Me and my girl and boy, raising awareness and acceptance of autism

Archive for the ‘Diary post’ Category

Bronze – Tues 9th Feb 2016

Today didn’t start fantastically well with D overwrought and refusing to say goodbye or wave (something she always does) at the top of the stairs as she headed to class.

She was over anxious because she was going to a Boccia tournament with school.  It was being held offsite and competing against five other schools – quite a lot for her to get worried about.

I didn’t know what Boccia was until D went along for her first game a couple of years ago, it’s this:

“Boccia is a disability sport that tests muscle control and accuracy. Players propel balls to land close to a target ball. Two sides compete as individuals, pairs or as a team of three over a set number of ends. Each side has six balls (red or blue) each end to try and score points. Points are accumulated over the course of a match to find a winner.

Sounds simple? It is to get started, but the tactics of the sport offer both tension and excitement as the game plays put.

A ball can be rolled, thrown or kicked. If a player is unable to throw or kick the ball, they can use a ramp. If players are unable to release the ball with their hands, they can use assistive devices โ€“ head/hand pointer.”

Sounds good, doesn’t it?  In the tournament I was able to go to a while back (generally parents aren’t invited but this was in a leisure centre near school), it did seem a nicely gentle game, apart from the competitive element and the fact that D would be sitting with strangers as the pairs waited to have their go.

And have a go she did.  In fact our girl practically sailed down the stairs this afternoon, beaming away and wearing this:

   
 
A bronze medal! It’s a really lovely heavy medal too, with fab detail on the back.

She does struggle with the competitive element and so it was fab to see that the team had been rewarded for what must have been a challenge for them all.

A great contrast to a not fantastic start today and, additionally, T seems to be turning a corner with this vicious bug that’s had him in its grasp for a few days. Hurrah! 

Thursday’s children are.. Tired 27th June 2013

I was reminded of the poem below when I was thinking of tonight’s blog title:

“Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace,
Wednesday’s child is full of woe,
Thursday’s child has far to go,
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for a living,
But the child who is born on the Sabbath Day
Is bonny and blithe and good and gay”
.

I realised having grown up with this poem that I didn’t know which day of the week I was born on….*googles*:

I was born on a Sunday (albeit 6 weeks early)
Hubbie was a Tuesday (over 2 weeks late)
T was born on a Monday (on his due date)
and
D was born on a Thursday (6 days early)

(I remember very well those last two!)

Do they apply to us? I’m not entirely convinced they do but I do know that:

This Thursday’s children are tired, very tired.

There have been tears of tiredness and frustration from T this evening, unusually for him as he does tend to bottle any emotions up and then go and bounce on the trampoline.

Also, unusually, he’s been very, very cuddly, which for T means standing very close and accepting cuddles.

Hopefully a good sleep will set him up for tomorrow and a busy weekend.

D’s also extremely tired. There was neither a body slam nor a bolt at home time, she was too exhausted to administer either.

I presume that the sports day activities and subsequent routine changes at school have taken it out of both of them. They tend to get extremely short-tempered with each other too.

Three weeks tomorrow until the end of term and it will be welcomed. Not from the routine changes viewpoint but just not having to dash out of the house at a certain time, taking things a bit slower and hopefully seeing my children laughing and comfortable in their own environment. They’ve both worked hard this school year, it’s deserved.

A wish for an easier day for my two tomorrow, at least it will be Friday.

I hope everyone’s had a good day, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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A medal! Weds 26th June 2013

There is a happy 9-year old girl settling tonight, she’s added a medal to her little collection.

Her brother, T, is so sporty both in his thinking and how he plays, that he has quite a collection of medals and trophies. D doesn’t say, but with her fascination for shiny and sparkling things, I’m sure there is a bit of coveting that goes on.

At last year’s sports day, D won a silver and a bronze so she definitely had an expectation, even though – of course – it’s the taking part that counts,

This morning’s individual activities went really well, as long as she could see me, she participated and enjoyed herself. I did have a prolonged insight into WW2 from a fellow classmate who is fascinated by anything connected with that and wanted to turn javelins/golf clubs and hockey sticks into weapons *gulp*.

