Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Life...

PLEASE tell me that I am not the only one that finds life frustrating and terrible all at the same time?? Okay so I will try to be positive...life goes up and down and right now is a DOWN time.

Okay I won't be that negative, not all of life is negative - just most parts of the day are negative. Mostly having to deal with ALL of the responsibilities that I have (want me to name them?) and with this little guy...
(And yes, this is his school picture for the year)

Okay now if it was just the picture, which everyone thinks I need to lighten up about, but is it so wrong to want a nice smiling picture like all the previous years? I am also told I will laugh at it eventually..not yet. 

This year has been such a struggle with him! We are only in the 2nd month of school and lets see....

1. We have gotten a total of 3 citations for the bus (4 total are allowed for the year) and is now suspended from the bus for this week. The first 2 weeks of school he got his first 2 citations.

We have most of the kinks worked out on the bus now, and frankly strike 3, was him mostly being a stinker compared to the first 2 were just him having problems adjusting to the bus. 

2. We have already punched a little kid at school in the nose and gave him a bloody nose. He almost got suspended from school for that for a day, but the Principle in his wisdom and experience with Autistic children let it slide. We were also very lucky to have the kid he punched and his mother were understanding and laid back enough to let it go. 

3. I receive on average a phone call a day from Brandon from school with a problem. They let him call me when he wants just to appease him, which is NICE because talking to me helps him calm down. 

4. The resource teacher, who we LOVED had to quite, which lets be honest, I cried! She has an older son with Aspergers and understood Brandon SO WELL!! She was a great mediator for him and helped him cope so well! 

I don't know what this little boy's problem is this year, or what is causing him to be so anxious this year. It has been more stable this year at school ( last year was the very first year for this new charter school, so it was a complete work in process). But it has caused my stress level to sky rocket! 

I used to think he was a "high functioning" aspergers kid. But what did I know when he was younger. It was a LOT easier when he was younger, but now as he is getting older and you get the "normal" expectancy of 8 year old boys you find that he is quite severe! I mean simple little things that you would think was just "natural" just doesn't register with him! He just plain doesn't know. That has been a big struggle. What is the difference from him just "not knowing" and him being a "stinker and playing the system". Cause this little boy, is just SO SMART! Just has the social capacity of a 4 year old. 

Now that I have that out of the way....there are some MAJOR positives with him too. He is so loving and is always willing to give me a hug or a snuggle at the end of the day! He is so smart in math that he is working on PER-ALGEBRA! 7th grade math! It comes so easy for him! In fact the Math Department asked him to be in the American Math Challenge this week (starts today) for a few days! Which means he just gets to do math all day for two days! He LOVES it! Since Math and Science are his favorite subjects he is happy. They have asked kids in all grade levels, but only 40 out of the whole school (several hundred) were  asked! 

Also he is doing so well in Cub Scouts and has progressed so well! He has accepted that he won't like everything in Scouts and has dealt with that and just has stepped up! SO PROUD OF HIM! 

So out of all the "stress" there is some positive. But just add this to everything else a "typical" mom has to do, you can see how life just sucks for awhile right? 

I do know that no matter what, my Heavenly Father will NOT give me anything that I cannot handle and that is some comfort to me. So I know that I can handle ANYTHING that comes my way. 

I also think that good times are coming, I am a FIRM believer that things get really bad before things get really good. Just the way Satan works and tries to get us down. So I know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel even though I can't see it just yet...but I KNOW it's there! 

Thanks for listening to me vent, and I definitely wanted to write this down so I can look back on what life is like right now with Brandon. 

Also if there are people out there (I know of some) that have kids with Aspergers or kids with Autism,  drop me a line! Tell me your horror stories so that mine don't seem that bad! LOL But also any advice with an 8 yr old Aspergers!

12 comments:

Luv 2 Kreate said...

AWWW BIG HUGGS to you mama! I firmly believe that things will get better and better for you and your little guy, just hang in there, pray, and have faith in him and your awesome parenting! You ar a fantastic mom to so really great little guys :)

amber said...

I was almost crying when I read your post. My daugther also has aspergers and is turning 8 this month. This is also a down time in our lives. What school does your son go to? Does it make a differance then going to a non charter school?

It makes me mad when my sisters tell me how to punish my kids, when they have no idea how a child with aspergers acts or how they needs to be punished.

praying for you and you are doing a wonderful job.

Amy said...

Sorry dear! I wish I could give advice of how to make it better. You are a wonderful mother and I love that you are working through this and seeing the positive too.

kerrykatiecakeskeb43 said...

