Dyer Family Happenings

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Peace, love and being a momma — September 22, 2016

Peace, love and being a momma

Today is International Peace Day. A day to spread peace and love speak and actions with everyone you meet. To show this world that we can and will not only conquer the rough stuff of life with love and smiles but that TOGETHER as a people we are better. Think about it, all of the beautifully amazing different things we all bring to the table. Thoughts, ways to worship, food, clothing, music, it’s amazing and beautiful.

And I don’t know why people are so scared of the things they don’t understand.

Embracing the things I don’t understand is just part of our world. Or rather has been for the past 5.5 years. There were things I didn’t understand before but I’d either learn about them or scootch around them, I was in control  of what I slammed face first into. And then Joel came into my world. He was new and I didn’t totally understand him and then we got married and I still didn’t have him totally figured out but I was much more comfortable with him. And then came Leo and the same, and then Max and holy Lord.

And just when I thought I was starting to understand Leo, bam- he regressed and was diagnosed with Autism. Same thing with Max. God has not let me live in comfort with these kids yet, and guess what…

I AM OKAY.

woah, wait a minute what. Yeah. Even in the moments, days, weeks, of uncertainty and confusion I am okay. Go figure that one. Even when I am not sure how to handle a behavior, how to make words come, how to keep health insurance, how to make a living, how to get from one place to the next in the correct time, I am okay. Why? Because I have faith. (Yes I have faith in God but He’s not who I am specifically talking about right now)

I have faith in the people around me. Family, friends, teachers, strangers. I have faith that there will be listening and love and understanding. That there will be hugs and tears and smiles and celebrations. Because that faith is what keeps the love moving from one person to the next. It’s what keeps me waking up every morning and wanting to push forward and through to that next hurdle. Because I know that there will always be someone with a kind or helpful word that will help get us over it. Because loving is learning.

So lets keep moving the love forward, even in the simplest of ways to one another. Have faith in your fellow man even when you might not understand his or her lifestyle choice, religion, choice of shoes. Because those things aren’t as important as being better together, and being together as people trying to live and love.

Wishing you all a peace filled evening and life

 

 

 

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If you’re interested.. here’s who I am — February 26, 2016

If you’re interested.. here’s who I am

Coming off of a heated discussion last night on facebook where a debate was started over something I posted, that was not intended for debate and then being told if I don’t want people to express their opinions on my facebook page I should censor myself I thought I’d share with the world who I am, what I’m about and why you can take a hike if you’re just here to cause problems.

I believe in God. I strive to live like Jesus. To teach and to lead and to love without judgement, because it’s not my place. My place is to show love, be love and to be thankful. To be faithful in learning Gods word, in being a walking image of his word and of practicing what I preach to EVERY person I meet. I believe we are all amazingly broken people that are really good underneath what we fight every day. We all sin. Period.

I’m liberal, socially I am very very liberal. I believe in taking care of one another. I believe that sometimes people need help and to help them rise they need a boost both emotionally and financially. Hatred is not something I choose to practice in my world. I choose to lead with love, I choose to listen. I choose to show the world that you don’t have to be angry and loud and full of hatred to make a point. But if you push me too far I’m a cannon, especially with things I’m passionate about.  I do not start debates or drama on other peoples social media pages or sites. If someone asks a question of others I may choose to answer but I do not troll or poke just to troll or poke. It’s rude.

I believe in manners, please and thank you. I believe in spankings and soap in the mouth and giant bear hugs and snuggles. I believe in loving until it hurts and crying until you can’t see. I have faith in Doctors and medicine and vaccines and holistic approaches. I believe in growing your own food and supporting all stores, because local isn’t just the store it’s the people who work in it. I believe in recycling- things and water. I believe in the public school system, my ability to navigate it and that our teachers need to be shown more respect and love- they are helping to shape the men and women that will take care of this country when I’m old. What a job.

I married for love and I’m more in love with my husband every time we push together through a rough patch. I believe that my children are amazing and will change the world, they already have. I believe that music can fix just about anything and a smile can be the best medicine for almost any situation. I don’t mind getting dirty or learning how to build. I love working on cars and learning about science.

I am more reserved than I used to be. Listening is much more interesting. I think about everything at least 5 million times before I make a decision. I like charts and check lists. I have anxiety and ocd issues that I fight every single day. I drink too much coffee. I was a medical biller for the better part of a decade and understand wayyyyyy more about health insurance, payers, doctors fees, contracted rates and fighting for money that you are owed than the majority of the general public.

