“Lightning Strike”

There is a song called “Lighting Strike” by Snow Patrol. Hits me hard. Today I was at the movie with my son and they played the trailer for the movie Epic – which has this song as it’s title song. Actually, it’s apparently 3 different songs put together into one 17 min song. But the one I am talking about is the one that begins with:

“What if the storm ends, and I don’t see you?”

That’s the part that truly hits me. 

The song goes on to describe the writer being with someone outside in a terrifying storm, it helps him to see the other person in a different way and he doesn’t want to loose that image of them.

As with all music, we often attach our own meaning to the song.

We all have terrifying storms in our lives. Some of them we come out of, some of them we don’t. And to me, that is what this is about.

If I do make it out of the next storm, will I find the ones I love there, or will they have been lost? Will I look up and see the people who mean the most to me, or will the storm sweep them away? And how do I move on from the storm itself and the loss it causes?

The music itself feels dramatic and storm like. The words cut right into me. I’ve been listening to them all day and it’s caused some great introspection.

Valentine’s Day

My parents always made Valentine’s Day nice for us. They got us all little baskets of trinkets and candies and cards. Sometimes balloons or flowers. We would come to the breakfast table to find such fun things. 

I am glad they made valentine’s day more about love and family than themselves. 

I do remember my dad always getting my mom something nice too. 

My husband works a lot. We aren’t always that romantic, or even have much time together – we didn’t plan anything for our anniversary, we haven’t done a lot for any holiday lately. But we love each other and that’s what matters. Not cards and flowers and candy. We will go to dinner or a movie this weekend. 

So, I am glad I have my little Valentine to spoil. We were really sick this week, but on one of my stops at the pharmacy I picked up a few things for his “valentine’s basket” and some cards. One for him from us. And one from him for each of us. He was proud to give them to us and was excited this morning to find a few little treats. 

I was able to go to his party at school. It was fun to help out and fun to go through his valentines with him. He made me so proud thanking almost every single kid and even hugging some. Without any prompting from me.

At the end when the kids were sitting on the carpet and the teacher was talking to them, my boy made the whole room laugh several times. And several moms told me “he is just too much!” (they don’t know the half of it. LOL)

The teacher told the kids to say thanks to the moms and dads. He turned to find me and after all the other kids said a generic “thanks” in unison, he said “THANK YOU MAMA!!!!” With his way too loud for inside voice. That was one of the “room breaking out in laughter moments.”

We came home and looked through his bag some more, trying out little toys and eating some candy. We watched some movies this afternoon to rest (we are still trying to get our strength back from being sick). And we enjoyed each other’s company. 

I love that kid. With all my heart. 

Best. Valentine. Ever.

School Skate Night

So, our PTO had a skate night. I think it earns money for the American Heart Association somehow. My kiddo is in Kindergarten and he really wanted to go. It was his first time skating and I knew he couldn’t tie up his skates and get going on his own, so I met the bus there and helped him and the other kids. He had a blast. He used one of those walker things, but he skated with his friends and had a great time. He even sat with them at a table and had an ice cream cone and lemonade. He didn’t get upset by the bright lights and loud music, he seemed to enjoy the feeling of “rushing” through the air. I was proud of him.

But this post isn’t about him. As soon as we got there, a girl of about 3rd grade came rushing up to me and said she needed to use the toilet, so I took her in and then helped her get back out to get a stamp and then left her to help my son get skates and get them on and start skating. I ended up getting him (and a friend) a trainer thing – like a walker with wheels – and had just gotten him skating. I turned around and I saw the same girl very near tears. I asked her what was wrong. She said she was having a really hard time skating. And she was. I tried to help her practice on the carpet – told her how to bend forward and bend her knees and stick her bum out to get some balance. I had her hold onto the wall and kind of walk. I told her about the stoppers on front and how they can help. She was really upset by now. I wasn’t really sure why, because her friends didn’t seem to be doing any better. But I offered to give her the other trainer that our friend wasn’t using. She took it and was off. I was so happy to see a smile on her face. She kept coming to me for help – help getting her dinner, help finding a place to eat, help finding her friends, help at the end when she had a blister. 

It made me sad. Not just because her parent wasn’t there – lots of parents weren’t there. But because she was so obviously in need of attention. Her hair was dirty, her clothes were older and dirty. She had some sort of eczema or dry skin on her face that didn’t look like it was being taken care of. She whispered, even in the loud skating rink. At first I thought she didn’t have any friends there, but she did. They found her to eat with her. They all obviously had more money than her and I felt bad for that. She even asked me to help her open her ketchup packets and find the trash. 

I made sure she got on the bus, and I made sure she got off the bus at the school. Then I lost her, I didn’t get to see who came to pick her up. 

I will look for her at line up and say hi when I can. 

Those kind of kids break my heart. Not the fact that she probably has less money than her peers – though I know that can cause all sorts of challenges. But the fact that she doesn’t look well cared for. No child deserves that. I know there are all sorts of reasons parents have a hard time caring for children. Needing to work 2 jobs, health, mental health, addiction, being a single parent, being low functioning, and many more. But it’s the kids who suffer and it hurts to see it. 

Feeding Therapy #3

We have been doing feeding therapy for almost a year now. We started in individual and then moved to group therapy. 

In group therapy there are about 6 kids and all of them have different food issues, but they ALL need help with food.

Last group I still felt like a failure. All of those kids would eat whatever you gave them (not picky), but some of them weren’t eating enough, or one needed to learn how to eat because they were on a feeding tube for a while, one just didn’t chew – swallowed his food whole and choked. So, I still felt badly. In fact, one day one family brought their grandma and aunt and cousin to watch and the grandma asked me at every single food, “He won’t even eat PIE???” or “He won’t even eat mashed potatoes?” I was kind of pissed about that one. LOL.

We just started our second group and I feel better already. One kid will only eat orange food. One kid is 3 and hasn’t ever eaten because he had a tracheotomy at birth and has been on a feeding tube his whole life and has swallowing difficulty. He drinks water now and is learning to swallow crumbs. He is picky too, because he has never tasted any food until now. There is a set of twins who just stopped eating one day. They had become picky, and then one twin decided to stop eating and his brother followed suit. They both got diagnosed with failure to thrive and got stomach tubes. Then the “lead” brother decided he didn’t need to eat AT ALL because he gets his food in his tube. Of course brother followed. The doctors are afraid they will loose the muscle memory and forget how to eat. I feel badly saying this, but it makes me feel much better that there are picky kids with us now and that my son’s issues aren’t as bad as some out there. 

So, what progress have we shown?

1. My son can sit at the table with other foods – even ones with overwhelming smells.

2. My son can stand to have different foods on his plate (a divided plate) with his food.

3. My son can touch, smell, lick, and kiss most foods without having a complete melt down. He can EVEN take an “ant” bite out of most foods with a little prompting and without freaking out.

4. My son has added several foods to his diet, even though I do have to insist he eat some of them. 

5. My son has even eaten almost half of a chicken nugget several times. THAT is huge people

6. I have learned to stop listening to the people who tell me what I did wrong and who tell me what I should have done. I have learned to let all that go and focus on what helps my child and I. I have learned frustration doesn’t help and to remember these things aren’t his fault and that I am here to guide him, not make him feel badly about how he is. I have learned we are lucky he eats enough calories to grow. And to be thankful for it. 

If you want to learn more, I have written more with in depth examples of what we do. 

Here:https://fishjello.wordpress.com/2012/07/08/feeding-therapy/

And Here:https://fishjello.wordpress.com/2012/09/21/food-therapy/

The first link breaks it down more. The second one was when we started and talks about the first steps we took.