Jump to content

Quirky Little BMJ (5 Years On...)


  • Please log in to reply
16 replies to this topic

#1 baddmammajamma

Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:39 AM

The last time I was "home" (original home of U.S.) for Christmas was 2007. My husband & I flew 21 hours from our then-home in Singapore to Charlottte, North Carolina, where my parents now live. While they cared for our 2-month-old son, we flew with our little daughter to Chicago in order to have her assessed for ASD.

She was just 28 months at the time, not showing the most glaring signs of ASD but struggling with certain things nonetheless.

A friend of mine from my Babycenter DIG had moved mountains to help us find someone over the Christmas holidays who could assess our daughter. So that's how we ended up in Chicago on Christmas Eve. We were scared, nervous, and anxious to get some answers...and I remember sobbing when the psychologist confirmed that ASD was part of our new reality.

Five years later (and a move to Sydney shortly after that Chicago trip), and years of great early intervention & the ongoing support of a lot of great people, our toddler who struggled with SO many things is a happy, thriving, still-very-quirky 7-year-old.

We are so grateful to the friend who had the guts to say "You ought to follow up your concerns with a professional." We are so grateful to the psychologist who was willing to squeeze us in yet still offer a gold standard assessment right before the holidays. We are so grateful that we could actually afford to make that journey, as there are a lot of other similarly situated families who are forced to wait too long for help for their kids.

So yeah, if I blather on EB about how important it is to get things properly checked out if you have concerns about your child -- ASD or otherwise -- it's because that trip to Chicago changed our lives for the better.

I am so proud of my daughter and am amazed at how far she has come. Prepare for the awesomeness to continue! cool.gif

Thanks for letting me brag/share my happy news.

Happy holidays, everyone!

2007 (in U.S.)


Book Parade 2012 -- Rock 'n roll pigeon costume, the star of a character from one of the stories she has written

Edited by baddmammajamma, 24 December 2012 - 07:29 AM.


#2 Superman+4sisters

Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:46 AM

She is just fabulous! TFS hheart.gif

And, like many others, we are listening to your message, and keeping a careful eye on one dd's 'quirks' - we will most definitely be getting them investigated if there's no positive response to our current plan original.gif

Edited by Superman+4sisters, 24 December 2012 - 06:49 AM.


#3 OneMore?

Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:58 AM

Oh she is beautiful original.gif

You do a fantastic job with educating people BMJ, and of course your daughter is lucky to have you as your mother.

I do have a question - what do you do when you come across resistance ? Just leave it and move along although you know you are going to watch the child struggle sad.gif

#4 Riotproof

Posted 24 December 2012 - 07:03 AM

Beautiful post, thanks BMJ.


#5 baddmammajamma

Posted 24 December 2012 - 07:16 AM

QUOTE (OneMore? @ 24/12/2012, 07:58 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I do have a question - what do you do when you come across resistance ? Just leave it and move along although you know you are going to watch the child struggle sad.gif


It's tough, and there are kids I know in real life who are really struggling yet their parents just aren't ready (emotionally) to take that next step. I'm not a diagnostician (though most ASD mums/dads will tell you that their "radars" are pretty accurate), and I certainly can't force someone to take action.

It's actually a lot easier to influence people on EB because I and other parents can speak candidly (yet hopefully still with sensitivity) without risking the loss of a friendship or alienating a family member whose child appears to have issues worth investigating.

Thanks, everyone, for your kind words. I really appreciate the support I've had from EB over the years!

#6 Therese

Posted 24 December 2012 - 08:06 AM

Look at your big girl! She's gorgeous.

Thanks for sharing your journey with EB BMJ. We are lucky to have you as part of our community.

#7 raven74

Posted 24 December 2012 - 09:11 AM

BMJ, she is beautiful and is going to totally rock her life.

#8 Canberra Chick

Posted 24 December 2012 - 02:53 PM

She looks great and your efforts on EB have helped many of us with quirky kids, even if they're not on the spectrum. Thank you.

#9 Sweet like a lemon

Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:08 PM

wub.gif

#10 ~Jot~

Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:19 PM

Love this post BMJ! Your gorgeous girl sure has come a long way. That second photo is an absolute cracker! Thanks for all your wonderful informative posts throughout the year, and the invaluable support for parents on their journey for a diagnosis.

