Autism Life Skills

life skills free printableI have watched with bated breath as Conor has changed from a little boy who has been floundering in our world trying his best to make sense of it all to finally flourishing. His little personality is emerging as he starts to explore his surroundings, trying to climb, taking chances (sometimes leading to me pulling him off the back of scooters as he hurtles towards a wall laughing his cute little head off). He is starting to spread his wings a little and “try out” the world around him.x

I see his growing confidence and independence emerging despite all the challenges he faces every day. A smile rises on his on his face as brightly as the morning sun when he “knows” he has done something for himself, he has challenged himself and has overcome a new obstacle.  [Read more…]

It is not your fault

It is not your fault It can be bittersweet sometimes watching the boys as they play happily on their own. Peeping through Conor’s bedroom door I watch as he happily throws his Angry Bird Teddies up, up, up in to the imagined sky I think he sees above his head. I find myself just then swallowing down a deep sorrowful pain I can feel rising in my chest that always seems to start in the pit of my stomach somehow. It feels sort of like a balloon expanding but pushing up, up, up into the sky waiting to break free just like Conor’s teddies but it is the most sorrowful and painful feeling I have ever experienced in my life. It comes and goes and can catch you off guard sometimes just like one of Conor’s “flying” Angry Bird teddies which  have been known to “ping” you on the head when you pass Conor’s bedroom if his door is open. His teddies much like that sorrowful feeling can catch you by surprize and steal the peace you thought you had in your heart.x

Jack just like his big brother Conor loves to play on his own, I know he loves me but for the most part he likes to be on his own, playing in his world, lining up his toy cars, listening to Bingo the Dog or Wheels on the Bus. Sometimes I think if I hear “The Wheels on the Bus go round and round” one more time my heart could burst with the pain I feel inside. Not because I can’t bare to listen to it the million times a day Jack has it on repeat but because I know that in some way on some level that is how Jack copes in our world. Having his songs on repeat all day long reminds me that just like me he is doing his best to cope, to live his “normal” in our world.x

It is not your fault [Read more…]

Conors fight

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Conor’s Fight to find his Voice.

I think one of the absolute hardest parts about Autism for me as a Mum is not hearing my children speak, not hearing their voices, not hearing the “I love you”s I so want to hear. That is by far the hardest part. The thought that Conor and now Jack have all these thoughts inside their heads and they can’t “express” them, breaks my heart.

Over the years we have tried everything to help Conor, we have driven around the country bringing him to Speech Therapists, tried all the ways you can imagine and it just didn’t work. Over the Summer a very close friend of mine told me about an amazing Speech Therapist she had brought her beautiful little girl to. She had helped her little girl find her voice again. Her little lady was almost the same age as Conor so I knew how she felt for all those years wishing her little girl could speak, and now she was starting to!

She passed me the Speech Therapist’s number that her little lady went to and I arranged an appointment. It was by far the best thing I have ever done for Conor. Every week since that fateful day I made that first phone call, Conor goes to Speech Therapy to his amazing Speech Therapist Roisin in the Speech Centre in Castlebar and every week he makes more progress. [Read more…]

Christmas Surprises

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With Christmas just a few short days away (Yeeey!!), we were incredibly lucky when the brilliant people of Orchard Toys sent us on their fab festive game “Christmas Surprises”. As you will know from following my Blog we are massive fans of Orchard Toys as they are one of the best toy makers of games for children of all abilities. So of course we were delighted to be sent on another fab game to play with.  [Read more…]

When Santa can’t help

1510946_10152551828518298_464121583_nI think the song goes “it’s the most wonderful time of the year” and it is, mostly.

I have always loved Christmas, loved Santa, loved the super cheesy but festive Christmas songs you hear in all the shops in November and December. It really can be the most wonderful time of the year, but it can catch you off guard too in the most unexpected way. Just when you are busy rushing around like everyone else in the toy shops, in the Department stores, standing in the line of children queuing up to see the most famous man in the world who happens to wear a red suit, it will just hit you. [Read more…]

When dreams come true

Waiting for his voice

Sometimes when I look back to before I knew Conor had Special Needs I get a lump in my throat, my heart tightens a little and that almost hollow aching pain in my chest starts. I know it is heartbreak and a sort of “longing” that I feel, I don’t know how to explain it completely into words, but if you have ever felt lost or longing, wishful for a moment in your past to be your present again you will know that feeling all too well.  [Read more…]

Learn about SPD

Our Sensory Systems

Our Sensory Systems

A Sensory World

It can be so overwhelming as a Parent when you learn that your child has Special Needs. I know when I was first told about Conor having Autism (ASD) and Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) I was blindsided. I had no idea what either of these words meant let alone what they would mean for my son and for his future.

Having recently found out that my youngest son Jack (2) has the same diagnosis as his older brother Conor (ASD, SPD, NV) I decided I wanted re-educate myself on all things ASD and SPD. In the beginning when you first find out about your child’s conditions if you are like me you will buy a wealth of books, you will look online, you look everywhere imaginable and speak to everyone you think may have the answers you seek. [Read more…]

Little Boy Lost

The photo that breaks my heart.xxxx
The photo that breaks my heart.xxxx

My Little Boy Lost

When I see Conor, I only see him, not Autism, not SPD, not anything else, just him. I see his lovely eyes, his sweet smile, I hear his gentle laugh, I feel the softness in his skin when he touches my face. I see him when he flaps his hands, I see him when he twirls around, I hear him when he screeches when he is happy, I hold him tight when he is glad, hug him a little tighter when he is sad.x I listen every hour of every day for his voice to find it’s way back to me. I love him now and forever more, come what may I will love him long after my dying day.xx

I hope when the day comes that I am gone from this world, my lovely Conor has grown up to be the handsome, kind young man I know he is meant to be. I hope by then his voice has found it’s way back, that he can tell all the world how he feels. I hope he will remember how much I have loved him and will always love him. I hope he will always remember the good times, the fun times we have had and above all I hope he will forget the sad. [Read more…]

The Hit List

Post Box Game

Post Box Game

Following on from my Review the other day of Orchard Toys “Farmyard Friends” Game I recieved many emails asking what games Conor first played with from Orchard Toys. There are so many brilliant games available on their website that it would be so hard to narrow it down to just a few games. I have created a short post on a few of the first games we used with Conor all those years ago. [Read more…]

You will forget me

Special Needs Bonds

Conor and his best friend Hailey

I don’t always have the answer when I should, maybe it is because I am still learning, and always will be as my beautiful little people grow up. There is no “handbook” that tells you the right or the wrong answer to give when the difficult questions come. The questions tumble so easily out of Hailey’s mouth from time to time that I know I should be prepared for them each time, but every time I am caught off guard. I search in the darkness of my mind for the “right” answers, the least painful response to her “wonderings” about Conor and now about Jack. [Read more…]