Just when I thought his head banging days were behind him, he starts it up again. I lay in bed yesterday morning, mind racing with all that needed to be done to get the four of us to Michael's soccer game at 11am. The silence of the early morning was suddenly interrupted by a loud screaming protest from Nick. "AAAAAAAHHHHH!" followed by a BANG! Nick had found the nearest wall to which to take out his frustrations. What a great way to start the day I thought. I got up and meandered down the hallway to the kitchen. It was going to be one of "Those" days already. I got both the boys something to eat, and then started preparing Nick verbally about what was going to happen that day. "Nick, we have to get dressed and go to Michael's soccer game" I told him as he yelled at me on the way to his bedroom. He did not want to get dressed this early in the morning. We managed to get everyone ready and out the door by 10:30.
Nick is fine until half time when suddenly 13 kids come off the field and gather around us for snacks....he gets visibly uncomfortable at all the commotion and starts crying. No other thing to do than just to deal with the crying while everyone looks at me as if to say "Aren't you going to soothe your child? Why is he crying?"
Somedays I just go around wondering "What is going on with this kid today?" After weeks of reprieve from head banging, he is now doing it again. He was stimming for most of the day, and when I tried to get him engaged with me, he persisted with throwing things to the floor, and just not paying attention at all. All he wanted to do was flick switches, open/close doors, and wander around with a blanket on his head. My whole day was pretty much spent keeping my frustration under control. I just kept thinking "Just.......QUIT.....with.....the....stims...I can't take it anymore!" I spent most of our session together just trying to reach him. What the heck happened??!! I am usually able to get eye contact from him when he is focused, but yesterday he was all over the place. I had to grab him and MAKE him look at me-once he did that, he would speak, or do something else I wanted.
Last night after he ate his dinner, I decided once again to give him the CLO. I stopped for a while because I was not sure if it was having any effect on him. Today, he was completely different.
He started the day off with coming to get me to play with him while I was in the kitchen. After playing for a few minutes, I went back to doing dishes. He came up to me, stood beside me, and said "Gimme Hug" in his quiet, Nicholas voice. Today, he managed to say several phrases appropriately...
"All Done" while I was playing with him
"Stop it" to Michael in the car
"No bed" when I put him in a "time out" of sorts after banging his head.
Somedays I feel like maybe we are not doing enough for him. Others I feel like we are doing just fine. We have switched him to powdered milk, started back with our CLO and vitamin supplements, work with him everyday on the most simple of tasks, send him to pre-school, and try to get him de-sensitized to table foods. I found some old pictures of Nick last night when he was a baby, and actually EATING...more solid foods than he does now...
Nick-11 mos old; eating a biscuit
Look at that! My baby eating crackers and cheerios!