Wishing your family a wonderful Christmas.  xmas_cool.gif

#11 Madeline's Mum

Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:26 PM

BMJ, she is gorgeous and you are such a wonderful mother and friend. Thanks for the many years of awareness and education, your daughter is so lucky to have you for her mum!

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas and a safe and happy new year!

#12 gabbigirl

Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:32 PM

She is one lucky girl, thank you for all our posts throughout the year.  Wishing your family a wonderful Christmas.

#13 baddmammajamma

Posted 25 December 2012 - 07:58 AM

Thank you so much!

We've both come a long way. I struggled a lot in those early days as well. But as I look back over the past five years, I am so in awe of how hard she has worked to develop some skills that come so naturally to most other kids, and I love that she sees the world through such an unconventional lens. I am so proud to be her mom!

Edited by baddmammajamma, 25 December 2012 - 12:17 PM.


#14 ~*Amethyst*~

Posted 25 December 2012 - 09:22 PM

You deserve to be proud BMJ! You have done a wonderful job & I love the last photo of J.

Merry Christmas to you & all of your family.

XxxAmethyst

#15 kabailz13

Posted 25 December 2012 - 09:35 PM

LOVE original.gif

Are the 'not so obvious' signs listed on your blog BMJ?

I love how passionate and open you are about ASD!

#16 baddmammajamma

Posted 25 December 2012 - 11:08 PM

QUOTE (kabailz13 @ 25/12/2012, 10:35 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Are the 'not so obvious' signs listed on your blog BMJ?


Some of the "not so obvious" signs are on my blog piece, especially as they relate to girls with ASD (who often present differently than boys do).

Something I've mentioned several times on EB is that giftedness can mask ASD -- parents and teachers might think that a child's high IQ accounts for all of their quirks and sensitivities and challenges, when in reality, the child also has ASD.

There are some common red flags for ASD that virtually everyone seems to know: lack of eye contact probably topping the list. The trouble is, a child can have lousy eye contact and still have ASD...or vice versa. It drives me bonkers when I hear someone say "Does he make eye contact? If so, then you don't have to worry about autism."

Likewise, many people appreciate that lack of speech can be a red flag, but I don't think as many people realize that a child with ASD might be incredibly verbose -- he/she might have learned to speak early and speak in long, sophisticated sentences, so ASD is overlooked. But the real question is "How is the child using his/her speech?" At 3.5, my daughter could blow you away with a monologue on world dictators, but she couldn't answer a simple question asked of her, and she didn't participate in the "give and take" of conversation. Even today, she still finds that hard and prefers to dictate the terms of the conversation.

Another "not so obvious" sign can be differences in social interactions. Again, the common stereotype is that kids with ASD don't like people or aren't affectionate (an inaccurate stereotype in many instances). A lesser known red flag that you might see is when kids don't have a strong social gauge -- that is, they think EVERYONE is their friend or they are unusually affectionate. In my daughter's case, at a young age, she was comfortable engaging with adults (so we thought "Surely this can't be ASD!"), but she was really not interested in stuff her peers were doing. We'd be at Gymbaroo, and she would be the only kid not willing to do circle time -- she always had to be doing her own thing.

Just off the top of my head, other "not so obvious" ones I can think of:

* Intense interest/obsession with letters/numbers/symbols -- being more interested, say, in the serial number on a toy than the toy itself, fascination with number plates on a car, ability to "read" (de-code words without corresponding comprehension) at an unusually early age

* Hand leading in very young children -- using another person's hand to direct them to what the child wants, as opposed to pointing or trying to verbalize

* Strong reactions to smells, sounds, textures or sights, and under/overreaction to pain and discomfort

* Gross motor and/or fine motor issues

* Insistence on doing things the same way every time (e.g. taking the same driving route home)

Anyway, my little blog piece in my signature link lists some of the most common signs. I can't stress enough that if a child exhibits things from that list it doesn't necessarily mean the child has ASD. Conversely, a child with ASD might not tick every item on the list.

