Thursday, November 3, 2011

Very cool posts

Head on over to 5 Minutes for Special Needs, for a post that says so much and is so real. It's about every-day life with an inflexible kid, and differences.

Also, here's an article about a kosher supermarker it Teaneck, NJ that provided meals for those without power. I have also hear of a couple of schools that have opened their cafeterias and gyms to families without power, and two that provided all students without power (in one case, all students, period) with free hot lunches.

Have a positive day.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

After the storm...

My internet got reconnected this AM, so here I am. Phones are still out, and probably will be until at least Friday, but hurray for cell phones and call forwarding (which Verizon actually got wrong three times, due to forgetting a "1" at the beginning of the number when keying it in).

And, of course, I am exceedingly grateful for the electricity that charges those phones, and runs everything else in my house too. Shout out to all those out there who still don't have power. The family who was staying in our basement got theirs back overnight- we'll miss them, but happily. (One of the boys in M.'s class calls himself a refugee. They were planning on staying put at home until the baby woke up the first morning blue in the face.)

S. gave me a science lesson as to what happened here. I knew that when it snows on a bunch of trees that still have leaves, those leaves will catch more snow, thus making branches more likely to fall. But apparently, the sap in trees tend to use fall to run back into the trunks and larger branches, strengthening them.

And since we didn't seem to get much fall, the trees are actually weaker. Which is how four to six inches of snow can make large branches bend, and split a tree so that each branch falls and splits off in a different direction. And how on almost every block, there's a tree on a car. And the street sides are lined with fallen pieces of trees. And there are fallen power lines all over the place, and... The cleaning up is taking ages, but how could it not?

So that's the science of snow in October. But there is, of course, more. My neighbor said to me, "Hashem is reminding us that He runs the world." I answered back, "Yeah, He's been doing that a lot this year." There has been so much weird weather in weird places, places that aren't prepared for it because it's unusual. And now in weird times, when not only the people and man-made structures but even nature isn't ready. For a farmer, that can mean the end of the crops they've worked for all season. Here, it means chaos.

So I think the world is going somewhere different now. Not that things like this have never happened before. But with so much... it feels like the world is at least somewhat reverting to the chaos in which it started. There's a major transition coming. I feel it. I don't know what it will bring.

Hopefully something amazing. Because if there's one thing all people have always been able to talk about, it's the weather. Things like this bring everyone together. Let's see what happens now.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I can stop lying to my child now.

Wow, long time no posting. Holidays, craziness...

The meds saga continues. We have E. on a supplement that has to be taken morning and night. We open up a decent sized capsule and mix the powder with food, not drink. It has a mild taste, but if the food is strong-tasting he doesn't notice it much IF he doesn't know it's there.

So for weeks, I would serve him food he's perfectly capable of getting himself, then send him to the next room, and mix in the stuff. And if he noticed it visually, I would lie to him and tell him it wasn't there. Because I needed him to take it.

I didn't feel good about it. I don't like lying, especially not regularly. It has to happen every so often, but I don't like it. So I am now so thankful that I have found a way to convince him to eat the food even if he knows it's there.

Basically, I told him the truth. If he takes it regularly, he may eventually get to eliminate one or more of his other meds. He hates the Straterra worst, but I was honest that it would probably be the last one to disappear. E.'s doctor has high hopes for this supplement, and we've already seen some nice results. So...

We pray. But things are going... I'm afraid to say alright. He had a major fit in school yesterday, but came out of it OK. So... we go on.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A new year...

I wish you all a great year to come. The idea of renewal is so powerful, but the process of starting again, especially since the work is always harder than if you'd started that way in the first place, can be daunting. So once a year, whenever it is for us, it's so good to take stock along with those around us, all of us together, and take a step in a new direction.

May we all be able to move ourselves where we need to go.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Meal planning, Afloat style

This is not a post about planning out your family's meals a week or weeks in advance and shopping accordingly. I am not and will probably never be that person. And it's not about planning out all the meals for the approaching three-day-yom tov (holiday). I am that person, but I'm a little behind this year.

No, this is about planning meals around meds.

E. has begun a supplement that he has to take in the morning and at night, with food. It's a fairly large capsule full of powder, and since E. can't swallow a sprinkle, we open it up. For whatever reason, it doesn't dissolve well in liquid, so the old grape juice standby is gone. We have to dissolve it in food.

It isn't nearly as disgusting as his Strattera, but it does have a taste. I tried apple sauce, and he hated it. Tried his favorite mushroom-barley soup- no go. Putting it on top of a solid doesn't work because it has to be hidden; if he knows it's there, he won't eat it.

So what works? Spaghetti sauce and chumus (aka hummus). That seems to be about it.

I repeat- he has to take this every day. And he has to take all of it. I can get him to eat chummus every morning, or at least most of it, as long as I have Wheat Thins. And if I get it to him just when he starts looking for food to eat. But the spaghetti sauce is easiest served on pasta, which I don't always have. So what do I do? And what if he's not in the mood for chummus? Or to eat his pasta?

So I came up with strategy. The supper must be served the second he walks in the door from school, so that he doesn't eat anything else that might spoil his appetite for what I want him to eat.

And the capsule has to be dissolved in when he's not looking, which is easy with dinner because I do it before he gets home but not with breakfast, where I have to block the food with my body and ask him to get me something from the next room. Which can backfire if he gets interested in something there and decides he doesn't want to eat anything anymore.

See? Takes lots of planning.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A call from school.

There should be a special word for the feeling you get when your kids' school shows up on Caller ID. And a super-exaggerated version for when it's the principal or the nurse.

I love when a teacher calls and says right off the bat, "Hi, this is Mrs. Weiss, everything's fine." The nurse did that for me once or twice when she was calling about forms. But mostly, when she calls, I need to come get someone. S. in particular, when she had her minor health scare last year, caused a whole spate of that particular anxiety.

I would pick up the phone and say, "Hey, what's going on with her?" Sometimes I'd have to go get her, sometimes it was just to alert me about difficulty she had. Either way, I worried the rest of the day.

Now I have a kid dealing with asthma. Thankfully, there's no major danger. But it's frustrating to watch my child go through an ER visit and multiple nurse's office visits for the nebulizer, some planned and some not. Every day I get a call: "Your kid has been in today." Sometimes, that means the day is over. Sometimes it's back to class, but again, the worries.

I wonder what life was like as a mother before Caller ID? When you didn't know who was calling until they actually spoke to you?