Wednesday, February 29, 2012

♫♪♬ We're Off To See The Pediatric Orthopedic Specialist! ♬♪♫

     Yes, you do detect a hint of sarcasm in the above title. It will be somewhat of an adventure but, not one of leisure. The doctor, that saw Nathan just two days ago, has made an appointment for my almost nine year old son to see a Pediatric Orthopedic Specialist tomorrow morning. What I found confusing was that even though no one at our physicians' office had not taken the time to call me with Nathan's lab results, evidently someone had thought it important enough to go ahead and schedule the referral appointment with the pediatric orthopedic specialist to determine the cause of the swelling in Nathan's hips. I am extremely thankful for that special someone that God used to help my son. 
     I am also grateful that my husband, whom has been fighting a high fever and is recovering from the flu, will be able to take Nathan's brother to school in the morning. Nathan and I will have to leave the house about thirty minutes earlier in order to make it to the specialist's office by our appointment. I am married to a responsible man and it means the world to me that I can always count on him. The father of my older two children had no problem leaving me to struggle with various decisions, situations and opposition while he did what he wanted, regardless of the consequences. I make sure to give thanks every day for God bringing my husband into my life.
     As you can see, I wandered off the intended subject. I ask that, no matter who you are or where you live, you keep our Nathan in your thoughts and prayers as we meet with the specialist that will help resolve the discomfort he is experiencing. Thank you for taking the time to follow our blog.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Leg Pain, X-rays and Lab Work...Oh, My!

     Nathan woke up this morning with pain in his legs when he tried to stand up. I called the doctor's office as I was getting everyone around. I had to carry Nathan to the dining room and back down the hall to use the bathroom then helped him into the bathtub to clean up before his doctor's appointment. This is difficult for any eight year old boy but, especially one whom has become very independent After we dropped off Nathan's brother at school, we went straight in to our doctor's office, and after an examination, we ended up over at the hospital for x-rays of his legs, hips, etc. The technicians explained that it could be the end of the week before we received the results. So, Nathan and I stopped by the grocery store to pick up Velveeta shells & cheese, children's ibuprofen and a few other necessary items. 
     When we got home, we checked on my husband whom has been sick the last few days and then fixed us all some lunch. Nathan and his father went down the hall after eating. I had just sat down in the living room to relax, before going to pick up Nathan's brother from school, when the doctor's office called for Nathan to have lab work done immediately. There was no way to be in two places at once, so I called upon Grandma & Granddaddy to pick up Nathan's brother from school. I then carried Nathan to the car and headed off to pick up the lab work orders from the doctor's office to take with us to the lab. I had been anxious all day and if I didn't want Nathan to get more frustrated than he already had become, I needed to redirect my energy into helping him focus on something that would take his mind off what was going around him. 
     While we were waiting to have Nathan's lab work drawn, we talked about what he might want to pick up for dinner on the way home. He decided upon "the golden arches" which gave him something to concentrate on for the time being. When they eventually called Nathan back to draw the lab work, the nurses brought a wheelchair which put a smile on both of our faces! Carrying my eighty pound son around wasn't quite what I had imagined that I would be doing today. The nice nurses brought Nathan a little teddy bear in a t-shirt with the hospital logo before they started. It didn't take very long at all before it was over. As they were wheeling him out, the nurses let him choose a full-size candy bar. They even offered me one! lol 
     Now, we just have to wait patiently until our doctor's office gets the lab results back from the hospital. Did I mention that our regular physician is on "leave of absence" until sometime in March? From what I understand, the doctor that has been covering for our physician, the one that saw Nathan today, will be returning to his normal office after tomorrow. I hope that we will receive Nathan's lab results tomorrow. I would be most upset if my son's care suffers because of the change of "lab coats". Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers! I will post updates when I have more information. 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Please Support our Family and Friends Autism Team in the Upcoming AutismOklahoma PieceWalk

