My Son’s #DentalSurgery #PreOp Appt (#Autism)

A couple of weeks before school started, my son had dental surgery. He needed one tooth removed to make space for grown-up teeth that were growing but the baby tooth wasn’t coming out; and he also needed a molar removed because, as with many children with Autism, it had rotted from the inside out since he won’t use toothpaste when brushing his teeth. You would think by now, with stats like 1 in 68, the toothpaste industry would have started making toothpaste that isn’t so strong tasting, and bubble so much…but I digress.

My daughter had dental surgery before the end of last school year, and she was an absolute superstar! She needed to have some baby teeth removed because the grown up teeth had grown in behind the baby teeth and was causing too much crowding in her wee mouth. (Sensing a theme here with my twins? 😉 ).

I took my son for his pre-op appointment the week prior to his surgery. He cuddled up under his weighted blanket during registration:

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He drew lots on his whiteboard while we were in the waitroom:

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He even tried stealing the nurse’s stethoscope while she and I were chatting. Of course, seeing as they specialize in surgeries for children, she had another one on hand for him to use while we took all his measurements (height, weight, blood pressure, etc).

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He loved getting his blood pressure taken too…in fact, he tried going for that FIRST, before anything else. The nurse thought it was so cute.

Tomorrow…tales of the actual surgery…stay tuned…. 😉

Recap of #Blog for #2013

Inspire Me 2014

Today’s Inspire Me 2014 Blog Challenge writing prompt: We’ve seen everyone do it this week on Instagram and their blog…recap your favorite moments from 2013. Or post one random picture from each month of the year.

I’m going to change this prompt a bit by sharing my most popular blog posts from 2013 because frankly, I tend to get way too involved and lose A LOT of time when looking through old photos. What can I say? My kids are cute! 😉

You Might Be An Autism Parent If…

Review of StepMom Magazine – May Issue

The Wonder of a Weighted Blanket (Autism) – although I wrote it in 2012…things that make you go hmmm… 😉

Who is Meghan? – awww, thanks everyone! 🙂

Yup, I’m Broken, Literally! – yet another one I wrote in 2012

After School Me Time, While the Kids Are Home!

Mother-Son Movie Time

30 Days About Me: Day 7 – Photo Happiness – yet another one I wrote a while ago…in 2011!

My Son Let Me Cut His Hair!!

Guess What? Autism Parents Are Stressed

Guest post – #WeightedBlankets Rock!

A few months ago, we won a weighted blanket for my son. I’ve been chatting with the owner of the company (Jodi) and I love her story so I asked if she would like to share it on my blog so, here it is:

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I started making blankets a few years ago by accident. One of our older sons went on a missions trip to Kentucky into the Appalachian Mountains. I had just bought a new sewing machine and was trying to learn how to sew, and how to quilt. After a brief lesson, we sat down and made not one, but 50 quilted blankets. Our son called from Kentucky and said, “Mom, could you make 50 more?” And so it began.
 
Just this year in January, I was asked if I knew how to make a weighted blanket.  A blanket is a blanket right?  Well not quite!  Once I learned what they were, I did a lot of research into them.  I kept wondering…what good could a blanket do? (I still to this day have never seen another one in person, besides the ones I make.)  But, the realization hit me that our three special girls might benefit from them too!  The first blanket I made turned out perfect!  (Of course it did, God, once again, had His handiwork in when we were designing this pattern.)   I snuck it upstairs to our daughter’s room at midnight to put it on her for a surprise when she woke up in the morning.  To my surprise, she was awake!  She said, “I can’t sleep again, mommy.”  She saw the blanket and her eyes lit up.  I placed it on her and she said, “OH!  It feels so good!  Thanks mom!”  The next morning she told me that she had fallen right to sleep.  Every day I asked, and every day she said the same thing.  I knew then, that there was something to this!
 
The two blankets I was initially asked to make?  She reported back that her 18 month old was now sleeping through the night, and her 4 year old said it felt like a great big hug!  Wow, what was going on?  Others had to have these, but more importantly…others had to be able to AFFORD these.
 
