My Dear Sweet Hayden,
I want you to know what an amazing gift you are. You bring so much joy and excitement to my life. You have taught me more about myself and life in the four years you have been a part of me that I have learned in my entire life.
You have taught me patience. You have taught me to celebrate and enjoy the little things that life has to offer. YOu have taught me to accept myself for who I am and to love myself.
I embrace every moment that we have together good or bad. I hold you tight and squeeze laughter out of you. This has to be on of favorite things in life. In that moment it is just us smiling, laughing, and enjoy the simple joy of being together.
You having autism has never and will never be viewed as a negative in my eyes. You be you has transformed our lives and made us a happier, stronger family.
I love you for you. I accept you for you. I never want to change you and make you someone you are not. I don't want a cookie cutter child.
I love the way you smile. I love the way to skip and jump. I love watching you swim and splash in delight. I love the pictures that you paint me. I always laugh and enjoy your randomness. Even when you run into the middle of the street and take a poop. Ahhh, how you have provided me with a great sense of humor.
I love what a good big brother you are to Ruby. It is truly amazing to watch you interact with one another. You love Ruby with all your heart. The two of you connect on an amazing level. I see the light in your eye when you say her name with excitement in the mornings. One of the first things you do in the morning is run in her room, turn her lights on and shout, "Ruby" with delight.
You have touched so many peoples life. You force as all to look outside the box and see the world with new eyes. I have a new appreciation for you blowing raspberries on my belly and jiggling the jiggly skin on my stomach (by the way you made it that way). I now view you playing with my stomach as a way to interact with you and be one with you.
I wish for you a life full of happiness and love. That you continue to be the sweet, loving, happy little boy that you are. There endless possibilities to all that you can achieve in this world. I love you will all that I can love you with and more.
Friday, August 26, 2011
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
I am currently in Massachusetts at the Autism Treatment Center of America. I am receiving training on the Son-Rise program. I have a lot of people as me what the Son-Rise program is. Well the Son-Rise program was developed by two loving parents in the late 1970's to help their autistic son. The therapy is loving and respectful to the child that has meaning and purpose that is NOT academically based. The focus is on communication and social skills. You join your child is his world and then run with it. For instance Hayden likes to shake his cars by his ear and look at the car with his peripheral vision. I then get a car and do the same motion to engage him. Then you work with him from there. I don't have the energy to go into every detail at this moment :)
We are in the process of converting our sun room into a therapy room for Hayden. The therapy room will be a non-distracting environment so it is easy for Hayden to want to focus on who is working with him. It will have a mirror, therapy ball, trampoline, and a table in chairs. There will be shelves high up on the walls that will contain work and snacks that Hayden is interested in. The purpose of them being out of Hayden's reach is so that he has to communicate with us to get what he wants.
The plan is to be in the therapy room as much as possible. I would like for Hayden to be in the therapy room for at least 8 hours a day and when possible 12 hours a day. That means we are going to need help!!! I already have some amazing people that have stepped up and offered to help with Hayden or watch Ruby so we can work with Hayden. We need more volunteers!!!! If yourself or know of someone that would be interested in working with Hayden or watching Ruby please let me know ASAP!! Unfortunately we can not afford to pay anyone at this time.
The requirements are to have an open mind, be a positive person, and have energy. You also can not have any cigarette smoke on you (Hayden is allergic). I will teach you how to provide therapy to Hayden and you truly need to stick with what I teach you for it to work. There will be an observation window into the therapy room so that I can observe and others can observe me to provide feedback. You can volunteer for an hour a week or several hours a week. This person can be 10 years of age to 100 years of age.
If I am hopeful that we can start an 80 hour week therapy program for Hayden!!! I am going to be taking Hayden out of school.....wow I said it. I firmly believe that this is what needs to be done at this time. We need to use every opportunity of the day to work with Hayden. We can't do that when we are wasting 2 hours driving to school and 3 hours at school.
I am making a commitment to my son!!! I know that recovery from autism is possible for him and I am not going to give up. We CAN do this!!!!