     Our Family and Friends Autism Team "Nathan's Voice" is participating in the upcoming Autism Oklahoma Piece Walk, as we did last year. We walk each year in support of our almost nine year old son who was diagnosed with Autism four years ago. Our Family and Friends Autism Team is very excited to be a part of such an AWESOME opportunity to "pay it forward" in the autism community!! 
     Please consider supporting our Family and Friends Autism Team "Nathan's Voice" by either walking with us on Saturday, May 5, 2012 and/or making a donation towards the 2012 Autism Oklahoma Piece Walk, thru our team's participation. You are welcome to follow our autism team on twitter @NathansVoice for updates on the upcoming walk.

     The Piece Walk and 5K is the largest single autism event in the state of Oklahoma. Attended by an average of 5,000 people every May, the annual Piece Walk and 5K generates monies back into the community in the form of grants or special projects and also provides operating funds for
     If you are an Oklahoma family, and want to start your own autism team in support of that special loved one diagnosed on the autism spectrum, check out and register for the Autism Oklahoma Piece Walk and 5K! Follow @AutismOklahoma and @MyFriendDash on twitter for updates on fundraising events leading up to the Autism Oklahoma Piece Walk.
     Thank you for the continued prayers and support ... it is much appreciated!!         

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Was Your Child Recently Diagnosed with Autism?

Our Newest Featured Guest Blogger is Amalia Starr, Autism Motivational Speaker, Independent Living Coach and Author. Please enjoy her post and feel free to leave a comment or question below for Amalia.
If your child was recently diagnosed with autism, it is important to be aware that negative feelings will arise. Try not to get attached to those feelings, do not numb them out, and do not bury them. They will shift over time. Remember, it is a process. We are all different, but I have found that surrendering to "what is" helps one to move through the acceptance stage more quickly, as resistance to "what is" will only prolong it. When you are able to face the diagnosis head-on, the negative feelings will begin to fade away, and acceptance is right around the corner.
1.   Gather as much information as possible.
2.   Join support groups.
3.   Talk about your child's disability.
4.   Keep a journal, and write down anything and everything.
5.   Find one person you can share your inner-most feelings with.
6.   When you are ready, talk to other parents. They can be a great source of information and support.
7.   Try to live in the present moment, whenever you can.
8.   Be courageous, and believe in yourself.
9.   Trust your feelings.
10. Be kind to yourself.
Do not keep secrets, especially about a health condition. It causes more harm than good.
My son, Brandon was diagnosed with epilepsy and learning disorders at age nine. The pediatric neurologist told us to tell no one, including Brandon, that he had epilepsy, due to the stigma attached. For several years, I did what she said. That was one of the worst things I could have done.
I know from personal experience, that when our children are helped at an early age, they have a much better chance of changing negative behaviors, improving performance, increasing self-acceptance, and self-esteem. However, if you missed that opportunity, as I did with Brandon, do not give up. We did not find out Brandon had autism until he was thirty-two years old. Early intervention is key but, I know firsthand it's never too late to get help.
A) What I wish I knew early on about having a child with special needs:
1.  Do not take it personally.
2.  It is not your fault.
3.  The sooner you give up resistance, the sooner you can help your child.
4.  Trust yourself.
5.  When traditional treatments are not working, look into alternatives.
6.  Doctors are not always right.
7.  Find a physician you and your child like, and who understands your situation.
8.  Acceptance comes only when you are ready.
9.  Take care of yourself first, and you will have more to give.
10. Get as much help, assistance and support from people who care, as often as possible.
11. Hold onto HOPE, and never let it go.
As parents, we must remember raising a child with special needs is a process. There may be days when we do not know how we can hang on, but somehow we make it through. The tools I found to be the most helpful were living in the moment, and having hope.
When we live in the moment, not out into the future, it helps to eliminate fear and anxiety. I also found that holding onto hope was not a luxury, it was a necessity.
Amalia Starr is a Mother, Motivational Speaker, Author and Independent Living Coach. Starr's youngest son, Brandon, is thirty-nine years old. He has autism, intractable epilepsy, and severe learning disorders. The professionals who worked with Brandon said he would never be able to live alone. They were wrong. Brandon has been living on his own for the past fourteen years, enjoying his independence. There is HOPE!
For more information on how to help your child with special needs reach his or her full potential please visit:, and accept Amalia’s offer of a free phone consultation.
Follow Amalia on Twitter at:
Visit her new non-profit, Autism Independence Project:

*Visit our Giveaway to Enter and Win a 1st Edition copy of Raising Brandon!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

My Cup Runneth Over!

