She Did It! #SSAmazingAchievements

The title says it all, or it could have been “back on the saddle”…but anyway..

After D’s tumble off her trike and into the road on Friday, it was going to be a challenge to get her back onto the trike.

It is not an understatement to say that she “hated it”, as she frequently told me on the way home, D with her very bruised and bloodied nose.

This was her on Saturday, resembling a mini, cuter Ant person but smiling through the pain.

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Fast forward three days and this has happened:

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Helmet back on, nose healing (although we do have an X-ray to get to tomorrow, just to double-check there’s no fractures), bruises fading and she was ready to ride again:

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We’ve talked about the corner where it happened and how we’ll walk that in future.

Whilst she isn’t as over the moon about her trike as she was before Friday, she’s overcome those anxieties, she’s got back on and realised that she’s not necessarily going to have another fall and ….well, she did it!

Mega proud of D. Mega proud.

Ethans Escapades

Fragile – Mon 29th Sept 2014

I could sum up our day in just that one word, Fragile.

A Fragile D, out of routine as she wasn’t at school today, due to her trike injury.

A D prone to extremely sudden mood swings and outbursts, because although she’s still “not sure” whether her injured nose is still hurting, it obviously is and then she resembles an octopus as I try to get some calpol administered.

A D who couldn’t wait to see her brother get home as she wanted to tell him something funny (to her) that had happened during the day, he was tired and a tad fragile too after an incident in the playground at school (not serious but annoying to him), so he wasn’t receptive to the funny tale and off D went again.

Tomorrow will bring another challenge as I want to get her nose checked over before I consider sending her back to school. The (vastly overstretched) GP surgery could not offer me anything at the moment, but could suggest “a week Monday”, unless there is a cancellation tomorrow. Not ideal in terms of preparing D for what will be stressful for her, on top of her already fragile state.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, isn’t it? If only I hadn’t taken the trike with me on Friday, what if we’d walked the trike around that corner where she fell into the road? Hindsight could really make you go “aaaargh”, but anyway…

I hope everyone’s day has gone well Jx

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Reasoning – Sun 28th Sept 2014

One thing that both Hubbie and I struggle with, with raising our two (very individual) children with autism is their ability to listen to reasoning behind decisions, or within a general conversation. Not that we ever really have a conversation beyond three or four exchanges (with T and D).

It all depends on how receptive to discussion they are feeling and, if they’re not, it takes a while to “get them back” (for want of a better phrase).

Take yesterday, Hubbie and T were at a football game in the afternoon, T had previously been asked not to sit somewhere (due to new rules) but he and another son of a coach did. Both dads tried to reiterate what had been said previously, zero co-operation because T didn’t understand the reasoning behind the request.

We brought it up today because it needed to be emphasised that what happened yesterday couldn’t again (the club could face a heavy fine). Again, T was very unreceptive, despite the reasoning being explained and this is something that does concern me as he travels through mainstream schooling, that at times he’s very unwilling to listen to, or accept, rationale behind what someone is saying. He has his own opinions and that seems to be it, the “black and white but no grey” element of his thinking.

It is also an issue with D too, but instead of retorting back, she will get very upset and want to bolt. A prime example today was attempting to explain that if she plays on her tablet whilst it’s charging, it’s unlikely to charge up very fast. Explained in a perfectly reasonable way but to D it was as if she’d been told she could no longer play on it, full stop.

So, combine the above with homework (for T) and a still fragile D after her fall on Friday and it’s been a Sunday not without it’s “moments”, but that’s life, no doubt it would be boring if it wasn’t.

D is definitely off school tomorrow (and probably Tuesday) with her nose injury. I’m not sure if her sense of smell has returned yet (which would indicate the swelling inside her nose is going down) and when I ask her if it hurts, she replies “not sure”, which indicates to me that she doesn’t want to admit it does because she detests calpol (which is always a battle to administer) or maybe she just can’t tell. Either way I think she needs a GP check-up before I’m happy to send her back to school, which will be a challenging in itself, with actually getting an appointment and then taking her into the surgery (something she’s not keen on with the volume of people in the waiting room).

I hope everyone’s day has gone well Jx

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(Tonight’s end picture courtesy of @curlywhirlygirly)

Smile – Sat 27th Sept 2014

I wasn’t sure if we’d see this today, but we have:

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Poor D is a bit bruised and battered after yesterday’s trike fall but she’s smiled through the pain that her (very bruised) nose is bringing. A relief, to put it mildly.

I’ve gently talked to her about the need to have another ride on her trike, once she feels ready and that what happened yesterday is very unlikely to happen again.

I’ve also made her smile by showing her pictures like this:

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and saying she looks a little bit similar (white stripe-wise anyway). Which led onto a look at pictures of New Romantics singers. Good fun, especially as she loves the Fade To Grey video (that’s my girl!).

T has had a football-packed day and homework looms tomorrow. D did say that he “seemed very kind” with her yesterday after she was injured so a tad proud of them both, T for empathising and D for realising that he had.

I hope everyone’s day has gone well Jx

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The Challenge – Fri 26th Sept 2014

I wasn’t sure if I’d be writing a blog tonight.

