I Believe In You

How you see yourself makes a huge difference in how you experience the world. The hubby and I had our first parent-teacher interview last Friday with T’s Grade 2 teacher. The conversation focused on T’s challenges: focusing and completing his work; avoidance behaviour like taking long bathroom breaks, and social interaction. I felt deflated, becauseContinue reading “I Believe In You”

The Grinch

On the annual day that we put up our Christmas tree, a real-life Grinch almost stole our cheer. It’s tradition to put up our tree the day after Remembrance Day. We remind T to honour veterans first before he goes nuts with Christmas. Three things, after all, get T super excited: Christmas, Halloween and hisContinue reading “The Grinch”

Out of the Blue

Hidden truth, isolation, confusion. Things fog symbolizes and it enveloped us for two days. As autumn weather arrives, so does morning fog. It was beautiful and eerie to walk through in the dark Thursday morning, as I headed to work (pictured at top). My head felt foggy the past week, resulting from recent sleeplessness dueContinue reading “Out of the Blue”

Second Chances

What parents won’t often admit: When they ground their kids, they are punishing themselves too. After T’s unfortunate incident with taking the lollipop from the store, we grounded him last weekend; no electronics and he would not have his Halloween decor, bought on the same trip to the store, until next year. It may seemContinue reading “Second Chances”

The Boogeyman

This is a very hard post to write, but I’ve learned that fears die down when you face them. I’ve been enjoying the ramp up to Halloween – recently catching a matinee of “Halloween Ends.” Yesterday night, a real horror scenario played out: T took a lollipop from a store without paying for it. ThisContinue reading “The Boogeyman”

On a Night Like This

When the unicorn of a night out without T presents itself, I grab it by the horn and go for a ride. Going into parenthood 6 years ago, I knew weekend night outs by myself would be rare. When we do go out, it’s usually with friends; company that we enjoy. Parenting a child withContinue reading “On a Night Like This”

Secret Sauce

Asian cooking and special needs parenting have one thing in common: assembling your ingredients. Hear me out. I have not gone off the deep fried end; not yet, anyway. As parents of a child with FASD, the hubby and I have learned so much. We’ve been blessed with help to create a toolkit of ingredientsContinue reading “Secret Sauce”

The Traveller

What’s the meaning of a name and does it express one’s desire in life? For social studies this week, T completed an assignment that asked to research his name. It turns out one of the meanings is “traveller.” To see the world was one thing the hubby and I prioritized during life before T. TravelingContinue reading “The Traveller”

Cross Country Race

Our little guy competed in his first cross country school meetup today. For a kid who is endlessly active, gym is a class T struggled with the last few years. For his mid-year report card last year, his gym teacher gave him an “I,” as he didn’t participate enough for her to give a properContinue reading “Cross Country Race”

Walking Towards Hope

Inspiration exists in all forms and they are so important when traveling down unpaved road. Thanks to our FASD service provider, the hubby and I recently joined a cohort of parents and caregivers for a weekly support group. It’s an 8-week pilot initiative hosted by Surrey Place, an amazing organization that has supported T sinceContinue reading “Walking Towards Hope”

Reading Buddy

We’re experimenting with our little guy’s love of younger kids to build his reading and social skills. At the start of every school year, I watch and reflect on this “Common Strengths of Students with FASD” video by social worker Dan Dubovsky. It’s apparent T loves younger kids and they bring out his patient andContinue reading “Reading Buddy”

Guiding Light

Earlier this month, Pa would’ve turned 100. I thought about him when T had his first swim lesson. T’s always loved the water. The outdoor pools saved our pandemic summers and T loves swimming in lakes during our outdoor adventures. He’s very comfortable in the water and it was time he learned proper swim technique.Continue reading “Guiding Light”

Planning and Collaborating for School Success

Week 1 of Grade 2 is in the history books! We stepped into the school year with cautious optimism. T ended Grade 1 on a positive note but entered the new year without a dedicated CYW. School is often a challenging journey for kids with FASD. This year, we will build on T’s many strengthsContinue reading “Planning and Collaborating for School Success”

Watermelon Sugar

Do you run towards or flee from inevitable sunsets? September 9 is FASD Day, commemorated during FASD Awareness Month in September. September 9 symbolizes the ninth month of pregnancy and this day helps raise awareness about Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder and the experiences of individuals with FASD. People are encouraged to wear red shoes, anContinue reading “Watermelon Sugar”

“La Vie Il Faut La Vivre”

Life must be lived. The words scribbled in French on the railing looking out at the lake. It was the final Saturday of summer break, four days before T’s second grade journey began. We were at beautiful Presqu’ile Provincial Park, located a little over an hour from the City. We left the day before, rightContinue reading ““La Vie Il Faut La Vivre””

Stand Up Paddle Boarding

Experiencing life through a child’s eyes is sweeter when you do something for the first time together. On Sunday, our friend, T’s Auntie E, whom we recently went to Tobermory with, organized a stand up paddle board outing for friends and us. E is a SUP hobbyist and took us to Cherry Beach, a scenicContinue reading “Stand Up Paddle Boarding”

Training Wheels

The sandwich generation experiences the joys of kids growing up and the sorrow of aging parents. Earlier this summer, T showed interest in bike riding again after having no interest last year. While he loves zipping down the park, he doesn’t yet feel comfortable taking off the training wheels. And that’s ok. I thought aboutContinue reading “Training Wheels”

Sanity Savers for Enjoying An Outing with A Neurodiverse Child

Some people joke their restless kids are “climbing the walls.” Kids like our T actually climb them. I’ve seen memes of this boy climbing a pillar in an airport (below) many times on social media. I empathize with this kindred spirit. Even though it’s never disclosed why this kid was climbing, I infer and understandContinue reading “Sanity Savers for Enjoying An Outing with A Neurodiverse Child”

The Dance of Life

Music can be such a revelation. Every August 16, we celebrate Queen Madonna’s birthday; she turned 64 on Tuesday. I discovered her music in high school in ‘98 and continue to admire her tireless work ethic, tenacity, fearlessness, and advocacy. Just as she redefined music, it’s interesting to watch her age on her own terms,Continue reading “The Dance of Life”

Timeout

As we normalize conversations about mental health, how do we support neurodiverse kids? I love watching T and kids play tag. I’m amused by how they apply “TO” (timeout) – whenever they don’t want to be tagged or need a rest. As I thought about this more, kids should be encouraged to take a TOContinue reading “Timeout”