Friday, October 12, 2007

Another doctor visit

This one was an appointment made by me; no emergencies. I took Nick to the tummy doctor in hopes they could possibly shed a little light on his mushy stools. I had hoped that the chunkier food would firm them up a little bit, and it did for a while. But we are now back to mushy and I was just trying to figure out why. He had also had quite a few days with horrible behaviors-so I was wanting to get to the bottom of it. Well, I got Nick to the waiting room with no tantrums-so I was quite happy. He screamed bloody murder when it was time to weigh him, and was not liking all the noise in the little room we were in. After getting him weighed, I decided to tell the nurse that he was autistic and that's why he was acting the way he was. She smiled, and told me "I know. He has all the signs. We will just do what we can, ok?" After she got all his vitals(this took a while-he was barely cooperative), it was time to see the Doc.

I explained to him my concerns about wanting to make sure Nick was digesting all the nutrients in his food properly, make sure we were not missing anything in this puzzle. He asked me questions like "Is he allergic to anything", "What kinds of food does he eat?", "How many times a day does he poop?". I explained that he eats babyfood due to texture aversions, but we are moving towards chunkier foods. He felt Nick's tummy, and looked him over real good. He then went and consulted with his boss, and then they both came in. The other doctor looked at Nick and asked me questions as well. Between the both of them, they told me that since Nick has gained weight, and shows no visible signs of food allergies or digestion problems, they said he was perfectly healthy. I am not sure what to think about this. I am glad that they say he is healthy. In fact, I have been told that he is "Too healthy". I still wonder if he has digestion issues that cannot be seen? We are going to limit his dairy intake(no yogurt), and watch his gluten intake as well. Just maybe, it will help with some things.

Needless to say it is getting a little tiring taking him to these "-ists" only to be told he is perfectly fine. I took him to the nutritionist who said he was "too healthy for this clinic". I took him to the "feeding clinic" at this hospital as well, only to be told "Wow, he is a tough cookie. You might want to try another clinic", and "have you seen our nutritionist?". Now, the gastro doctor says the same thing. How can he not have issues when he goes from firm stools to mushy, then to loose all in one day?? He went weeks with normal stools, now we are back to square one?

I went shopping today and bought him NO Foods with wheat flour, or other forms of gluten in them. He got NO yogurt. I printed out a list from the internet of babyfoods that do not have gluten in them-and he is getting those only. We will see what happens.

Tomorrow is our walk for autism! I just wanted to say THANK YOU to those who donated! Our team raised $580 for autism research!! YAY!!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Peaks and valleys....

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!