In addition to the many challenges D will (and has) face(d) in her life, there’s another one as of today.

That of getting back onto her trike after falling off it this afternoon.

It wasn’t a minor fall by any means, she overshot the pavement outside her school gates and ended up sideways down, in the road. Thank goodness there was no traffic coming and that she was wearing her helmet.

She has an extremely swollen and cut nose and the bruising is not going to be pretty. There was blood everywhere and her first instinct was to bolt.

The staff at her school were brilliant, taking her in, administering first aid and chatting to Hubbie on the phone whilst D was being checked over.

Any plans we had for tomorrow are forgotten, depending on how her nose is will depend on when she’s back at school, I’m not comfortable sending her in with a bruised nose or black eyes, especially as the playground can be an extremely fast environment.

At the moment, she hates her trike. Yes, that beautiful pink trike which has brought so much joy to her this week.

She will need to get back on it to combat the fear that it may happen again, hopefully it won’t but that will be the challenge.

But not yet, a snuggly day with a DVD and popcorn will beckon tomorrow, she deserves them.

T, bless him, had a confusing end to the day with no-one waiting at the coach stop and me hollering from the other side of the road as we needed to get D seen to. Fortunately the stop is more-or-less opposite D’s school and he was very empathetic towards her. That big brother (even though he’s shorter than her) element kicked in and he helped me get D home.

So, it’s not been a fantastic end to the week but it could have been much worse and, for that, we’re very grateful.

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Eeeeeeek! #R2BC #WordOfTheWeek

It’s nearly Friday and time to think happy thoughts and sum up our week.

Eeeeeeeekk!!

Is a very good word for this last week, it can convey a multitude of emotions and here’s why:

1. The Pink Trike

Last Friday I was waiting in for a box, a rather large box. The contents of which would change D’s school runs and growing independence for the better.

It was this:

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The most wonderful pink trike! She’s mastered the brakes and sings away as she’s riding, whilst I trot beside her.

That alone is such a mega, mega thing for us as she doesn’t have the balance for a two-wheeled bike.

But there’s more…

2. A pamper

I changed my hair style just before the summer holidays and went through the following weeks without trimming the fringe or anything (unusually for me). Suffice to say that a tidy-up was overdue and that happened this week.

My new glasses were ready to be collected today too. A different style to previously and yes, they’re purple!

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3. Happy Birthday Mr Bluecrisps!

It was Hubbie’s birthday today and there was a definite “day off” written in his diary.

It was nice. A shame that T and D both had school but we got the chance to have lunch out, with my FIL and spend time together.

This was yummy!

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Cake, singing and laughter after school too.

4. On its way (well, ish)

I’ve taken the plunge and signed up for a new phone, having been eligible for an upgrade for a few months.

The new phone will be sleeker, have oodles more memory and will hopefully be faster than my current one.

As long as I don’t keep it in my back pocket for 18 hours (umm, no), it should be fine.

5. After school club

D participates in a sports-based after school club once a week at school, the activity changes every half term and it’s generally the same group of pupils.

This half term’s sport is football and during the evening before and the morning of, D has anxieties, really quite severe ones.

It’s primarily around the fact that the other pupils are bigger, stronger and faster than her (they definitely are). But, with positive reinforcement, she enjoys it.

Today was no exception, anxiety-wise. We watched an extremely nervous D head off up the stairs to class and a phone call later from her teacher confirmed that the anxieties had remained but she’d settled down and was enjoying herself.

We asked her this evening if she wanted to do the club again next week and she replied “yes, if I get worried about it, I need to remember that I enjoyed it today”. Well done D! It’s now a case of reminding and reinforcing but the recognition that she can overcome her worries and enjoy it is a big step for us, especially in terms of her understanding that.

Definitely plenty of things making me positive this week, good stuff!

Out Of Routine – Weds 24th Sept 2014

Our see-saw days are continuing, today’s primarily because of a few “out of routine” events for T.

Today has been a non-uniform day for him, it’s been a transition/team work for the new year 7′s at his school. Which is a good idea, it’s a chance for the children to integrate, learn a bit more about each other and hopefully strike up new friendships. Unfortunately for T, it’s “out of routine”.

Another factor in his downbeat (and that’s an understatement) mood this evening has been that he’s been given pieces of homework this week, to complete this week. Not at the weekend for next week. This hasn’t gone down well at all and it’s been challenging to get him to undertake them. One piece still hasn’t been done but there’s always tomorrow.

(Digressing slightly: I was having a conversation with a fellow mum at the weekend and she was asking me whether I considered that T’s primary school had done enough to prepare the year 6′s for secondary school. I guess it has to be a “no”, there is so much to get used to – the (much) stricter uniform code, the vastness of the new environment and the increase in work. There were assurances of more transition and assistance for him from the SENco, which didn’t materialise and, I know, I shouldn’t look back but maybe my experiences may assist someone with a high functioning child in a current mainstream year 6 environment to speak out for more transition, more visits and just better communication.)

And there’s more change tomorrow as it’s Hubbie’s birthday, which has got T thinking about whether he’ll have to go to school on his birthday (yes), which has not helped with moods.