But more than anything else I treat people with respect. I do not attack their beliefs, their physical appearance or their religious or political views. I don’t choose to make every situation a platform for what I believe in, but I share my heart. If these are things that offend you, you feel I need to be “schooled” on or you’d like to start a debate with me on something I’m pretty well versed in, just don’t. Because social media is not the place to have a word battle. You want to get coffee and talk, I can try to make that happen. But here, no.

 

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Seasons of change, not just summer to fall — October 26, 2015

Seasons of change, not just summer to fall

California is finally getting the memo that it is in fact autumn. It’s still a smidge confused but the brisk mornings are a nice way to start days. But weather and month changes aren’t the only things that are changing around here. Surprise surprise. (One day all I’ll write is- everyone is alive and nothing has changed and that might come in about 35 years….)

Leo is still majorly rocking preschool. His questions, conversations and general talking is loud and never ending but I love it. Even when it’s 5am and I don’t feel well. He tells us when he’s excited and happy and angry and sad, but never when he’s tired. 🙂 admitting that at 4 would for sure be the end of the world. Wednesday we have his first Parent Teacher conference. I can’t wait to hear all about how he’s doing. With all of the advances he’s making, regulating (stimming) has become more pronounced. You can tell it’s totally involuntary movements and it’s amazing how it helps him get his words out when he’s excited or calm him when he’s upset. I’m proud of him. He’s understanding his own body and that is HUGE.

Max is talking up a storm. His fits are more appropriate to being 2 or tired or a boy that just wants to throw pumpkins. His therapy is changing totally. We are actually backing out of ABA and he will be having more focused therapy to work more on speech and O.T. for some super testy sensory issues. I get one on one time with him to talk and read and sing and play with playdough. I love it. I’m proud of how he wants to be a big boy. He wants to go to school with Leo. Wednesdays are library day and he just loves it. It’s slowly coming together for our boys.

Last Wednesday was a hard day. Max spiked a fever and had a seizure. It was definitely the scariest thing I’ve ever seen. He was purple from not breathing, he was unconscious for way too long and when he finally came too, he wasn’t Max. It was like the sparkle in his eyes was gone. It freaked me out. I just wanted, no I needed him to say “momma”. If he said that somehow I thought it would all be okay. He slept most of Wednesday after we got home from the hospital. And Thursday morning it was like watching a miracle unfold.

He woke up, happy camper style, walked into the living room and started talking. 2-3 word sentences. Words he’d never said before. Rewind to Wednesday night when my husband asked me very honestly “when enough is enough for our boys”. They have had so many hurdles already and we just need them to be able to be. I feel like God hear him. This was his way of saying, lemme show you that things are going to be okay.

We had already made the decision to pull him from ABA, but his communication becoming so much better since Thursday made it easier for me to confidently remove him from ABA services this morning. Because I felt God saying, you’ve got this because I’ve got you. And I am so thankful. I am thankful for what ABA did to help our boys, I am thankful for my husbands teamwork with raising our children, I am thankful for the tutors that are more like family and I am thankful that when it feels like we can’t handle another thing that God tells me, I got this. Because you put your faith in me.

I know there are lots of people that don’t believe or are skeptics about faith, but I’ve gotta tell you in my shoes it’s a real deal.

Now I’m looking forward to the next season and what it will bring to my family.

