Wednesday, June 22, 2016

A Diagnosis DOES Matter

I've debated on writing about this for a while, mostly because I don't feel it's completely my story to tell. But on the flip side, I feel like if I can help another parent, I should.

Kayden was my first baby and came to us at 7 months. He's always been my high energy, rough and tumble textbook definition of a boy. He plays hard, laughs hard and is seriously the most lovable little guy ever! 

But the older he got the more red flags we would see from time to time. Milestones were being met, but my gut told me something wasn't "typical." Finally when he turned three last August he didn't meet the milestones for language development and social skills. It sounds terrible, but I was overjoyed, because it told me my gut was right all along. 

After a referral process and some testing Kayden got to start pre-school as a 3 year old with an IEP for help in the areas he was struggling with. Within weeks I saw improvement with his speech and the way he interacted with his brothers, I was thrilled to see progress. When his quarterly goal chart came around he was ABOVE the aim line of where they wanted him to be! Talk about some proud parents over here, I cried tears of joy!

As well as his speech and social skills were coming along there was something I couldn't ignore, and it wasn't improving. He was SO rough without trying to be and his energy was through the rough! Now I had a bit of parental denial, and just kept telling myself it was because he was only 3 years old and a high energy boy, but then I attended a training and my world was flipped upside down. 

The training was on Sensory Processing Disorder, which in my mind screamed Autism, but isn't. It is defined by WebMD as, "...
a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that comes in through the senses." It is a spectrum disorder where children can be high-sensory seeking (jumping off couches, pushing, lack of safety concerns) or low-sensory seeking (clothing tags hurt, aware of all noises/lights, etc.). Many sensory symptoms of Autism overlap with SPD, as well as many of ADHD connect with SPD. There is only a tiny portion of cases where all three meet. It has been shown that therapy addressing SPD has helped to decrease problems associated with ADHD. (Holy acronyms! I apologize.)
I immediately sent a text to Kayden's preschool teacher telling her she needed to look it up and let me know her thoughts. It quickly turned into an Occupational Therapy evaluation and a trip to the pediatrician's office. We had a diagnosis, Sensory Integration Dysfunction (because SPD can't stand as its own diagnosis), with a heads up he'll probably also be diagnosed ADHD down the road. Does this mean he is broken? No. Does this mean he will always have an IEP or need therapy? No. Does this mean we took steps to be proactive parents? Hell yes!

Since he was officially diagnosed, he can receive private services now and insurance will cover it, this wouldn't be possible without the label. He gets to go to speech therapy, occupational therapy and a social-skills play group, which he loves! If you met him you would have no idea of the struggles we deal with from time to time. You might notice he's rough and sometimes hard to understand when he talks, but other than that you would just think he's a super cute lovable almost 4 year old boy.

Often times parents are scared to diagnose their child, because they think that it'll just get better on its own. Or that if they label them, the world will label them and it will reflect back on them somehow. Or kids will pick on them. Or people will think that the parents caused it, because of "poor parenting." I just don't understand it. We don't have him wear shirts that say, "I have an IEP and am diagnosed SID."

We live in a society where everyone assumes that doctors are just out there throwing a diagnosis around, like roofies at a rave. That is not the case! Do some people abuse 'labels'? Yes. But a vast majority of children are getting a diagnosis because doctors are learning more and more about spectrum disorders, and because of that, more and more people fit into it and are receiving services.

A parent's intuition is a crazy thing! We could've continued to wait and watch him fall farther and farther behind his peers, instead we took action. We chose to pursue getting an official diagnosis so that we could provide Kayden with the best tools to help him thrive! He is not the diagnosis, he's our crazy, warm hearted, fun loving little boy; but without it we wouldn't be doing as well as we are! 

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Sunday, June 19, 2016

My Husband is the Okay-est Dad Ever

Often times you hear people say how "perfect" of a father their children have, I've said it before too. But I've realized that calling someone perfect is just setting them and everyone else up for disappointment at some point or another.

So here is to the most okay-est father and husband ever!

You have the ability to fall asleep on the couch while children are loud as hell and running wild around you. You can't always make it to appointments or events, not because you don't want to, but because it just doesn't work out. Sometimes you yell when you are upset, instead of speaking "gently." You work more hours than most, and occasionally miss baths and bedtime. Some days you zone out on your phone instead of playing monster trucks. You either have the slowest bowels on earth or use the bathroom to escape from the crazies for 20 minutes. 

But guess what buttercup? All that is ok.  You smile when you get home no matter how hard of a day you had. You give kisses and hugs to everyone before taking a moment to relax. You listen to me whine and complain about things that don't really matter. You provide for our family in a way that sets an exemplary example for our boys and shows them what hard work looks like. You still smack my ass when I'm cooking dinner in the same yoga pants you saw me get out of bed in that morning. 

