Friday, July 20, 2012

My daughter recently informed me that Jason eats his toast upside down. While this seemed a bit odd, she decided that this made a lot of sense, as this would allow more of whatever is on top of the toast to hit your tastebuds,therefore allowing you to enjoy more of the flavor. This is how I have decided to look at Jason's new diagnosis of Autism. He is still the same wonderful, loving boy he has always been; he just looks at things in a different way. And, like eating toast upside down, he might have a lot to teach us about life. Jason came to us at 22 months from Taiwan. He bonded with us immediately, and has always been very affectionate. For a very long time we thought that his speech delays were due to the fact that he had been uprooted from his native country as a toddler. Other people who had adopted infants from Taiwan now had toddlers who were speaking in complete sentences. However, there were others who had adopted older children internationally who seemed to pick up the language quickly as well. We then learned about a special-ed preschool program through the public school system that would help him with his delays while he was also getting socialization. It took him five months to get into the program because of all of the testing required ahead of time to get his IEP (Individualized Education Program). This plan, however, will follow him throughout his school years, changing as needed, to allow him all of the special help he needs for his delays. At the end of his few months in preschool, the teacher and speech therapist met with us and told us that they suspected he might have autism. I was surprised, but then again not, to hear this. We had taken him to weekly sessions of private speech lessons, which without any extra therapy, weren't helping him to learn to communicate. Our family doctor had also mentioned that she thought he might have some neurodevelopmental delays. His lack of communication and eye contact, his repetitive speech and fixations, as well as his lack socialization skills were all starting to make sense. We took him to the University of Washington Autism Center, where we had him tested for Autism. He was given a diagnosis of Mild to Moderate Autism. (We asked about why he wasn't considered high-functioning or Asperger's but we were told he falls bellow standard in cognitive, verbal, motor and social skills.) It was recommended that we seek therapy for him in ABA (Applied Behavioral Analysis) Therapy, as well as speech therapy. Unfortunately, our insurance doesn't cover ABA Therapy, but we are looking into other options, and I am signed up to do a three day "bootcamp" to train in ABA therapy myself. We are now trying to educate ourselves about Autism, seek help for direction in his therapy, and meet others who have had similar experiences. I am looking forward to discovering what advances Jason might make in the years to come.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

I'm sad to report that just after the "Pink Spoon" book was published here, Mr. Pink Spoon was lost forever down an elevator shaft. We have tried to come up with a replacement, but nothing has been able to match the beloved pink spoon. On a happy note, Jason doesn't seem to care now which spoon he is carrying, as long as he has one in his hand!

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Pink Spoon

I realized after uploading all the pictures for my last blog entry, that almost all of the photos show Jason with his beloved pink "spoon". When he first came home he tended to carry around a hairbrush, but after a while he switched over to a spoon. At first it didn't matter what particular spoon he had, as long as he was carrying one at all times. Then one day we were at a friends house and he spotted this giant pink spoon (aka a pink spatula that was a part of a play kitchen set). They have been inseparable ever since. In fact, even if you can't see the pink spoon in one of the photos, I guarantee it isn't far from his body.

This last weekend Kate and Steve decided to make a book together for Brian's birthday. They spent hours working together. Steve drew the pictures and Kate wrote the story and colored the pictures. The book turned out to be so amazingly cute that I had to share it with you all. If you have trouble reading the words, you should be able to expand the photo by clicking on it. Enjoy!!!!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Finally Some New Photos!!!





Friday, October 23, 2009

Days of Autumn

It has been a pathetically long time since I have updated this blog! Busy days and small snippets of time on the Internet don't leave me much time to post. However, our beautiful Autumn days provided us with some gorgeous photos full of colors so glorious, they must be shared.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

"Stop It!"

It has been a while since I have given an update on Jason. I have had several people ask me how his English is doing. Well, I’m not sure how much Mandarin he actually spoke in Taiwan and I don’t expect him to start speaking full sentences of English anytime soon, but he probably has a vocabulary of about 25 words. He is particularly good at mimicking sounds of things such as the tea- kettle. He has started saying, “Mom! Deedle doodle daddle….” Because he hears Kate and Steve say this and he is trying for the same thing.

His first combination of words came when we were on our vacation in Virginia. He already likes to take up more than his share of space in the back seat and sticks one leg out of the car seat in one direction and on in the other. Stephen jokingly told him to “Stop It!” and the next then I heard was, “Bop-it!” They did this back and forth several times, which was hilarious. He also has a particular fondness for shoes and brushes. He wants to have his shoes on (doesn’t matter which pair) at all times. He will reluctantly let me take them off at night when I say “Night- Night!” to the shoes. He thinks it is important for everyone else in the house to have their shoes on, too, so if someone is lacking a pair he will grab some from the shoe rack and try to put it on their feet.

He also loves to carry a brush around wherever we go. Kate got tired of him stealing hers so she bought him one of his own. Now he just carries them both around, one in each hand. It’s funny that if he can’t find his shoes or his brush, he will call them; “Shoes……!” or “Brush……!” While he won’t sit in front of a movie and watch it, he loves to sit in front of Kate’s CD player and listen to children’s music. In fact, he especially loves the tape she listened to when she was little. He will sit there for a long period of time just staring at the player and listening to the music.

Otherwise, Jason is basically one of the gang. He keeps us in smiles.