Seen & Heard

October 21st, 2014 by Ruth

I didn’t realize I felt like an invisible parent until this morning. When I met a social worker in an intake appointment to see whether a certain social skills group/program would be a good fit for N. Not sure if it was because she was an MSW (like me) and we were speaking the same language and had the same outlook/perspective/values. She was trying to get a feel as to what N was like, and what I was like with him at home, and after some sharing, she interrupted me and said, “You have been doing this from day 1, haven’t you? Being a mom slash therapist?”

And then she proceeded to tell me all the little things I was doing that led to N’s current success and I was so overwhelmed that I nearly broke down in tears of relief. I had been seen and heard.

I doubt I am the sole reason my son is doing as well as he is today, but it is nice to not feel invisible and that the work I do at home on a daily basis, is not invisible either.

I am not alone, I parent with a Heavenly Father who guides my paths, while I plead for wisdom every step of the way. And every once in awhile, He lets me know that I am doing a good job, despite how I am feeling that day/week/month.

Empathy & Taking Initiative

October 21st, 2014 by Ruth

J was sniffling in the kitchen (after a stern scolding from me). N walked in and watched J for a moment, before speaking up.

N: J, how can I help? (Scripting per Daniel Tiger’s episode about saying sorry)

J: (sniffling and pouting). Nothing.

N: How can I help…? …Do you want a tissue?

J: (sniffling) Yes…

N: (runs to hand him a tissue) Want to hold a letter? (Handing J a toy letter)

They ended the conversation by running together into the living room to play. I was left in the kitchen, astounded by what I just witnessed. I tried to leave them alone to let the situation form and develop organically (without any prompting). But occasionally I poked my head in the other room just to check on them. The room was a disaster, but they were happily playing side by side.

To a regular mom, this may seem like a non-event, but to me, this interaction required a lot of complex things going on. I am astounded and encouraged at the same time. I can’t believe this is happening!!! =)

Unique Kids

October 17th, 2014 by Ruth

The other night we went out to dinner as a family. While the kids were busy with their meals and drawing with their crayons, W and I were able to talk quietly among ourselves and trade notes and muse over their individual development/progress. W admitted with a laugh that as a dad, he no longer knows what “typical” is anymore. I pointed at J and said, we’ve got an NT kid here, he’s “typical” isn’t he? And then after a brief moment of contemplation, we both laughed at the same time and agreed that, no, J is not typical either.

Which is ok. What is “normal” anyways?! We love our unique kids and their sparkling personalities (for better or for worse, lol). God created then to be so different, yet have striking similarities. We’re curious to see how He uses our kids with the gifts He’s given each of them.

N’s New Recent Things

October 15th, 2014 by Ruth

We’re a couple months into the school year. We’re finding our new normal, our new daily routine. School, homework time, dinner time, free play time, practice piano, and bedtime. Wash, rinse, repeat. It’s taken a bit of time to adjust, but so far it is going OK. A couple good things:

 

1. We are getting less reports from schools (for both boys, particularly with N), so that is good thing. And most recently, N is no longer trying to destroy the classroom every afternoon (a whole other story in itself). =)

2. N suddenly is starting to nod correctly and appropriately.

3. N’s use of pronouns are finally straightened out.

4. Also, a month ago, I took N to the dentist and he rated it a 4/5! I’m not sure what happened, but it was apparent that I was more nervous about it than he was. Maybe me being nazi about his tooth-brushing and daily flossing helped desensitize him a bit. His hygienist is a rock star; she counts in French and knows exactly what peaks N’s interest and distract him. In fact, he said he LIKES going to the dentist, it’s “fun”! I’m sure it also helps that he gets a billion prizes at the front desk afterwards. Haircuts are still really scary for him, but he plows through them like a big brave boy. I’m sure if I give him a haircut as often as I brush his teeth, the haircut experience would be similar to the dentist, but oh well. At least it’s all headed in a positive direction overall.

5. N’s school offers a lot of sports clubs and special interest clubs and even music lessons. Many of these things happen after school, and as his school day is already quite long, I declined (although I would love for him to do a sport to help with gross motor, but that’s something for later, should the right opportunity arise). Except for the piano lessons, which he can take during a recess. I figured it might help with his fine motor skills and he would like the theory part because a lot of it is math related. Turns out, it is a hit. Initially, practicing took a bit of creative enticing, but we keep it very short and simple and fun. And just last night, I found him working on “a project”. It took me a moment to realize what he was doing. He wrote a song!!

Three Six Nine song

The song is called “Three Six Nine” and it is written in 4/4 time. The lyrics are the words at the top, and the numbers above the notes are the beats/counts, I think. And the numbers below the notes are the finger positions (based on his thumb on middle C, just like in his Bastien book). He even put in bar lines between the measures, and a double bar line at the end. (P.S. Sorry about the big black bar above, he wrote his full name mega big on the paper, lol.)