Hang in there! You will laugh at the photo in time - I know I have a complete set of those photos they take right at the hospital with my beautiful baby girl and a great big booger hanging out of her nose. Yes, I have the complete set - never gave any away - you understand! lol As to the rest, these kids are a struggle but they are worth it. If it is you who is frustrated at the end of the day and he is feeling okay, you are doing a great job!

Jacqueline said...

Oh sweetheart. Be patient with yourself. Pray for strength. He will be alright. You are describing my husband. In second grade he socially reverted and had to learn everything again that year. He remembers it being a bad school year but couldnt put his finger on why. xoxoxo It may get worse before it gets better, but it will get better.

Anonymous said...

Deep breath! Exhale...not sure where to start except to assure you that your coping skills will grow right along with your son -- I know because I'm the mom of an autistic 14 year old boy and while it has been challenging (really awful at times), it is also filled with laughs and lots of hugs! It takes especially loving, wise and strong parents to raise these special children (easy for me to say for someone else, harder to believe it of myself :) Do you have a good IEP (Individualized Education Program) at his school? Autism qualifies for a variety of services and if you haven't got an IEP, go to yellowpagesforkids.com or copaa.org and find yourself an advocate. An advocate can guide you in the right steps to take toward getting all of the help your son needs. I can't get much more specific than that since I don't know what state you are living in. The earlier the interventions, the better and the more equipped he will be for the future. Sometimes it is heartbreaking to realize life for our children will never be what we expected but then God blesses us with the ability to appreciate the smallest accomplishments that are so easy for others. I hope you will be able to find other local moms to compare notes with because then you can share the laughter and the tears that accompany living with the unique perspective of our very special children! If there is no one local, I know there are other moms out there blogging about this...you and your family will be in my heartfelt prayers for a long time to come.

Tiffany said...

Oh Brandon. With all that is going on, you still can't help but love him, can you!
You are doing a great job - all the things you are doing right now will make a big difference to him later in life. Even if you can't see it right away.
I agree - Heavenly Father would not give you this challenge if he didn't know you were up to it. This coming from someone who will soon be mom to twins - He knows what He is doing.

The Picketts said...

I wish I could give you better advice - but we ALL get stressed and just generally fed up with all that is required of us as a parent! My best solution (and I'm totally serious)...allow yourself to be upset, miserable, mad and whatever other feelings you are feeling. BUT only allow yourself to feel those ways for a short short time. THEN LAUGH! Even if you have to go on YouTube and find some funny comedians or something. (if you need some recommendations, let me know - I have a few that put me in tears because I'm laughing so hard - even when I've seen them several times!) Laughing is a GREAT cure! I always tell myself that ANYONE can find the negative in any situation, but it takes a real STRONG person to find the good and the "laughable" qualities in the situation (and it looks like you're already on your way with finding the positive with your sweet son). Regardless of the fact that Brandon has autism, parenting is difficult and we sure don't have an instruction manual to help tell us what to do. BUT, we have some incredible "mommy intuition" that sure puts us on the right path. And you are truly doing an awesome job of being a mommy.
When you speak of your children, you can feel the complete love that you have for each of them. Even during times when you want to pull your hair out! :o) And really, that's all that matters - that YOU love them. That's what they will remember.
Don't EVER doubt your ability in mothering YOUR child. No one else completely understands your life - and no one ever will, and that's ok. But don't doubt yourself and what you think/know to be best for your kiddos. If you do that - everything will work out in the end. Even if the road there is a little bumpy!
Hang in there and don't forget to LAUGH! :o)

Love you!

Kathy said...

Hang in there! I have a special needs daughter (Down syndrome) and it's so easy to get discouraged. But you're his best advocate and you know what he needs better than the schools, so just keep pushing for what's best for him. It sounds like math is really a strength for him... I've heard of kids with autism-spectrum issues who do really well when you let them pursue their strengths. Stay positive and give him lots of love and support, and make sure the school administration stays on the same page as you. You might check with your local support group to see if they have parent advocates who can come with you to school meetings, etc.

Alex and Katie said...

You're the best, Crystal. And a fantastic mom. Hang in there. Love you.

Kay Lynne said...

I've never gone through what you're going through, but reading your post you are just a wonderful mother! I have two grown sons and there's been some ups and downs. In one of our down times a wise neighbor told us to never give up on our kids. Keep on be a great mom :) You're in my prayers.

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