people should never judge unless you step out of the box and see your children as well. I see so many children with problems like my sons and children that are worse then mine, the parents think it is normal.

So what do you do, you move on to others that will take time to want to help and be there for you. It takes time, I still have not found anyone. God has plans and dont' give up.
You have to take care of home first before you can venture around others.

So when you discover your child has SPD challenges there are important steps to take first:
1. Have them diagnosed to see which SPD issues he or she has..
2. Check out Out of Sync Child first then Out of Sync Child has Fun
3. If there is any agression or frustration w/ the SPD I totally recommend The Explosive Child
4. Have faith and you can do therapy with him at home...
5. Once you are comfortable with the challenges then you can venture to mingle w/ other family members...
6. Realize that some family members may not agree with you, then you put a smile on your face and say "Sorry, that you don't understand".
7. Once you go around friends, if they don't understand or negative then refer to #6.
8. Keep your patience, loosing patience is the bomb that will explode.
9. Don't worry about anyone except your immediate family.                                       10  . Make sure if you have siblings to get them active with others that understand as well.
It can work..... I will talk more about how to difuse a situation this week.

Remember that God will not give you more then you can handle. No matter what an OT says, your child needs help everyday not just once a week. You will have good days and bad days always... Sometimes you will seem like you have to start from the beginning. This is a journey, a long one....I hope everyone that goes thru this will find support. You need a special someone to talk to or vent to.
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