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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

My son is different

First things first! Thanks to Krystyn at Krizzy Designs, I have a new look for the Shoebox! Just what I need. Clean and fresh. Simplified! I love it! Thanks, Krystyn. It was so easy to work with you. Be sure to grab my new button in the side bar! Good-bye cartoon girl, hello me!
A recent evaluation has confirmed some concerns I've had for years.

A few weeks ago we were told our oldest has mild Asperger's, sensory processing issues, and high social anxiety.

None of this was a surprise. In fact, it was actually a relief to get an opinion I trust and agree with. Even though the news confirms his behavioral challenges, it's nice to have some validation behind my own personal Google research diagnosis.

A while back I wrote a post about some of his issues and got a ton of feedback from all of you! It has been two years since we have gone down the road of trying to get a diagnosis for him that makes sense. It was hard to pick that ball back up. I was so afraid of being lead down the wrong path again. I was afraid of my assumptions being rejected, and discounted because I'm just some mom with too much time on her hands to research disorders online. But, thanks to Katie at Sack of Potatoes, I am learning about Sensory Processing Disorder, and thanks to many of your comments I felt encouraged enough to seek some answers again.

We will be lining him up for regular appointments with an Occupational Therapist, and hope to continue to help him manage some of the things he's struggling with. All that being said, those are the facts. It seems so simple to type the update and plan. But, it's not that simple. He has to get through this life. He has to learn to become an productive adult in this world. It's just not that easy. He's a very challenging child. Every day is a challenge. Every hour is a challenge. One minute he's fine and the next the world is crashing in on him.

He does not deal well with change at all. This move has been very difficult for him. That's putting it mildly.

It breaks my heart to see that he notices that our youngest son does not have some of the same struggles that he does. He can see the differences. He's angry and frustrated. Sometimes I think he's even jealous.

He feels misunderstood. He is misunderstood. By me. By others. He thinks I'm against him no matter what I do.

He's not a toddler anymore. All of these struggles come hand and hand with being a 12 year old. He's having to deal with entering his teen years-which is hard enough. It's just not fair.

I watch other kids, other parents with their kids. My son doesn't "appear" to have anything wrong with him. He just looks like a healthy, handsome, young man. People don't really know what to do with him sometimes. His behavior can be misleading.

You never know what a child is going through. They're not just disrespectful. They don't just have a bad attitude. Sometimes there's more to it than that. Sometimes they don't know how to act around others, but aren't able to tell you that. So maybe they don't want to shake your hand? It doesn't mean they don't respect you. Sometimes they don't know what they feel. They just know they're uncomfortable.

Like many Wednesdays, I'm linking this up with Shell at Things I Can't Say.

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At May 11, 2011 at 1:02 AM , Blogger Sarah said...

A diagnosis is helpful but I can't imagine how it is living in his mind. I'll keep you guys in my prayers!!!

At May 11, 2011 at 9:09 AM , Blogger Heather said...

Of course your help will make things so much better for him.

(How coincidental. After figuring things are the best they can be for my son for two years we too are headed back to the doctor today to get a diagnosis so the school will help him out by getting an OT for his obvious fine motor skills problems.)

At May 11, 2011 at 9:13 AM , Blogger amygrew said...

Sounds like you are on the right track!

It's hard to deal with people misconceptions and lack of education on this I am sure.

With the help of the OT and you I am sure life will start to make sense a little more.

At May 11, 2011 at 10:25 AM , Blogger Jenn said...

Being diagnosed is a step in the right direction. Of course, you don't want to see anything "wrong" with your child...but having therapists available to you now will make a world of difference! My son's half-brother has some form of autism and other sensory issues as well...he just cracks me up whenever I see him (which isn't too often). Once I had taken Dylan to his Dad's for the weekend...I walked in, said Hi and his brother began to push me back out the door. His Dad apologized but I told him not to offense taken. For Seth (D's bro), I had done my job and it was time for me to leave. :)

I think your biggest battle is in the perceptions that others bring, as well as their lack of understanding. Your kid is not "bad" or "weird"...he just looks at the world through a different lens. Truthfully, I love these kids and being able to interact with them because they don't see things in the same way and I think that is so cool!

I know this will be a daily work in progress, but you are taking the right steps and although every day won't be easy, I think that some things will get easier, just because you will have a better understanding of your child!

At May 11, 2011 at 11:14 AM , Blogger Renee said...

What a relief it is to get an official diagnosis...but it's so far from the end of the story.

You will find the strength and patience to provide your son with everything he needs...mostly your love!

At May 11, 2011 at 11:51 AM , Blogger Losing Brownies said...

I lvoe your new look!

Having a diagnosis must take some stress from your shoulders. I hope that it's the next step on the journey to helping your little one.

At May 11, 2011 at 11:51 AM , Blogger Shell said...

First of all, I love your new look!

And this "I watch other kids, other parents with their kids. My son doesn't "appear" to have anything wrong with him. He just looks like a healthy, handsome, young man. People don't really know what to do with him sometimes. His behavior can be misleading." is exactly how I feel about my Bear a lot of the time.

Now that you have a diagnosis, hopefully you can get him the help he needs.

At May 11, 2011 at 9:32 PM , Blogger Sara said...

I am LOVING this new look :-)

Look at you... new house, new blog design!!!

I am sad that your son and family has to face this, but relieved you now know what you're facing. Sometimes that "label" gives a name to the unknown and makes it somewhat less intimidating. Praying for all of you {{HUGS}}

At May 11, 2011 at 11:37 PM , Blogger Emmy said...

Thank you for sharing this. And yes, finally getting a diagnosis can be such a relief as then you can start to move forward and get the help that is needed.
I am going to have to go read your other posts about this. There were several years that I was looking into this same diagnosis for my son.

At May 12, 2011 at 8:20 AM , Anonymous christine @ quasiagitato said...

Good for you for pursuing what you and your son need. Now you can get support. As a friend once told me, "Help helps."

At May 12, 2011 at 10:36 AM , Blogger Braley Mama said...

I am so happy for you that there is an answer, that must have been very difficult! Praying for you guys!!!! My daughter has some sort of social thing, I don't know what. She is very shy, even with people she has known since birth. But she is not with me or my husband. It is hard I don't want her to offend anyone, but I don't want to push her to do something she is uncomfortable doing, or just can't do. Anyway thanks for sharing this, it helps me in my situation too!HUGS!

At May 12, 2011 at 11:15 AM , Blogger Rach @ This Italian Family said...

The end of this post really touched me because I work with many children and teens and am often frustrated (not openly, but within myself) at their 'rudeness'. It never even occurred to me that there could be something like this behind those behaviors. I just assume that they haven't been taught right or disciplined properly or that they have an attitude problem. That is so wrong of me. Thanks for this, I really need to be more understanding.

At May 13, 2011 at 7:47 PM , Blogger Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

I love the new look!

I'm glad for you that you have some answers and direction... it's hard when you know in your gut something isn't quite right...

At May 15, 2011 at 4:21 PM , Blogger Katertot said...

I am so glad that you were able to get some answers. It's difficult now and it's not going to be an easy path, but I promise you that this journey is worth it.

I had a parent of one of my clients look at me and with tears in her eyes, she told me that her husband, the child's father, told her that he just realized their child wasn't his "perfect little boy" anymore. I assured her that in fact he IS a perfect little boy - he just needs help navigating through the world around him. Through therapy, you and he will gain techniques to do this. Hopefully, you'll have more smooth days than difficult and both gain a better understanding.

Feel free to contact me at anytime. If it's helpful, you can also have your son email me if he has any questions!


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