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Archive for the ‘Patrick’ Category

Autism in my family

Hi Fellow Auti people

I have had a bit of a rough trot lately… I have reached the end of my coping abilities…my patience is lost, my anger is noticeable, my frustration is at a level so high I think I have high blood pressure. I am doubting myself, my parenting, my capabilities, my intelligence, my mind.

Kim, 25, has moved back home, she is in a caravan in the backyard with her partner. She also came home with 2 cats. Guess where they live….in the house with me. Guess how much I pick up after THE FAMILY.

Patrick is now nearly 16 and he is huge…in height, popular and is hardly ever home. He goes to TAFE now, to become a mechanic,  much better than the failed public school system for him. He smokes….grrrrr. He doesnt come home…..grrrr. He doesnt really get into trouble, thank goodness. He did when he first started at TAFE, but he has settled down now and is doing the right thing there…he wants a trade, he wants a job…but….his attitude stinks.. He rings me and asks if he can go somewhere or stay overnight with a mate….and when I say no and why, perfectly reasonable of course, he refuses to come home anyway….so privileges are few and between. I am so over teen boy….size, noise, thumping through the house, temper, door slamming, swearing, resistance, abuse, smell, laziness, procrastination, more teen boys and more of all the above, disrespect, no food, no money, backyard full of car parts, dirty hand marks high up on the walls, and much much more.

I am so over….: cats, cat hair, cat in my face, cat on my lap, cat under my feet every time I move, cat crying, cat food, cat shit, cat diarrhea, cat furniture, cat food tins on the kitchen floor, broken vases, chewed phone cords, chewed computer cords, chewed artificial flower arrangements….cats; dishes…in the living room, in the bedrooms, in the front yard, in the backyard, in the sink, on the sink, piled up on the benches, unwashed, not in the cupboards, not clean, on the floor, on the benches, on the furniture, broken,  missing…dishes; smoking paraphernalia…: cigarette butts outside the back door, front door, in the yard everywhere, front and back, empty packs inside, outside, (I dont allow smokers in my home), tobacco pouches, tobacco dregs, filters, papers, lighters, no matches in my emergency stash, smell in the house, smokers….;

I get a cleaner in each fortnight, to help keep up with the floor mopping and bathroom cleaning, etc, that I cant keep up with myself, my arthritis and depression is a struggle. I work flat out for at least 2 hours before the cleaning lady comes to make the house clean and safe for the cleaner to work in…how ironic…so I am sick of having to hurt myself to do that. It sets my physical being back two days after the cleaner coming….no one helps me. Cleaning up the cat mess is NOT my responsibility, BUT, I have to make sure there are no poops anywhere for the cleaners health and safety; I am not the only person who cooks and uses dishes in the family, BUT, I am the only regular dish washer in the house; I dont leave dishes anywhere but on the sink, BUT, I am always picking dishes up from all over the house and yard; I take care of my belongings, BUT, no one else does. Everything in my house is dirty, untidy, trashed, cluttered, over run with animals.

I have my own pet, my little maltese x shih tzu, Brandy. He doesnt get my lap anymore, he has to fight for it. He doesnt settle. He has to wait to get his feed until the cats are out. He has to sleep on my bed, in my room, to get peace. He is always unsettled, getting up everytime he hears a cat move, someone else in the house. He is my little companion, but I feel so alone, so unsettled, so impatient with him often.

I am so alone and so depressed….Autism Sucks

Catch you next time

Dianne

 

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Soccer

Today has been a great day weather wise. Today was also Patrick’s indoor soccer tournament. He plays in a team called ‘The Misfits’, a group of his big sister’s Kim’s friends, mainly lesbians. I wasn’t sure I wanted him to play at first, but since he has been playing, only 1 win and definitely losing today, 4 games, Patrick has learned a lot. He has learned commitment, team playing, responsibility and a lot about himself and his limitations and strengths. He has learned that when he is angry, he can save it up and channel it into playing soccer.

