Relief or Cry?

The family dramas of recent months have been decreasing, in terms of managing my son’s behaviour and my own emotions towards them, but still more issues than I would like. I still do not see it as the ‘crisis’ my son’s previous school was alluding to, although some may disagree, but he has handled things better than some people may have expected from him. However, the continual changes to his school timetable are not helping, and yes, I know there are issues at school that need to be dealt with and prevented, but what to do right now?

We eventually got an appointment to see a paediatrician for a second opinion, and they have said possibly my son has mild autism that needs to be assessed and investigated further. I don’t know how to react to that, feel relief or cry? I still don’t completely know what to think… Am I annoyed that a previous childminder was possibly right? No, as she said it in a really unhelpful way as I held long term suspicions, but was reassured by other health professionals I was over worrying and I don’t see how she said anything that was supportive or helpful, but came across that I had a child that was possessed, not just having difficulty communicating some of his feelings. Still onwards or upwards, as still a long road to travel down yet.

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Holidays

Half term holidays have begun, and to be honest the lead up to that hasn’t been great. We were hoping that my son would have started settling into his new school by now, but no, seems to have gone a step backwards and has got himself excluded for the second time round after having another emotional meltdown in their care, this time over he feels he was wrongly accused of hitting someone. Whether he hit someone or not, teacher says she didn’t witness it, but told him off anyway in her ‘we don’t hit’ kind voice apparently, I am not happy with the way it was handled. I cannot excuse his overreaction, but feel this needn’t have escalated in the way it did. Cannot see a paediatrician where we use to live anymore as they realise we are now out of area, so basically just left us to fend for ourselves. I put a complaint in, which consequently got them to pull their finger out and help us make two new referrals in our new area, one for a second opinion as the paediatrician thought he had no medical conditions such as autism. I don’t know whether he has, I agree that if he does it is not obvious. I suggested to the school as I was running around in circles at the time trying to get these referrals made that they can refer him themselves and they said they do not have enough evidence, which exasperates me, as they have enough evidence to cause us to take him home early twice and find it difficult to say something positive about my son’s time in school.

Beyond the school troubles, we are settling more into our new home and our son’s behaviour has started to calm down at home, as he was quite hyper and getting a bit disrespectful. We are continuing to go to a Gymnastics club here, which he is persevering with, it is quite different to his old one so he is getting use to it still. I think the old one was a better fit for him and he found the class structure more familiar, as there was a repetitive routine, with only slight changes. This one seems to be slightly different each week, plus there is less coaches and apparatus, but he surprises me and is giving it go, and wants to return, so that is the main thing. He loved the new local weekend playgroup, despite my partner hating it, but we are going back next weekend and my partner said he will try to be less grumpy hehe So what can I say we are not getting the behaviour that school experience with us, yes, he tests the boundaries every now and then, but not having destructive meltdowns with him and not seeing him be aggressive with other children in our care either, yes, he has less opportunity as he is our only, but we do take him to places where there are other children.

We started the half term by visiting a local farm, the sun was out, but was very cold still so we had to wrap up warm. However, he had a lovely time exploring all of what the farm had to offer.

Collage crafts at the farm

Crafts at Standalone Farm

Collage crafts at the farm

Crafts at Standalone Farm

Train ride

Play area at Standalone Farm

Action shot with daddy Sand pit fun

Sand pit fun in the sun

What a pair?

Baa!

Model railway

We look forward to having more fun together during our half term break and forget about any school troubles until our next meeting, groan!

Take care my lovelies

The last 2 weeks

So what can I say that I didn’t say the last time, new house is starting to take shape and getting more organised, but still have a fair way to go and well the garden, the less said the better, we will try to sort that out when it gets a bit warmer. Also doesn’t help that viruses have been spreading through my family like wild fire for the last 2 weeks.

My son’s behaviour has taken a down turn at his new school, again, in fact a complete nose dive, although I wonder if the alluding illnesses we have been suffering from have contributed? However, again do not want to be told off that we use illness as an excuse, but most adults are complete grumps when they are ill. Fed up of posting on mothering forums about our issues for support and not even trying to meet new mothers on these social media Mum apps and the alike. I have tried a new local Gymnastics class and playgroup, more for his development than to be social, does that make me a grump? Most probably

Settling In?

4 weeks have passed by since the move, including Christmas and New Year’s festivities, although we didn’t do much for the latter, apart from tidy up the old place the best that we can, which apparently was not appreciated that it was our best effort. Almost got into a dispute about that, but after highlighting a few technicalities the owner had to back down. Honestly, wanted to charge us for moss on the outside garden wall and the alike. Anyways moving on from that saga.

Slowly unpacking more each weekend at the new place, put most of our pictures up last weekend and it is starting to look more homely, even my son said ‘it is really our home now’, like he just got it’s not just a holiday home despite all our boxes being stacked up in it with our belongings. Still yes, it is our home until we can eventually find a proper forever home one hopes.

We have been missing our old playgroup and gymnastics classes, but have tried new ones of both things in the area. The new gymnastics class is run by a smaller club in a school hall building, less coaches and equipment, but my son said he wanted to go back that is the main thing. I am hoping to get him back to a similar club in terms of equipment and more one on one coaching provided at some point, but local waiting lists are long. The playgroup was more craft based than the old one, but think my son is now ready for that as before he just wouldn’t have had the concentration. He can move around from table to table trying various crafts, my OH didn’t like it so much as it was a bit happy clappy, and it was, but I can let that go for the sake that my son liked it there and it is good for me to see how he behaves around other children other than doing something like Softplay.

