Friday, December 28, 2012


I have found much needed happiness in the last couple of weeks. A feeling that I have been longing to have for a while now. It's not just me feeling it either, it's my husband too! We are seeing some monumental changes. Let me share with you:

When we received the diagnosis of Aperger's just a couple of weeks ago, Dr. B had said that she thought bumping his doses of meds would help. I trust this woman one hundred percent, however, I just didn't think we would see these kinds of changes in our sweet boy. I am finding it hard to put it into words, but he is more aware...he is happy...he is more easily redirected...we have had maybe 2 tantrums in the last two weeks...and no hitting at home. He is just super sweet, starting to be cuddly(before he didn't even like to be touched the majority of the time), he allows me to massage his back (touching him usually overstimulates/irritates him), and he looks into my eyes when I am giving him a direction or correcting him. We even caught him cleaning the playroom after he was done playing. He is just all around more focused and grounded.

This isn't to say that he doesn't have struggles. He still struggles with being overstimulated when we have company, go in public, or he goes to school. I am hoping that after he goes back to school after Christmas Break his teacher will notice some changes. It is possible that she might not see what we do, and I am okay with that. He still has a hard time when we go to a store. We haven't tried going out to dinner yet... only time will tell.

I have to say that a few weeks ago my heart was hurting, it was all too new. I was scared and bitter. Today I am confident that we are headed in the right direction. My husband and I are on the same page and we will do whatever humanly possible to help our little man. We are a team...and the BEST one for Logan. We have relaxed a little more, laughed a little more, and enjoyed our time as a family. It has been the best few weeks of my life in a long time. I have been able to BREATHE. It sounds funny, but for the last year or so I felt like I have been holding my breath. I didn't realize it until I witnessed my sweet boy smile, curl up in my lap, look into my eyes, relax, and fall asleep in my arms. (He hasn't slept in my arms since he was an infant, and even then he didn't want to be held.)
Today while he was sitting at the table waiting for me to serve dinner he looked at his sister and said "Hailey, I love you." Typing it brings tears to my eyes because he verbalized his emotions - he has rarely done this. I jump for joy in our progress!   

Thank you for reading and catching up. I hope this brought a smile to your face. I know my heart feels like it has grown ten times! I hope each of you had a Merry Christmas. Enjoy a safe and blessed New Year. I will be spending it at home with the ones I love the most! :)


Tuesday, December 18, 2012


I know some of you may try avoiding the news, however, I just can't. I don't like hearing all of the negative things that are going on in our city/state/country, but I want to be aware. This past Friday - December 14 - Newtown, CT witnessed a horrific tragedy. Not only did the events that took place impact Newtown, CT, it also affected our entire nation.

I went back and forth on whether or not I really wanted to share these feelings on my blog...I am a very private person when it comes to political views and quite honestly I hate debating. I do not have a "type A" personality. I have never had the confidence to broadcast my views... The main thing I wanted to share with you is how this sad news has weighed on my heart.

As most of you know Logan was diagnosed with Aspergers & Pervasive Developmental Disorder on Tuesday the 11th. Not even 3 days after I heard this incident on the news. I watched as it unraveled. I couldn't take my eyes off of the television. The innocent children being shuffled across the screen with hands on each others shoulders, the teachers maintaining their composure in such a horrific event, and the officers swarming the building school. A school for Pete's sake! A place where our kids should be safe. Then after a while I heard mental illness was probably to blame. "Obviously" I thought. Not too much longer after that... I heard it. I heard the words that  just 3 days prior to this event were attached to my precious child. Aspergers.

Do I know if that is really what this kid had? No. I don't. The thought of it though makes me sick. Not sick as in it's a bad thing for my Logan, but sick that the news would broadcast it that way and put such a negative stigma with Asperger's. The news screwed up so many details. They just kept releasing things far too early - so the gunman wasn't really Ryan, it was Adam. His dad was dead...and then he wasn't. So many speculations were made. The speculation that he has Asperger's made me extremely bitter.The unfortunate thing is if I ever have to tell a stranger my son has Asperger's (and they have never been exposed to such a thing) - they are going to automatically think "Oh, that's what the Sandy Hook Killer had." That just breaks my heart to think someone someday may think that about my precious child like that.

 After reeling over the news I didn't want to even think that my Logan could possibly have something in common with this man. It really sent chills down my spine. My mom even called me and said "Did you hear what the shooter had?!" I was bitter. She meant not a single thing, but my heart was grieving and far too emotional. I wasn't mad at her, I really wasn't. It's just that everyone heard it and everyone had received the news just 3 days prior that Logan was diagnosed. It was all still too new. My heart was sore.

