56. #Autism and Passing of Grandpa

No. 1 Kiddo (who is 9 years old) and No. 2 Kiddo (6 yrs) dont want to see Grandpa in the coffin viewing, No. 1 Kiddo says that he knew him when he was alive and that “It would totally freak me out” to see him dead.  No. 2 Kiddo says he doesn’t care that Grandpa died, the 6 year old if very matter of fact about it. No.2 Kiddo saw Grandpa’s deceased body in the coffin at the funeral.

Going through the last stages of Grandpa’s life with him I hoped would teach the boys about the transient nature of life. I was there when Grandpa took his last breathe and I sat with him till the funeral people came to take him away. I looked at his 75 year old aged body and I look at a photo of him when he was 1 years old.  I held his hand all the time in those last hours, and I did not want to let him go. All the things you have to do fell by the wayside because this was my time with my Dad. I could feel his spirit in the room. I know his spirit was with me. I played him some music on the ukelelie.

I strummed a few notes, and hummed a few words, we watched “Star Wars” and “Dr Who” video’s in those last days. Grandpa  wanted to know where he had to go next. Grandpa was asking where he had to go. In the last hours I told him that he could go if he wanted to and that would be ok or he could stay and that would be ok. And then he  took his last breath. He was in pain when alive and now he is in the “Dr Who” Tardus, his spirit waiting to be reborn if you believe in rebirth. Two days later I heard that his former employer and good friend had just had a baby grandaughter called Natalia and I joked that it may be my Dad being reborn which bought a smile to my face.

 

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

 

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57. Autism special school

I am so pleased with the new school. Visual charts, positive reinforcement, small class sizes, class is taught in a structured way where students can learn and their anxiety  is abaited enough to let the learning happen. I am pleased and proud that we are part of an Autistic specialist school that works with children’s abilities as well as their fixations etc. No. 1 Kiddo and No.2 Kiddo are doing very well. No. 1 kiddo seems to be  quite good with his maths and science. No. 2 Kiddo is learning his reading.

No. 1 Kiddo is doing science experiments in the shed science lab, and you tubing it.

 

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

 

58. #Autism and Christmas= Sensory Overload/Marketing hype

Santa and Autism? How do you explain the story and marketing hype?  We have watched the “Elf” movie with Will Farrell. In the lounge room on a night before Christmas and my 6 yr old son is sitting on the lounge, enraptured with the moment and the story and says “Mum, I am going to stay up all night and wait for  Santa Claus to come to our house.” While he looks out the window. And I look at him. I look at his father who believes in telling his children the truth. What a killjoy! I want my son to enjoy the fairytale of christmas and encourage him with whatever he wants to believe and do but as a parent I feel conflicted because I want him to be able to identify reality from the fairytale marketing rubbish where the story of Santa Clause is used to sell toys to parents/kids for money.  In his life he must know  the difference so he is not clueless. I want him to identify a tall story from a short one.

I look at my beautiful boy and say, “Darling life is full nof stories and the story of Father Christmas, dressed in Santa Suit, flying all over the world, through the air in one night on a sley and reindeer is one of them!” I explain the Santa story defies the laws of physics and is a slick marketing campaign to make people spend their money on products manufactured in warehouses. All of which mean nothing to my boy who, earlier in the year, wanted to fortify his room because he lost a tooth and was scared the tooth fairy was going to come in the night and steal it.

Eventually he did fall asleep on the lounge.

 

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

 

57. Ok, so stim! #Autism

My 5 yr old stims. A self regulatory behaviour in response to too much stimuli.  Where are the filters? Is it the pressure he needs? I don’t know! He  rubs his legs together allot.  I  love you son, so lets work with the unique makeup of you. I’m sure the child will get knock knee’s! Or cause a friction burn on his skin. Where is the vasoline!  Is it something to do with the Atopic Eczema he had as a baby I wonder? But this is his stim and apparantly, according to experts, like biting nails, it is a self-sooth. A response to outside stimulus and anxiety. I was rather concerned when the child dropped to the floor, and rubbed when on social outings. But not wanting to make a big issue about it just went with the flow. Keep on moving on. Don’t draw attention to the behaviour and it will go away. Well it has not!

I thought maybe he needs to have the sensory pressure.The light pressure of water flowing over his skin, awakening the proprioceptive factor. He finds it hard to follow instructions from his teacher. I enrolled the kid in swimming classes, which seemed to do the trick for the 10 weeks that classes lasted. Then things changed, our particular instructor moved on and it is so hard to find a special needs swimming instructor.

Why is it so hard to find a special needs swim instructor? Around $300 to get a 2 day swim teacher registration with a reputable organization, then another couple of hundred to be a special need registered on top of that. No wonder they are hard to come by. Apparantly you can do Aquatic therapy classes, I think this is water skills without the stop start time frame and meant to be stress less.

He has been doing it for atleast 8 months now, on and off! I thought perhaps he needed to go to the toilet, because it sometimes does look like a potty dance! Is this child holding on too long!  Then I thought I might like to get him horseriding, as sitting in a saddle might be an acceptable or suitable outlet for this stim. The appropriate term for it is equine therapy. I have not jumped through the hoop yet. I thought maybe they could get a saddle chair for him at school.

