Autism and changes, distractions and Angels

So this week has been kind of insane. Almost 3 weeks now since this whole scary mess kicked off. My emotions are finally starting to settle to a manageable level, or at least a level where I can shove them into a box and ignore them to focus on solutions.

The kids though, they are still having a rough time. The little dude most of all. Emotions are high around the house. We are all handling things differently. None of us very well though. Meltdowns abound. The singular joy of a meltdown is something i think every person should witness at some point. Maybe people would stop being so judging of other peoples parenting skills and just see that sometimes life is hard for kids. Maybe if everyone had to go through a meltdown they would just be nicer to others. Meltdowns are fricken hard. Why are we having so many meltdowns? Because we have no solid ground to stand on. No structure, routine or stability.

Stability

Autism and routine are best friends. There are more meanings to the word routine than how you plan out your workday. The kids need to know what to expect. I can plan out our days and even in summer when no day is really the same, I can plan them. I can warn the kids when things will change. And when things are rough and unexpected, they could always fall back on knowing that no matter what happened they could go home, to their room. They could go home and everything would be as it was. Now they don’t have that. I have to start thinking of packing. I have to start preparing things. The problem is, we still don’t have any place to go and they know that.

River is having a rough time. His way of expressing that is picking on his brother more. He has a lot more attitude and is more withdrawn. He is also getting more emotional. Things are upsetting him easier. I am trying to keep things as calm and normal at home as I can but they still feel it.

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Eph being goofy with the dinobot cutout and apparently Marilyn is being cheeky back there too

Ephraim is just weepy and whiny all the time. He needs constant reassurances. He wants hugs and I love you’s every time he walks into the room. He is more dependent on his lovies and has certain toys he won’t put down. He has a little plastic pokemon that lives in his pocket 24/7 now. He cries at every little upset. It is hard to help him feel better.

You can only offer so much of the promise of structure and routine that they need, when you have no idea what the next week will offer let alone the next month. They both really need that routine and structure.

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Mall playgrounds are still fair game in our family.

So we have been keeping ourselves busy.

Wednesday we went to Eugene and spent the day with Ephraim’s father. We had a picnic, fed ducks, played at the playground, walked the mall and went to see The Lego Movie at the budget theater. That was a really good day. We kept very busy. Ephraim loved being able to visit his dad there were lots of smiles and giggles and hugs.

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Eph with his dad

Thursday started off rocky. Everyone was tired, which added to the emotions. Especially in Ephraim. He had a rough morning. In the afternoon, we went to a BBQ at a friends. That was fantastic for all of us. I got to talk with other adults and some of the conversations were about what is going on and offers of help, while some of the conversations had nothing to do with what is going on and they helped me feel human for a few moments. The kids both got to hang out with other people and had a great time. After the BBQ the boys went to stay the night at the Grandparents house.

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a rousing game of driveway soccer made this little dude happy

Friday, I had to go to the dentist, so the kids were at grandmas most of the day then came home and helped me make dinner and most of the evening was calm but as the evening wore on, the crankiness came out. Little guy actually put himself to bed early because he was tired and upset.

So today started off with a bang. Arguing and crying and questions. River is snapping at Ephraim and Eph is crying because River won’t play with him and the dog wants to eat the kitten and my head is still spinning from yesterdays pain meds and it was just all a jumble of crap that I had to wade through to try and finish writing my term paper for Advanced Anatomy and Physiology.

This was no fun and I thought I was going to lose it. Then, there was a knock on the door. Two packages sitting on the porch, with the kids names on them. Just in time too. The boys got quiet for a second as they tore those boxes open. Ephraim squealed louder then I have heard in a long time, while hopping up and down trying to get his new Stuffed Creeper out of the box. River, in his too cool teenage way, just said woah how cool as he delicately extracted his new dragon from it’s box. Both boys wore smiles as bright as the moon.

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It was hard to get him to stop hopping for a picture

We have angels. One of them sent the boys these gifts, just to give them something to smile about. Thanks M! You are amazing and we adore you.

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Dragons are the way to this kids heart.

Some of these angels are spending time looking into tenant laws and sending me information or searching for rental houses or asking if they can babysit or offering to pack. And some of them are sharing our story. There are Angels making donations and offering aid in places we never knew. There are Angels we have never met who are sending me words of encouragement.

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super happy boy, you can see from the puffiness how many tears he has had today, this guy made it better.

