Cuttin’ up

Cuttin’ up

There are quite a few things I am not able to experience in the world like other parents with “normal” kids.

Getting Hayden’s hair cut is an obstacle that I wish on no person. It’s cardio and a part time job all in one and to top it off, I get charged more because of it. When I say more I mean instead of being charged $10, like every other child was charged for a hair cut, you get a surprise total of $30-$40 because of his special needs.

I am not tripping am I??

*Whew*

He has to be held down while he is getting his hair cut or it will be bad. How do I hold him down you ask? I have him sit on my lap and have my arms wrapped around his torso (including his arms) and my legs wrapped around his. Did I mention he was four years old when all of this happened?

Like I said earlier, a cardio workout, but that should still be no reason to charge almost $50 for a haircut for a child when I am doing the hard part!

So I ask again, am I tripping?

I will say, one of the places we went to was considerate of Hayden’s needs. The owner made sure that there was limited people in the shop. He also made sure to have the lights dim and all music low, just in case there was a sensory overload. That, I appreciated.

However, after being referred to this particular location we experienced very unprofessional-like behavior from one of the other employees there. Not only did this person get a kick out of Hayden fighting because of the sound and vibration of the clippers, but they were laughing pretty loudly. Although the owner apologized for their actions, it was still unacceptable.

Needless to say, we never went there again and I have spread the word to other autism parents in the area about how unprofessional and inconsiderate some of the workers were at this particular location. The owner was nice, but he should have done a better job educating his staff on what autism was. It completely destroyed the image I had for him and that place.

To avoid the unnecessary price spikes and snickering from ignorant bystanders, I decided to start cutting his hair on my own. It saved me a lot of money for months and Hayden was more comfortable around me. Yes, he did try and fight me off or run a away (because of his sensory processing disorder), but I was still able to get the job done.

Ask me if I am able to cut his hair still….

Hayden is the strongest little person I have ever met in my life and the crazy thing about it is he doesn’t realize he has that type of strength. I have had teachers and other professionals tell me he is extremely strong, so when he unleashes his “super power” because the sound of the clippers hurts him, I stopped.

He is only seven years old and he is only going to get stronger. We will have to figure something out about his type 4C hair because cutting, unfortunately, is no longer an option for both of our safety. Maybe when he gets older he will be more accepting of the clippers, but right now it is a no-go.

So for now, we are embarking on a new journey and it is called, ‘Mastering the Crown.’ His little afro will be fun to explore.

Say, what?

Say, what?

I have decided that there is no better way to feel like I am not going crazy than to talk to myself aloud. Sounds crazy, right? Haha.

We all do it, but being a parent with TWO special needs children, it has become a part time hobby for me. So, instead of looking crazy, I decided to take my “special talents” to another level.

I’ve started the Autistic Talks Podcast. It’s a place where I will be able to speak on concerns and other relatable challenges that I face as a parent of autism. It’s a safe space and I know I am not the only parent, with or without autism, that experiences challenges with following the standards of what and how our children are supposed to be in today’s society.

It’s a place to vent and gain a sense of support knowing that there are other parents, friends, or family members that experience the fantastic challenges of raising or being linked to an individual with autism.

So, if you need someone to talk to that understands what it’s like to raise a child with autism or you know someone that can be a positive voice for the listeners that tune in, I want to hear from you!

All you have to do is fill out this form and I will get back to within 24 hours!

It’s always good to have someone to talk to. 🙂

Don’t forget about the gear!

Tackling the Toilet

Tackling the Toilet

Okay, toilet training has always been an obstacle for toddlers but trying to toilet train a child with special needs is on a whole different level!!

With Hayden about to be seven years old, his bowel movements are more so on the adult level and lets just say they are not pleasant to smell or change.

Working with him on his potty training has been a challenge for many reasons.

One, there are videos on YouTube with children (an their parents) flushing random items down the toilet. He saw this and has taken a huge interest in not just flushing anything down the toilet, but flushing the toilet in general. It’s the before and after effect that stimulates him and I can’t stand. Let’s just say there is no more YouTube on any mobile device that he can access.

Secondly, he is very stubborn. He knows when he has to go, yet he will sit there and hold it in until his adult pull-up is back on him. He’s very smart as you can see.

Lastly, he is comfortable wearing the pull-up. It’s what he knows. It is his comfort zone and when people are comfortable it is difficult for them to accept change.

-STORY TIME-

For the last week or so, Hayden has been sitting on the toilet around the same time every night. He needs to be familiar with relieving himself there and not in his pull-up. He has also been very constipated for the last week and when has to go number two, he does like this crazy dance so I know when it is time for him to go.

We were successful one time this week. He went both number one and two in the toilet after sitting for about 30 minutes. That is PROGRESS! Even though it was just a drop, I know he is still very much so constipated. So, I decided to give him a little Miralax to help it flow better. To be honest, it seems as if the Miralax was lacking because it did absolutely nothing for him or was it his stubbornness and he was just holding it in? You would think the Miralax would have done the job, but nope!

Ugh….

On a positive note, Hayden did stand in front of the toilet to let me know that he did indeed have to use the restroom. However, after having him sit for almost an hour with my phone he held it in. This just lets me know that he does know when he has to go and he does feel comfortable sitting on the toilet.

Now, all I need for him to do now is use it. . . . . . .

Pss…..

Don’t forget to check out the gear!

Family vs Autism

Family vs Autism

I know I am not the only one that has experienced a shift in support from family members once a diagnosis was given to your child. I know I am not the only parent to experience the same stares that strangers give from family- blood relatives when out in public settings?

How do you accept that? Do you accept it?

Autism is just a label. A label that was created to allow individuals with a unique set of gifts to stand out from us “regular” folks. But, it is still just a label. A label that should not allow for others to be treated differently. Just because these individuals are unique, does not make them contagious. It does not mean that they do not have feelings and it also doesn’t mean that they want be left alone.

I have family members that used to be willingly open to watching both Hayden and Maya. These same family members knew that there was the possibility that they could have been different, but they were still treated the same as other family members.

Once the diagnosis was done and that label was placed on both of my children, these same family members’ behaviors took a shift. They weren’t so willingly open to watching them and their reasoning for doing so was because they didn’t know what to do with them. (-_-)

How pathetic is that?

You treat them the same as you were before the label was placed on them. It’s not that difficult. It’s hard enough to deal with the small-minded people out in the community, but to have family members who are old enough to educate themselves on autism act like their own blood is contagious is sickening and disheartening.

So, this goes back to my question, do you accept the behaviors from family that treat your children differently?

NO

As an adult, if you come across something that is new to you, you make yourself aware of what it is and how to work with individuals that have it or you can stay in your bubble and look crazy.

I’ve chosen to not associate myself with people, blood included, that feel it’s okay to stare, make sly remarks, and overall mistreat their family because they didn’t turn out to be “normal.” If you really think about it, what is really normal? That is another conversation for another day.

In the end, my kids are still happy and they are doing just fine. Their loss……