But if your child is having challenges or you notice differences between them and their peers when it comes to social and communications skills,  if you notice they have certain ritualistic or repetitive behaviors, and/or if they have sensory sensitivities, it is worth getthing things checked out by someone who truly understands the nuances of ASD (IMHO as an ASD mamma, not a specialst). original.gif

Edited by baddmammajamma, 26 December 2012 - 12:43 AM.


#17 rocketsurgeon

Posted 26 December 2012 - 12:33 AM

Aww she is just gorgeous xx




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

Tot meets his heroes, falls apart with excitement

Two-year-old Quincy finished his potty training last week, and as part of his reward he was able to meet his idols.

Beautiful in our eyes: Georgia's story

I will never deny the fact that grief has a place when you give birth to a child who brings a set of circumstances very different to what you imagined. Because for nine months, I thought I knew my Georgie.

'It's been phenomenal': widower dad of quads thankful for support

There was nothing Erica and Carlos wanted more than a baby.

Vin Diesel names daughter after actor Paul Walker

The actor said there was "no other person" he was thinking about when he chose the name.

How midwives can help women who experience domestic violence

More than half of women who live with abusive partners experience violence during pregnancy.

Mum describes giving birth during Cyclone Pam

A new mother was told she must flee Port Vila hospital with her baby as Cyclone Pam bore down.

6 signs you're done having babies

There were a few signs I'm never going back to the land of maternity jeans, breast pumps and bassinets.

Marta Dusseldorp reveals breastfeeding cost her an acting job

Australian actress Marta Dusseldorp has revealed she was forced to withdraw from a Sydney Theatre Company production because a director did not approve of her breast feeding.

Female celebs (or their babies) with traditionally male names

Looking for a name that's a little bit different for a girl? Turn to names that have been traditionally used for males, as these celebs (or their parents) did.

'If you're anti-immunisation ... take a look at this picture of my son'

Greg Hughes is "an absolute shell of a man" as he and his wife Catherine struggle to come to terms with the loss of their newborn son Riley to whooping cough.

How an extrovert can raise an introvert

Introverts are often misunderstood as shy, and sometimes even rude. A timid child can be difficult to build rapport with, but it's important we nurture their sensitive natures.

Sheryl Sandberg's advice

'Choreplay': Help out at home to get more sex, Sandberg tells men

Forget foreplay. The new and improved route to intercourse is "choreplay" - it's good for your spouse, good for your house, and comes with the imprimatur of feminist du jour Sheryl Sandberg.

How to play with your baby

The first time your child learns a new skill at playtime is very exciting - for both you and your baby! Play is important to your child's development for a variety of reasons - here are some simple ideas for you to try at home.

I'm a single mother by choice

For me, being the best mother I can be means being a mum alone, at least for now. Thinking of my friends with inadequate partners, I wonder why more people don’t choose single motherhood.

Awkward wedding photos

Weird poses, surprise photobombs, bizarre editing: these are the wedding photos that should have never seen the light of day.

Four-week-old baby Riley Hughes dies of whooping cough

The mother of a four-week-old Perth baby who died after contracting whooping cough says her family has been left devastated by the loss of her "gorgeous, sweet" son.

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, we are giving away five DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Oh boy! Video shows family's reaction to baby surprise

Little Peyton Williams thought she was getting a baby sister named Charlee. But the two-year-old has had to settle for a doll dressed in pink after her baby "sister" turned out to be a boy.

How to help build up your baby's immune system

We all know that having a strong immune system is the best way to stay healthy – but what can we do to help it along?

'Nick, you need to call an ambulance': home birth mum's tragic death

A Melbourne mum who died after the home birth of her baby pleaded with her husband to call an ambulance because she felt she was going to die, the Victorian Coroners Court has heard.

When dads believe their baby doesn't 'like' them

Q: My two-month-old baby doesn't like me. He's perfectly content with my wife, but when I try to hold him, he gets upset and cries. I've backed off a little, thinking that he just needs a little time to get used to me, but that doesn't seem to be working. I'm starting to think I'm just not a very good dad. Is it too late for me to build a relationship with my baby?

When was the last time a stranger praised your parenting?

