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A Mothers View of Autism Open the Door to Early Intervention by Michelle Rasmussen May 27, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "A Mothers View of Autism Open the Door to Early Intervention by Michelle Rasmussen May 27, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Mothers View of Autism Open the Door to Early Intervention by Michelle Rasmussen May 27, 2009

2 Overview Introduction Project Childhood (DVD Slideshow) Stephanie Genteman, Liberty Center Phone: Circle of Friends

3 A little history: Kai Normal pregnancy & delivery (January 13, 2005) Angel baby for the first year Meeting milestones, the older he got, the more noticeable the delay Lucky to be staying at home and around other babies at playgroups, etc. Around 12 months is when the obsession with doors and light switches began.

4 5 Major Components of Success for Kai (In my humble opinion!) 1.Time with Typical Peers 2.Early Diagnosis & Intervention 3.Dietary Changes 4.Family Education/Support 5.Home ABA Habilitation Program & Respite Kai has Autism?!?! Go Team Kai! Typical Peers (Safe) ABA Program Home & Respite Family Acceptance & Support GFCF Diet (Support) AzEIP ST, SC, OT

5 1. Time with Typical Peers Gymboree, Casas Parents Day Out, Weekly Playgroups, St. Andrews Preschool, Mesa Verde/CDO North Campus, Beautiful Savior (summer) Safe environment, Who is Kai? for teachers, Open Communication How I felt: scared he wouldnt be safe, people wouldnt understand him, think he was just a bad kid or that I was a bad mom, worried I would be judged for my decisions and hesitation. Started Match 2007 – Kai was months (weekly & daily) 5 Major Components to Success Without the support of the teachers, directors and therapists, Kai would not be where he is today! This is a HUGE piece to the puzzle of success for kids and their families affected by ASD. A lot of people gave Kai a chance and believed in him (and me) and stuck with him (and me!) through the challenging times, and because of that, he is growing up as typical as he possibly can, and we as Kais parents are forever grateful for that.

6 5 Major Components to Success 2. Early Intervention Program Arizona Early Intervention Program (AzEIP) https://egov.azdes.gov/CMSInternet/main.aspx?menu=98&id=3026 Apply online and then they called and set up appointment for eval Support Coordinator/Early Interventionist Lacey Miller from Child and Family Resources Phone: Speech Therapy – Maureen Dykinga Phone: Occupational Therapy – Nancy Ossman / Paula Kelly (Sensory Integration) Started August 2006 – Kai was 18 months (weekly)

7 5 Major Components to Success 3. Dietary Changes Gluten Free/Casein Free Diet Online Resources (Great Overall Resource) (DAN Info) (Great scientific papers written by doctors on several topics) Carmen Palacio Smith, R.D. – Nutritionist Started Match 2007 – Kai was 2 yrs old 4. Family Education/Support Southwest Autism Research & Resource Center (SARRC) JumpStart Program – 8 weeks in Phoenix, 2x per week Summer 2007 – Kai was 2 yrs old

8 5 Major Components to Success 5. Home ABA Habilitation Program & Respite Liberty Center – Stephanie Genteman Started August 2007 – Kai was 2.5 yrs old Such a relief to have experts as part of Team Kai! Observation, Recommendations and behavioral goals and strategies that we can be consistent with. Teaching Kai the skills that dont necessarily come naturally to him, so that he can apply and practice what he learns in the Typical Peer Environment. This is HUGE!

9 A Vision Statement for Kai October 18, 2007 – Partners in Policy Making Homework My vision for Kai is that he will have good friends and enjoy engaging with his friends and family. I hope that he will be able to attend a school in full inclusion with a team of people who are caring and working to help him learn and succeed in school, both socially and academically. I hope Kai can learn effective coping strategies when he is frustrated. I hope he will be kind and loving and want to share experiences with others…I hope he has empathy and compassion for others. I hope Kai can take his strength with computers and symbols and use these to help others (maybe with homework), find enjoyment/recreation and eventually build on these skills to find a job he enjoys and is good at.

10 Life is a journey and an Adventure… Before

11 …you can help a child and their family enjoy the ride!

12 Adventures in Autism…Opening the Door to Early Intervention February 25, 2009 { D O O R S } Kai loves doors. Anyone who knows him knows this. He also loves to flush toilets and he likes how they sound. He'll say, "Heehee, that was a funny one! Mamma, did you hear that??" Who knew you could be SO excited about the sound of the toilet, right? There is also ALOT more about Kai, but I'm going to try and stick to the point - I know I know, my stories are a tad bit LONG...anyhoo...so, back to the doors though...I am in the process of trying to figure out what domain name to get for this blog so it's easy to remember and type, I ask my dear hubby what he thinks of my ideas yesterday morning, and he suggested and I laughed so hard and immediately used my favorite new gadget - my new boyfriend, as Owe so enviously refers to it - my iPhone - and checked that url - taken! Darnit! Oh well, I am sure not everyone will see the humor of it just yet, depending on where they are at in their journey.www.ilovedoors.com We are finally getting to a place where we are finding the humor in the things he does (3 years later), all the while running a full time Early Intervention Program. FULL-ON. 24/7. And it's working...Kai has made SO much improvement. He still loves doors and toilets, but he also has friends...and plays games...and talks (and talks and talks and talks). Wow, we are grateful for all of those people who have supported us over the past 3 years and I honestly don't know what would have happened if it hadn't been for the Arizona Early Intervention Program (aka AzEIP) and for the amazing people who have supported us and given us hope. Arizona Early Intervention Program What is Early Intervention? Early Intervention is professionals working in partnership with parents and families of children with special needs, to support their childrens growth, development, and learning. Early Intervention happens in places where children and families live, learn, and play; the families natural environments.natural environments Why is Early Intervention important? Research tells us that the first three years of a childs life are critical years for learning. Early care and education have a long- lasting impact on how children develop. During a childs first three years, it is important to focus on a childs developmental needs and take advantage of your childs natural ability to learn (excerpt from the AzEIP site - my first point of contact and the beginning of recovery for us) Please check back in the coming days to see how Early Intervention has saved Kai's life...and mine. That is not being dramatic, that is the truth. As I was thinking about this blog and what to name it and Owe's suggestion, it occurred to me that it all goes back to the doors. Doors are all around us in life, and it's all about which door we choose to go through...sometimes we go through running and jumping, sometimes we get a little shove from a friend (I personally tend to do the shoving lately, heehee) and sometimes, we barely sneak our foot in before the door closes. Sometimes we are so overwhelmed with life that we don't see those doors at all. Make sure you take a moment and make yourself aware of the DOORS in your life...you have the power to open them and go through them. A little bit on the cheesey side, I know, but Kai is certainly aware of this fact, and he takes every opportunity he has to try and open each and every single one that crosses his path, and perhaps that is a lesson for us all. *hugs for now* ~M

13 { d o o r s } Doors are all around us in life, and it's all about which door we choose to go through...sometimes we go through running and jumping, sometimes we get a little shove from a friend (I personally tend to do the shoving lately, heehee) and sometimes, we barely sneak our foot in before the door closes. Sometimes we are so overwhelmed with life that we don't see those doors at all. Make sure you take a moment and make yourself aware of the DOORS in your life...you have the power to open them and go through them. A little bit on the cheesey side, I know, but Kai is certainly aware of this fact, and he takes every opportunity he has to try and open each and every single one that crosses his path, and perhaps that is a lesson for us all. { t h a n k y o u ! } ~Michelle


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