Posted in family, Uncategorized

Getting There on Your Own Time

Childhood is not a competition. As parents we shouldn’t compare our children with other kids their age; of course that’s easier said than done. It’s very difficult to not compare kids when you notice all the other kids are doing something that your child isn’t. I was so proud of Eli when he was walking with a walker at 9 months. I was very happy when he quickly and easily got off the bottle at 12 months. Then he stopped talking after his first birthday, I started comparing and I’ve pretty much been comparing since.

I wasn’t just comparing his speech, though that was the main thing. I started looking at what else Eli was behind in compared to other kids I knew. This girl can sing the alphabet song, that boy just named 10 different colors, she just wrote her own name. Then I look at my son who couldn’t do any of those things. It’s not like I needed my son to be like everyone else, I didn’t need him to know these things the same time as everyone else. What I needed was for Eli to be ready for school. My biggest concern for him was that he wouldn’t catch up in time. I wanted him to have a normal childhood as much as he could despite his delays/difficulties.

It wasn’t until recently that I started to give up on comparing Eli with other kids. In the past 6 months he went from being behind on speech, fine motor skills, letters and numbers, color, etc to being able to say over 25 words conversationally (can repeat upwards of 50 different words), signs close to 30 words, knows 10 colors, can count to 5, learned about half the alphabet, and knows close to 20 animals and most of the sounds they make. It was after this big boom of his that I realized, it doesn’t matter if Eli reaches his milestones after most other kids do, what matters is that he is reaching the milestones. Some kids diagnosed with autism never speak and my son just skyrocketed his speech in only 6 months of therapy, that is something to be so proud of. I don’t care what the other kids are doing anymore, I just care that my son just wrote letters on his chalk board all by himself. Seeing the proud smile on his face afterwards is a great feeling.

Posted in family, Uncategorized

Hiding Mommy

Whether you’re a working parent or a stay-at-home parent, finding alone time is next to impossible when you have kids. After you get the laundry done, dinner made and cleaned up, dishwasher loaded, house picked up- all you want to do is eat your damn candy bar without a kid trying to take it from you. Over the past three years I have been perfecting the art of ghosting out on my kid. Now don’t get me wrong, I love my son and love spending time with him. HOWEVER, every mother knows it’s hard to get a moment to yourself some days without hearing the dreaded “Mom. Mom. Mama. Mommy! MOMMY!” and knowing that when you finally go see what they need, you realize they only screamed your name incessantly so you can watch them jump up and down on the couch cushion they pulled onto the floor. Or when they beg you to come into the room to ask you for a glass of water…when theirs is three feet away on the TV stand. This is where the ghosting out technique comes into play. I’ve described five techniques that I’ve tried out. I’m sure the possibilities to this game are endless.


  1. Pretend Pooper

You know how seemingly all husbands take 20-minute-long “bathroom visits” while women are in and out in 45 seconds? Aren’t we living in a time of women demanding and receiving equal rights? You get in that bathroom and get the 20 minutes you deserve girl! Who cares if dinner still needs to be cleaned up? Who cares that your kids just destroyed the living room? Who cares if you even have to go to the bathroom at all? Whether you do or not, get a book, open up Facebook, or just put in your headphones and lock that door and enjoy your break.


  1. Uncharted Territory


Are there any places in your home that your children aren’t allowed to go? I put stop signs on all of the doors in our house that lead outside. Eli acknowledges them and knows that he can only open if we are present with him or he asks permission. Use this to your advantage. Find one of these forbidden areas that would work for your quiet time (maybe an area blocked off with a baby gate). For me, it’s the garage. It is right underneath the living room so I can still hear everything that goes on upstairs, but unless I’m spotted going down there, Eli would have no Idea I’m there.


  1. Behind closed doors


For this technique any inconspicuous closet will do (as long as you’re not spotted going in, remember, the most important rule of ghosting is to move without being seen) One you are situated in the closet, close the door and remain as quiet as you can. You can hear your child but he can’t hear you. You have just enough time to finish a snack, or read an article on your phone before your child started ripping open random doors to find you.


  1. Beneath the Sheets

This may not always be an option. The only time I can really get this one to work is when Eli is preoccupied downstairs either with a movie or playing with his dad. A lot of times after I get dinner cleaned up and the boys are playing video games in the living room, I drift upstairs and lay in bed and watch some Netflix on my phone. I can get up to a good 20 minutes sometimes before I’m spotted. It’s not only your children who can bust you; you’re wide open for a spousal bust as well. In fact, most of the time when I get busted with this technique, it’s by my husband. When questioned about what you’re doing ALWAYS answer “I came up to put away laundry but I got a cramp in my leg and I fell down and I’ve been waiting for it to go away.” Don’t believe me? Prove it. I’m gonna go start Eli’s bath now…


  1. Hidden in Plain Sight

Once your child get’s sick of your hiding antics, they’re going to get better at finding you. This is a good time to switch up your hiding spots. A clever idea is to hide where they’d least expect you. This one has a lot of room for error, but no risk no reward right? While your child is off tearing your bedroom apart or banging on the bathroom door looking for you, you will be hiding in their territory. My son has a loft bed so a good place for me is in the play area underneath his bed. If hidden far enough back he would have no idea I was in there (unless of course he goes under there to play while I’m hiding; which, be warned, is a good possibility). Also, instead of hiding in your closet, you could switch it up and hide in your child’s closet. What are the odds they’d open their own closet looking for you?

Know that this was all in good fun. I really don’t spend my entire day hiding from my child and responsibilities. At the end of the day, my house is clean, my family is fed, and my son is happy. I live a very dull life revolving around my son’s schedule and housework, creating a game for myself makes life a little more fun. Well, that and wine.

(Photo Credit: My husband)

Posted in Uncategorized

Newfound friendships

Eli has never had a lot of opportunities for playdates. A lot of my friends have children, but being military we are always relocating. Many of our military friends have no had children yet; so Eli very seldom had the opportunity for friends. Because of his delays, his social skills were subpar and I was worried how he would interact with other kids in school. Since starting school, however, Eli has made a few good friends. When I volunteered for his class I watched Eli go up and initiate play with some of the other kids and it made me so happy. One of my biggest fears after his diagnosis was that he wouldn’t make friends; and it looks like that may not be the case. At least while he is in developmental classes.

Since the first day of school his teachers told me how Eli had a best friend. I was beyond happy for him. Not just because he made a friend, but he made a friend that is just like him. Recently Eli has started to become friends with a girl in his class. They point and wave to each other before and after school and he gets sad when they both get in their cars and leave each other. One day her mother was a couple minutes late for pick-up and Eli demanded to sit and wait with her. I swear my heart swelled over double it’s size. When her mother finally came to pick her up, she ran to her mom and Eli cried because she left. On the way home I asked If she was his girlfriend and he told me yes. Jokingly, I asked if he loved her and he told me yes. Obviously he doesn’t know what I’m even talking about but it was the most adorable thing.

I know Eli will probably have his share of troubles when he starts elementary school, but I cannot express enough how happy I am that he is in this developmental preschool. I feel like it’s everything he needed at this point. He is surrounded by other children just like him. At this point he doesn’t receive any judgment or teasing for his delay and he is making quite a few friends. He is also expanding his vocabulary by the day. We have also nailed down our routines since starting school, every day is different but the schedule is consistent and it’s working well for Eli. Nothing is better for a child diagnosed with Autism than a structured schedule.