Sunday, May 10, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday, Family Friday, All on a Sunday!

O.K. So I am so behind. I have a hard time getting out my usual Thursday and Friday posts on time because they are usually busy days where I don't always get the down time to write. I really need to just write them ahead and schedule them, but I usually forget. So I will do a combined post today.

Thoughtful Thursday

I started reading Asperger's Syndrome A Guide for Parents and Professionals by Tony Attwood this week. The first chapter deals with the diagnostic process. The second chapter has been very enlightening so far. It is all on Social behaviors. I am still working on this chapter, but wanted to share some of my insights.
First was on playing with others. Jesse wants to be friends with people many times, but struggles knowing how. Other times he wants to play by himself and this describes him perfectly: "The child appears to play in a 'bubble' and can resent other children intruding into their activity. When the child intends to play on their own and other children are inquisitive or want to be sociable, they can be quite abrupt or even aggressive in ensuring their solitude. They often prefer to be left alone to continue their activity uninterrupted." This happens almost daily between Jesse and Faith. He can get very upset when she tries to play with him or sometimes even sit by him.

Another thing that stuck put was the lack of social codes of conduct. This situation is so familiar to me, "On occasions the person may appear ill-mannered; for example, one young man with Asperger's Syndrome wanted to attract his mother's attention while she was talking to a group of her friends, and loudly said, "Hey, you!" , apparently unaware of more appropriate means of addressing his mother in public. The child, being impulsive and not aware of the consequences, says the first thing that comes into their mind. Strangers may consider the child to be rude, inconsiderate or spoilt, giving the parents a withering look and assuming the unusual social behavior is a result of parental incompetence. . . It is essential that other people understand that the child is not being rude, but did not know a more tactful alternative or appreciate the effect on other people."

Mr. Attwood describes the use of social stories to help teach proper social conduct. Once children with AS understand the proper conduct, they will almost become police in enforcing it. For example a few weeks ago we were playing tag at the end of scouts. Faith ran into the person who was "it" but everyone else continued to play as if she hadn't. Jesse became upset and stopped the game saying that Faith had touch the person and now was it no matter what. The social stories are very descriptive, showing what the situation should look and sound like for the child.

I wanted to share a few poems found in the book as well:

One foot in and one foot out
Is what Aspergers is all about.
Sometimes I think why me;
other times it's the best way to be.
A little different from the rest
makes you think you're second best.
Nobody quite understanding
a hard life which is very demanding.
I look like any other child
but little things just make me wild. (Vanessa Royal)

People everywhere,
Talking, wearing bright colours.
The talking is like the pounding of horses' hooves,
The bright colours are blinding,
The talking hurts my ears,
The bright colours hurts the eyes,
Oh why can't people be quiet and wear dull colours. (Dianne Mear)

The second one really describes Jesse feeling towards loud noises. Every time we try to have music on, he tells us it hurts him to listen to it. He sits through music class in school with his hands over his ears. Even as a little kid he would run out of sharing time because it was to noisy and he couldn't handle the others kids talking.

Family Friday

This week has been another busy week. Tyler had district for track on Friday where she ran the 200 meter hurdles. It was her first time running the race since she was injured a few weeks ago. She did a great job and I was nervously watching hoping she wouldn't fall again and reinjure herself.
We also finally got the lawn mowed and flower beds weeded after all the rain. Our yard was really looking bad! I also got the rest of the garden planted. Some stuff is still a little early, but I figured I would cover them if they came up before the last frost.
This morning I found I had an e-mail from 5 minutes for moms saying that I won an Elliot Lucca Ellene satchel. I was shock to win such a big giveaway. My one question is where do you wear a bag like this? I am sure I can find some place though!