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Warning...much whimpering ahead... [Sep. 30th, 2004|12:05 am]
[mood |scaredscared]

I'll spare you all and give you a cut...

I'm not exactly sure where to begin. So I'm going to start at the very beginning. I'll try to condense.

On June 16th, 1998, Ayden Maxwell arrived in this world. He was the result of an easy pregnancy, quick delivery and a very healthy baby boy. He nursed like a champ and was only fussy during growth spurts.

When Max was 4 months old, he had a sudden medical mystery. To this day, we still have no idea what happened. He went from three times his birth-weight to his original weight. He became severely dehydrated and was quite literally on death's doorstep when I arrived at the hospital with him. We spent two weeks over Thanksgiving at Our Lady of the Lake Peds unit. I still have a polaroid of the little indian head-dress that the older kids made for him. No diagnoses was ever given and he bounced back just fine.

At some point around the time he was a year old, he broke his leg. We aren't sure how that happened, either. I was sitting on the floor right there in the room. I saw him get down off the bed, sit to play with a toy, then stand up to come hug me. He smiled and said "MomAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH". I knew something was wrong. I could hear it and I could *see* it. Even though everything looked right as rain on the outside.

Max has been my only child that just flat out does not handle change well. I attributed that to the fact that for the first several years of his life, his mother (who has been guilty of much wanderlust) actually stayed in one place for an extended period of time. I figured he just wasn't used to moving like my other two were.

At 3, we noticed his speech wasn't where it should be. We suspected this was the result of being the youngest of three and not ever HAVING to talk. If we didn't understand, he could be sure his big brother or sister did.

By this point, I'd noticed something else. Although he rarely got into any trouble, when he did, he freaked. If you tried to so much as talk to him or put him in time-out, he'd just shake violently. As a child or animal who's been hit. Gun shy, if you will. I was baffled, but chalked it up to a "kid thing".

Kindergarten rolled around and he struggled the entire year. Wouldn't do work unless it was one-on-one. Hated writing in any form. Wouldn't read on command, but could obviously read larger words than most kids his age. His teacher, the amazing Ms. Ashe, suspected this was a maturity thing. He had *just* turned 5 and not attended pre-K. We know, though, that he was capable.

In the last few months, the poor boy has had more thrown at him. A move. The loss of his brother and father in his immediate vicinity. A new school. A new grade. A new house. A mostly absent mother who sees him on the weekends.

We noticed that he could only tolerate so much of "people" before retreating to our room to have some "quiet" time. Okay, so he's a loner. *shrug*

Things have now rapidly started going downhill.

If asked to verbalize anything or write or read out loud, he shuts down. If you try having a serious discussion with him, he gets fidgetty. I mean, in the most pronounced way. Scratching himself all over, playing with something....any distraction. If you restrain his hands, he flips out. "I'M ITCHY!!!!"

There are other little "oddities".

He's been discovered to have approximately a 6th grade reading level, yet he won't read if asked to.

If you take him to the movies, he holds his ears because it's too "loud", yet he will turn the television up to a point of annoying others. Any loud noise seems to bother him. Vaccuum cleaners, toilets flushing. Any white noise, really.

It's been suggested that it might be mild autism. It could be those "developmental problems" I was warned of when he was 4 months old and hospitalized. It could just be a child that's totally and completely not handling things well.

We're working on getting an appointment with a therapist. My 6 year old. Therapy. Scary. I'm worried.

I've arranged to change schedules with a co-worker when I get back from California. This will result in me being home when he gets off of school. I'm hoping this will at least help him feel safer, somehow. He loves everyone in the house here. He's not angry with them. It's just not mom. He needs mom. Mom will do her best to make that happen.

So I was digging through pictures and wanted to share one.

That's the little boy I adore so deeply. I hope I can find a way to see him like that more often than not.


[User Picture]From: darke
2004-09-29 10:19 pm (UTC)
Cute kid.

I only mention this because it came to my attention at work the other night when this "are you autistic" test went around and someone brought it up. As far as the autism thing goes:


Just something to read and know about should it ever provide any insight, be it for your son or someone else.
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[User Picture]From: rimmie
2004-09-30 03:29 am (UTC)
he is such a sweet little guy.

I am here for whatever you need. Let me know what happens and what is said.


See you soon
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[User Picture]From: sichernde_seele
2004-09-30 06:15 am (UTC)
I'd definately say he's less empathetic than his siblings. However, I'm not sure if it's a lack of empathy or just a case of "I don't get what you are so upset about...it's no big deal"

As for the repetition, not so much. At least not that I've noticed.

But then there is his thing with music. The fact that he can hear a song once and know the tune. He'll sit and sing while in the bathroom. Beautiful music, but a little strange.

I'm going to make his appointment and we shall see.

Up until about a year and a half ago, he also had nightmares from hell. I figured he'd inherited my night terrors. It's so unsettling to hear that scream in the middle of the night.


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[User Picture]From: yarha
2004-09-30 09:54 am (UTC)
Beautiful music, but a little strange.

That's it! He's not 'autistic', but 'artistic'! This happens to people who play oboes and bassoons, too, which are ill winds that no-one blows any good.

No, really, it doesn't sound like it's horribly severe. It's good that you're havin' him looked at.

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[User Picture]From: sichernde_seele
2004-09-30 11:55 pm (UTC)
The psychologist we are going to see isn't all about the meds.

Because he isn't "bad" or "hyper" it's going to be very difficult to find a medication to make a child "speak".

I've got a few books on the list and (if this is the case) will be looking heavily into diet and vitamin therapy.

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[User Picture]From: jaxia
2004-09-30 06:19 am (UTC)
Oh hon. I'm glad you are taking him to see someone. If I can help, let me know. *huge hugs*
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[User Picture]From: wwwolfww
2004-09-30 06:20 am (UTC)
I just finished a book called Songs of the Gorilla Nation written by a woman (Dawn Prince-Hughes) who grew up with a particular kind of autism that was not diagnosed until she was an adult. It's called Asperger's syndrome, a form of autism characterized by difficulties processing stimuli, sensory sensitivity and social awkwardness.

That is an adorable picture.
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[User Picture]From: sichernde_seele
2004-09-30 06:28 am (UTC)
My ex-husband was diagnosed with Asperger's after we divorced. It made a lot of sense and I was glad to finally have a handle on some of *his* behavior when we were together.

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From: barefootboi
2004-09-30 08:19 am (UTC)
My little cousin Anton shows some of the same things you've talked about your son doing --- he's very smart, but he learns sort of in patches so sometimes he's way ahead and sometimes he seems to be way behind. His ability to sit still is dramatically reduced when you *need* him to sit still, otherwise he's fine. He doesn't talk nearly as much as his sister, who's two years younger. And yeah, he can be a little bit wild at times.

After being diagnosed as hyperactive and having behavoiral probs for about six months, his new doctor came out with the diagnosis that he's "very, very mildly autistic". He's doing a lot better now.

It's worth checking out.
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From: chumas
2004-09-30 05:15 pm (UTC)
I wish you the best of luck, Holly. He's a cute little anklebiter. Here's to him having a long and happy life.
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