Horse riding and D2 Immersion Therapy

My wonderful son, my no.1. In his own world under the water, with Immersion Therapy. The  company is called ‘Determined 2″ or “D2” for short. A place where the sounds are suspended and the only sound to focus on is the sound of your own heartbeat. Under the water. Excited to go and looks forward to it.

I believe. He likes to wear his wetsuit which is tight. A firm pressure sensation for his body. I’m relieved that we found it. A place where we can walk under water. Self confidence is getting better. Great to see. I am glad we found this organisation to  his sensory needs. It has been an. Effort to  start this routine. Hard on me. But I have wanted so much to help him find something that he loves to do. That is his. Something he can relate to and be proud. (Perhaps he just wants to get time off school!) It could turn into an occupational interest down the track.

I am happy. No. 2 Kiddo is finally able to participate in horse riding activities  through another organisation as he loves it. It seems to satisfy the stim that he has. Horseriding addresses the pressure that he needs when seated on a horse. I originally thought satisfying this stim this activity was not possible. It is possible. We have found a way to do it through exploring resources. Although 6 months later he wanted to swim more than ride a horse.

Both boys were riding horses last week. Honestly I think it is one of the best activities to do and learn. I am very pleased. It has been hard work researching to find these activities that are relevant to my children. I am so very pleased that they are doing them.

Horse riding and D2 Immersion Therapy

 

The gloves, play the piano/move your fingers

Bandaids and gloves had to cover his hands. He had scraped  his hands at school. This was too much for a highly sensitised 7 year old. Recently returned from Humid and wet, Darwin.

Flying back to Adelaide Dry weather. A scrape on the hands, he had somehow decided that he would cover his hands with bandaids. Lots of bandaids. Many packets costing a small fortune. The school spoke to me several times about the use and amount of bandaids. Could he please bring his own supply as they needed to keep a supply for other students as well. The bandaids were wretched after some days.  He would not want me to change them. One day I  found that the sticking plaster was caused a rash on his skin. A skin irritation.

This was not helping at all. In a problem solving effort I thought I had come up with a brainwave. I would substitute the bandaids with gloves. It was a comedy of errors. This seemed like a good idea but  turned out to be another hole to fall into.

He loved wearing the gloves. He wore them non-stop for 3 months. I could not buy just any old glove with a mixed fabric material. The material had to be cotton. It had to breathe.  His hands got sweaty from wearing the poly fabric gloves and he did not have the will to explain this to me.

I finally got his gloves off of him to find  his skin peeling . I was not going to sit by and let this phobia he had hurt him so I changed gloves. I realized the material used to make the gloves was making his hands sweaty. It was impossible to  find cotton gloves anywhere. In an effort to dry wet gloves we used a blow dryer, (I’m starting to dig another hole unbeknownst to me! OCD routines were rearing up it’s head).  The hair dryer  had a warming effect on the glove also.  It seems that he also thought he had horrible hands possibly because they felt extra sensitive. An extra teacher was called in at the time to help him understand how he was feeling. Constant wear of gloves poses a few problems when it comes to washing the darned things.

I didn’t understand what was happenning only that I wanted him to be comfortable. Then it seemed to occur that because it had grown cold during the winter months that the gloves had to be warm when he put them on. They were dried in a certain section of the house before he put them on to go to school. (Another localised routine). This went on for quite some time  or there would be loud protestations from Junior. Well, requests to dry the socks started happenning at school! The hair dryer – oh the hair dryer! I just determined I would not put up with it any more and I told him that I was not going to do it any more. He screamed and shouted at me. I feel defeated.  I decided not to assist the set routine.

I did not want him to stop using his hands so we started on the path of challenging him to work his hands and fingers on the piano. Hopefully music will do the trick. Now years later he plays some beautiful pieces on the piano. Thank goodness something has paid off! Piano

 

 

 

 

Sub categories list

 

53. Autism and Problems at Mainstream school.

52. How did the kid learn to read so early?

51. Autism: Sensory Processing Disorder and Socks!

50. Murphy’s Law! Today: It’s ones of those days!

49. Autism Siblings.

48. Writing for writing’s sake!

47. Car Troubles and Laughter!

46. Comedy Radio, Laughing and walking to school!

45. Mum! Stay still I am putting a chip up your nose!

44. The 5 year old.

43. Let’s take our Xbox controller to school!

42. Autism and the 2 km walk to school!

41. Where is the demarcation line?

40. My son wants an X box!

39. Life in another Language: Auditory Processing Disorder.

38. Drama and the kiddo!

37. Don’t Let The Bastard’s Get You Down!

36. Useful Bedtime techniques for our kids.

35. Laughing and a loving family life.

34. Calming ideas for a stressed out kiddo.

33. Respite for Parents.

32. Feeling Isolated, Parental Depression, Feeling overwhelmed!

31. Autism: Clothes and Socks.

30. We have to trim your nails: “No Way Mum!”

29. “Can we wash your hair?”

