Sleep, who needs it. Owen woke at some point and I was too tired to even think about it. Plus, I knew he wasn’t feeling well. He woke early but I could tell he wasn’t himself, still sounding congested. I put Vick’s on his back and feet last night and I think that really helped him. When he woke this morning he wanted his tablet and started playing his school apps. He was spelling and reading for me without any hesitation. I love days like this where he is in learning mode. I try not to push him since he teaches himself so many things but he doesn’t always like to read or do math with me. When we went to the Clay Center the other day I could tell that he liked the science motivated experiments they had at the water table and I’ve been looking at projects we can work on. He was watching a video that showed stars in the sky and he said, “look at the starfish”. I then explained to him the difference, knowing he already knew but wanted to see what he would do next. He watched the video again and he said, “look at the not starfish up in the sky”. He cracks me up when he explains something and uses my words. He was then watching a video on pirates and they were talking about directions. I said, what to do use to tell directions. He said, “compass and rooster”. I’m not sure what the rooster does but maybe he carries the compass. He asked about church and I told him that I wasn’t sure if we would go tomorrow if he still wasn’t feeling well and he said, “I sad sick no church”. He went through spurts today that he didn’t sound as bad or hardly sneezed but he was still very clingy and we didn’t go on our bowling adventure. He wore his socks all night and when he got ready for bed he said, “socks go to bed” wanting me to put socks back on him like I did last night. I was pretty impressed with that since he has never liked to wear them at night. He fell asleep quickly and I hope that he is feeling better tomorrow. It still sounds like allergies and he hasn’t been rubbing his ears so I’m hoping it will be gone soon. I pray he rests and for not feeling well he had a good day. Find your motivation and know that you can move mountains if you believe. Smiles to all and donut daze!
Owen didn’t sleep through the night and I was too tired to even attempt to get him back into his bed. Then he woke early and was ready for his day. Me, I was cranky. I couldn’t fall asleep last night even though I was exhausted. I kept thinking about our day. Owen was super exhausted when we went to see the horses but he still had a great time. It was hard on him but also a wonderful learning experience. He screams a lot, squeals often, and talks loudly sometimes. I’m trying to work with him on breathing techniques and calming himself. Horses, like other animals, and people, do not always like loud noises. He couldn’t understand why the horses weren’t coming to him as much but he kept making lots of noises. I tried to explain it to him. I stood there next to him talking to him about respecting the horses and we were in their territory. It’s a hard concept but as time went on he was calmer, quieter, and didn’t want to leave. I told him that he was doing really well and the horses appreciated it. I thanked the horse for coming to talk to us so Owen would understand that it was a big deal and respectful to the horse. He was supposed to go to therapy after the horses yesterday but he got sick to his stomach almost immediately after drinking whole milk. I had gotten a kid’s meal and it had chocolate milk with it. I started him back on almond milk hoping it would help his screaming and meltdowns. I didn’t think about it when I gave him the meal that his stomach still has a hard time with dairy. As soon as he went to the bathroom he felt better and showed no other signs of feeling bad. And today about mid-morning I heard the change in him. He started sounding nasally and sneezing. It seems like every year he gets allergies about this time of year. Hopefully, it goes away quickly and doesn’t turn into an ear infection. If he isn’t better by Monday I’ll take him to the doctor to make sure he doesn’t need antibiotics. When we were in the car he was talking in monkey. He watches a video from the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse where Goofy talks to the monkeys and translates. Owen was saying both parts of the conversation. Later he was watching the “pirate puzzles in Espanol tonight on Disney sooner”. When Skully came on the screen he said, “ahoy maybes”. And with that, my boy made my day. He is learning and growing, and I pray he sleeps tonight and feels better tomorrow so we can go bowling. Miracles do happen every day. I am so glad I get to see mine smile. Never give up on the hope for tomorrow. Smiles to all and donut daze!