Lets talk regression — September 14, 2015

Lets talk regression

Hindsight is 20/20 right. Totally is when you’re oldest child is diagnosed ASD and when you are asked if you saw a regression, you rack your brain and yup- at 2 1/2 years old there it was. Sensory overload constantly, not gaining words and phrases, saying the same phrases over and over and over and over, only knowing how to communicate via labeling.(dog, cat, momma, milk)
I keep being given weird looks and told basically that I’m off my rocker that it is again happening, at the exact same age, with Max. But today it all became very very clear at an in home ABA session. He became totally overloaded, he shut down, he started screaming and crying and shaking. If you touch him he says ouch over and over and over. This just started. He is 3 days away from being 2 1/2. He is very very slowly gaining words but it’s a fight.
And I get it. I’d be super pissed off too if I couldn’t tell you what my brain is saying. He’s smart, we are so very fortunate that both of our boys are, but he can’t get what is in his head to come out. He can’t tell me what he needs. He can’t say that he’s tired, or that his teeth hurt, or that his tummy hurts. That he can’t focus, or that he just needs a break. And at this exact age, neither could Leo.
Leo would yell. He would cry, he would ball up and rock, he would cover his ears, he would run to a safe place.
Max screams and cries, he throws things and shakes. He answers no to every question and then he burritos himself in a blanket and depending on the amount of time this has all taken he passes out.
His tutor gave me some things to try to calm him down, but we both agree that the “ouch” screaming comes because he flies into sensory overload, so even the lightest touch hurts. I can’t even begin to imagine what that must be like. To not be able to appropriately vocalize what you need, then to get so frustrated all you can do is scream, then not be able to be consoled because it physically hurts. I can’t imagine. And this is happening multiple times a day just about every day.
So I have to check myself. Remind myself that he can’t help it. That he can’t regulate, that I’m going to have to sit and rock him and sing to him and tell him it’s all okay just like I did with his brother. That we are going to have to push everyone to be more patient and take his therapy that much more seriously because I am terrified that he’s not just the super cute kid with a major speech delay. Because I don’t want this to be his normal or forever or even right now.
So here I am again praying for the strength to push through this, for the patience to open my mind and my heart to whatever God has in store for Max and our family. That Max knows that I love him and it doesn’t matter what he needs I’m going to try my hardest to give it to him.
But I’m not crazy. For better or for worse I am so very in tune to my children.

Faith, love and lowering expectations — July 11, 2015

Faith, love and lowering expectations

Every morning the boys and I say a prayer out loud together:

“Heavenly Father thank you for this beautiful day for learning and for love. In Jesus’ name, Amen”

That’s it. My hope is that the boys will realize that the world doesn’t revolve around them. That there are other hands that make things happen and that we need to not just BE thankful for those hands but we need to TELL those hands we are thankful for them. In toddler world I have no clue if it resonates but we are gonna keep saying it every day.

There have been giant leaps in our household- Leo swimming without a vest or floaties, Max using 2 word sentences more and more, Leo can (in his own almost legible way) write his name without hand over hand help or a drawn guide, Max is growing (I’m pretty sure his feet grew two sizes over night), Leo is mastering sight words (reading here we come!!!!) and Max is conquering his fear of swimming pools.

At the same time we have had some ugly stuff- Leo overhead throwing a chair at school, Max having a full blown screaming/ stiff body meltdown because he needed to finish a task before he got his blanket back, not eating, throwing, hitting, screaming, pinching, ugly words.

My guess is that all parents have these issues with their toddlers. Always pushing boundaries, my hope is that they don’t have them to the extreme we have them here, I don’t wish that on anyone.

I joke(but I’m really serious) that I could do physical labor all day everyday and I’d be tired but Id pull through it, but the emotional drain of dealing with behaviors from my kids wipes me out. It drains every bit of strength, every bit of positivity, every bit of patience I have. And I really need to work on that.

The good days make me excited for the possibility of new growth and learning and the horrific moments knock me down. I feel like I start to expect too much from my kids and then I am let down when they aren’t up to my expectations and that is so wrong on my part. Yes, I need to have expectations of them, and yes they should be just outside of their reach and comfort zone, but I should not be placing 7 year old expectations on my 4 year old and I feel like that’s what I do when he fails. And when he fails he is crushed and his world ends. You can see it across his face. He is just like his mommy with wearing his emotions out in the open so everyone knows.

In these moments I am learning to back off, to lower my expectations to attainable things and to love my children. More importantly to make sure I TELL them I love them. They need to hear those words out of my mouth more. They need to know that I love them, even after awful behavior, they need to hear that I love them even when they act out in ways that embarrass me and break me down, and hurt my heart. They need to know that I will love them as I teach them these things are not okay, that they will happen but that we can find a better way to tackle the situation. That it doesn’t matter what happens my love for them is for always.

And I don’t TELL them this enough. Because I’m embarrassed. Because my heart hurts. Because I am emotionally drained. Because …. because nothing.

1Peter 4:8 “Above all, love each other deeply,1 because love covers over a multitude of sins.”

“Heavenly Father thank you for this beautiful day for learning and for love. In Jesus’ name, Amen”

Transitions, stimming, workload, changes and walking. Lots and lots of walking. — April 23, 2015

Transitions, stimming, workload, changes and walking. Lots and lots of walking.