28. Autism: Gloves and Bandaids.

27. Autism: Shoes, Socks and Clothes.

26. Cost of Education and Autism.

25. Swimming week 2014.

24. Autistic Meltdown 2014.

23. Diagnosis Days 2014.

22. Autism and School Socialization.

21. Why? Why? Why? Diabetes 2!

20. 9 yr old. I want an X Box.

19. Real life experience in the caravan.

18. Singing lessons? Martial Arts?

17. IPad Parental controls and Daily household chores.

16. 3rd pregnancy: Miracle Baby Jack.

15. 2nd Pregnancy: Miscarriage.

14. “No, I don’t know want to take my shoes off!”

13. Pregnancy no. 1: Birth of a miracle boy.

12. How to Survive on a camp trip with Bear Grylls!

11. Understanding signs and symptoms of Disgraphia.

10. “New Shoes! It’s Groundhog Day!”

9. Useful resources: Autism Support Groups/Reference books/films.

8. I am so proud of my Autistic son.

7. Autism and bedtime techniques.

6. Law mowing and being tired!

5.Writing therapy for parents.

4. National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and coordinating therapies.

3. Ok! Let’s talk about Autism, Poo, Toilet training and Sensory Processing Disorder.

2. Ok, let’s talk about Autism: Fixation and Obesessive Compulsive Disorder.

1. A full on Meltdown: I did not expect!

 

Autism and Mainstream school

 

It is my understanding there is in 2016 approximately or more 3400 children with Autism in South Australian Schools.  More than 50% of children and students with Autism are enrolled in a school without a  specialist unit or specialist education teacher. The Department of Education policy for a mainstream school is to have  between 21 and up to 36 students per class with one teacher and a school services officer.

I am feeling raw. I feel like I coudn’t organize a chook raffle! Things are fraying around the edges. I’m starting to get cynical.

What is the bigger message here on the grand scheme of things? Is it to learn to fit in, so the societal machine keeps working? Is it that you have to learn how to deal with your sensory processing issues or else? Or is it that you are doing something if anything so you can fit?

My darling 5 year old child having trouble at mainstream school. It’s not the child’s fault. It’s not the teacher’s fault. It’s not the principal’s fault. Class sizes and the price tag associated with educating your child is a systemic problem. 5 years old. Autism Diagnosis. There is a policy of inclusion in mainstream schools but can schools provide if resources are already stretched. If classes are too big. If there is not enough attention given for the child with special needs. Is it because of money! I am Mum and advocate for this little Dude!

Do I park money with a limited budget myself, to start a treadmill of tests which will tell us what? Haven’t I done this before?  I take him to get his hearing checked. Heavens above! What good will that do? It’s all a matter of  perception. A two day suspension disrupts the life of a busy/stressed special needs parent. The little treasure says he gets bored with what the teacher says. So he wanders off. “Be where you are meant to be” is the mantra repeated at school.

I’ve told both of the kiddo’s if there is no school duties for the day/ then there is home duties. As a deterrant! But it seems to be a sweetener!

Each child has a bucket and they put a rocks in bucket for duties completed. A certain number of completed duties. Then they get some free time. Who is familiar with this positive reward training method? Wash the dishes. Wash the clothes.  Mow the Lawn,. Take the rubbish out! Thanks kiddo!

Turning myself upside down and inside out to try and make things fit! They don’t. Trying to do all the different suggestions from respective therapists. I’m worn out! Where is the coffee because I am already tired of this crap!

Occupational therapist ($120/wk) says that his sensory needs are met at home as the house has been turned into a play sensory gym as much as possible. Pay more attention to his emotional needs. Well, kiddo is telling me that he hates going to school. How do you deal with that little pearl?

I feel as though I am walking through quicksand! What to do? I guess, we will find out his hearing level from the audiologist ($80 one off appt). Oh yeah, we have to get an IQ test ($100-300 one of appt). I feel as if I’m sending therapist on a holiday to Accapoco. I’m already doing the $167 Psychology, Speech Pathology and $57/wk Social Skills group. Therapy costs a fortune.

It’s Mum’s taxi, on steroids, driving them to this that and the other. Where’s the money for the petrol coming from! Hold on I’m losing the plot! Driving here, there and everywhere. Co-ordinating school and therapy timetables making sure that therapists all talk and understand the plan of action. I’m not even sure what the Plan Of Action is but I am doing as I am afraid of not doing anything.