“No blue bed today”, Owen said, as he was standing at the foot of my “white bed today”. He started calling his bed the “blue bed” because of the blue tent he has on it and my bed is either the “white bed” or occasionally he will call it the “pink bed” because of the blankets and covers I have on it. And he always adds “today” to everything. As he stood there I could tell he was more asleep than awake but still processing it all. I had told him he had to go back to his bed if he wanted to go see the horses today. In all the history of all the world, this has never worked until last night. He turned around and off he went. I still kinda shake my head like what just happened. He was in his “no blue bed today” after I told him to go, I heard him get in it. This was a miracle. He may have stomped his feet a little and snarled some but he went. At that point, I knew he wouldn’t fall asleep right away but that was the victory that he was even in his bed. It didn’t last and he came to me several times but it was truly spectacular that he went back to his bed. When he came one of the times he brought his elephant lovie that plays music. I told him he would have to go back to his bed with it because it stays in his bed. It keeps me even more awake because he wants it to run continuously and you have to push it to make that happen. When he came back the last time I let him get in bed with me but I could still hear his elephant. He put it on the table in the kitchen instead of bringing it to the bed. I thought another great moment because he was listening. We both needed sleep and I truly felt the victory was already won. When he laid down with me before he fell asleep he told me “little red wagon teff” which meant he was excited about seeing the horse that had put his teeth on his wagon. I woke before him and sat on the couch waiting for my coffee to brew. Before he even came to me he went “potty first then blue tablet”. Let’s just click off another victory. When we got ready to leave I was cutting the apples and carrots for the horses. Owen said, “that’s a” like he’ll always say, waiting for me to respond even though he knows what it is. And then Owen said, “no apples today” followed by “no carrots today”. He is not a fan of either. We had fun with the horses again but I think he was a little more overwhelmed and a lot more tired. I asked him tonight if he liked going to see the horses. His reply, “feed the horses carrots big and strong”. I’m not sure where the big and strong part came from but it works. He told me he wanted to see the horses again and we will go back next week. I’m thankful for his growth and hopefully tonight he will sleep in his bed. Celebrate your victories and celebrate ours. Smiles to all and donut daze!
Some days the sadness washes over me, quickly becoming an avalanche I want to run from. Life happens when you have something else planned. And today didn’t go according to Owen’s plans. He did really well until I decided to take him for a “ride in the little red wagon”. The ride wasn’t long enough, it wasn’t in the right direction, and it wasn’t near water. I always forget or maybe block out all the rules. You can’t just casually stroll in a certain direction. He wants me to go exactly the way he wants me to go. I tried to explain to him that we couldn’t keep walking in the direction he wanted to go but he doesn’t understand or his rules have to apply. The screaming started and I wanted to cry right along with him. It breaks my heart in a million pieces that I can’t get him to understand. I completely get that he has to process everything and there are places he wants to see over and over or even actions that he needs to repeat but when it’s something he can’t do for safety reasons or because it’s not really an option it makes it even harder for him. He is excited about tomorrow. We get to go visit his new friend Otter the horse and then he goes to therapy. He has asked numerous times to go see the horses. “Wanna feed a horse”, he has said. I asked him what he wanted to feed the horse and he said, “food”. We are taking carrots and apples but I have been trying to decide what kind Otter will like so I’m taking a variety. I’m sure his other horse friends will like them if he has a favorite flavor. I’m thrilled Owen wants to go and has asked about the horse every day. We are clicking the days off until he goes back to school. He asked for his teacher again today, saying her name, and then telling me “no bus today”. I told him August would be here soon and then he would see her. I know it helps him when everything is scheduled for him and he thrives in the routine. As the night wore on I reminded him that we are a team and have to work together to listen to each other and figure things out. I want him to understand his emotions and that they are valid but he also has to be kind to others and remember that he can’t always do everything he wants when he wants to do it. I had to go to the bank today so I drove by the windows. It has been days since he saw them and he immediately started screaming at me about the way I was going, which was the way he wanted to go. So many emotions, so little time. One breathe at a time and a lot of coffee got me through our day. He fell asleep in my arms and with that our day was done. Find your inspiration and know that you can change the world. Smiles to all and donut daze!
