#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!

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

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32. Are you an #AutismParent and feeling #Isolated, or #Depressed, or #Overwhelmed?

Don’t you hate it when you get up in the morning. You did not sleep that great! And there is this piercing/jabbing pain by your right shoulder, and when you raise your shoulder blade to test it out ouch! Oh I need to do some movement exercises I need to get a wheat bag on that. I need to take a panadol for that. And you don’t because you forgot because you get up and do the regular motions and all the time there is this niggling pain in your shoulder.  You have to go through the action sequences of morning routine w/time management skills too! I’m thinking maybe my shoulder is linked to Tennis elbow, hell! I don’t even play tennis! But you know I had the same thing before when I was only carrying my baby so ……yeah! Chew on that!

Wow! I have been down in the dumps about  how hard it is  being a mother of two kids with Autism.  I have felt like a robot. And I was just going through the motions of daily life because I had to keep things going. While I wanted to fall apart and just stop! Trying to keep my ship afloat with all my family in it. Trying to keep the bills paid and buy the food as well as get the petrol for the car. Trying to encourage my children to actually be social and play with other children. It has taken some time. Or even quite possibly be on time to school, which much to the kids credit they do try hard to do what I say and we are at school, on time, allot of the time. There just does not seem to be enough time. Does this cycle ever stop!

And it is nobodys fault there is no-one to blame or thank for my hardship! I decided to have two children and was lucky enough to be able to. It’s just bloody well hard.

Rushing out to the shops to buy groceries or  trying to fit in picking up wood from the woodshop for the fire inbetween drop off or picking the kids up from school and something else! Always having  one million things that could be done. Being tired, needing a rest but not being able or feeling able to. I prefer to do the shopping by myself as when I take the kids they always want something. I don’t have enough money to buy anything in the shop for them.

Not being able to get a goood nights sleep because the boys Nanna or Grandpa are having health issues and hospitalizations or clinic appointments. Or Hubby has gone to hospital for something. The support base is crumbling away from me at times. What to do? Well I recognize that we all need to take care of ourselves so I got respite care services in to help.

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

 

3. Ok, so let’s talk about the #Elephantintheroom: #Poo, #toilet training, #Autismand #Sensory Processing Disorder.

My Kiddo no. 1 did not toilet train  early or before turning 3 years old. Yet Kiddo no. 2 toilet trained at 1.5 years.While he eliminated in the loo he needed reassurrance that everything was alright and he was following the correct way to do it. If you are a parent or caregiver and hearing  “Mum, is all the Poo off my bum?”, “Mum, wipe my bum!” and you know they can do it themselves,  then in our cicumstance I felt this was a Sensory Processing Disorder and part of Autism Spectrum. It was a worry for me because I was scared he was asking and showing people at school or in public and I had to find a way to  fix this. I did it by using a wall mirror in the bathroom so my child could self check. Hopefully this would instill in him a sense of self confidence.

It took me, as a parent, a while to realize that a mirror in the bathroom may do the trick. The bathroom idea was not an idea that had been provided to me by any therapists I was seeing. It was not until aged 7 and a half he was totally independantly toilet trained and he did not ask me those questions. I think Sensory Processing has allot to do with it. I feel for parents going through this issue with their child. I know I felt isolated when I was going through this issue with my son. I would like to share a few strategies that I used  while toilet training my son, which you may find useful.

    1. A corner mirror  in the bathroom so your kiddo can visually see the state of his cleanliness. (So when the kiddo has finished wiping and says  that he still feel unclean and perhaps wiping many more times than he has to. A problem because kiddo may irritate his bottom tissues through abrasive toilet paper, you may run out of loo paper and toilet drain becomes blocked.)
    2. Reading favorite stories to your child while they are on the loo to make the experience of sitting on the loo more emotionally comforting.
    3. Realizing that the kiddo may feel there is material still left on bottom because of Sensory Processing Disorder difficulties. So  an explanation to the kiddo about what he is feeling or some cream may help. The kiddo may feel very frustrated by the whole loo process and not want to go at all.
    4. When the kiddo says “Mum, wipe my Bum!”, Mum says “No, you do it! and the kiddo says “But I forgot how?” you can use laminated compix or photo’s in bathroom for bathroom routine.