The kid is very smart. He is starting to snort like a horse over the last month or two. I have a little trotter running around the house. I wonder if I did assemble a race track around my house if that would do us any good.

I make a booking at Dr’s because maybe he has some difficulty with ears, nose and throat. Knows how to work the teachers. Knows how to not follow the rules of engagement by dancing on the cupboards and table-tops. Knows how to not do what one is told.

Parent: What is the matter child? Kiddo: I don’t want to go to school. How do you tell a 5 year old that they cannot stay at home all day. Chores or else! No problem Mum! It’s a joke! How do you tell kiddo in a way that he understands that as an adult you need to look after yourself/ have time for yourself to exercise/knit/do your thing to stay healthy for them? And also most importantly stand up for yourself.

The 5 yr old kiddo is a bit easier to get out the door than his brother. Both anxious when they leave the sanctity of the house. He does not pick up on the rules of engagement. He doesn’t see the social cues. He finds it difficult to understand that the things he does at home, generally, he can’t take transition objects to school. He doesn’t have any emotional attachments to kids or the teachers to make him want to go to school and want to be there.

 

 

Autism and SensoryProcessingDisorder with socks!

Having issues with socks: I recommend only giving a choice of two spare socks in bag or else its overwhelming/too many choices and heading towards meltdown territory.

Pick your battles

Mum: “Put your socks on!”

Son: “I can’t, they don’t feel right!”

Mum: “Ok, well you can get another pair of socks from your room.”

Kiddo: “No I can’t.”

Mum: “Why.”

Kiddo: “Because the others don’t feel right

Mum.” What to do in this situation?  I have to get this kid to school (or so methinks). When he finally decides to put a pair of socks on,

Kiddo says “Mum, which sock is for the left foot and which sock is for the right foot?”

Mum: Oh for Goodness sakes! Are you kidding with me? (for want of a better word!)  “Honey you have 20 pairs of socks and they are all exactly the same.”

Kiddo:”No, they aren’t Mum! I know my socks!” , can we make friends with the two black socks, and give them names.  (I remember my Nanna saying, “You would not read about it!” and I can’t help smiling because the socks just got animated in my brain, the socks have the power to  make my child’s life  suck! You wouldn’t read about it!)

😄 I love you son. (To me  they are 20 pairs of exactly the same socks but little do I know  that the fibres in these socks, do these socks have names?  How do you tell which sock is  the left and right sock  if both saocks are black, the answer is ……Drum roll please! and this is a son has a self regulated solution!

One black sock is slightly longer than the other! Tadaaaaa!

Who would of thought because I thought the difference was how worn out and tired the socks were and that is how you could work out which pair of sock actually were the one’s that felt right !

They were also the only socks that could be worn for all eternity!

 

 

 

Autism and Murphy’s Law: Today, it’s “one of those days” !

Popping disco music on and disco/rap dancing while getting dressed is fun and helps them get ready for school. Let’s dance as we forget about sensory.

So today it’s “one of those days!” Where according to best intentions it’s just not going to happen. The too hard basket is the bracket category for today! Is it because it is Monday?

I thought, you know what: My son’s socks are no big deal, we can deal with this!

It’s no biggy for us! Son: Mum I can’t get up without my Sustagem Dutch choc milk before I put my socks on! Mum and Dad: There is no choc. Oh no! The thought of going down shop 7.30 am not appealing to us. Thinking ahead is what I do to plan day or I do try! There is nothing for it – it’s plain as day, so with a spring in my stride I’m heading down shops to get kid to school and save a meltdown!
We will just get to school when we can, so then school drop off/Walked dog/ off to gym to swim/ have an assessment for gym which is cut short because relization that there is a time clash with another appointment. When we finish the swim and to top it off, it’s raining and my slightly dodgy electronic lock in car, which has seen better days, has just doesn’t work! I can’t open car door!

The appointment.

It’s not happening.

You have to laugh!!!

Today!

 

 

Lawn mowing therapy and being tired!

Patience is a virtue when trying to get the kiddo undressed and into the pool when he doesn’t want to. I explain to him that this is the set time to do the swimming class. Kiddo does not want to take his clothes off! He doesn’t want to follow time schedules as it doesn’t fit”, the boy needs time to get used to the idea of getting changed. Kind of like starting up a pull string lawn mower, he has to do it a few times to get the mojo started. Alla get motivated to do something. Heavens to betsy! Hello world – we had allot of fun in the pool. Mum playing sharks with the kids in the water. Great for sensory! Please feel free to leave constructive useful ideas as its a place to share. Lawn mowing therapy and being tired!