I’m not sure how I can say I slept better when I was up about ten times but I’ve felt better today than I have in quite a while. Eating healthy is not my favorite thing to do but it is helping me and that’s what’s important. That doesn’t mean I don’t dream about sugar every single minute of the day still. Owen had a good day. I took him to the “play center” where we met some friends. I hadn’t been to the Clay Center in years. They have a lot of different activities for kids and numerous other events throughout the year. He didn’t know where we were going but he kept asking to ride in his “little red wagon”. I know that it brings a lot of comfort to him to be able to sit in it when everything around him can be overwhelming even if he is enjoying what he is doing. And he can get out of it easily to still do the activities. When we got there he immediately saw one of his favorite things and wanted to go to the “rocket ship rocket ship please”. From there we waited for our friends to come and it was nice to have people to help show him around. He loved playing at the different water tables and going into the music room. I could tell he was overstimulated but still completely enjoying every part of it. He wanted to walk the stairs and ride the elevator, both favorites of his. I figured at the max he would last about two hours and I knew he would tell me in his way he was ready to go. He said, “mommy change” and I knew this was our cue. He always asks me to change clothes when we are going home. He wants to know that we aren’t going anywhere else and I need to be in specific home approved clothes. We rode the elevator one more time and told our friends goodbye. On the ride home, he screamed a little but I was able to quickly distract him and we got home without a complete meltdown. The rest of our evening was very low key and he fell asleep quickly. He wanted the “clock go to bed” this evening as he always finds something he wants to take to bed with him. I told him the clock couldn’t go to bed with him and he laughed. He said something in Spanish and that was the end of our day. I’m thankful for his laughter and his big smile that keeps me going no matter what our day brings. Find your strength, push forward, and know that tomorrow is a brand new day. Smiles to all and donut daze!
As far as I know, I haven’t learned to silence rain, especially at three o’clock in the morning. The rain must have woken Owen and he certainly let me know it. He was already in bed with me at this point and he started screaming for me to “shut the rain off today”. Oh, how I wish I could. He then was ready to go to the park with his friend and there was no changing his mind. I told him that it was in the middle of the night and we couldn’t go to the park in the middle of the night. He insisted that we should. I’m exhausted thinking about it. He then changed tactics and asked for his tablet. Again, why haven’t I learned that he is a lot more persistent than I can keep up with especially when it is raining and in the middle of the night. Okay, so any time night or day. I told him that he needed to go back to sleep so we could go to the park with his friend. How asleep was I to think this was a good statement. He started screaming again. At this point, I gave up and let him have his tablet. He then decided to watch tv and let me know the play by play even though I had told him he could have his tablet if he went to lay in his bed. One of us clearly follows their own rules. I told Owen all morning we were going to a different park and that it was going to have water at it. I was trying to prepare him. He loves water but he does not like to be in the car long. I got him dressed and he knew something was different because he had to put his swimsuit on. Maybe this was the spark we needed to get us there. We got in the car and he voiced his opinion a couple of times about where I should go but I reminded him of the end goal. We made it without a meltdown and very few screams. The screams mostly came when I needed to stop but he listened to instructions and we got there. As soon as he saw the water spraying in all different directions he was ecstatic. He ran around to the different sections and would stand under the spray. He hugged one of the poles at one point and stuck his finger in the hole to keep the water from shooting out. He sat down on the ground several times, playing under the downpour. I thought about the rain overnight and how if he only understood that it was so similar. He was ready to go about forty-five minutes after we got there and I thought that was a good amount of time for us. We said goodbye to our friends and we started the trek home. I was praying he would be fine on the way home. He once again he voiced his opinion a couple of times about where I was going and changed his mind about wanting and not wanting chicken nuggets but we got all the way home without a meltdown and only screaming when my singing was not met to his approval and I didn’t follow his driving directions. The afternoon was spent playing on his tablet, eating a lot of food, and talking in every language he could think about. It was a very full day and he is ready for the rest of his week. He even told me he was “going to feed Otter on Thursday”. The horse of course has been added to our routine. I’m thankful for our victories today. I’m exhausted but thankful. Follow your heart, dream the big dreams, and make them all come true. Smiles to all and donut daze!