Realize that the child could be getting Bum sweat, which possibly could be percieved as feeling like there is something remaing. And also when kiddo gets anxious the body can sweat.

  1. Cartoons are also great instructional routines to set the bathroom routine in place.
  2. Finally, I was right there with him, to help him, and I told him how proud I was of him and then when he looked at me with those beautiful eyes I just repeated the mantra over and over, I know you can do this, I trust you. And it did not work all the time for fully independant toileting experiance. But one step at a time is all you can do.

Toilet training your Autistic child can take a long time, longer than usual and two Autistic siblings can develop at different rates and toilet train at different times. I felt as though I had explained to my son  more than 1000 times how to do it then I realized that by challenging  the Sensory processing difficulty with the his own visual input may be helpful, and it was and we use it all the time. Hopefully this is helpful to some other parents.

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

 

 

28. #Autism and #Sensory Processing: #Gloves and #Bandaids

Dear Mums! If you think bandaids and gloves are a good idea to cover hands: think again as the glue on the underside of bandaids can irritate kiddos skin if left on too long. Leaving gloves on can also make hands sweat depending on material of glove. The kid does not get the sensory input from using bare hands.

My experience  with my kid is this:  The kid would have a minor abrasion on hands or other body parts and a bandaid would have to go on to cover. This happened again and again until we were going through so many packets of bandaids. Kiddo would not like to take the bandaids off either but preferred to leave them on. So: doing regular maintenance health check Mummy notices the bandaids are getting old and dirty and there is quite allot on the kids hands. This was not a good look. I find out that the bandaids are there to cover minor scrape and falling injuries (nothing to worry about but very) hyper painful to the kiddo. Mummy also notices that skin is peeling and irritated redness on fingers underneath the sticking part to bandaid.

Being a kid with Autism and sensory challenges is not easy by any means. The bandaids are kiddo’s attempt to armour himself (with bandaids) against an abrasive world. I understand this, but also not wanting the bandaids to get out of hand and turn into a fixation or Obsessive Compulsive thing I limit supply of bandaids. I’m also “caught between a rock and a hard place”  because I don’t want to injure a developing self esteem and self preservation ideas in kiddo.Its a double edged sword. I look for alternatives. I think, well its cold and winter is coming on and the obvious solution is the wooden gloves for winter.

I thought it was a great idea . So kiddo wore them everywhere, at school, at home, to bed. The hand was warm and protected in the glove. He was happy. I thought it was a great solution until  I realised that getting the glove off him for washing was going to be a big deal. We eventually worked out that I was to wash the gloves at night when he was in bed. HE was to take gloves off while in bed to let the skin on his hands breath. If I didn’t wash them at night then there would be problems.

If you are going down the glove road with your child just beware that if the fabric of the glove is made of a polyester or polyfibre then your child’s hands are more likely to sweat underneath. This can be a breading ground for bacteria leadings to infections if not properly maintained.

To avoid this hand sweat thing kiddo would clap hands and demand that Mummy blow dry them at a certain place in the house many times a day. I got sick of this quick as it became time consuming and not functional in the daily routine. I tried to envisage myself doing this routine for a long time and I just did’t like what I saw. So that moment, I just said “No I am not doing this any more!” I got all the pairs of gloves from that had accumulated in the house and I drove to a bin somewhere, I don’t know where, and I just dumped them in the bin and went to my piano class. I did this in full view of my kiddo so he could see there were no more gloves ever to be in this house again. Kiddo did not like it one bit.

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

 

27. #Autism and #SensoryProcessing:Shoes,Socks and Clothes

Time just flew out the window! It’s been a regular morning,  and the one and a half hour time limit to get to school is totally unrealistic this morning. He will be late for school. The clothes have not been washed the night before. I feel like the most disorganised mum this morn because the daily wash was not done. I feel like I couldn’t even by a ticket in a chook raffle! I am fallible and I forgot to wash his clothes last night. Actually I wash every night because my son insists he must wear the same clothes. Exactly the same, everyday!

Why do you have to wear the same set of clothes? Because they feel right. But your clothes are getting holes in them! They feel right Mum. Why do you have to wear the same set of socks (until they have worn out?) Why is any other sock not good enough? It doesn’t feel right mum! Stephen you have 10 pairs of socks! They are all exactly the same colour and size. Made exactly the same way. Why can’t you wear a pair or even one of your other socks! Mum, I know my socks, and any of the other socks are just not right!