This leads me on to how he has been settling into school, he was doing fine until last week. They started him on half days/morning only sessions for the first week, they told us they couldn’t see any significant concerns other than he was a bit quiet the first week (I told him he was not really quiet, but just nervous because everything is new), but then they said they wanted to try him on proper full school days, the first 3 went well it seems, but last week there were some incidents. However, which seem to coincide with me complaining to the old school about our childcare refund and their data error about having his parents down living at two separate addresses, not there is anything wrong with single mothers, but don’t insinuate wrong information and expect me to be OK with it! I believe the old school have been in touch with the new school causing trouble again, in fact I have it in writing from them that they have done so, and it just magically coincides with the downturn in my son’s behaviour. I have to say my son’s behaviour was at his worse since starting a reduced timetable at the other school, firstly I don’t think he knew whether he was coming or going, was not burning his energy off as there is only so much my nearly 70 year old mother can do with him in the winter and yes, possibly some feelings of agitation and anxiety with the move.

However, the last week or two we have noticed an upturn in his behaviour at home and think he is settling in his new home here, and not so much the ‘Crisis’ his old school were over-egging it was going to be. Rather do a move like this at his age than when he is older and has more established friendships with children. We have another glorious meeting with his new teachers this week, and hope it doesn’t spell more trouble as it often does.

The Christmas Meltdown

I have been very quiet on the personal blog front for most of December, because we decided to move, nothing really tying us to our current abode, although the location has been convenient for work, shops, the local park, weekend playgroup and my son’s gymnastics classes, those things we will miss, but never really made any close friends or connections.

The continuing childcare issues that we have experienced here, plus now it seems more financially viable for us to live somewhere else and have a fresh start. So have been organising our relocation like mad, and yes, we must be crazy to do this just before Christmas, but didn’t want to or could afford to put it off any longer. So, wish us luck settling somewhere new and hope my son has better luck settling in his new school, I am a little nervous, but read the new school menu to my son tonight, and he said it is making him hungry, ha, so if only things could continue in that positive manner.

Sending you warmest wishes for a wonderful holiday this Christmas!

The Bombshell

Firstly, I know I said in a previous blog I would try to work with the childminder, but oh well I couldn’t after the third whinge from her and the week before that she insensitively dropped the ‘autism’ bombshell on us.

What has alarmed me at first, my son said she was not around to witness the event, I thought maybe he is lying, but he is not. Although since then she has admitted each time there is an behavioural incident between the two 4 year old boys in her care she is not around. The third time I am starting to lose my patience, yes, I am aware that childminders cannot always be in the same room, but they are still suppose to be in earshot and have everything in sight to what is going on. It is obvious she doesn’t. We already said if my son continued to be disruptive in her care that we would review the contract and whether he should stay there. She decided she wanted his last day to be within her care to be the end of last week, and has been very awkward with refunding us, although we have most of the money back now.

I am in shock on the last day in her care she tells me my son was able to get hold of tent pegs and get near her baby’s head with them, yes, he could have hurt the baby’s head (1 year old child), but he could have hurt himself too. She seems to be completely oblivious to the problem that he shouldn’t have been able to get hold of them in the first place, this situation should not have arose and where was she not to notice he had got hold of these? She admits she shouted at my son that day. However, I also discover unexplained bruises on my son the next morning, and my OH’s mother is admitted back in hospital on Sunday fighting an infection/sepsis. So yes, it has been a shit week again, but have been trying to smile through it, only just.

I am left not knowing what to think about transitioning my son onto school, does he really need a referral, is something really wrong developmentally (as we have always been told no and the health visitor said she had no concerns over his social emotional development on her last visit in July) or have we just been unlucky with shit childcare? The referral is happening, but doesn’t look like anytime soon and because I have asked the childminder about how the bruises happened today she has threatened the LA (local authority) on us. Just unbelievable, but bring it on.

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Any normal parent would question unexplained bruises on their child?

What a last few weeks?

What a last few weeks? Not just for me personally, but terrorist attacks too, the world has gone mad! Simultaneously this country seems focused on wanting to nuke the world too, the one thing we need a world leader to do is have a willingness to nuke everyone, I despair?

I mean my childcare woes seem trivial in comparison, but it shook my small world up and shocked by what just seemed to me as unreasonable spitefulness. We have found replacement childcare and hoping my little one is much happier there and can continue to progress. Waiting for the NHS to still get back to us and confirm they have no worries or concerns about my son, and he is ready to start school in September.

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Enjoying himself at the playground

This weekend we tried our first story time at the local library and have to say I was impressed with my son in the end as it was his first time in a library, he sat and listened, and was very quiet. To be honest I think the volunteer would have appreciated a bit more feedback and interaction, but it was only a small group and it was only our first time attending. However, nothing like the nursery was trying to tell me he was at these kind of sessions, admittedly he may behave better for me. So, two things we are going to continue to persevere with is his preschool gymnastics class and story time at the library. We have also got more puzzles and few simple games like picture dominoes and memory games to work on his concentration. Trying out magnesium flakes in his bath a couple times of week in order to help relax him a bit more, not sure it will make any difference, but suppose to be good for skin conditions and he does have mild eczema anyway, also might try it out myself as apparently good for muscle stiffness, yep feeling my age!

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Magnesium Flakes

http://drcarolyndean.com/2010/10/should-kids-take-magnesium/

So starting to feel positive, things we need to sort out are finances for childcare (refunds and new payment, just another headache I will be glad is out of the way and done with) and toy organisation, never ending, got rid of a few bits about a month back and now feeling overwhelmed by toys once again ha! Feeling happy about our son’s new garden corner, but got to deal with those pesky slugs who are chomping on my new plants this week!

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Pesky chomping slugs!

The one thing I wasn’t anticipating was changing my son’s childcare so near to starting school and was hoping to only deal with one change, rather than two, but hey life is always ready to throw a few curveballs your way!