Today, I went to see him play his last game of the day. It was a good game, score of 11 to 4, The Misfits being 4.

The games were only 12 minutes per half, with a 6 minute break. It is a very fast moving game. Now that he is home, he is making a lot of noise taking the tape off his toes. He had them strapped up because he keeps hurting his toes. He may even have a break or fracture, but we may never know unless he doesn’t play for a week to allow the swelling to go down so as to get a clear x-ray of it. He won’t let me touch it or even look at it.

Well, that is all I have to say about the soccer, apart from the catching up with Amy’s dad and grand father. I have not seen the grandfather for 15 years and haven’t seen her dad for about 10 years. He had news of Patrick’s father, being quite ill with emphysema. I have wanted to take Pat to see his dad for a couple of years now, so now I feel an urgency for him. I am hoping Pat will keep contact with his dad so that he does get a chance to get to know him a little, before he dies and he has heavy feelings of regret.

The opportunities are all there for Pat to keep contact with his dad, but his dad is just as bad in keeping in contact, even worse, seeing as he is the adult. He has never accepted that Pat has autism and adhd…and he never tried to help Patrick in area’s he needed help. It is a sad situation, I feel for Mick, his dad, now that he is so sick, but all in all, I had to put Patrick’s safety and mental stability and life routine at the top of the caring for Patrick list.

Patrick did keep a little contact with his father up until a couple of years ago. Mick has never been good at keeping contact, so I would prompt Pat to text his dad and ask him to ring him, as the court orders stated. Pat still cannot understand why his dad wouldn’t just ring him when he felt like talking to him, and I guess its just one of those things that he will never learn. It was a long process of a couple of weeks prompting conversations leading onto the subject of his dad, guiding his thoughts in the direction of contacting his dad, and having a chat with him.

Pat also doesn’t really understand that the condition his dad has makes it difficult for him to talk. When Mick has in the past rang Pat, he has broken down and cried and the conversation was just ended because Pat couldn’t understand what his dad was saying, and that’s a no-no in Pats book. It also upset Pat that his father just blubbered instead of having something decent to say.

I can understand Mick’s blubbering, knowing him, but it is so hard to help Patrick to understand that he feels emotional because he did throw a life with his only son away, because of a stupid whim. I know he is so sorry for making it difficult for us to stay together as a family, he will have a lot of regrets and I am glad he knows it, before he does die. I don’t want him to be suffering the way he is, of course, but with some people it takes something very drastic, like this, for them to realize the mistakes they have made. So now he knows his mistake with Patrick, he is unable to do anything much about it because of his drastic health situation.

So, I will continue to save money the best I can on my very limited income, find some cheap as chips airfares and try to get Patrick up to Queensland to see his dad before he passes. I have been trying to do that for a couple of years now. Patrick will not go up there on his own, and he shouldn’t have to. I wouldn’t allow him to go on his own. Pat is not confident enough to do a trip that long. He has traveled on the train to Melbourne from Bendigo, and returned, but he had someone leave him and see him off at the station in Bendigo, then he was met in Melbourne, so he didn’t have to travel on suburban trains alone. The return trip was the same, accompanied at all times except on the Melbourne to Bendigo trip. He kept himself busy with his music and games. He only started catching the train to Melbourne to stay with his sister once he had started growing and was confident enough that he was big enough to defend himself if someone picked on him on the train.

All in all, he has grown up to be a strong, tall lad, with charm and wit and ability to defend himself, although he has not had this tried out…hopefully he doesn’t have to.

Where traveling to Queensland is concerned, it is a long long way, he is not confident flying and he does not travel well on buses. Traveling on a trip consisting of 3 states, several stations, changing trains, buses, etc would be too much for Pat to deal with, without stressing about getting the wrong train or bus, his anxiety would have him bashed and dead before the first leg of the trip was half over. The biggest insecurity he has about going to see his dad is that he refuses to go wherever his dad’s wife is. She is a nasty person, she has hurt Pat and upset him several times, so he refuses to see his dad if he has to see her as well.

