Spectrummy Mummy

Asperger's, Allergies, and Adventures Abroad

Posts Tagged ‘humour

Scent of a Pudding

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As far as we know, Pudding wasn’t able to smell things for a long time.  As with many of her senses, she was hypo-reactive to smell.  I didn’t know this for a long time, because how do you know if a small child can smell or not if they aren’t able to tell you?  Also, Pudding would frequently call things “stinky”, so I assumed, as I was wont to do back then, that there was no problem with her olfactory sense.

Mr. Hindsight (that smug old detective who goes around solving problems too late to be of use to anyone ) informed me that Pudding was using visual or auditory clues to identify when to use the term stinky, it had nothing to do with actually smelling anything bad.  For instance, a foul diaper (nappy) hidden away in a trash can would go unnoticed by Pudding, but if she saw her brother being changed, she would correctly identify it as a stinky one.

When a child is hyper or overreacts to smell, it is pretty obvious.  They’ll be disturbed by strong odours, and can even become physically sick when in the presence of an odour that is too strong.  When the child’s sensory perception presents like Pudding’s, it is harder to tell.  Kids who are unable to smell may lick or taste objects, but then they could be doing that for other reasons too.  Sometimes those who are under-responsive to smell go around sniffing objects and people.  That wasn’t our girl, so we figured we’d got away with one of her senses behaving reasonably normally.

I got some flowers for Mother’s Day, and Pudding asked to smell them.  She pressed her nose deep into the petals and inhaled for several seconds.  She was starting to smell.  Every time I cooked I’d offer her a sniff of a fruit or vegetable.  She likes to smell hot drinks, maybe because the steam adds an extra sensation for our girl.  She has slowly begun to identify scents without visual cues, like stating that a restaurant smells like pizza.  Now she gives her own descriptions, like a product smells “like babies.”

I can only imagine how those flowers in the garden must smell to her!

She still isn’t able to identify many precise smells, even strong ones like lemon, but she is getting there.  For me it is almost tangible proof that connections are being made in her brain.  To simplify things to a point that I can understand them, it feels like her sense of smell has been turned on, and is slowly working its way up to full power.  I’m curious as to what will happen next.  Will her sense of smell begin to function properly, or will we see more problems with modulation: sometimes seeking smells, sometimes being overwhelmed by them?

Right now, of all her senses, this is the least problematic.  She asks to smell food items, and if she likes it, she’ll have a taste.  So far, so typical.  She isn’t going around smelling people (yet) and is able to go to places with strong odours.  When I was pregnant with her, I went through the classic phase of overreacting to certain smells.  I couldn’t go down the coffee aisle in a supermarket, and I’d feel sick at the burger smell as I walked past fast food restaurants.  So far, we aren’t seeing anything like that in Pudding.

But I would still say there is something out of the ordinary about her sense of smell.  One morning last week I woke up to Pudding….how shall I put this?  Making her own fragrant sounds and smells.  I asked her if she wanted to go to the bathroom, but she declined with a giggle.  She continued with her funky music-making.

Me: Please go to the bathroom, it is stinky.

Pudding: No Mummy, it’s not stinky.  My trumps smell like flowers!

Sometimes I’m envious of her sensory dysfunction.  No matter how much I breathed in the odor, my nose never could detect those floral notes that are the signature scent of a Pudding!

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

September 6, 2011 at 3:16 am

Little Sheldon

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The Big bang Theory using simple typefaced font

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I turned on the TV so Cubby could watch a new children’s show I’ve found about underground trains.  I went to sit down, and Cubby shouted at me:

No, Mummy.  That’s my chair.  You don’t sit there!

And that right there was the final proof of my suspicions that I am mother to Little Sheldon.

When I returned from the mandatory 5 day stay in hospital after giving birth to Cubby, my husband introduced me to a new TV show he’d started to watch: The Big Bang Theory. Almost immediately, I sensed something familiar about the Sheldon character. I was, and still am, overwhelmed by maternal instincts for him. I put it down to the magical effects of oxytocin from all the breastfeeding I was doing at the time.  I just want to hug him, much as he’d dislike it.
Back then, I was not so intimately acquainted with Asperger’s Syndrome, nor did I even know that many viewers felt that Sheldon was an Aspie. As far as anyone knew at the time, Pudding was a typical toddler, and Cubby was your average newborn.  Fast-forward two years, and average and typical doesn’t even come into it any more.  But then again, nobody would call Dr. Sheldon Cooper average or typical, and I think he is just fine with that.

The writers deny that the character has Asperger’s Syndrome, they simply claim he is “Sheldony.”  Just like my spectrummy boy he is not diagnosed with an ASD, though he does show more than a few traits, and a shared obsession with trains.

Cubby was always highly verbal.  Though he has been closely followed for developmental delays, language has never been a problem for him.  Just like his sister, he has a huge vocabulary, particularly when it comes to special interests.  He takes things comically literally.  He is very smart and doesn’t mind letting you know it.  This boy has an opinion on most things.  And just like the real Sheldon, he is always, always right.

Unlike Pudding, who is (relative to her diagnosis) pretty flexible, Cubby likes his routines.  Things have to be done in a certain way- his way- and any other way is wrong.  One more thing he has in common with Sheldon: he also loves his mother very, very much.

So Cubby, like Sheldon, has a spot.  A place where only he should sit.  A “single point of consistency in an ever-changing world.”  My Little Sheldon.  I’m okay with it.  I’m okay with this little guy being who he is, quirks and all.  I know he’s not insane, because like Sheldon’s mother, I had him tested.  And if he continues to grow up and be just like this character- well, it isn’t the worst thing that could happen.  He’d make any mama proud.

