Monthly Archives: January 2015

Moved!

But not unpacked. I am superwoman, not Divine.
Everything went swimmingly when they saw the new place. Then middle son got into the bathtub and said it was dirty. I had just cleaned it out with a bleach abrasive cleanser. It has a sort of worn mark in the back that is darker, it is not porcelain, but one of those surrounds.
But here is what is funny about that. Our old bathtub was made of the same stuff, but somehow previous tenants had cracked, nicked, chipped, and I have no idea what they must have done to it for it to be patched. It was clean, but awful.
So he is upset about a better bathtub with worse fixtures. I heard him out, reasoned with him a bit, told him I was sorry, and agreed when he asked me to save my money for a better place. He understands that it would be a long while.
I am going to ask for new fixtures if Barkeeper’s Friend or something like that doesn’t do it.
Ha. The entire house just started shaking. I think it is from the train. It felt like a small earthquake.
The house also leaks something awful. I need weatherproofing, and bad. I pay my own heat here, which is not the norm for rentals in these parts. I will jury rig something this weekend over the windows, but the front door cannot be covered like that.
But to be honest, I have never lived in a place this size. I need a bigger kitchen, but all bakers do.
Thank you everyone for your well wishes. The support helped.

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Middle Son’s Medication

Middle son has been very active. I mean like overactive, hyperactive, attention deficit active. But not hitting anyone, thank goodness. He is still bursting into tears each day over every real and imagined slight.
I thought I must have put on his patch wrong. I thought I must have it in the wrong place. I thought he must be so rattled by the move that it has stopped being effective.
I talked to three nurses, a pharmacist, and his doctor (by proxy) today. The doc thinks he is just accustomed to the dose. We have to wait until a shipment gets into our small town tomorrow to get him the new dose on his patch. His patches have been leaving red marks that take a week to fade, and the doc wants me to try rubbing the spot with lotion three times a day to see if it will go away, as there is no blistering.
I had emails from Middle Son’s teacher each of the last two days, telling me she can barely teach him because of his busy behaviour and she had him show her that his patch was on, because he was acting like he had none. Luckily it was a lot of computer testing, common core crap, so he got into minimal trouble. Though something has happened that has gotten him banned from the boy’s bathroom… no one has explained, other than to reassure me it was an accident and not intentional on his part. If I can get a minute alone with him, I will ask him.
Poor kid. Tomorrow is show and tell and he cannot find what he wants to show. His auntie must have packed it for him. I hope he can manage the compromise we worked out.
I hope he does not acclimate to his new dose in four weeks, like he did with this one.

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Special Education Just Got More Special

My oldest son’s special education teacher just called. She has noticed a great deal of anxiety, misuse of the word ¨boring¨ (my son uses it in the British sense, which is confusing to an American elementary teacher, rightfully so), and a general dislike of the mainstream class he is in. My son has been asking more often to go to the special education room to get his work done in quiet.
She wants to pull him out of the mainstream class, but give him the same academic lessons, and break them up with OT and sensory ¨lessons¨.
I want my son to learn.
He is going to a psychiatric evaluation this week. It has been about a year now since he has become afraid to be in a room by himself, and the county insisted he be evaluated, based on observation of his behaviour. They thought he had ADHD. I thought not. He is just like that, I said. He gets bored, distracted, he gets curious -off topic. Oops, my bad, because that is what ADHD is!
His ADHD test came out with a zero attention span. Yet he can focus when he has the drive. The child taught himself to read in a few months, when this same teacher saw him go home for the summer not reading, and come back for the next grade, fluent. She says his comprehension is good. She said his big issue is skipping superfluous words in reading aloud. I told her to give him Hemingway. Hemingway doesn’t use any superfluous words. She didn’t know that. I thought everyone knew that. I suppose my son would make a great auditor, if he could winnow finances and companies like he does with sentences. I suppose right now he would be an editor.
Kidding aside, I know he has the mind to learn, if he is interested in the subject matter. I am so lucky to have a son who likes robotics, engineering, and Minecraft. He has been telling me every single day that he hates school. I hope this helps. I want him to love learning. Hell, I want him to love living. I could care less if he is a straight A student. I want him to love being alive, to be comfortable in his own skin.
Conferences are in a week. If she pulls him out of mainstream now, we should have something to discuss then, and be able to tell if he is more open to learning in the microcosm of his special education room.