So today dear, I want you to know! We appreciate you! And you aren't perfect, because no one is, but damn you try, and we love the hell out of you for it! 

Here are some of my favorite daddy pictures too!

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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

What's That Clapping Noise? Oh...My Boobs!

I recently had a garage sale, and the sole purpose of me selling all of our shit was for me to fund a trampoline for the boys. Exercise plus burning up some of their energy, it was a win win in my book! Could we've bought it without the sale? Yes, but the hubs wasn't completely on board with it, let alone funding it. So I spent days prepping and then nearly melted into the cement the day of the sale. BUT hard work paid off and I "raised" enough money to buy it for the boys.

Now parents don't usually talk about how their kids are sometimes a great excuse to buy or do things they secretly want for themselves. I've wanted a trampoline FOREVER, but couldn't justify it until the kids were actually big enough! Well mama went and bought it yesterday and the hubs spent all evening putting it together. I was SO excited to jump on it with Kayden that I couldn't stop laughing while we were on it! Then something happened.

I heard this clapping noise, like that noise you might hear when on an X-rated movie, I immediately stopped jumping, and the noise stopped. I started jumping again and then I heard it again! I shit you not, my tank top melons were giving me a round of applause every time I bounced up and down. I assumed it was a fluke, but decided to not risk a black eye and got off.

This afternoon Kayden wanted me to get back on the tramp with him. I obliged him after strapping the girls down. I could see the headline now, "3 Year Old Knocked Unconscious by Mom's DDD," we didn't need that!

Kayden, "Mom you are going to knock me over! You jump, I'll sit here and hold on!" Ignore my obnoxiously overexcited face!
He kept telling me to jump higher and higher, well what goes up must come down.......boobs included! And there's the whole "an object in motion will stay in motion." Well those objects were stopped by my chin. How in the fuck is that even possible?! Seriously though!

It's like all my teenage dreams have been crushed! I just wanted a trampoline to jump on like those girls from that old show for guys, The Man Show. Well minus the bikini, plus some cellulite, oh and a couple gray hairs. Ok so nothing like those girls, besides the up and down part. But still! And here I am coming to grips with the fact that a mother of four who can't buy bras at a regular store, and has too delicate of skin to duct tape them down, just shouldn't jump!

Is this hiccup going to keep me off of it? No. I might just have to tuck one under each armpit to hold them down. Ok, I'm joking, I can't really tuck them that far, but if gravity keeps being a bitch, I'm sure I'll get there!

I'll leave you with this meme to steal! OH and did you see I have a Facebook page now?! Check it out here so you never miss a thing!

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Thursday, June 9, 2016

The World Isn't Made for Big Families

We don't have the "average" number of kids at 4, and honestly I don't think of us as a big family. I'd be down for 2 more in a few (or 5) years! But today I realized they world doesn't do above "average" families!

Retail Stores
Our Target has 3, yes 3, carts total that hold 2 kids. I bust my ass to get there right when they open in hopes of scoring one. It's like trying to score something on Black Friday, but it's just a cart that saves my sanity! Otherwise I'm stuck putting 2 in the basket while wearing the babe, and if Dayton is with us he just holds the side. Cluster fuck is what that is. Today we went to Shopko. Let me say this nicely.....they don't have double carts at all, and their baskets are so small my 2 and 3 year old can't sit on their butts in them. I was less than pleased!

Get it together retailers! It's not pleasant shopping in your stores when I either have to chase children or worry about them falling out of the baskets. As a stay-at-home mom, I don't get the luxury of running errands without them, and I know I'm not the only one!

Some times, Snyder Party of 6, goes out to dinner! Yeah it's as crazy as it sounds! But what happened to back rooms? Party rooms? Open spaces where tables can conveniently be put together? Places that can muffle the volume that comes with us? Instead we end up sitting pretty much on top of each other, in the middle of the restaurant being stared at by everyone. We get the, "Oh you have your hands full," and the "Oh man! You're busy!" Yes and yes, but stop with the staring. We are sitting here as your dinner entertainment, because restaurants think every party just needs a table for four. And if we have people joining us, well hell! Game over! Just burn the place down at that point!

Car Manufacturers
We can travel to the moon, but we can't figure out the most comfortable way to have a car with 4 car seats in it also allow the other "2" seats in the back to be sat in. Seriously! Our van is amazing and I love it! It says it seats 8 people total, with 5 places you can put car seats. Fun fact though, you have to be the size of a dehydrated banana slice to fit into it. I literally can fit the cup of one butt cheek between the boys' car seats. Dumb dumb dumb! Our next option is a 12 passenger van. Literally I would go from soccer mom to Michelle Duggar status......That shit ain't happening!

I could go on and on and on! There's the fact that homes with more than 3 or 4 bedrooms are rare. Or how "family packs" for things usually only include 2 kids. But I'll leave you with this meme! It pretty much sums up my look on a regular basis!

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