Here’s some pictures from this morning:

A nervous but excited D going into school:

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Scoring a goal (T would have been proud):

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Hockey dribbling:

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The morning session ended with a inter-house tug-of-war, which had pupils, teachers (and me!) joining in. A tad competitive but very good fun!

Parents and carers weren’t allowed to be on-site at lunchtime so I left a clingy D for a while.

The afternoon’s events were running, egg and spoon and wheelchair racing. It’s always a bit humbling seeing the wheelchairs and the walking race for those with physical disabilities, there is always a fantastic atmosphere with music and lots of supporters.

D had a wobbly meltdown after her first race, when she came 4th. There were tears, shouting, bolting and a complete and utter refusal to take place in anything further. She came around eventually but definitely wasn’t the only disappointed child on the field.

Her next race was a relay and I’ve found with D that it’s best if I stand at the finish line and basically wave, jump around and shout encouragement in her eyeline so she has something to focus on and aim towards. It works! She absolutely powered down the track, passing over the baton and nearly bowling me over. Her team of 4 came second!

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One delighted D, two very proud parents and several relieved members of staff.

Yes, it’s all about taking part and I’m so glad she is able to (mainstream sports days were a no-no) but a medal is a very nice reminder for her.

T’s had a good day, he’s been very pleased for D that she got a medal and her good mood has been infectious, they’ve had some bouncing fun on the trampoline in between mine-crafting.

I think it’s a “normal” day for both of them tomorrow, after the excitement of the last couple of days, would be good to get back to a semblance of routine.

I hope everyone’s had a good day, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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Lots of team spirit! Tues 25th June 2013

A very successful day, if I discount the squabbling due to the heat and tiredness on T and D’s part after school.

It was T’s sports day today and it was lovely, the weather was just right and it was very well-organised. The team spirit amongst the children was wonderful, cheers and claps for the fastest and the slowest, lots of children determined to finish even if they were quite a way behind those already past the finishing line. Some natural athletes, some not but all doing their best.

Here’s a couple of pictures of T, he carried on throughout, acknowledging his dad and I with a little shy smile:

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T’s “house” came third but it was very close, I think it was only 20-ish points separating first from fourth place.

A tired but happy T at the end.

D greeted me with another body-slam at home time, she’d watched the oldest children in school do their sports day and she’s fascinated by their star-shaped medals. I know that the children have been told and we’ve been saying it too: “it’s not the winning but the taking part”, but my girl would like a gold (she got a silver and bronze last year). No pressure then!

She’s been squeakily excited about it all evening tonight and no doubt will positively bounce into school tomorrow, there are sports activities in the morning and afternoon at school so it will be a long day but a fun one.

So grateful that she is in the right setting for her, with the gentle support and high staff:children ratios that she needs. Sports days in mainstream were full of excitement beforehand and then suddenly, her anxieties would take over and she’d bolt all over the field, parents commenting and muttering about her being “out of control” when they couldn’t or wouldn’t understand. Seems a lifetime (and no doubt a wrinkle or two) ago now.

I hope everyone’s day has gone well, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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Not just one body-slam! Mon 24th June 2013

It was a double body-slam that greeted me this afternoon when I collected D, a full-on hello-Mumma-I’ve-missed-you-but-had-a-good-day-thwack, twice!

It was very welcomed, it had been a while.

She’s extremely excited about sports day on Wednesday, the school proms next week (singing performances) and she’s also going to the Kurling finals with school, her team got a silver medal in February so there is a mild expectation for more goodies!

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It’s amazing, when D was in mainstream, she couldn’t participate in any assemblies/plays/sports days or anything due to anxieties and the busy setting, she has progressed so far in the three years she’s been in her SN school, it’s wonderful.

Of course, there has been so much preparation behind the scenes, one of the songs they are singing next week has been practised since last October, there is no way she could walk into an unfamiliar setting and do something off the cuff, respect to all the staff at her school.

T’s excited about his sports day tomorrow too, his class have been working towards athletics badges (gold/silver/bronze) and they expect to receive them tomorrow – after them being delayed for weeks, which has vexed Mr T, with his requirement for routines and deadlines.