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Service Dogs Are For The Rich

Everything is a business.
There is only one reputable place I can reasonably apply for a service dog for my son. Every other place, assuming I can raise the ¨donation¨, would require hotel and food for weeks of training. Not to mention care for my other children while I am doing this. Another adult to watch my child (yes, I had to pick which one, I don’t like it anymore than you do) while I am in their facility and the child is not, etc. Of course I cannot work and do the training at the same time, so I would lose a bit of income.
I am practically superwoman. I can do things like this, but the risk is really too high. If the dog does not work out, I have to pay for this working vacation all over again. So I am forced to go local,and only one place here works with children. Only autistic children.
Every PTSD assist dog is for adults, and mostly for veterans. Which is good, just not for anyone like myself who has multiple children with PTSD.
I have been reading on service dogs all week. I had a fantastic dog for over a decade, and I raised her myself. I found her eating garbage at the end of my road just off base in North Carolina. Everyone dumps their dogs right by the base. She was the fourth one I found, but the only one I kept instead of finding a home for, because she was attentive, instinctively attuned to me, and learned to sit in the first half hour. I know you shouldn’t train a dog for thirty minutes at three months of age, I wasn’t training her. I was just telling her to sit, on and off, to see if she could learn the word. She did, with her eyes on my face. She did everything a service dog would do, except for the proofing. I could not get her to remember to ¨stay¨ for more than forty five minutes. Oh, and I also could never get her to sit from afar. She always came back to me to sit. She could not work out the stay and sit combo. It might have been me, I was not a dog trainer. She was perfect.
So my point is that there is also a place here that will coach you through training your own assistance dog. There are probably two places, and I know I can handle it, if I can find the time. I am going to put him on the list and see what happens. It is not up to me, but up to them. If they do not think we are a good fit, I will get that letter from the psychologist and get a cat or train up a dog.
I have the applications for horse therapy in my bag. I need the boys to sign them, and off they go. I might not be able to afford that, either, but I will never know until I give them these waivers. I have fantastic testimonials from horse people and the community.
If I had gone to college, and made some decent money, I would not be writing this.

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Middle Son And Moving

My poor middle child has burst into tears six times today and told me he wanted to die. He has not done that since he began his medicine, over a year ago. I am very sorry for him.

I think it is from moving. From seeing his things packed up, his schedule disrupted, and his mommy very busy. Today we did most of the house. Not much is left to pack. Everything we own is hidden inside brown boxes.

He is probably being triggered by the move. He remembers what happened when we moved before. We moved one day, and left the next when the violence escalated. We never went back.

I am sure he is afraid.

His nightmares come early and persistently now, it seems all night long.

I am going to spend some time talking to him tomorrow about his feelings and our moving. I am grateful that I got his consent and his approval before we moved. I am sure it would be a million times worse if he did not feel as though he wanted to move, as if I did not care how he felt.

I feel so sad for him.

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Service Dogs

Yesterday I spent all day agonizing over service dogs. The psychologist has been ready to hand me a medical necessity note for over a year. She really wants my son to have a dog or a cat, but I haven’t time to train or care for much larger than a canary. I am not home enough, and when I am, I am really busy. It would not be fair.
I was looking up therapies like horse (I have to apply for that for both boys) therapy and just seeing what other animal therapy was out there when I came across autism assist dogs. I did not know there was such a thing. This is the last year that my son can apply for a service dog. Here there is an age limit. I read everything on it, thought about my son, and decided that the training was not really pertinent to him, he is not so bad off and those dogs should go to people who truly need them beyond a doubt.
I pick him up at daycare and the teacher takes me aside and tells me he hit her. Not his usual MO. I get him home and explain he has lost his computer privilege because of it and he threw a fit for forty five minutes. No one got hurt, I have seen far worse fits, but I am going to turn in the application for the dog. I probably will not get approved, I am sure most do not. The wait is two years. If he no longer needs assistance at that time, then great. But right now he can use all the help he can get. I should not discount any method. If I don’t gather resources for him, who will?

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Triggering Events

My son and I are having nightmares. I had to go to work with our abusers face burning in my mind, as the alarm went off while I, in a dream, tried to keep him calm. Like I was back there, trapped. Those are worse than the being found nightmares. Those are panicky, sure, but at least in those dreams I got away for a while. When I dream that I never left, that I am trapped in that cycle of trying to appease a monster and protect my children, those are worse. Those nightmares ruin my day. I don’t get them often.
It is the move. My son awoke screaming in the night, something he thankfully does not do very often anymore. He has been having more of those dreams, the more we box up our belongings.
I hope they go away in the new house. But the new house is not as securely set up as this house is. It is far easier to access and far more exposed. I haven’t got a dog to alert me to anything. I ought to look into security. I ought to move on. How does one know when to stop being afraid? With what does one measure personal risk? I don’t think a conversation even with Gavin De Becker will help. I feel like I have to take every precaution, at all times, and that is a ridiculous way to live forever.
PTSD really sucks.

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