So I have some wonderful news!! The bus starts tomorrow for Selena and since she loves to ride in cars, buses, etc, the hour ride she has home shouldn’t be too big of a deal! That is amazing news! That means I will now get to have a 7 hour work day! I am going to miss picking her up though. I get to hear all about her day (sometimes) when it’s still fresh. Usually, when I ask her to describe something to me that she can’t see, or about previous actions all I get is, “I don’t know.” So all the stuff she did at school will forever be a secret. Grrrrr.
Ahhh, but the stress level is coming down and things are going a bit more smoothly. One thing that helps with that is talking to my wonderful man, my mom, my friends, you! You will most likely face dead-ends and bumps in the road, get stressed out and feel hope start to slip. Or have feelings that your family may never be ‘normal’! These feelings are natural. It’s learning to overcome those feelings in a healthy way so that you can move forward and get the best help for your child so they can continue to grow. Remember that your family IS ‘normal’, but with some ZING! The point I’m trying to make, is that I tortured myself and beat myself up, thinking I was doing something wrong, that my parenting was to blame. But after quite a few, very intimate conversations, I could feel this burden lifting off my shoulders and it was such a relief!
I felt that if I could just get through to her, then maybe some of her behavioral issues will stop. Were we using the wrong words? Did we just say it wrong? Should we even bother, it goes right through her? And when all the different techniques we were trying wasn’t working it felt like we were banging our heads on the wall. I was beginning to feel hopeless. I don’t think anyone realizes how much more patience it takes to raise a child like Selena (and farther down the spectrum).
How do you discipline a child who has no idea that they did something wrong and was acting out because they went into sensory overload? Or even get them to just talk about what they did. For example, when we ask Selena “What happened in school today?” The typical answer we get is “I don’t know”, so we narrow it down further. “What happened in your classroom today?” We get the same response. “What happened in reading today?” Same answer. So we narrow it down and narrow it down until it is basically a yes or no answer. Then if we haven’t upset her by this point, which is a rare occurrence, then we might get an answer. Will it be accurate? Who knows because it’s likely to change. I typically spend about 40 minutes, just trying to get her to say ANYTHING! Then, when I do, it’s almost as if I’m nodding when I say it, just to get her to say something. Hmmm. Real accurate indeed.
I’m trying to stay hopeful for tomorrow and understand that this will inevitably pass. We just can’t give up, Selena’s future is on the line. I know we’ve already won half the battle by staying strong, determined and positive! You will be surprised by how much you can endure, don’t give up!
As usual, if you have any questions, comments, suggestions (yes please!) please don’t be a stranger, drop us a line! We would love to hear from you!