I can feel the tick tock of the clock! But it doesn’t matter this morn because I will not be stressed by time pressure this morn. There’s a procedure to putting the clothes on. The socks must go on first in a certain order and spacing on the floor. My son must stand in the lounge for  minutes, until it feels right, and then put them on. I don’t get it. Where is this feeling? It’s a mystery to me but happens every morn. To avoid this anxiety sequence and associated vocal stress release, Zak Stephen does not want to take his shoes off – ever! I am his mother and I have to look after his well-ness, I explain the shoes must come off at night so your feet breath.

There are different times where Stephen is upset because there are holes in his socks. I explain that washing the socks every night means the sock weave will lose fibres faster. Stephen does not get that things change. Mum, there are holes in my socks! Mum, how did the holes get in my socks! Mum, I can never wear my socks again because there are holes in them which means I can’t put my shoes on – ever! That means I can’t go to school!! I love you son.

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

26. #AutismandCostofSpecialEducation

It is my understanding that there is atleast 3400 students with autism in south australia and rising. The government of South Australia has let the Aspect Treetops Autism specific school use the old Ashford Special School site at a peppercorn rental. The local school zoned in our area means that there are government subsidies available to help pay school fee’s. Does this apply the same at Ashford? Can I apply for the School-card? What subsidies are available to me in my situation? How much transport assistance can I get for my child? Is there long distance education?

The facts are that you can’t go to this Treetops Aspect Special School if you don’t have atleast $232/wk spare cash and thats for 1 child. If you have two children then its $500 approximately. This is compared to $40 per week for Services and materials charge at the local mainstream school. It’s prohibitive for a large number of Austistic families because they simply do not have the cash.

The thought of HomeSchooling has always been around but not something I have wanted to get excited about! I don’t know it! Although, when I was a kid I did corrospondence schooling for a while. So how much money can I afford out of my budget to send my children to a school specifically oriented to teaching kids on the Autism Spectrum? I am excited about the Satellite Programs the Aspect treetops Autism School is proposing and the Distance education Proposed Program. The issue is how to pay for it?

It seems that the affordability of education equates to class sizes! Am I wrong? Does a kid with Autism who prefers to be by himself need socialization? I think I as a parent need to make our living arrangements bearable for both parent and child.

What happens to a child if they are bullied at school? Bullying and its effects at school have been well studied. Nobody wants that for their child to go through hard times. What is the criteria for entry point to Department of Education Autism Intervention Programs at Blackwood Autism Intervention Program and the Heights Autism Intervention Program, Modbury, Adelaide? What is the criteria for entry to the Aspect Autism Treetops School at Ashford, Adelaide? Would Montessori be good? Tick it off, for a try. What about Steiner education? Not that fussed about it! It can be overwhelming to consider. Do I want to stick my head in the sand about it? Do I have the energy to get excited about the idea?

The school fees at Treetops are in the order of $10,000 or so PA which may be prohibitive for 90% of ASD cases as it may be more unaffordable for those on lower incomes. $200 per week for 1 child. How much does it cost to educate a child in a Department of Education school?

 

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018

 

25. Swimming week 2013

Another situation: No. 1 Kiddo  was at the pool as a part of school swimming week. He wanted me to be there, he fell over and stubbed his toe. It was a horrible mess and flies were attracted to the moisture in the wound. Kiddo  lost it! He was totally freaked out by it! He screamed and shouted. It was almost like those flys suddenly became enormous garagantuan monsters. He was terrified of them. His eyes huge with fear! He wanted me to do something and I went to help him cover the wound or wash it. He just screamed.Right in my ear and so much that if I couldn’t do this or that I would just take him home. I swept him up in my arms, dumped him in the pram aside his baby brother as Kiddo so upset he wanted to be carried. I drove them both home in the car, me so very angry because I was totally confused as to why my son was not 1. doing what the other kids did. 2. my son would not let me look after him. I needed to look after him as if I didn’t then who would.

 

Written and Authorised by  Jane Muras, 4 Henry st, Hectorville, SA 5073 Candidate  for Hectorville Ward CCC 2018