Sep 19, 2014

Little Boy Genius

I saw this shirt and the first thing I thought of is The Big Bang Theory.  I love the show, but Sheldon is probably my favorite character.  He is always wearing the nerdy shirts, or at least cool t-shirts that I could see myself wearing.  They just look comfy.  Anyway, I bought the shirt with that in mind and took some pictures.  He looked so cute and I loved that color on him.  Given that he was recently diagnosed with Autism, it just worked.

Another Tooth Gone

I've been curious to see how long it would take for the bigger teeth to come out.  There's really no set timeline since every child is different.  Landon came home from school two days ago and told me that his tooth was loose.  I even tried to wiggle it, but it seemed fairly sturdy.  He kept swearing to me that it was loose and it was going to come out soon.  Usually "soon" means the darn tooth is rocking like a boat in a heavy storm.  Well, come to find out he was right!  It came out at school yesterday while playing with it with his tongue.

Then I hear, "Mom, I don't think the Tooth Fairy is real.  Something seems fishy.  How come you never see him/her?"  Uh oh!  I ignored it hoping he would drop the subject and move on.  It worked!  His tooth is still sitting on the counter in a baggy because I can't think of a sneaky, creative way for the Tooth Fairy to give him money.  I may have to make a box and put it in the living room (kind of like Santa's cookies).  As they get older it's way more difficult to do these sorta' things.  You want to keep the magic alive for as long as possible.  I absolutely hate it when they start to doubt everything.

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Sep 18, 2014

Finally, A Long Awaited Diagnosis

From the start of it all, I never thought in a million years that I would be one of those moms who had a child who was different.  When I looked at my newborn for the first time, watching him grow into an infant, and then into a toddler, I never knew we would be faced with any big challenges along the way.  We have dealt with multiple surgeries, many trying moments of administering anesthesia (and waking up), weekly therapies, doctor appointment after doctor appointment, and ABR (Auditory Brainstem Response) to detect hearing loss, a brain scan, blood tests, eight months of hearing tests, months of casts and leg braces, and for the last two years, behavioral challenges.  I feel we have been bounced all over the place and our medical bills prove it.

It has been quite a long road to say the least.  I've had people all around me with similar complaints and their children getting the help they needed, so I felt so alone and lost for the longest time.  Well, we finally got our magical day.  We had Liam evaluated for ADHD, SPD (Sensory Processing Disorder), and Aspergers.  It took us about two and a half weeks to get the results.  These last two weeks have been a real nail-biter.  I had a lot of emotions running through my body, but at the end of the day, I was happy.  There was finally a feeling of relief.  I just wanted to find out and move on with treatments, medications, etc.  I wanted to be able to do my own research on the subject, whatever that may have been.  I was ready.  We were ALL ready.

When I posted the news on Facebook, I had a friend send me a private message and this is what it read:

"I was reading your post about Liam and was filled a million thoughts and emotions. It was really brave of you guys to seek out those answers. We all want to do what's best for our little ones and sometimes that's a harsh reality. Not that it's a bad reality but from my side I don't want to think there is anything "wrong" with my boys. That would be like a failure on my part. (selfish thought huh). I know in the back of my mind there has always been the question of autism for Judah. I'm just greatly encouraged by you and your husband's courage to seek answers you just might not want to know but in the end it's better to know and be prepared then to always try to figure it out. Thanks for the help even though you didn't know you were helping me."

If I can help someone, anyone, I feel like I have accomplished the most amazing task.   Seeking answers for as long as we did about broke us, but we somehow found the courage and strength to keep moving on.  My friend was right.  You never want there to be anything wrong with your children, but God gives us these special people for a reason.  Not just to test our patience, but He knows that we're the right parents for the job.  We love Liam so much.  I can't describe how deeply I feel for him in a blog post.  God chose us.  I look at that as a huge honor for Him to have that much faith in us as parents.  We're doing okay.  Actually, we're doing more than okay.  We're content.  We're finally at peace.  Why?  Because we now know what it is and know that our baby boy is happy.  It doesn't bother him a bit.  He's always going to be our amazing little boy no matter what.  Since his disorder is mild, it won't be as challenging as a child with severe Autism.  That eased my mind a bit.  We will truck along just as we have been, but we will have to change our lifestyle a little to accommodate him.  He comes first.