Wouldn’t it be great to get some nice feedback every now and then? After all, everyone likes to hear positive praise, particularly when it comes to parenting.

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

15 names on the verge of extinction

If you're looking to revive an older name, or don’t want anything near the top 1000 list, check out these rare monikers for your unique baby.

5 characteristics of great dads

It’s great to see a generation of dads who are more actively involved with caring, nurturing and loving their kids.

Why doesn't Australia have more breast milk banks?

When there’s no question that milk banks are important, why don’t we have more of them in Australia?

Carrie Bickmore announces birth of daughter

Television personality Carrie Bickmore has given birth to her second child.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Sign up to our 30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

Sign up to receive 30 amazing tips and ideas for play with baby during the month of April and submit a picture or tip on our social wall for a chance to win an amazing Fisher-Price prize pack.

Man faces jail after giving woman abortion pill smoothie

A Norwegian man is facing jail after putting abortion pills in his ex-girlfriend's smoothie, causing her to have a miscarriage.

'He's a blessing': family of baby born without eyes

Jordy Jackson was born without eyes. He has anophthalmia, which affects one in every 100,000 babies born.

Win one of 5 Cadbury Easter Hampers

With Easter fast approaching, Cadbury are giving away 5 Cadbury Easter Hampers. Enter Now!

Super fit model Sarah Stage defends her pregnancy body

Model Sarah Stage has defended her pregnancy body after critics claimed her slim figure at eight-and-a-half months pregnant wasn't "normal".

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom and Peppa Pig prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, Essential Baby and Entertainment One are giving away five bumper DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Why I post breastfeeding photos online

I love to take pictures of my children. In some of the pictures, my younger son is nursing.

The day I broke my baby

There are things I wish I didn't know. I wish I didn't know that companies make tiny braces, small enough to hold necks no bigger than a wrist.

The place just for dads of multiples

When a couple discovers they're expecting multiples, the dad can sometimes be almost forgotten in all the excitement and preparation. But one group offers a space just for dads of twins and higher-order multiples.

Brave mum calls for domestic violence law reform

A brave mum of two has shared details of the harrowing attacks she suffered at the hands of her partner in a bid to help other victims of domestic violence.

Why I had the new test for Down syndrome

Early last year I turned 35, and having just found out I was pregnant, I opted to have the new test for Down syndrome.

Geeky baby gear

If your family is more into Star Wars, gaming and the periodic table than most, you might want to check out these geek-chic baby items.

2015: the year of the sheep

According to the Chinese zodiac, babies born in the year of the sheep are creative and enjoy spending quiet time with their own thoughts.

Breakthrough genetic testing now available in Australia

Pregnant women will for the first time have access to locally analysed, accurate, non-invasive pre-natal genetic testing when the first Australian clinic to offer the services opens its doors next week.

Grandbabies: the babies born looking old

Not a day under 65 and a lifetime of struggle! That's the look of these newborns, who look adorably older than their real age. Social networking site Reddit recently featured user submissions of adorable grandbabies, here are our favourites.

Family kicked off flight after toddler seatbelt drama

An entire family was kicked off a Cathay Pacific flight when a misbehaving toddler refused to put his seatbelt on.

Stolen baby found after 17 years

A baby stolen from her mother's arms shortly after birth has been found through an astonishing coincidence.

53 creative pregnancy announcements

Announcing that you're expecting can be a time to express your creativity, sense of humour and imagination. Check out how other parents and parents-to-be have broken the news to friends and family.

IKEA hacks for the nursery and kids' rooms

Are you one of those that know the whole IKEA catalogue by heart? Love their stuff but want to personalise it? Here's some inspiration to help you realise the potential of IKEA furniture and fittings.

36 baby names inspired by food and drinks

A French court may have ruled out Nutella as a baby name, but that doesn't have to stop you from taking inspiration from the supermarket (or bottle shop). See what parents in the US have chosen for their delicious little ones.

Clever breastfeeding products

Check out this range of products designed to help make your breastfeeding journey more enjoyable, manageable and convenient.

 

Sign up now!

30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

Receive a daily email from Essential Baby during April with great play tips and ideas, then submit your baby at play photos to our Playwall, Instagram or Twitter for your chance to win.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.