 

All of you, everywhere, have touched my heart. Right now it is so hard to focus on one thing. I am at a point where I am taking it a day at a time and when the days are too hard we go an hour at a time, But I am not giving up. I don’t know if the fundraiser will continue to get attention or if I will find a suitable rental or if we will be living in the camper for a bit, but I know that people support us and want to help and that is more then I have ever really had before.

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My phone was stupid today and his smiles aren’t often caught on camera, but he loves this dragon

So thank you too all of you out there. Thank you for keeping us in your thoughts. Thank you for believing in us and showing us people care. If you want to donate or share our story we would appreciate it. If you just want to send us a pray or happy thought, those are much appreciated too.

Always Love,

Domoni

http://www.gofundme.com/Dreaming-of-home

The Chicken Chick

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Overwhelmed.

I don’t even know how to express what I am feeling tonight. When I wrote the blog this morning and decided to go ahead and take the advice to start the gofundme page, I didn’t actually think anything would come of it.

People can surprise you when you need it most. The last 2 weeks have been so confusing and emotional. For me and for the boys. Having people reach out to offer comfort and support is something we never really had much of before. Aside from my mother, our support system has been scattered across the country and I have felt so very alone at times.

river baby

My original inspiration. 18 years of showing me how to be a better person.

The last 13 years have been harder then I can explain. Sometimes it seems surreal. Like something a fevered brain would make up, or a lifetime movie to entertain the home bound masses in the heat of the day.

How we went from me and River doing well, I was in college and he seemed like any other little dude, to one day a small pain in my side turns into days in the hospital and now years of progressive problems. Frequent hospital trips and too many doctors, that was not how I planned to spend my life.

Then River suddenly shows me how hard the world is for him and our lives spiral into this tiny little box. Just me and my son, working through our hell together. Then when I start to loose hope we will get out of that box, Ephraim comes along and makes us love him. He gives us more reasons to fight. Watching an infant smile through that much pain changes how you see the world. Seeing my little baby face such a serious surgery that could have had some major complications should not be something that I say this about, but in a way he saved us by being so ill.

I had Ephraim in the middle of River’s worst years. That time was dark and painful in ways most of the people I knew couldn’t understand. And we isolated ourselves, and people let us. I was at a point that I didn’t think I could get through it. Then that baby reminded me that pain doesn’t have to rule you. I started to fight harder. I learned more about my Porphyria and I worked harder with River to get him through his pain. I pushed Doctors to listen to me about what Ephraim needed. I argued with  teachers and principals and shrinks about how to bring River back out of the hole. I became my own champion and battled my illness. I became a warrior to save my sons.

If I didn’t have Ephraim, I don’t know if I would have reclaimed that strength.

My mother has stood beside me, even when I didn’t deserve it. I have made bad decisions and fallen on my face so many times. But I know no matter how far I fall she will help me back out.

I have grown. I am not the damaged child I used to be. I can see that when I look at River. When I see who he has become. If I was that broken little girl who was lost in herself, I could have never raised him to be such an amazing young man.

Watching Ephraims face light up and the sound of his innocent laughter is like a beacon when I feel overwhelmed.

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My second little fighter. He was born stronger then anyone I know.

I do find myself scared and overwhelmed often, as of late. Before I moved into this home, I didn’t really have friends. I know I do now. I know there are people who love us, who want us to succeed. People who will fight with us.

All of you people out there who are sharing our story, who have donated to help me give my children something I can’t do alone, you are what gives me hope. Some people who have never met us, but can feel our struggle. I have no idea how I am supposed to thank you.

This morning I wrote a post asking the world to help me. I opened my family up to what I feared would be shaming. I feared people would call me unpleasant things. I feared many things. I posted that page with tears streaming down my face and had to walk away from it out of fear of repercussions. 

When I came home this evening, People had donated to help us, people had shared our story. Over 350 people have read our that blog post.

When I tucked Ephraim in tonight, he was having a hard time. He got to play at a friends for awhile today and there were more people then he expected. He did amazing, but he had some problems after he came home, over stimulation does that. So he was teary and wanted a cuddle. He asked me if we were going to be able to find a place like this. I told him I didn’t know what we would find.  Then I told him that so many people care and want us to find a good home that something good will come through for us.

So thank you. Thank all of you for bringing hope back for me. It makes it easier to comfort my babies when I have so many people comforting me.

Always Love,

Domoni

http://www.gofundme.com/blaeok