Every day going forward we will celebrate him and the wonderful little person he has become.  He has come so far in this journey.  By the way, his shirt in the first picture really does say it all.

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Sep 14, 2014

Burning Off Energy

After a pretty chaotic day of crowds and babies galore, the kids were ready to spread their wings and run amok.  Landon was tired from sports and school and took a short nap, but somehow Liam always manages to find an energy boost in the midst of, well, anything, even if he is beyond exhausted.  When I'm tired, like Landon, I crash.  But I guess toddlers don't get that concept, or at least Liam doesn't.  Liam needs space and only a select few to play with.  Too many people is overwhelming and sparks the "crazy toddler" antics (sometimes with certain people).  He's not a crowd kinda' kid.  It's funny looking back on the big differences between when he was an infant or a small toddler to now.  Night and day.  He was such a quiet, happy, smiley little guy that never gave us any problems, even when teething.  Boy, does time change things.  The only thing that hasn't changed is his awesome smile.  Okay, and maybe happy 80% of the time.  He was much happier being in his back yard with his brother.  I could see a big change in his mood, tired or not.  I've always joked around and said that he's probably sniffing out something suspicious in people.  Ya know, like a dog does.  Not sure how or why he picks and chooses his "victims".  Whatever it is, it's weird because it doesn't include everyone he's around.

Having said all of that, if everything goes according to plan, Liam gets his test results back this Tuesday!  Long overdue, loooooong overdue.  Fingers crossed.

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Liam will wear a sweat jacket and pants in 60 degree weather, but takes his shoes and socks off.  Crazy kid.

Sep 13, 2014

Making A Splash

All the kids flock around our infamous puddle at the end of our driveway after a good rain.  I know that it's tempting, especially on bikes, to run through it to get wet.  Aaron and I have even done it a few times when we've taken the kids for a bike ride.  It's fun!  Kids love that sort of thing.  The girls came by on their bikes to ride with Landon.  They never actually left to go for a bike ride around the neighborhood.  Instead they stayed close to their favorite spot.  I captured the kids running through the water.  Their facial expressions say it all.  Love it!

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Poor little McLiam.  In due time, buddy.

Sep 4, 2014

Alone Time

I'd like to say that this post has everything to do with "me" time since us stay-at-home mothers desperately need that every so often, but not exactly.  Landon was in his room playing on the tablet enjoying some music and learning new songs like, "Everything Is Awesome" (which is a nice, positive song that he recently discovered).  Liam asked if he could go outside.  Instead of unleashing him into the back yard, I asked both of them if they wanted to go for a walk.  I have been wanting to lose a little weight and thought this may be a great opportunity to kill two birds with one stone.  Landon respectfully declined, but Liam was all about getting out of the house and sprinting for the front door.  I wasn't too shocked by their choices.  Landon is in a chill stage and Liam is my active, adventurous child.  We left Landon behind so he could have some time to himself and Liam and I headed off for some mom and son alone time.  Along the way, Liam found an "apple" that he later found to be a baby tomato.  He held onto that thing for dear life.  He even asked to sleep with it come bed time.  The kid is down right funny.

Before we headed off, Liam needed pictures taken in certain areas around the house.  Goofy kid.

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Liam loves to hold our hands, and for as long as we can remember he has been our "pinky" kid.  He always goes for the pinky finger.  When he realized that he was holding more than just a pinky, he quickly switched.

"Stay out of the water, Liam", I told him.  "He responded, "Okay, sure", as he spread his little legs over the puddles.