Predicting happiness of couples raising an autistic child

What makes some couples who are raising a child with autism get divorced, while others thrive? Researchers at the University of Miami did some analysis of couples to find out.The scientists looked at things like:1. the impact of optimism (as an individual trait)2. social support3. spousal support4. coping styles5. benefit finding ("the bright side"?)They found that:1. Mothers had more social and instrumental support (vs. fathers)2. Moms and dads didn't differ in terms of partner support, optimism or relationship satisfaction...more

The Healing Power of Stories: Why Sharing Our Health Journey Matters

Storytelling has the power to heal.My grandma, a woman who spent her life volunteering in hospitals and passed away after a challenging journey with pancreatic cancer, found strength and community in the experiences that she shared.  While she died long before blogging became popular, the memory I have of her delivering flowers to patients or sharing her favorite food tips to ease cancer symptoms, reminds me of the power of stories to heal and connect....more

Suck it up--A realistic guide to parenting kids with Autism

I recently read several blogs talking about the anguish and tragedy involved in having a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Been there, done that, survived it—three times. You read that right--three. All three of our children (2 girls, 1 boy) had diagnoses on that magical spectrum before each one had turned four. FINALLY I was the overachiever my parents always wanted me to be!!!...more
My first visit to the Autistic room my son would be attending, I spoke to the teacher. He said ...more

Caregivers For Special Kids

There is always so much talk about how Mom’s need to care for themselves so that they are able to care for their children.  When you Google “Secrets of a Happy Mom” you come up with everything ranging from new moms to moms of teenagers, and all the ways one can find happiness in those roles of parenting.They all have a common theme running through.  Mom’s need personal time, exercise, time alone with a husband or significant other, etc. to be a whole person before anything else.  ...more

The Loquat Climber

 There's a tree in our old neighborhood that my husband pointed out on a walk once. Years ago, someone nailed a sign to it. “No Trespassing”, most likely, but you can barely read it. The tree has grown up and around the sign such that today, only a few black letters are visible beyond the gnarled and knobby bark. How the steely edges of that yellow sign must have dug and cut into its proud trunk along the way....more

ADHD decreases at higher altitudes

I live in Colorado so I found this very interesting.Higher altitude states have lower ADHD rates. In Utah, for example, the rate of diagnosed ADHD is 50% of states at sea level.And for every one foot increase in elevation, the likelihood of being diagnosed with ADHD decreases by .001 %.Why?1. Higher altitudes mean more dopamine production. Decreased dopamine is linked to ADHD.2. It could also be partially due to regional disparities in diagnosing ADHD....more

It's Not Autism That I'm Celebrating Today

For me, Autism Awareness Day is a time of celebration.  But I'm not celebrating that fact that my son was diagnosed with autism.  That day was not one full of joy and happiness.  Today I am not celebrating autism.  Today I celebrate my son, Brandon.  He works so hard every day to be self-sufficient, independent, and to communicate.   ...more

Autism Awareness Facebook Cover Photo!

The month of April is Autism Awareness Month, and April 2nd is Autism Awareness Day! ...more

You Might Be a Special Mom If...

This is the special moms version of "...you might be a redneck."  They were written by a group of strong, intelligent, courageous, loving, special needs mamas.  One of their most important qualities is that they have a sense of humor...something that is a requirement for sanity for the special needs parent. ...more

A Daughter Teaches, A Mother Learns.

I'd like to tell you a story about a baby girl. Did her mother know one day in April that her doctor appointment would not go as planned. Did she know they would tell her she would deliver her baby that day. Did she know the doctor would use terminology she did not read about in the baby books. Did she know after a suggested sonogram, she would be told that her baby has a "myelomeningocele - spina bifida, a neural tube defect in which a developing baby's spinal cord fails to develop properly." A what? And explain it in WORDS she can understand please! NO, I did not know....more
Thanks Heather! She is beautiful!more