So, all things considered, I will go with Pat to see his dad, probably Kim will come as well, we will have a little holiday while we are there, but Patrick will not see his dad at his home…it will be in a neutral place.

Well, I have had my little say about the subject and thats all for now.

Thanks for reading

Dianne

Kim and Pat

Hi ASD Bloggers

I just have a few words to describe how things are at home here with Kim and Pat. This little excerpt is a little of what it is like living with my two ASD’s on any given day at any given time, several times daily.

Patrick went into the bathroom. Kim opened the door after he shut if to see what he was going into the bathroom for. (there is just shower and vanity basin). Kim then shut the door and laughed. Pat opened the door. Kim shut it. Pat opened it. Kim shut it. Pat opened it, laughing. Kim shut it, laughing. This went on about 20 repetitions more. Then Kim walked off laughing. Pat came out of the bathroom and shut the door, laughing.

That sort of thing happens in this house all the time. It doesn’t matter why it happened. It doesn’t matter if anyone was doing the wrong thing. It doesn’t matter why Pat went into the bathroom. It doesn’t matter why Kim kept opening it. It just happened.

It is a very happy household, all of the time. I have learned to just go on with what I am doing. I laugh and enjoy the FACT that they are getting on so well. I enjoy the FACT that they are laughing and happy. I enjoy the FACT that they are leaving me alone. I enjoy the FACT that they are not trying to kill each other, which is the other end of the spectrum. They either love each other and have fun or they hate each other and fight and/or try to kill each other.

Now, at this moment, they are in the living room, playing the music they like, loud, discussing who know’s what? She picks his pimples that are just asking to be picked and he rubs her feet when they hurt too much. Any other time, she would not touch anyone and he would not touch anyone. Go figure!! If I asked for a massage anywhere on my body for just one minute only, Kim would recoil in horror and Patrick would run and do his best to get out of having to do it. I very rarely get a massage. I bought a massage chair for that reason.

Patrick does however give me massages. That is only when he comes to hug me and he sees that I am not at my best, so he just gives my shoulders a tweak. A tweak of my shoulders to me is absolute full massage, releasing all my tension within seconds. A tweak to him is just digging his fingers and thumbs into my neck and shoulders and squeezing. He will do that a couple of times. He figures if he can get away with hurting me and I like it, it fulfills some need in him.

He is so strong and his hands are so big that just him tweaking my shoulders, his hands span from my spine out to the edge of my shoulders where my arms hang down. I really appreciate my son. He is a hugger and kisser. My little boy, who was always such a tiny little guy when young, has grown up from 12-year-old into a man-sized teen. He is only 14 and a half and yet his is bigger that both my ex-husbands. And, on top of that, Patrick loves me.

Ok, it has been an obsession with him all his life to hug me, kiss me and tell me he loves, a million times a day, and I had to hug him back, kiss him and tell him that I loved him too. Now, when he tells me this and hugs me, it will only be a few times a day, like breakfast time, when he is leaving for school, when he gets home from school and before he goes to bed. On weekends, there may be an extra one or two thrown in there as well. He still expects me to tell him that I love him too when he does this. It isn’t so much an obsession so much as it is a habit, I guess.

I don’t care, I get a good strong hug daily, I know my son loves me and all is good.

Kimberly, however. Kim doesn’t like touch. To touch anyone or anyone to touch her. She does have her special people that she likes to hug or give kisses to. None of them are me. She loves Colleen’s family. She gives Colleen hugs, she loves Max, 6, who is very much ADHD, and she gives him heaps of hugs and kisses. She gives Sophie, 8 a hug occasionally, but Sophie is an occasional hugger also. Jack, 14, keeps to himself and no one really hugs him or vice versa.  But Kim will still give Jack a hug in very special circumstances. She also has a few good friends that she hugs.