What to overthink today and other fine questions still have me in the spin cycle of the wash, waiting for a blanket to dry. Owen didn’t sleep through the night and came to my bed not much after I fell asleep. He wanted me to hold his elephant lovie. It plays music and vibrates. He quickly fell back asleep so I turned it off. He then woke up as quickly as he fell asleep and started screaming about me turning off the elephant. The no elephant in the bed rule doesn’t really matter. I got out of bed somewhere around five. He didn’t stay there much later than that and we were up for the day. He was ready for church and excited about going. No meltdowns either way. There was a little discussion about me not turning right at the kangaroo but otherwise, he did fine. I really wish I could figure out where the kangaroo is or even what it is. He’s had a pretty good day until I decided to wash his blanket off his “blue bed”. I generally change his sheets and wash his favorite blanket when he isn’t home so I didn’t even think about it causing him to meltdown. Now we are un-patiently waiting for his blanket to be dry. He keeps running to his bed, asking about it. “Blanket please”, he says, sitting back down after he comes to tell me. And then a minute later off he goes again to check on it. It seemed like that was the slowest hour of the day. Bedtime happened pretty quickly after the blanket finished drying. He randomly yelled about his toenails and sharks being grey and not black but could be black and wanted to wear his shark shirt to bed. Every night now it seems we have a discussion about the air vents and that they aren’t hot but it is outside. Then he says in winter they are hot and it’s cold outside. He amazes me with his thought process. Tomorrow we are supposed to go to a splash park but it’s about forty-five minutes from us and in an area that causes him to have meltdowns. I know if we can get there he would have an amazing time. He has to stay calm to get there though. One day at a time can translate into one second at a time and time will tell tomorrow. Find your strength keep pushing forward and know that tomorrow is a brand new day. Smiles to all and donut daze!
Owen went to sleep pretty quickly last night. From there he was awake at some point but I couldn’t really see the clock. He crawled into bed with me and luckily went back to sleep. He slept a little later and I seemed to have woken up earlier than I wanted to. When he woke I heard him talking in my bed. “Lion here lion in bed roar”, he said. Sometimes his phrasing amazes me. He hears words and then applies them to different situations. I don’t know if he understood that “lion” and “lying” sound so similar and if he was using “lion” to explain he was laying down in the bed or if it was a coincidence. Today was bowling day. He went to see grandma for a few hours before we went bowling. Today’s adventure was quite different than last week’s. The last month has been so hard on him without his schedule and routine being exactly what he needs them to be. It took all my strength to go again. I didn’t want a repeat of the meltdown from last week. We got there close to the time they opened, hoping they wouldn’t be busy. Luckily there were only a few people already there. When we got to our lane I could tell by his actions and reactions he was still processing what happened last week. He made certain gestures and references that I helped him work through and after a few minutes he settled in and we had a lot of fun. He was very animated and threw himself to the ground numerous times to be one with the lane. He likes to see everything moving at eye level. When we left there we came home and he sat with me most of the evening. I think he was still reflecting on the day. As the day ending he didn’t want to go to bed but he certainly wanted to go to church, reminding me often of the friends he would see tomorrow. I’m thankful for today. Some days it is really emotional for me to even walk out our door. The screams, meltdowns, and questions keep me rooted in one spot but today was a good day. He screamed on the way home but this one was purely the attention-getter kind and I was able to get him to sing over my bad singing. One day at a time and one smile will lead to a million more. Focus on the positive side of life and the rest will follow. Smiles to all and donut daze!
