Thursday, June 26, 2014

Therapy and Sleep Update

Overall, we have had a great week in therapy.

On Monday Trenton had a session of ABA with Alicia in our house. She has done a fantastic job with him the past few months on getting him to use the word "want".
During her session with him she was drawing shapes on a piece of paper and having Trenton imitate what she was doing. On the left side of the paper she drew a circle. Trenton drew his circle on the rights side of the paper and then continued to draw a person. He said "eyes, nose, mouth, ears" while he was drawing. I think he did a fabulous job!!!

On Tuesday mornings Trenton plays with our high school friend for one hour. Trenton enjoys playing with her still and I could not talk more highly of this individual. She always listens to me and does exactly what I tell her to do. We will miss her when she goes off to college in August.
Trenton went on to have a really good session with Heather in Effingham on Tuesday and for Stacey in music therapy as well. Both Heather and Stacey received a few moments of eye contact with Trenton.  Trenton had a really good work ethic on Tuesday. I was very proud of him!

Wednesday morning both boys had therapy in the morning like usual. Andrew continues to work hard in speech therapy with using, "I want" before he says what he wants. Andrew usually has to have a verbal prompt in the beginning or he looks at his pictures that is in his speech folder. However, after a while he gets the hang of it and can say "I want" without being prompted or by being prompted with just simply pointing to the "I want" pictures. I still continue and will continue to do this at home as well. Jill is also introducing the meaning of "my turn" and "your turn". She plays with him and they practice taking turns with Andrew saying, "My turn" before his turn and "your turn" or "Jill's turn" when it is her turn.

Jill continues to use "I want" with Trenton during speech too. Trenton does very well saying " I want". He almost always needs a verbal prompt before he will say it. At home I either give him a  verbal prompt or show him the speech folder pictures and he will say it! Trenton will not use the words at all without being prompted.

Both boys had occupation therapy with Emily on Wednesday too. Trenton had a rough session in OT on Wednesday. I got to listen to him cry a good majority of the time. Trenton continues and always will receive a lot of sensory input during his OT sessions. Andrew did well in OT and is working hard on using his spoon and fork for Emily!! In the middle of his session with Emily, Andrew started singing "Jesus Loves me." How cute is that!!This is just another way that autism amazes me! It is very hard for Andrew to talk functionally. He can't ask a question spontaneously at all but he can sing a song that he has learned. Then again....Andrew's speech is primarily learned language and a song is learned language.

Trenton also receives an ABA session on Wednesday with Heather and this was where we went down hill. Right after his ST and OT, Trenton was very high strung. He was having some big sensory problems such as having a hard time feeling his body in space which leads to his movement disorder where he has to move, pace, and run constantly. This helps him feel his body. Well, to say the least, our car ride to and from Effingham was a disaster. His session with Heather was not good. He couldn't stay put in one spot for more than a few seconds and he was hitting himself in the head repeatedly. On the way home it was very difficult to keep him in his booster. He kept on squirming out of his booster. At one point, I started to hear him scream bloody murder while I was driving home. I looked back and saw his body hanging out of the booster with his head trapped under the seat belt which was very tight around his throat. I slammed on my breaks, barely avoided wrecking, and undone the seat belt as fast as I could. Majority of the time, my car rides with the boys are my most stressful part of the day and if videotaped would by far be the most educational experience for anyone that does not live with autism.

Today we had the same therapies as we did on Wednesday and both boys did phenomenal!!

As you all know, sleep is a huge issue around our house. Since the middle of May, Trenton has been in a good pattern. He has one bad night a week. For the past month, he is having some issues of calming his body down to go to sleep. Normally, he is up pacing the house and fidgeting with toys to get all of his sensory input from the day out of his body. One night this week he didn't close his eyes for bed til 12:03 AM. Normally, it is more like 10:00.
Andrew's sleep has been OK. He always cries for me at least two times in the night and I normally just cuddle him back to sleep. However, the last week has been a little more difficult for Andrew. He has been crying out more like 3-4 times a night for me and last night was every hour and a half. I pray he is not on his way to a really bad pattern. Simply stated....I never know if its a night where I sleep or not. I have a feeling it will always be that way...especially with Trenton.

On our really bad night this week, this is how Trenton originally fell asleep...
 This was around 4 AM.....
 This was around 6 AM...
 Andrew really likes to fall asleep in the swing too. I thought he was so adorable with his arms above his head...
 Just another night of battling sleep but finally was able to go on the couch..

Early one morning....
 Early one morning....

Right before we got out of the van for therapy this morning!


  1. They are so beautiful, Angie. God bless you on this journey. And thank you for sharing. Awareness is a great first step to understanding, and you help us to be aware. Sending hugs and prayers your way.

  2. I always imagined me and Logan would never sleep again. He has improved so much in that area and I pray the same for you guys too! It is so hard to live sleep deprived on an already hard schedule.