Friday, January 8, 2016

Somewhere on the Spectrum. Written by Just Another Mama

Somewhere on the Spectrum

Jessie was and will be my 1st and only pregnancy. Being the internet mom I am, I googled everything and tried to go super healthy for it. I quit all soda, started eating right and doing exercises. I even stopped going down stairs to my bedroom near the end because it was so bad for you according to the internet.

Once he came I was so in love. I look back at his pictures and see someone different. He couldn't keep any weight on him, and looked like a skeleton. That was the start of our problems. 

Since then Jessie has had more hospital visits in 3 years then the rest of my family combined. Both him and I got staph, he had surgery at 2 months for a hernia. And shortly after we figured out that my staph was so bad that I was admitted for a week. At this point he was taken off breast milk, and he sudden gained weight and lost his jaundice. But little bouts of colds, and infections plagued him for years. I wasn't sure how much of it was me being a 1st time mom and freaking out, or how sickly he really was. 

Once he finally started to mellow out I started looking into autism. From the start if he started to babble, we would try to talk back just like the books say. He would stop and not make a sound for hours. All toys had to be upside down, and he would like up blocks for as long as we let him. But when I saw kids his age at work acting so different that's when I knew we had to do something.

In April of 2014 we saw a professional, and not even ten minutes into the meeting he knew. At the time he was showing many of the "classic signs". Spinning wheels, only voicing certain sounds, and the sorting were big hits. We were lucky enough to get our meeting early on, and on the way home we even stopped at the early intervention program to get him signed up right away.

And I think that's what did it for him, before he was 2 years old he started getting weekly therapy visits. And we found another program that lent out "toys" for disabled kids to try before being bought. Being out in the middle of a national forest this is the best we can get without spending hours driving. But this has been amazing for Jessie. One of the toys we were lent was a Ipad, and Jessie's language took off. He had been working on signing and using P.E.C.S with the therapist but nothing really stuck. The Ipad slowly but surely has been dragging words outta him. 

Unfortunately that program ran out in August for him, but we picked up where they left off and got him his own Ipad with a few different communication apps on them. Like before nothing seems to stick too well. But he is so open to anything now. And I thank his therapist for that, she was amazing. She pushed right to the limit, but at the same time pushed that limit farther each time. And was able to calm him down right away. Jessie started not allowing anyone in the house, or anyone to touch him. And how he can't go 1 hour without grabbing onto one of us for a hug.

We tried having him in daycare to help with his socialization, since we are already hermits, and we didn't know anyone that could keep up with his needs. But that was a total fail. Yes he learned to stay in the corner and put toys away and sit nice at snack time. But there was no progress with dealing with other kids. If any came near him he would yell and hit them until they left. He still isn't doing too well there. When at the playground, if another child shows up he needs to leave right away. Even though he is now in a proper preschool he just can not handle children. Adults are fine, but young people seem scary to him. I, hoping he can work through this in some way as they are not going away. And I just don't believe in home school, people need social interactions.

All through this I worked way too much, to the point of only seeing Jessie for up to 2 hours a day if I was lucky. And went through some horrible depression. I'm finally getting the help I need, and stepping back from work. But I never imagined like would turn out this way. And while I hate what he has to live through I love every odd thing he does. The weird goat like happy sounds, the need to have the lights out with a "good night" no matter what time it is. And even how passionate he is about water, though it terrifies me at the same time. 

I know that he is going to grow into a amazing person. We just need to give him the time he needs. And that's hard as a parent to have to wait for your child to get better at something. Last year he couldn't tell me anything. Now he leads me to what he wants and that in its self is amazing, and totally worth the wait. So Dad and I will keep waiting for Jessie to catch up, even if it means a snail crawl sometimes, and a brisk run at other.

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