Tuesday, March 13, 2012

An Attitude Change

Well, since I gave my blog an overall....I think it's only appropriate that I give my attitude one as well. And this weekend, I tried my best to begin asking my husband for help & lightening the load of being Ethan's main caretaker. Here's how it went......

It was a GREAT WEEKEND!!!! Friday night, we went to my eldest nephew's birthday party. This was a chance for me to explain to Corey what the team & I have been working on with Ethan as far as his social skills. I told him the goal is for Ethan to interact with as many people as possible (preferably his peers), to use his words, and to model appropriate play (no pushing or hitting). OUR plan was to give Ethan as much space as needed, and only intercede if needed.....which I told Corey meant a dangerous situation or inappropriate behavior. Because of past meltdowns that have occurred with Ethan, Corey is very anxious taking Ethan into social settings. In the past, Corey has followed Ethan around at these things in order to protect him from possible triggers. So, this was a good chance for me to tell/show Corey what I have been told/shown as well as for Corey to try it out himself. And, it went GREAT! Corey was able to relax, and enjoy the company of our family & friends. Ethan had a blast as well. He & his two 2-year old cousins were running in a circle pattern through the kitchen, dining room, entry way, and sitting room. They were laughing & squealing....and it was awesome. During the singing of the Happy Birthday Song (a big trigger for Ethan), my husband usually takes Ethan out of the room. However, this time.....Corey was having such a good time that it was actually me who took Ethan out of the room! I was so proud of him...he was relaxed too!!!! It was a perfect evening. Ethan interacted with his peers, Corey was less anxious & didn't follow Ethan's every move, and I was able to see that I can trust Corey to follow through on what I tell/show him we are working on with Ethan. It was awesome!

On Saturday, we participated in AMC's Sensory Friendly Films and went to see The Lorax in the theater. As we were preparing to get ready to go to the movies, I could feel myself becoming overwhelmed. I needed to not only feed & dress my child (and myself), but I also needed to pack a sensory diet bag & do some OT with Ethan before we went out the door. Corey was helping out by working on my blog, so I didn't want to bother him. But then I realized....this is why I am getting upset with him. Poor guy. So, I opened my mouth & asked for help! YEAH, I DID IT!! :0) So, as I prepared the Sensory Survival Bag, Corey did OT with Ethan. It was awesome.

Ethan's Sensory Survival Kit, Sound softening headphones, and Ethan's weighted lap pad that I made for him.

The contents of Ethan's Survival Kit. Some fidget toys, some things to bit/chew on, a slow-color changing snowman, & bubbles. I also put Twizzlers in my purse...a pulling candy.

And Ethan made it through the entire movie! After about 10 minutes into the movie, I even switched seats with my husband so they could sit together! It is either habit or my nature to be the caretaker for Ethan, so it just made sense for me to sit by him. (His Grandma was on the other side of him.) But it was great being able to sit back, relax & enjoy a movie. And that movie was adorable!!!!

After the movie, lunch & nap time, we all went grocery shopping....together! Then, we came home, ate dinner, and then went back out to do some shopping. On Sunday, we usually go to church, but the daylights savings time change threw Ethan's sleep off, so we didn't make it. :0( Today, however, we decided to skip Ethan's nap in order to help get him back on his sleep schedule. So, we went to Peoria for some shopping. Here is what we bought!

Ethan in his new pull-behind bike trailer!

Biking is something that we LOVE to do as a family. For the last 2 years we have been borrowing my sister's pull-behind trailer, so we decided to buy one of our own...and return the borrowed one to it's owner! Ethan loves to ride in this.....I think it gives him a similar sensation as swinging on a swing. Plus, the fresh air is good for him.....and the exercise is good for us!

It was a very nice & relaxing weekend. I am learning to ask for help as well as take care of myself. I feel better....less stressed, less overwhelmed, and less alone. I'm not saying I won't ever revert back into my old ways, but I'm going by the motto practice makes perfect. The more I ask, the better I'll be at it, right???

"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." -Dr. Seuss

At the end of The Lorax movie, this quote was place on the screen. Of course, I cried. And for a moment, I felt as if me asking for help was telling myself that I didn't care as much. But, that's not the case. I still care a "whole awful lot", but it's too much for one person to do alone. And Ethan is very fortunate that his dad and our entire family care a "whole awful lot"......and so am I.

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