     Wednesday morning at 12:01am, my beautiful granddaughter was born. I had the pleasure of witnessing her birth, as I did when her older brother was born a little over two years ago. My precious daughter is their mother and one that makes me proud to be her momma. Both her and her brother have experienced more than their share of disappointment before, during and since the divorce of their father and I over a decade ago. To see my daughter as a momma making important decisions, and taking into consideration how those will affect her family, reminds me that she has matured so much in the last few years. He brother just left for Basic Training four days ago after enlisting in the Army last fall. He had wanted to see his niece born before he left to start his service in the Army. It is safe for me to say that my two older children have grown up and started their own individual journeys. I am raising their two younger brothers with the man I love and find myself asking "where has the time gone?" I am not questioning my seasoned life because God has blessed me to the point that my cup runneth over!  

Monday, February 6, 2012

I am Running Out of Tissues!

     Words can't express how this momma feels. Even though my eighteen year old son enlisted in the Army in August of last year, and we knew he wouldn't be leaving until February 6, 2012 for Basic Training, it doesn't make it any easier for me to see him go. He was able to see almost everyone from my side of the family when we got together at Christmas. Since then, I have gotten him and my Dad together, taken him over to see my husband's parents who have treated him & his sister as their own grandchildren and have spent as much time as possible with him over the last few months. It has been a very emotional week while I was helping him get his paperwork, bank account and all the things he needed together so that he could pack. He spent some time over the weekend with his 2 year old nephew and his pregnant 22 year old sister, who is due to deliver his niece anytime. Tonight, I gathered him and his almost 9 year old & 10 year old brothers tonight for them to have a chance to spend time with their big brother before he leaves out later today for Basic Training for the Army. My youngest boys are both too young to understand what this really means but, I am glad that I made it possible for them to see him. It could be a minimum of three months before he comes back from Basic Training. If everything works out for him and he gets a chance at Airborne school and then at becoming a Ranger, it could be quite awhile before he gets to return home. Either way, when he does get to come home, he will be a changed person. The Army will make a man out of the little boy I gave birth to almost nineteen years ago. I am fighting back the tears as I type this and just as I have been for the last forty-eight hours!
     I am going to try to get some rest before I have to get up, with the alarm in four hours, and rush the boys off to school so I can shed some more tears at the airport. I know this post isn't directly related to autism but, it affects me which will eventually affect Nathan and the rest of the family. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers during this period of adjustment. I am dealing with a difficult medical diagnosis and could use a bunch of positive thoughts, also. I want to thank you for continuing to follow our blog! We will be back to bringing you Featured Guest Bloggers, more resources and more fantastic giveaways in the near future. If you would like to contact me with special needs resources to list on the blog, news that would be of interest to our readers in the autism community or would be interested in offering a resource for our future giveaways, email at your convenience. I always look forward to hearing from our readers! Good night and I hope you have a great week!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Educational Parent Seminar in Tulsa, OK

Parent Seminar

Oklahoma Vision Development Center is hosting a FREE informational Seminar for Parents about how vision affects learning. Seating is limited so please call 918-633-9085 to register.

When?  February 16, 2012 7-8pm
Where? 4520 S. Harvard Ave. Ste. 100, Tulsa, OK

Dr. Monte Harrel's training is in development and children's vision. He has a passion for helping kids and educating parents and professionals on the options that are available for kids.