Neil and I talked yesterday. It was the first time we had opened up with each other since the diagnosis and the shooting. We discussed that his parent's could be us, what could have been done differently, the poor families that are dealing with this, how Adam Lanza's dad and brother must feel, and then we discussed how we would deal with our sweet boy long term.

I honestly feel bad for Adam Lanza. My heart not only breaks for all of the victims and the families, but it breaks for him too. You may not agree and I am okay with that. It just saddens me that he had no one whom he felt he could relate to or talk to. All of those emotions had to have caused his switch to flip (in my opinion). The thought of him being so angry and going to the extreme of killing innocent people just tears me apart. The thought of someone being so mentally ill that they are capable of such destruction is scary. So many questions that will never be answered.

If you could do me a favor and just stand up for Autism/Aspergers/Pervasive Developmental Disorder. If someone makes a comment about that guy having this disorder please explain to them that no two cases of Autism are exactly alike. There are so many successful people who have lived their entire lives with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Here are some that you will know: Abraham Lincoln, Albert Einstein, Alexander Graham Bell, Benjamin Franklin, Emily Dickinson, George Washington, Marilyn Monroe, Isaac Newton, Mark Twain, Thomas Edison, Vincent Van Gogh, Mozart, Alfred Hitchcock, Andy Warhol, Bill Gates, Al Gore, and Robin Williams are just some of the many people! Very successful and memorable individuals. I hope this gives you hope for Logan, because it sure does make me feel a little better.


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Autism Spectrum Disorder... (I hate those words)

In March Logan was diagnosed with Impulse Control Disorder. Upon that diagnosis I was sure that that was what we were dealing with. Originally I had obsessed that I thought Logan was mildly autistic, but after the ICD diagnosis and researching it, I had pushed autism out of my mind. We have been treating the ICD with little success. The meds that he has taken for the ICD have failed us time and time again, with the impression that his body/brain is constantly growing and changing.

Yesterday we had an appointment with Logan's psychiatrist for our monthly check-in. I took along all of the notes from the meetings we've had, all teacher comments, "think about it" papers, phone call documentation, etc. Lately he has been really out of sorts both at school and at home and his behavior/meltdowns have become really bad again. It has resulted in him being sent home from school and us not really being able to go out in public without completely disrupting everyone else around us. This behavior carried over into her office as well - he was doing a lot of spinning (which the teacher has made several comments about), going around touching all of the plants over and over, pulling his hair, etc...there were just a lot of mannerisms that she was actually able to witness first hand that we witness on a daily basis.

After taking a deep breath she threw us the curve ball. She is certain after observing Logan for the past 9+ months that he indeed does have Autism Spectrum Disorder - more specifically Aspergers. She combined the testing/observations from when he was inpatient with the school notes and the observations she has taken in her office to make this diagnosis. She reassured us that she tried to wait as long as she could and be 100 percent certain before labeling our boy. She went on to explain why this was the right diagnosis and how the medications will be altered to try and better suit him...but I was in a zone.

I have had family and friends ask me how I am taking the news... I guess I don't know really. It's not terrible. I just wasn't prepared to hear it yesterday honestly. I think I had kind of ruled it out, although I knew there was something "not right" with my little man. I have wanted to know what "IT" is for a long time - and I didn't think I would ever find out what "IT" to hear those words "Logan is on the autism spectrum. He has Aspergers." just punched me in the stomach. I would ideally like to punch autism in the face... My emotions have been so up and down. I think about how Logan is considered highly functioning for the autism spectrum and I am thankful. I think about how smart he is and I am thankful. I think about how parents have lost their children and I have mine and this is nothing compared to what others have had to endure and I am thankful. I really am...but then I think about how this stupid disease/disorder/disability/whatever-you-want-to-call-it has invaded my child - taken away a part of my sweet boy - and it pisses me off. Then I have the emotions of "what did I do wrong?" haunting me. Was it because I had the kidney issues during my pregnancy? Was it the invasive kidney surgery that I approved because they said I had no other choice? Was it the prescriptions I had to take? So many whys. I don't know - I just know those questions will ALWAYS haunt me. I cannot hardly speak the words without tears - and that is so not like me. I am a strong person and I don't normally cry, but to say those words just hurts. I had hopes of him outgrowing the impulse control disorder. You cannot outgrow autism.

We are taking it one day at a time. I am praying that having this diagnosis will make getting special help at his school easier. At the end of the day Logan is still Logan and I love him to the moon and back. Nothing will ever change my love for him and I will always be here to help him in whatever life goals he sets. He is smart. He will achieve great things, I just know it. So we are calling this a special gift and not a disability. God made our Logan special and we will move forward like we have been doing and make progress (even if it is one step forward, two steps back)!