He has shown a lovely moment of empathy though, his Asperger friend is expected to receive a bronze and T has said to him that he’ll give him one of his football medals if he does. Very considerate of him and T does not give his medals/trophies away lightly.

Neither have said that much about the rest of their days, they’re both too focused on the next couple of days. I just hope it doesn’t burble over into anxieties – it’s a very thin line – but I doubt it will.

Positivity is the mantra this week, it IS going to be a good one!

Hope everyone’s day has gone well, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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Cows and Princesses Sun 23rd June 2013

This morning started with a “lesson” on cows, D seems to have a renewed interest in them ever since she’s been placing them into her Minecraft world.

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We’ve tried to decide how the bull’s horns are trimmed and what breed of cows her various little plastic animals are. She does like her small animals, whether they be Playmobil or others, the smaller the better so that she can carry them around in her hand or a small bag.

This afternoon D’s embraced her girlie side, she loves dress-up apps on her I pad. Toca Tailor and Princess are big favourites, I guess because the results are instant and very visual. She may have only had her device a month but the photo stream is full of her little fashion creations.

We found another app this afternoon – Princess Salon – not only is there the dress-up element but there’s the preparation beforehand too, hair washing and face packs. She loved it, very ironically for someone who dislikes hair washing intensely due to her sensory issues. The mildly gruesome bit is that before the face creams etc, the princess has spots – great big pus-filled ones – which promoted a discussion about the advantages of face-washing, bonus!

I’m relieved in a way that D bypassed the “princess and tiara” phase, she wasn’t interested and her sensory issues meant the fabrics and fastenings weren’t an option. I guess the app we found today is the 21st century equivalent of a Girls World but with far less mess! (always wanted one of those when I was D’s age ๐Ÿ˜ณ).

Sunday afternoon unfortunately means homework, in D’s case it’s her News. Literally two sentences to be copied out but it does cause her a lot of issues, part of me wants to say “don’t worry about it” but the more sensible part knows that she needs to persevere, that people in the future will expect her to have some sort of writing standard, it’s difficult to see and hear (because she does protest) her struggling though.

Offset by some jolly good singing at bathtime though!

Mr T has had a good day, homework (of which there was loads) out of the way this morning and attending a football tournament this afternoon. He’s had a busy few days – in fact he worked out precisely how many hours he’d seen me in that period, answer: not many – but he’s coped very well. It’s taken his mind off the will-he-won’t-he have a session with Chelsea coaches next week quite nicely.

A new week looming for us, sports days etc, thankfully on different days in their different schools, it should be fun!

I hope everyone’s day has gone well, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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Throwing off the cloak Sat 22nd June 2013

I feel like I’ve been a bit of a misery-guts blogger the last week or so, but I’ve always found blogging very therapeutic and it’s helped me to write it all down, how I’m feeling and implications of events.

But I need to get a degree of normality and routine back for T and D, D in particular has been very unsettled.

Her mantra again today has been “don’t leave me Mumma” and, if I’ve headed off for a w e e, her footsteps are inevitably not far behind.

She’s veered between happy-anxious-sad and furious at the flick of an imaginary switch today but still managed to make us smile – here’s our funee from earlier.

There have been times when she’s asked for and needed “tight hugs”, there have been times when she’s been so cross with me, she’s refused to acknowledge me, it’s all in a day of autism parenting.

In a moment of anticipation earlier, she tried on her tshirt for sports day next week, it’s a yellow Angry Birds one and she proudly said “I’m an Angry Bird” and promptly whooshed around. True, very true.

T, on the other hand, has had a really good, energetic day as predicted. He set off early for his paintballing day and – despite the intermittent heavy rain showers – he really enjoyed it. Very cuddly (well, T’s form of cuddly) this evening though, which has been both unexpected and welcomed.

We’ll aim for a good day tomorrow, they both deserve it.

I hope everyone’s day has gone well, comments/RTs/shares as ever welcomed, thanks for reading Jx ๐Ÿ˜˜

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