A new day tomorrow, it would be nice to step down from this emotional see-saw, I hope everyone’s day has gone well Jx

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Small Steps Amazing Achievements – Weds 24th Sept 2014

Welcome to this week’s Small Steps Amazing Achievements, as Jane at @ethansescapades and I co-host fortnightly, this week it’s my turn.

Thank you to everyone who linked up last week, we enjoyed reading your posts.

If this is your first time reading this, you can find out about the Small Steps Amazing Achievements linky here, we do hope you join in. Posts can be old or new and please don’t forget to visit and comment on other posts too.

Here’s the badge code if you’d like to grab it:

Ethans Escapades
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Jane and I enjoy reading and commenting on your posts and sharing them via the #SSAmazingAchievements hashtag.

Here are Jane’s highlights from last week:

“There were lots of fantastic achievements from our superstars last week, here are just a few highlights

There was a great moment of unexpected family connection with @softthistle when they fed the horses

They are slowly adding tasks to this superstars visual timetable with @MrsTBlogs

This little lady is excited about joining brownies with @stephc007 and so far it’s going very well

This little lady has made the step from formula to milk with @shiredad

and lastly @AdventuresAdam completed the Three Peaks Challenge raising awarenenss for Hyperemesis Gravidarum.”

We always find it difficult to choose a few to highlight as the posts linked up are always so wonderfully varied, but you can read them all here.

We can’t wait to read what your children have achieved this week.



Highs and Lows – Tues 23rd Sept 2014

I mentioned in yesterday’s blog that T’s or D’s moods can dictate how our day (or after school time) will go, that was certainly the case today.

T was in absolute stinker of a mood on the way home today, he wouldn’t elaborate (may be the school coach had been noisy, I’m not sure, he’s very sensitive to noise) but it was made plain that he did not want to be drawn into conversation and told D a few times that he “couldn’t care less” about what she was trying to tell/show him. Which hurts, I can’t pretend it doesn’t but I can’t show that, it would make things worse.

Anyway, some time winding down in his room helped because his mood has improved.

It’s inevitable that there will be school runs like this, he does have a long day, with the challenges of being a new year 7 in secondary school; but I wish that he’d take account of other’s feelings, it’s something that does concern me, him being in a mainstream environment. A glare from T is really quite stern and certainly let’s whoever it’s intended for know that he’s not in approval.

D had an upset at school today and what with that and T’s mood, she was fragile for a while after school.

There was – fortunately – something written in her diary so I was able to discuss it with her, let’s just say being the only girl in her class does have its advantages in terms of adoring classmates, but it can also be a hinderance too.

But, she did tell me something that was amazing and just proof of how far she’s come in her SN school – she wants to be a house captain! We have the task of making a poster with why students should vote for her and she’ll need to stand up and say why she deserves votes. This she’s looking forward to and from a child who couldn’t participate in any assemblies or activities whilst in mainstream. Incredible, eh?

D’s reasons for votes, that she suggested tonight, were:
* She’s kind
* She cares about others
And
* She wants to help people, especially with handing out the medals on sports day.

Lovely reasons, aren’t they? That’s my girl!

Obviously we have to manage the fact that she may not get voted in, but I think (and hope) she’d be really pleased for whoever did,

A definite “ups and downs” day here, or should that be “downs and ups” (as it got better?), I hope everyone’s had a good one Jx

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Weird Thing – Mon 22nd Sept 2014

Tonight’s title comes from something T said today. I love his sense of humour, it’s very much like mine was (and still is) at his age, the slightest hint of something silly will set him off, sometimes giggling until he gets hiccups.

I miss T’s humorous side when he’s grumpy or anxious. Like D, his moods can totally dictate how the day will go.

But what is this “weird thing”?

Well, D (it’s not her) has ridden her bike on both school runs today.

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She is now extremely good at the brakes and knowing to stop at the kerb/crossing and waiting for me, as she said today “I’d never cross a road without you, Mumma”. Which is excellent but she has been known to attempt it when she’s over anxious.

She also doesn’t like coming up against people (stranger anxiety) and that is when she’ll stop and I’ll have to guide her slowly past them. One of the many reasons why I can’t envisage her riding to school on her own, not that she would want to.

Both times I’ve rode her trike from school and back again in the afternoon, it was great.

And that, according to T was the “weird thing”, or as he described it:

“It’s Weird Thing Bingo, something you don’t see everyday. An old lady riding a pink trike”.

Old? Old? “Nice” to know I’m perceived as such, but that’s T’s very honest humour, which naturally produced some giggles from him and a bit of mock indignation from me.

Mind you, I’ve never seen another “old lady” riding a pink trike around our village so, perhaps, he has a point….

I was slightly concerned that he wouldn’t appreciate being met by the pink trike when he got off the school coach but we were waiting right back from the crowd and, once he realised that he could put his school bags into the crate on the back (and wouldn’t therefore have to carry them), he was a happy chappie. Running alongside D as she cycled, giving her encouragement to keep going, much like the coaches do during a football game, I imagine.

A good start to the week therefore from this WT! I hope everyone’s day has gone well Jx

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