Monday, April 19, 2010

Stupid Shit That I Do

I am a curse for new things. Just ask my husband. Last Christmas, he got me an .mp3 player. I loaded it up with tunes, charged it up and took it on our week-long cruise where it stopped working. For my birthday, he got a great deal on this really nice digital frame that didn't even work. I mean, I took the thing out of the box and it wouldn't even turn on! At that point, Greg affectionately called me a curse on electronics.

I've blown up computers, I've ruined dinners, I've left the garage door open all night. (With the light on so anyone driving by would see what we had in there!) My car has dings and dents. In essence, I cannot keep anything nice.

Which brings us to today. I took the twins to school and went to the grocery store with Riley. We rushed through the store because I had to get Riley to the ENT clinic at 10:30. After the store, we went home and I quickly unloaded the groceries and realized I had a couple minutes to take the cover off the garden since we had a frost the night before. So, I run to the side of the house and start to take the cover off. We have a very temporary plastic fence around the garden to keep the bunnies from munching and as I was closing the gate, my new running shoe got caught on the fence and it got a hole in it! I was so mad. That will teach me to do something in a hurry!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

I am so excited for a friend of mine! Right this very moment, she is in Austin, TX, with her son, J. J is almost 7 years old. He hasn't spoken or communicated w/his mom, dad, or anyone else, since he was 3. Well, except for this past week. He's done a LOT of communicating this week!

My friend JC watched a documentary on HBO called A Mother's Courage and was intrigued by a therapy used in the film by the HALO (Helping Autism through Learning and Outreach) center called Rapid Prompting Method. No other center uses this method. For a little bit of information about this method, see this link.

JC got immediate response from her son after trying this method one time. She said it was like he looked at her and said "What took you so long!" JC was beside herself with joy. Then, he spoke. Said "Mommy." She hadn't heard him say that since he was 3! JC was so excited with these results, she decided to show his teachers. All of them were flabbergasted. Couldn't believe it. He was doing things he had NEVER done before! Other teachers in the school kept popping in on his sessions to see what amazing things he would do next.

Where is JC now? She and J are in Austin, TX...waiting to start Rapid Prompting Method training tomorrow. She can't wait. Neither can J.

There are a lot of us who live with Autism. I can only imagine the struggles faced by the families of those so severely affected with this disorder. My daughter is what they call a "high functioning" autistic...she has Asperger Syndrome. She talks, is social and affectionate and I would say MOST people who meet her wouldn't think she were autistic. We have our challenges with Rachel and there are days, like today, where I just don't know what to do. But Rachel talks to me. She hugs me. She laughs. She's a relatively "normal" kid.

So when I hear about something like the HALO center and how even someone who saw a demonstration on TV can get results the first time they try...I get excited. But my excitement doesn't come close to JC's! She always knew J was in there...but after trying Rapid Prompting, she's learning how to bring him out. And I couldn't be happier for her. Or for her son!