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Feeding Problems and Speech Delay

Feeding Problems and Speech Delay

Our son has been trying to talk for a while now, and he tends to be reasonably understandable when he wants something. Every once in a while, he’ll even surprise you with a full comprehensible sentence — maybe once a month. It’s clear he understands complex thoughts and long sentences based on his response to instructions. So, what gives? Why is he not speaking clearly on a consistent basis?

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Routines

Routines

Routine is the foundation upon which you can direct your family’s chaotic energy into a safe direction. Having an established routine allows your children to go through the necessary motions of their day without worrying about what’s next. Some of the common hurdles are inconsistent nap times and unexpected activities. Of course, these are all more pronounced when you have more than one child. Fortunately, there are tricks to handle even the most frustrating situations.

Quiet time is a great way to handle nap time, especially for your children who no longer take naps. Set aside a two-hour window and enforce quiet activities for all of your children. You get less noise, your napping child gets to rest, and your remaining children get time to do quiet activities like coloring or homework. All of your children may not agree, but everyone wins.

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#OrlandoUnited

Donations can be made at this GoFundMe page. It’s been vetted by NBC Miami and is being managed by Equality Florida.

Local hospitals are in need of blood donations. This is a list of local blood donation centers. Despite rumors to the contrary gay men may not donate blood unless they’ve been free of sexual contact with another man for a year or more.

Attacks like this are perpetrated to instill fear. If you see something suspicious, please report it immediately to local police. While it’s legal to have guns in many places, it’s more than reasonable to question anyone openly carrying a firearm in a place where shooting it would not be appropriate. Keep in mind some may carry today for self-defense.

Hatred and violence against any group of people is NOT OK. Anyone viewed as different from mainstream society is at risk of being targetted. Regardless of whether the attack is perpetrated because of Race, Color, Religion, National Origin, Age (40+), Sex, Pregnancy, Citizenship, Familial Status, Disability Status, Veteran Status, Genetic information, or ANY OTHER REASON, it’s just as horrible.

The special needs and medically complex community stands with Orlando. We’re sending prayers and positive thoughts your way.

Statement from Pulse

Like everyone in the country, I am devastated about the horrific events that have taken place today. Pulse, and the men and women who work there, have been my family for nearly 15 years. From the beginning, Pulse has served as a place of love and acceptance for the LGBTQ community. I want to express my profound sadness and condolences to all who have lost loved ones. Please know that my grief and heart are with you.
Barbara Poma, Owner

The Anchor

Someone has to keep it together when everyone else is falling apart. Usually, it’s me. The world around me dissolves into a panic and I do my best to ignore the whole production. I don’t ignore the problem. That I’ll be attempting to resolve while everyone else is still in shock it even happened.

When others around me realize I’m not in a panic something magical happens. They compose themselves almost immediately. First, they have to stop panicking enough to look around and realize what other people are doing. It does, however, pull everyone back into a state of calm much sooner than they would find it themselves.

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Morning Ritual

I’ve started doing my makeup every day. Part of it is, as my son gets older, I’m better able to do something with both hands while he plays on his own. The main reason is more complex than that. I don’t think of makeup like I used to.

It used to be something to cover up my flaws and I hated the process. Staring in the mirror identifying each of my deficiencies and attempting to thoroughly hide each one was a miserable process. I avoided it and only put it on when the situation absolutely required. Even then I may have skipped it from time to time.

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The Nearly Impossible Task of Finding a Sitter

The Nearly Impossible Task of Finding a Sitter

Finding someone to babysit for a few hours is both the easiest and the most difficult thing I’ve ever done. Whenever I mention to a friend or co-worker I need a babysitter they  know a million and a half people who would LOVE the job. The excitement is palpable. They’ve clearly convinced themselves they know a 13-year-old whose minimally responsible enough to make sure a younger child in their care makes it through being babysat without a trip to the emergency room.

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A Special Bond

A Special Bond

Mothers frequently have a unique bond with their children. Something about being “Mom,” or “Dad” where he’s the primary caregiver, creates a connection with your child which cannot be broken. Mothers who adopt have it as well, as does anyone who serves as a child’s primary caregiver. The unbreakable tie between you and your child becomes stronger when your child has medical difficulties or special needs.

It’s not that these caregivers love their children any more than anyone else. It’s a strengthening which increases the sensitivity of both Mom and the child to the connection itself. It’s as if you can feel your child’s presence through a sixth sense. Their emotions are as clear as day. Personally, I frequently become tired when my son gets tired even if he shows no outward signs of fatigue. If I take a nap while he’s sleeping, I wake up around the same time he does.

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Caring for a Child with Special Needs has Been a Growth Opportunity

In my experience, when people look for growth opportunities they usually talk about things like traveling, training, or networking with a specific community of people. I’ve done all of these things, and they certainly do expand your horizons. For me, none of them have done nearly as much to grow me as a person as caring for our son with feeding difficulties.

After talking to other moms, I’ve come to understand it’s different to care for a child without health problems. Then, you’re balancing between how much attention is appropriate to give them versus how much independence you can gain for yourself to accomplish your tasks for that day. The balance is different for us. We know exactly how much attention our son needs, and most of it is spent making sure he’s fed and actively performing his assigned physical therapy exercises. I don’t think of it as less time for him is more time for me to do what I need to do. Less time for him is slower progress toward walking and crawling independently.

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Missing Out on the Human Experience

Watching my son, who is an extremely social child, interact with other people has made me realize just how little attention the general population pays to their surroundings. What do I mean by that? It’s completely normal for us to walk into a coffee shop and see everyone but the employees staring down at an electronic device. My son waves, and he says hi. He smiles wide. His whole world lights up when someone makes eye contact. We’ll have our coffee and be gone before anyone makes eye contact with him a single time. If they do, they’ll immediately look away back to their phone, laptop, tablet, what have you.

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