But there is just one thing that has to change- that chair he wants to take is my spot.  Perhaps there is a little Sheldon in all of us.  Bazinga!

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

September 1, 2011 at 12:04 am

An Alternative SPD Lexicon

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I finally got around to writing a brand new post for the SPD Blogger Network.  I’ve decided to share with you what my brain thinks when I hear terms like “IEP”, “bilateral coordination”, and “motor planning.”  I’m pretty sure that most parents of kids with sensory issues will agree with my definitions.  If you have any of your own- please feel free to add them in the comments.  You can read the post here.  I guarantee you’ll laugh or your money back.*

SPD- Sometimes Pretty Demanding.
IEP – Incredibly Enervating Process.
Motor Skills – What we develop as we drive our kids from OT, or PT, or ST, school, social skills groups, doctors, and specialists with reluctant, squabbling children doing their best to distract us. Requires…
Motor Planning – bringing enough snacks/ juice/ stickers/ fidgets to keep the kids relatively calm for the journey. Inevitably leads to a…
Gross Motor – how my car looks after all the snacks/ juice/ stickers/ fidgets end up dumped out on the floor.

And while you’re there, take the time to read Spectrummy Daddy’s post and you’ll learn why he is always our superhero, even when he doesn’t realize it.  His entry is part of the Sensational Dads series this June, which you should definitely be reading.  There are some amazing posts on there.  Go on- enjoy!

*Money back offer strictly limited to return on payment for reading the post.  Oh look at that….it is free of charge!  Costs nothing but a click.

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

June 6, 2011 at 6:58 am

Googled

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Image representing Google as depicted in Crunc...

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I’m frequently amused (and often horrified) by the internet searches that bring people here.  Today I thought I’d share some of them with you.

Apparently Google has become self-aware, and gets a kick out of sending people to the wrong place, like with these:

cleaning the house blog tips carpets  – You want tips?  Don’t have carpets.  Or kids.  We have both, and we’re screwed.  Sorry.

social mummy – I’m a blogger with spectrummy kids, exactly how social do you think I am?

valentine’s day – No.

social story – parents going on holiday – You mean without the kids?  This can happen?  Tell me how, then I’ll write a social story for it.  Gladly!

mummy’s curse bouncy castle – Sounds interesting.

on a dark halloween day mummy came in our huse – Okay, so there are lots of searchers for “mummy” around Halloween who were disappointed, but I’m still curious about what this person wanted.

my teenager is saying i want pudding – Can’t have her.

mummy is talking to mummy’s mummy in the motherland – There are few things I’d like to do more than talk to my mummy in the motherland.  Way to make me homesick, googler.

Then there are times when the bog searches are weirdly accurate:

asperger bashful – I don’t know if you’re saying that Aspies can be bashful, or that Bashful has Asperger’s, or what…but you’re in the right place, my friend.

rituals my cup of tea    how important is a cup of tea in the morning?   cup of tea and a biscuit – I am queen of the tea bloggers!  Is Tea Blogging a thing?  By the way, I’m taking “Tea Party” back.

beady eye blog – You have them too?

life in the foreign service special needs children – Yes.

mama bears shoes – Yes, but were they comfy?

paper cuts and autism – If you mean figuratively

blue fountain white house – Ooh yes, right place.  Still don’t know why though.

autism rapunzel – Vindicated!  I’m not the only one who sees it.  Disney, the world is ready for a spectrummy main character.  Or at least myself and another random internet user.

http://www.cubbywords.com – This should totally be a site!

mummy culture shock – Yep, I’m the bewildered woman you’re looking for.

aspergers trickery Yes, right?  Not just mine, then.

christmas syndrome homesickness – I just self-diagnosed.  Now if only I could fly back to Blighty every year to treat it.

pudding autism bolivia – Right here is why I’m glad we don’t use our real names.  Perhaps there is some other reason for this uncanny search, but it makes me want to take out a restraining order.

paersonal space invaders – Right here.

santadaddy – Look no further.

starbucks coffee karma – You suffer from it too?  You must know my husband.

mummys pudding – Yes, she is.

love distance blog  – I think I prefer this to Allergies, Asperger’s and Adventures Abroad.  My new tagline in an economic three words!

Written by Spectrummy Mummy

May 13, 2011 at 9:55 am

Look, Mummy! (A pretzel in the potty).

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Earlier this summer while Spectrummy Daddy was in Afghanistan I begged requested that Grandma came to keep my sanity visit.  During that time we made Pudding this dress, with matching headband and dress for Sleeping Beauty.  It is not twee if you’re three!  It isn’t.  Shut up!

Today she put that dress on.  I couldn’t find her headband, so I left her to get dressed while I did the same for Cubby.  She managed to find it and called:

Look, Mummy!

I hurried to get there.  This whole “Look, Mummy!” thing is new to us.  One of her IEP goals is to use appropriate ways to gain an adult’s attention.  I love it.  I get to my bedroom and find her preening in front of the mirror.

Look, Mummy, I’m beautiful.

Can’t argue with that one.  Earlier in the week, though, she had done the same thing.  She appropriately engaged my interest, but it wasn’t such an appropriate sight that greeted me:

Look, Mummy!

I found her in the bathroom.  She’d just used the toilet.  I’m not going to talk numbers here, but it wasn’t pretty in there.

Look, Mummy, it’s a pretzel!  I did a pretzel in the potty!

I know, disgusting, I’m sorry.  Just felt like a little toilet humour after this [insert profanity] week!

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Written by Spectrummy Mummy

September 17, 2010 at 12:17 pm