Not me. I’m used to it. When she is really scared and I come to her rescue, you can see she wants to hug me, but will only do it if I hug her first. Then, also, it is over just as soon as it happens. Kim has also hugged me when she has been quite ill, she has had pneumonia a few times and she hugged me when she was younger. But she has pneumonia quite often now, she is used to the way it feels and knows she will be fine in a few days and doesn’t need a hug from me. But that’s alright, I know she does love me. She doesn’t say she loves me, but she shows it in different things she does.

Like, making sure Patrick shows respect to me, and when he shows disrespect, she lets him know his wrong and makes him apologize. And in ways like just then, she came in with three of her favourite undies, showed them all to me and explained why she liked them. That is such an improvement. She is talking personal stuff to me. She even showed me personal stuff. Things like that, concrete my knowledge that she does love and respect me. Which also makes me feel like I have done the best for her. Maybe you will get to hear about those things one day.

So, there is a snippet of a day in my house. It is Saturday. That makes no distinction to any other day of the week being different. It’s just my observation.

Hope you enjoyed my story, or have a bit of insight as to what it is living with my family, or living with ASD.

Cheers

Dianne

Tuesday

Hi Fellow Bloggers,

Well, have I been busy the last few days. Kimmi has moved in, lock, stock and barrel. I wonder what that really means. Must Google it. Hehe.

Found it:


Lock, stock and barrel

Meaning

The whole thing.

Origin

Lock, stock and barrelI’ve seen it suggested that this phrase refers to all of a shopkeeper’s possessions – the stock in trade, the items stored in barrels and the lock to the door. This explanation is entirely fanciful though – the ‘whole thing’ in question when this phrase originated was a musket. Muskets were composed of three parts:

– The lock, or flintlock, which is the firing mechanism. Various forms of ‘lock’ muskets were used from the 1400s onwards, e.g. fire-locks, flintlocks, matchlocks etc. The term ‘lock’ was probably adopted because the mechanism resembles a door lock.

– The stock, which is the wooden butt-end of the gun. ‘Stock’ is the old term for wooden butt or stump and is a generic term for a solid base. It was used as early as 1495 in association with Tudor guns, in a bill for ‘gonne stokkes’. See also laughing-stock.

– The barrel, i.e. a cylindrical object, is an even older word and was well-established by the 15th century. This is the least obvious of these three terms to have been chosen to name a musket part. After all, in the 15th century people would have been very familiar with barrels as the squat coppered tubs used for storage – hardly similar to the parallel-sided cylindrical tubes that were used in muskets. It may have been that the term migrated from cannons or other sorts of gun which were more barrel-shaped.

Note: that ‘lock, stock and barrel’ refers to muskets, not rifles. What makes rifles different from earlier guns are the spiral grooves inside the barrel, which cause the bullet to rotate and fly more truly. ‘Rifle’ derives from the French verb ‘rifler’ – to scratch or scrape.

So, There we go. Kimmi, as a whole, has moved in!!

Isn’t the Internet wonderful? I think so.

Anyway, because of her moving in, with all her stuff, I have had to re-arrange the house. Our house is so teeny-weeny that when she moved out, I spread my sewing and craft into the spare room. I filled it to capacity. Now, I have to empty that room back into my room. My bedroom is only half a metre wider than the sewing room. Now, that is a job and half or two thousand, I am telling you.

I have spent the better part of the last two days, sorting every item in that sewing room, organized it into a shoebox, clear box, file or folder, large and small and made it fit into my bedroom in some of the furniture that was in the sewing room, including my Horn Sewing Cabinet.

I am only part way through.

I also have to find room in the house somewhere for jigsaw puzzles, board games and other books and magazines other than crafting that I wish to keep. I don’t know where that will be. The games I could fit into Patrick’s wall unit in his bedroom. Hopefully. I have so much to do. I have been trying to organize my house for Kimmi to move back home for a couple of weeks now, and it has been a slow painful process. Now I am beginning to see the outcomes of all my hard work. But I am also seeing full shelves, boxes and cupboards.

I am feeling accomplishment though, and that is very important for me.