 

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

 

56. #Autism School first day

It is my understanding that there is atleast 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 fora mainstream school is to have  between 21 and up to 36 students per class with one teacher and a school services officer.

Well, if your child needs more attention in school to help their learning, then you really can’t beat 4-7 students per class with 1 teacher and 1-2 Student Services Officers. The 2 boys were all geared up to go to their new school that catered to the needs of children with Autism.

Upon asking the 5 year old No. 2 Kiddo  how much he liked the new school he stretched his arms out to show me how much. That was huge!! I hoped that the two transitions the previous month, before starting, would introduce to the physical layout and make  them comfortable with the new environment. I think it did. I think they like to wear the uniform, although there was protest about entertaining the idea. I think they liked going into get the uniform from the  reception area.  While sounds of jackhammers filled the air, (capital works in tow to get school up to scratch before start of school term) we attempted to pay our uniform fee’s. A  slightly perplexing assignment for anyone with hypersensitivities in the current context.

Low and behold! My  9 year old No. 1 Kiddo,  liked it the first day! He wants to go back after the first day. I can’t believe it. He liked the activities and schedules that they did. As soon as he went to class he got to sit at his own desk and play a word search game about his favorite video games in it. He went in with a mission, he was going to do the day! Alright! Wow! Well, I am shocked to see the ease into the siituation. There were visual schedules and visual plans around to direct the visual learners. There was a visual plan for the day. There were many sensory objects all aimed to reduce anxiety. I felt these were learning essentials catered to an Autistic learner that I had to fight long and hard for with the former school. Kiddo was tired from processing the new  environment and activities, he fell asleep in the car on the way home.

The youngest kiddo, the 5 year old did great, but by lunchtime he was pooped. The new environment and new faces! Turning to a blurr! And where is my Mum! The beginning reception students were picked up at lunchtime, as half a day was thought to be enough for them, yet my No.2 Kiddo had a year at (a different mainstream) school and thought to be more experienced at the whole school thing.

But I had blown it!! I did not pick him up at lunchtime with the other kids.  Boy oh boy he let me know it. Oh shite! Oh dear! After storming off, screaming at me and throwing himself on the ground. He turned on the waterworks! I was actually a little pleased that he was firmly moulding/imprinting the shape of his body in the pavement. This kid will be remembered. I asked him “So do you want to sleep at school all night? Or are you coming home with me!”. He thought about it then and off we toddled back to the car.

We will see what the next day heralds! I am pretty sure I shall be commanded to pick him up at lunchtime, the kid has me twisted around his little finger and I for sure do not want to break the bond  between mother and child. The sacred trust! Oh darn it! I had stuff planned today! Lol

 

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

 

55. #Autism specific School

It is my understanding that there is approximately 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 fora mainstream school is to have  between 21 and up to 36 students per class with one teacher and a school services officer.

So we are off to this Autism specific school and the kids actually want to go.  I am amazed! Finally. The children will be with children having similar Sensory Processing Disorder and Obsessive Compulsive etc. so they will be able to identify with the other kids and possibly even make some friends. I want happiness for the kids. I want them to enjoy school. Is this possible?

Does it iron out quirkiness? I hope not because I love the little quirky!  The quirky makes me laugh and I love  it? The quirky kid has a different view. My quirky kids wants to live with the Ants in an anthole at Uluru! I try  to explain the physical impossibility of this. My quirky wants to crawl through the doggy door forever, to get inside. I feel as if we are going to meet Alice in the wonderland of our house. I explain that he will grow. I love difference. I am pleased because Zak actually wants to go to the school,  which is new as its a struggle to get him to go at the old school. I hope he will abe happy with it.

Apparantly this new school is designed for smaller class sizes, in the vicinity of 3-8 students per teacher and an School services officer compared to between 21 to 36 student:1 teacher and 1 School Services officer ratio in a mainstresm school. The programs run at this school are specifically designed to work with the talents and uniqueness of Autism.

I would like the younger kid to be able to read, decode words, and enjoy writing. Know their maths and enjoy it.  Heck, that is what I want for both of them. I think a smaller class size may be the trick because, if the social pressure is less there may be less pressure and more ability to uptake information and perhaps even to be inspired by something.

The price tag associated with the new specialized private school, may I say it, could possibly put the opportunity to go out of the price range of alot of the population but perhaps not. What does one do in this situation? Homeschool? Stick your kid in mainstream and hope for the best? Get a scholarship? Education is not free.

Neurotypical kids find it hard to identify with my Autistic kids. My kids have quirky behaviour because of the Sensory Processing difficulties experienced and they act in certain ways or repeat certain behaviors because repitition of behavior 20 or more times either gets their “pull the string lawn motor, running” or makes them feel better. So we have to work with this. Sure, it’s annoying and slower than normal, and trying to train your child about the  road safety is essential do they don’t get skittled. Instilling a sense of self preservation in your child is another good idea. We run on on Autistic time frame which is not the normal time frame. Time is expanded out of normal parameters.

 

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

 

#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