I knew that this was what God had in store for me, this was to be my mission.  I was in bed that night and just as I was falling asleep, God gave me the name…Weight On Me.  I jumped out of bed, and our facebook page was born.  The next day as I was walking through the kitchen, He gave me the verse Isaiah 40:31 “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
 
Once again, Wait On Me.  I got it.  :o)  As I Wait upon the Lord, and provide for others through this Mission, He will provide for me.  Our home philosophy has always been, if you want to get a blessing, you give a blessing.
 
In the first five months of production (We launched 2/1/12), we have made approximately 80 blankets that have gone from Coast to Coast across the USA in 15 states, to Canada and Australia. Some of them for a few Therapy Clinics for Autism, Sensory Processing Disorders and even Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. The feedback has been overwhelming! Children are sleeping through the night. Adults with Fibromyalgia, and victims of near-fatal car accidents who live with chronic pain for years now without restful sleep, are sleeping. Autistic children are calming and sleeping. Cancer patients are relaxing, resting, sleeping. A Williams Disease child-sleeping and napping who wont let go of her favorite weighted blanket, and who just calmly sat for a coast to coast car trip for their move. Story after story warms my heart. Some send pictures for me to keep. I get so excited to see their beautiful faces. “My blanket babies!” These are not just autism blankets, they are for so many people! Anyone who needs to feel safe and secure, anyone that needs a little help with sleep, or anyone who just needs a hug once in awhile, would love – and does love a weighted blanket! 
 
Weighted blankets are extremely expensive through many places.  Sometimes as much as $200-$400. We try to keep our prices low so everyone can afford them.  Our custom blankets start at $59 and no size is over $93.  Our first goal is to bring blankets to children and adults that need them. We have very little and sometimes no profit margin. All profits that are made on the blankets, go right back into Weight On Me. I hope to keep things going that way as long as I can, because this is not my mission, and it’s not about me…..it’s about those who need it and it is about the simple things that God has put in our lives.

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You can contact Jodi at makemyblanket@gmail.com, through her Facebook Page, and also her website.

The Wonder of a Weighted Blanket (#Autism)

In the Autism community, we are very well aware that Autism and sleep do NOT go together.  I can probably count on one hand the number of times my son has slept through the night more than 2 nights in a row. Some nights, he can get himself back to sleep fairly quickly (within a half hour) but the majority of nights, he’s up for what I call his “Autism party”, which means he’s up and playing in his room for anywhere from 2 – 4 hours, which also means I’m awake for that time too.  I’ve tried everything I could think of, including taking everything out of his room so there’s no incentive to play between 1am and 5am. My research brought me to weighted blankets, but honestly, as a single mom, the price (along with shipping costs) was too much.

A month ago, Weight on Me – Weighted Blankets held a contest on Facebook. It was so popular that initially the winner could win two weighted blankets, and quickly Jodi (the owner of Weight on Me) added a 2nd place prize of winning one weighted blanket.

Part of the contest was to have other people “Like” your comment, and “Like” Weight on Me’s Facebook page. I entered the contest, posted on my personal Facebook, moms groups, and other groups I belong to.  I was completely overwhelmed by the help I received from friends, online friends and friends of my friends. Over 200 people helped us win 2nd prize – HUGE thank you to each and every one of them!

My son surprised me by choosing a Spiderman blanket (there were other fabrics I thought he would choose over the Spiderman one, but at the end of the day, he’s still a boy!), I ordered it, and within a week, we had our blanket:

 

Most amazing of all…my son has slept through the night EVERY NIGHT (except for one where he got up to go to the washroom so that doesn’t count…he went right back to sleep) since receiving the blanket!! 

I’ve chatted with Jodi via email quite a bit since the contest and she herself has an amazing story so we’ll be sharing her story next week too. I just love that she sees every blanket as being a “hug”.

So, THANK YOU again to everyone who helped my son and I finally sleep!!

 

Thankful Thursday

This week, I’m thankful for:

  • my son and daughter
  • being able to chaperone my daughter’s school trip
  • surviving an evening where we accidentally left my son’s iPad at his IBI therapy. He was pretty upset but we made it through, without meltdowns.
  • reconnecting with a childhood friend and her kids in person
  • winning a weighted-blanket for my son (details to come soon!)
  • my personal Facebook community (thanks for helping me win the weighted blanket!)