The last two days has also seen Kim and Patrick playing over and over a DVD of Carl Barron, an Australian Comedian. He is funny but when I hear it all the time, and then Kim and Pat re-enact a lot of the DVD, speak to me in Carl Barron language, walk like him, talk like him, there is not a straight word in the house. They are so funny, mimicking him. It is a very Autistic thing in our household. Patrick has always Role-Played. He was 12 months old when he first starting eating off the floor like a puppy, lifting his leg when crawling on all fours, hanging his tongue out for attention and food, barking, using his teeth to play with towels, carpet, toys, anything that he could reach. He was so tiny. Then he started rounding up the chooks the day he started walking, or should I say running. Only a week after the puppy thing started. Then he started imitating his dad, and sisters, and anyone else that took his fancy. We used to go to a local pub regularly to see bands play live…he had to have his guitar and microphone and sing along. Not that we understood a word. For a while he was a rock’n’ roller, playing drums and guitar and singing and stomping his feet in an attempt to dance. This was all before he was two.

By the time he was four, he was rounding up sheep (we lived in outback Qld) and he was Murray from The Wiggles. He was also very much into guns and dinosaurs, although he was quite happy calling goanna’s and lizards his ‘Saurs.

When he started school, we had just got his diagnosis of Autism. He was always Jim Craig, the Man from Snowy River. From the movie. He had his imaginary horse, who went everywhere with us, tied on behind the ‘Cruiser when we went to town, he tied him up to the posts out the front of the shops. He had to wear his Akubra and his jeans and flannel shirt, no matter the weather. He always had a belt and a gun of some concoction he made or found and tried all the time to get spurs on his boots. We eventually bought him spurs and a whip. He could really use that too.

At fourteen he still has his days when he says ‘Mum, I’m Jim today.’ I have to talk to him in old Aussie lingo, and give him food for his horse as a treat, usually a carrot, he shares it with his horse. LOL.

Then there are the days he is Lightning Jack, a character portrayed by Aussie actor, Paul Hogan. He plays an outlaw. He also has days when he is Jack ‘Crocodile Dundee’, another Paul Hogan character.

Kimmi, she is just a fun nutty person to have around. Nothing is normal with her. In amongst all her friends, she has made Cheese, a cartoon character, popular. She quotes from all movies she has ever seen in most of her conversations. Finding Nemo can be quoted several times a day in several instances. Tarzan is another one, and El Dorado is another one. She loves Sandra Bullock movies and quite often reminds me of certain passages of dialogue in movies as well as looks, comments and actions she portrays in her characters.

Kimmi quite often  brings up Sandra Bullock moments with me, especially from the Ya Ya’s. We love that movie, and even today, when my daughter Meg rang, (for the 3rd time today) I said ‘if that’s meg I’m gonna scream’. It was, and I screamed and when she said….’what do you have ESP, you know its me before you pick up the phone’ . how she knew I was thinking of Ya Ya’s at that moment I don’t know, but yes, I did the banging the phone like Sandra did in the movie when her mother did the same thing, so Meg did it too, aaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh yes, life is just one big laugh in our household, thinly disguised as frustration…lol. We have a good belly laugh every day.

I quite enjoy the relationship I have with all my 3 kids. Meg thinks she couldn’t live with me again. I believe she is right, but we do always have a nice time when she comes to visit. I can’t really visit with her, as she lives with her dad, and he and I, although we tolerate each other, really could not stand to be in the same house together. So, visits have to be at my house or if we have some money, a mutually agreed holiday place. Not gonna happen, I’m telling you now. Kim knows she has to live with me, but if we can get her her own unit out in the backyard, that would be best for her and us. Patrick, whether he likes it or not, has to live at home.

Well, that’s how my continuing saga is at the moment. I still have a lot of sorting, chucking and organizing my sewing and craft before Kim can move into the bedroom. The living room is getting cluttered with Her in there, but what else can I do? Keep on doing what I’m doing, plugging away at sorting it all until it is all done, and we can all live with it.

So, until next I chat….have a good day

Dianne

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