I heard Owen in the living room around five. I thought maybe he’d lay down on the couch and fall back asleep. I was surprised he hadn’t come to me yet. But then he started screaming. I got to him as quickly as I could. “Bumped his head”, he was yelling but it turns out it was Alexa, not him. He had been talking to her and somehow he turned the device upside down. This was enough to send him into a meltdown. I was able to distract him and luckily that moved him forward. I’m not quite sure how he does it but he has it so the device will talk to him in Spanish and then he asks it how to say things in all the languages he can think of. He says, “monkeys peel a banana in Portuguese say it slowly”. He laughs when she responds. He moves on asking her the same thing in German and Arabic. He says, “say it” mimicking me. I try to get him to repeat the words Alexa has said in the other languages. He doesn’t always repeat them but I’m still amazed at how much he knows and retains. Once Alexa bumped her head there was no going back to sleep for us. I tried but he kept coming to me and asking me to find things on his tablet. He truly can find every single thing that could ever be put on the internet I believe but he still wants my help. He likes me to read the captions. We went out for a little while today and when he was in the car he did really well. No meltdowns for him or me. He now has it on his mind about how lamp and lamb are the same words except the last letter. He has to go through all the steps. He says, “lamp lamb light not a baa baa is not a cow cow mows the grass no cow mows the grass baa is a lawnmower”. Then I have to ask him the difference between the two and he says, “not the lawnmower a lamp the light what’s the big idea”. This can go on and on and sometimes if I don’t get my part right it circles back around. He has several things intertwined together when he is referencing it all. He has been watching several of the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse episodes again that he really likes and I think this has him thinking about a sheep robot lawnmower. We finished out the day with smiles and hugs. He had played music for me earlier in the day and we sang lots of songs. I’m on to him though. He asked for “chocolate milk in cup please” but he didn’t drink it. He wants me to get him chocolate milk so it delays bedtime. I’m thankful for our smiles, music, and growing together. Never give up on the miracles yet to happen. Believe me, I hug mine every day and tell him how much I love him. Smiles to all and donut daze!
There is a difference between “seahorses” and “see horses”. And truly, who needs sleep. Not us. Owen was up at one. Sure he went back to sleep but I hadn’t even fallen asleep at that point yet. He woke up by six and was ready for his day. Me, not so much. We had a very busy day ahead of us. Today was therapy day and we were going to a horse farm. I kept telling him we were going to see horses but I realized at some point he thought we were going to the “water” for “seahorses”. I didn’t know how this was going to go. He watches a video that shows a seahorse so once I realized he thought we were going to the water I started showing him horses and he said, “ride in little red wagon”. I had driven him by the area before. This helps with some of his anxiety when he knows where we are going. When we got to the stables I got out his “little red wagon” and he was ready to go. He was also anxious at this point but at least he was sitting in his wagon and he wanted to walk. When we walked inside the stable there were several animals there to greet us. Owen was squealing and wanting to keep moving but I kept talking to him, pointing out the animals. So far we were doing better than I expected. The lady that I had spoken to on the phone came to meet us and she started talking to both us. She had us come further into the stables and telling us about the horses. We kept walking with her past the different stalls. We got to a more open area and there were a couple of horses in it. One of the horses, Otter, was watching us as we continued to get closer. Owen was getting calmer at this point but still wasn’t sure what to make of everything. I had pushed his wagon close to the pin so he could see the horse and we started talking to him. He was very interested in Owen and the wagon. He was touching the handle of the wagon and we could see his “teff”. This fascinated Owen even more. We stayed there for quite a while talking to the horse and I was learning how I should hold my hand near it so he would be comfortable with me. Owen became calmer as our time went on. When I was talking with the lady at one point he picked up a piece of hay off the ground and held it out for Otter. He grabbed it from Owen and I could see the connection growing. This made my day. I didn’t know how it would go but he didn’t want to leave. He said, “ two more minutes ten minutes five minutes one minute”. I told him we would come back again soon. The horse was as happy as Owen was. When we left he was calm the entire way home. We ate our lunch and then it was time for his therapy. He did great in the car and hardly told me any directions for us to get there, except “turn right at the kangaroo”. That will be another connection I have to figure out. His therapist told me he did good but seemed to be sleepy. I explained that we didn’t sleep much and we went to see the horses. When we left he asked me for a “fancy chocolate moo milk” and wanted me to get a coffee. We got our drinks and headed home. I was dreading the ride home, hoping for the best but still expecting a meltdown. We made it home without a meltdown. He said, "Otter had a tail and teff he make smile". Happiness is seeing my sweet baby O smile. I think Otter and Owen will both be smiling the next time they see each other. Find joy in the world around you and know that tomorrow is a brand new day. Smiles to all and donut daze!
I'm Lynn Browder. Owen's Mommy. The best moments in time are when I get to see the smile on his face and that giggle come from his heart.