The Long Road to Teaching Empathy with Special Needs

Unhappy with the movie we'd chosen for the evening, my son jumped up to the television and clicked it off. Thrilled at his accomplishment, he smiled at the screen, crossed his arms and said in delight, "There." My daughter and I sat on the couch. I told her not to laugh or smile no matter how funny or cute he got. He turned to look at us. This was serious. At an age when empathy is critically important, it was imperative for him to learn how his actions affect how others feel. It is critical for him to connect cause and effect. ...more

Long Time No Write...

Well, hello... I haven't done this in over 3 years. I abandoned the thought of writing my inner, deep, personal thoughts down and entering them into cyberspace for some time now but I'm choosing to entertain it once more. I'll call it free therapy for myself. My special needs son, Riley, became even more "special" last summer and was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. I cried the day he was diagnosed and then proceeded to throw a pity party for myself every time I heard the song, "Worn" by Tenth Avenue North....more
"I cried the day he was diagnosed and then proceeded to throw a pity party for myself..." -I ...more

Through the Eyes of a Little Boy with Autism

My mom loves me.  Even when I kick and scream, refuse to eat, or try to hurt myself when I’m mad.  One time right before bed I slapped her right across her face.  She didn’t get mad or yell though.  She told me “no” and put my hands by my side.  She still snuggled with me and read my books to me....more

New me

    It starts ...more

"Remember That Time David Pulled Out Your Hair Till You Bled?"

 My daughter and I got into a discussion last night about the circumstances of her birth - or more accurately, her conception....more

Joy From Ashes

Beneath the instruction to develop a sentence was a line that read: I like mouse. I gaped in awe.This three-word sentence in mix upper and lower case letters was conceptualized and penned solely by my youngest on his assignment sheet.For the first time since he attended Kindergarten, he did not ask me to read an instruction or spell a word while working on an assignment....more

Our autism journey to a big boy bed

Brandon is three.  He has been in a crib up until about a month after his third brithday.  This is fairly old to still be in a crib.  He's had the ability to climb out of his crib for more than two years before we made the switch.  He loved his crib, and bedtime was easy peasy for me, so we went with it!  He climbed out a couple times, but that was a very rare occurance.  As active, strong, and athletic as he is, he stayed in the crib....more

Merryish and Brightish

 May your days be merry and bright! Well, not every day that we did a Christmas activity was merry and bright.  But it's okay....more

Depression and the Autism Parent

I'm at Starbucks typing this blog post at the insistence of my husband, who saw a dark cloud settling over me and knew I needed some time alone. For most of this year, I've had a decently positive attitude about my son's autism diagnosis....more

Siblings Aren't Really Family, At Least Under FMLA

Earlier this week I happened across this article in The Atlantic regarding the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and its restrictions, particularly on how it defines family. The article details the case of Barbara Sapharas , whose brother became disabled in a workplace accident. He needed help caring for his children, and could not walk or drive....more
As a mother who also has a now adult child with autism, I total understand your concerns, I ...more