Thank you all for being such amazing supporters. My hope is that I will be able to connect with other parents who are going through the same journey - or maybe even one day I will be able to help parents the way I have had some awesome special needs mommas help me. I have been blessed.


Monday, December 3, 2012

Our Meeting (and afterwards)...

I know, I know,  I am a little late getting around to filling you all in on the meeting we had last Wednesday. Boy oh boy has it been completely crazy! I finally have a moment to blog because unfortunately I have two sickly (or kind of sickly) kiddos that are napping. Guess it's that time of the year - and being 65 degrees in December probably isn't helping with the germs. :)

We walked into the meeting with the request in writing for a special education assessment and a functional behavior assesment. That was quickly shot down because they didn't feel that he needed the special education assessment and asked if we would hold off on that request if they agreed to do the functional behavior assessment. I looked to Logan's advocate to see if this was okay or not, because I honestly STILL don't understand all the lingo associated with the assessments, 504's, BIP's, IEP's, etc. I did hand them the request for the IEP for Logan and they said they want to try the 504 first. I don't really know - I just agreed. It was going to be a fight (even with the dr's note to get them to even consider the IEP) and I just don't want to fight. I want everyone to get along, to be a team, and to work towards what is best for my Logan. They will be assessing Logan over the next few weeks in the classroom and in the unstructured settings such as gym and recess. We also agreed that instead of sending home Logan's negative daily report that it either gets e-mailed or we get a phone call. No more of him dreading to show us these negative papers every single day. We left the meeting and I had no feeling at all. It wasn't an exciting feeling like I got lots accomplished, but it wasn't a complete failing feeling either. It was kind of like - I hope this works?!

Wednesday I received a phone call from his teacher stating he left the lunchroom and no one knew where he went. They looked all over and his class had to head out to recess without him. They finally found him in the bathroom and when the lunch lady confronted him he got very irritable. He had to pee extremely bad and said he couldn't hold it. They told him that was unexcusable, and that he has to ask an adult to use the restroom. He just didn't understand why that was such a big deal. When his teacher came in and asked him to take a time out for it - he flat out told her "NO". She asked a second time and he laid on the floor and said "NO" again. She then had the principal come and get him. They discussed why it is important not to leave the lunchroom.

Thursday he was again sent to the office for "choking" another child. Logan's story is that B was upset because Logan wouldn't quit touching him. Logan didn't want B to be mad at him so he was trying to hug him and apologize...and the teacher saw it as choking. He was then sent to the principal and had to sign a contract. READ CLOSELY: The principal wrote a contract stating "I, Logan, will never touch another child again." and then he had to sign his name on it. What a silly contract - a child with IMPULSE CONTROL DISORDER - signing something that states that he will never touch another child. Geez...It is almost comical. I still believe that Logan did not choke the other boy and that everything he said to me was accurate. He never wants anyone to be upset with him - so I am just positive that Logan was trying to give the child a hug even though that child didn't really want a hug. Logan really doesn't read others well. He doesn't know personal space or boundaries. 

Friday afternoon I received a phone call from the principal asking if I was close by. I quickly headed over to his office to find out what was going on. Apparently there was an incident on the playground where they were playing tag... Logan was pulling the other boys shirts and getting angry that he kept getting tagged. The playground monitor had asked Logan several times to stop and he didn't. She then tried to seperate him from the other kids and he started swinging at her and yelling "get off!" The principal took him to his office again and Logan refused to cooperate with the principal - thus me getting the phone call. I tried to calm Logan down in his office, but he was already "over his limit" and talking wasn't going to accomplish anything. The principal was just getting more frustrated by watching Logan pull his own hair and cover his ears and growl. He said "We aren't getting anywhere with this, I think you need to take him home." When I asked him to put his coat on to leave he threw himself on the floor and refused. The principal then threatened that if he didn't leave with me (I was in my sling so I couldn't just scoop up my 60 lb boy) that instant he would call the police and have him escorted out. I was devastated and completely embarrassed because we weren't the only ones in the office. We had a few children, office ladies, and a parent as an audience. Ugh. I brought him home, talked a little bit to him, and then explained that he really needed to take a nap and rest (which he did w/out any issues).

I am just praying that last week was just a bad week and that we can move forward w/out being sent to the principal everyday and/or getting sent home. That was awful! We have a meeting with Dr. B this Friday and I am going to discuss this with her and see what she recommends. I am really at a loss of what to do.

Here is a sweet picture of my sleepy head:

Hope you all have a great week. If you have any suggestions, please feel free to share! This parenting thing is a TOUGH job! :)