Posted in Autism Support, Random nothings

Our 3 year old has extreme anxiety

Our 3 year old has extreme anxiety… That statement can mean so much to so many people. It can mean your child don’t want to go to bed alone or get nervous going to school or are thinking twice before going down a slide. For us, with a child with autism, social anxiety and ocd it means:

For the last week Abby’s anxiety has been out of control. Last Thursday she woke up and said to me: “Mommy, feel my chest”. Her heart was beating out of her chest. We had to go out the day and I knew that was the reason for it. I begged her to stay home with me rather, it was school holidays and the play area where Sky will have her ballet will be filled with screaming toddlers. She would have nothing of it and demanded that we go with daddy and Sky. Against my better judgement, I gave in. We walked into the play area and chaos started from the first second. She immediately grabbed onto my neck and crying because children were too close to her and wanted to touch her or the things she wanted to play with. I walked out within 2 minutes of arriving. I took her to another space, but they were also busier than usual and she was in total panic mode. We couldn’t just leave Sky and the rest so had to ride the hour out in the center. I found a restaurant that was “not too busy” and had booths (booths are great). I pushed her in the corner of a booth and sat next to her, sheltering her from people. I put her earphones and phone on to drown out sounds. We sat there for an hour before we could get her to function enough to walk out.

Well, it is a week later and she is still not functioning without me. She won’t be left alone for a second – day and night. She would rather wee her pants than go to the toilet alone. While 3 of us are right here in the house with her. We have to sit with her on the loo, if she has a bath, Sky baths with her and still she needs an adult to sit with them. Night time becomes chaos. The dark scares the daylights out of her (pun intended I suppose!). We have 2 lights on in the room, the toilet light is on and the dining room light to shine even more light into the room. Still she will not sleep even just next to me. She holds onto me, pulling my neck right next to her face. If I move she is awake and ask where I am going.

As you can imagine this mama bear is tired, worried and emotional. We have tried so many things and the anxiety is just there. When we ask her what she is afraid of, she says she saw a wolf with a pig’s tail that wants to eat her. And no matter how much we try, we can’t get her to calm down about it. And the anxiety causes her to not eat. Yesterday for the first time in a week she ate about 4 bites of my pasta and last night she ate a bit of meat. Other than that, the only things I could get in her the past week is Pringles, grapes and baby Squish.

I am working 2 jobs and taking care of the house in all of this chaos and I know that I will need to do some massive research to get her some help. And then we are dealing with Sky – she is only 5 and we sometimes forget that because of her smart mouth. But she has really been acting out because she needs attention as well and mommy is taking care of Abby, she just can’t fit quality time in with her. Hubby is there and doing as much as he can to help and really takes care of Sky but she is really feeling the strain. Especially because if I have to work, I am asking her to not leave her sister alone. So she is taking on more responsibly than what a 5 year old needs to have. Ever. And with that comes a real bad attitude. She is giving us lip about everything and this mama bear is tired and irritated. So let’s just say life is a bit tense in our home at the moment.

But we are putting on our big girl panties and taking care of business, one minute at a time. And who needs sleep in anyway???

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Posted in Random nothings

Living with Autism Level 1

Autism Level 1 also known as Aspergers or High Functioning Autism, is a complex syndrome. You aren’t ‘autistic’ enough for people to realize you have it, but you aren’t normal enough for people to not notice you are ‘weird’.

And that is where we are right now. Abby’s results came in and she has Aspergers (yes we have know the whole time, but an official diagnosis was needed). So the official diagnosis really does not change anything, we are treating her the same, loving her the same and struggling with the same things.

Just an insight into her ‘world’ – she is 2 years and 10 months old – but her mental capability is that of a child 19 months older than her. So she is extreme intelligent and has the vocabulary of a child older than 4. But emotionally, she is only a year and a half. And this extreme gap causes her to have the knowledge of things around her, but not have the ability to react to it. Think – Sheldon Cooper of Big Bang Theory. So yeah us, we are raising a pretty, girly Sheldon that is in love with dinosaurs and trains!

We are carrying on with therapy and I will blog more on what I found is working for us and what is not at a later stage.

I am really feeling for her at the moment. The last 2 weeks I have been very busy and there has been a lot of customers coming in to pick up products. This has totally thrown her system out. By Saturday evening she was a total mess as I have been at a market the whole day and she was left with hubby. Sunday she was even more clingy and slept with me the whole night, holding on to me. We wanted to go out for some ice cream but I realized that taking her out in public the way she was, would be a disaster. So I sent hubby to do the ‘chores’ part of our trip and stayed with her. I wanted to brush her (I will explain brushing in a different post) but her brush just felt too hard for me. I was desperate to give her input, so I remembered a back massager¬† that my sister in law gave me as a gift a few years ago. I found batteries for it and gave it to her. The amount of instant relief it gave was amazing. She was rubbing it on her legs, arms, tummy and even put it in her mouth. She loved the input she got. By the time hubby got back, she was calm and we could go out and have ice cream. She was VERY busy while out, but on average, it was a good outing. So yeah for massagers!

Today she was very needy. I had to stop my work often and go to bed with her. She just wants to be in bed hugging me. And it so difficult with a cheeky 4 year old in the mix that demands attention. But hey, tomorrow is a better day. Also – as an Aspie parent, you are always tired. Like always. So send coffee!! And chocolates!

We really want to thank Lorryn at The Mouse House. She has been amazing with Abby and we could not have asked for a better person to do the evaluation.