Those words pretty much sum up life around here as of late.
I walk, every single day. At least a mile. My body is changing in a great way, I feel better and have lessened my stress. I am also now a month off of my migraine meds and 7 months off of blood pressure meds. I think sunshine and movement are cure-alls for me 🙂

Tomorrow is our first official IEP for Leo and the transition from a Special Ed preschool class to an inclusion preschool class. I don’t have an idea what we are in for. I do know that we all seem to be on the same page and I am hopeful that everything is going to transition smoothly. Prayers are always welcome. 🙂

Max starts ABA 5 mornings a week the beginning of May. I am very hopeful for progress with his communication and behaviors. Again, Prayers very welcome.
With these changes I have to give up my Life Group that I am part of through church for the foreseeable future. Although I did suggest Skyping me into the study 🙂 I know this is again a season of life and change that will not be forever but feels kinda long.

Leos stimming, Maxs lack of words and general stuff around here has been on overdrive. I have made the decision that what gets done (house work wise) gets done. What doesn’t, well that can just wait until tomorrow. Things seem to get done more effortlessly, still not totally sure how that happens, but it does!

I wish I had more to say. I’ll get it together better after tomorrows meeting.
Until then Peace and love 🙂

Unreasonable expectations — February 20, 2015

Unreasonable expectations

I have them.
Daily.
I have them for myself, for my husband, for my children and even for my dog.
The funny thing is that I know in my brain that what I think should happen is ridiculous but for some reason my heart still wants them.
Logically:

the dog is going to bark at our mail lady- even though it’s been (just about) the same person, at just about the same time 6 days a week for 3 1/2 years.

Joel is going to be exhausted after work and I try to keep his “to do” list short, and focus on family time but there are days I feel like it’s not enough.

There will daily be at LEAST 2 loads of laundry. And if I slack on it for a couple of days there are then 100. So I should do it daily right?

The boys are going to want to play until they are so tired they fall over, I know this, I try to intercede and head off the massive screaming melt down of exhaustion by requesting “quiet time” in the hope of them settling down to rest. They are 4 and almost 2, they don’t care about sleep, they don’t want to sleep- they are sure they are going to miss something.

I should be further along in my weight loss. I should be able to run a 5k by now, I’ve been working at this for so long- why am I still in size 14 pant?

WHY do I keep getting myself worked up about these things. Why. because I feel the need to traffic direct anything I can. Because I feel like I can’t control so many things (ASD, Sensory freak outs, lack of words, screaming because we can’t talk, health issues, when the sun sets, what time Costco opens, how many people are going to cut me off taking Leo to school) that I feel like I have to have a choke hold on a few things to balance it out. And all I am doing is choking myself.

I pray daily that God calms my heart, softens me to the things that make me rigid, that he will help relax the control issues I have. Somedays he does, others he lets me fight it out.

Leo had to have an EEG Tuesday, it sucked. And I am having a hard time getting passed it.
Logic: He made it through, he did what they needed, we should have the results soon.
Emotion: I have to fully physically restrain him for the first time in a year, The tech was so gruff and told him over and over and over “he couldn’t cry and scream because of other kids at the clinic” (my thought- f the other kids dude, how about you focus on my freaked out one), I wasn’t prepared for the setting or the testing they way I wish I could have been to talk to Leo about it more, I feel like I failed him because we took 300 steps backward for a few days after having the test done.

Max has been saying more single words, and having worse and worse melt downs and tantrums when the words don’t come out. He’s also having worse gas issues. So we are trying lactaid again, tried coconut milk and he looked at me like I had lost my ever loving mind calling it “milk”. I read to him all of the time. We sit and look at one another trying to make words sounds, and it’s all just stuck, and hes mad, and I feel like I am failing him.

And none of this is logical, because we are all alive, working toward goals of understanding, breathing through uncomfortable stuffs and learning, but when the boys struggle I feel like it’s a personal reflection on me. The person that is with them just about 24 hours a day, the person that should be guiding them to daily success

UNREASONABLE EXPECTATIONS

How do I pull myself away from them? I celebrate successes, but why are the set backs like a gut punch?
Gotta figure this out.

For my family

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Because they deserve more than I give them. Because God saw in his plan for these amazing creatures to be part of my world, and I need to remember that my need for order doesn’t matter when it comes to the happiness of my boys.