Wednesday, 28 November 2007

So why do we have a hard time?

NB If you are looking for WW - scroll down!

Cait O’Conner made a comment on my Trip to Harrods post ‘you make us think and examine our own far to conventional lives’ And many of you expressed that you would like to have done what C did. As im sure there are other things that C has ‘got away with’ (or probably not, but he is unaware) that we would like to do, but because of what is supposedly socially acceptable we don’t.

Abstract jenn on the same day sent me a video clip that I would like to share with you of an autistic young man reduced to giggles in his big moment in the middle of the National anthem.

But instead of everyone jeering at him they helped him. I found this very touching.
If you have been reading my blog you will have shared some of my pain, heartache, embarrassment and joy, and you all have been so supportive.
Is this a blogging community thing?? As a cross section of society that you are (well maybe a bit bias one or two of you) this is not something that C and are exposed to in our daily lives. Why do C and I therefore get so much prejudice from the public and professionals whom we meet or just pass in the street.
Its not that long ago that the long stay asylums were closed and we now see more ‘Cs’ on the streets (for that i am very thankful) and the more able ones in our classrooms. I live in hope that attitudes will change - or am I asking to much (maybe in Cs life time) There is unfortunately still stigma attached to gay, coloured people, single mums and other minority groups, but times are changing. And maybe all these people will one day be totally socially acceptable.
I do hope so.

Wordless wednesday

And the winner of yesterdays early Wordless Wednesday is Craig with "Archaeologists discover the first politician." Love it!!

As I'm going to be away for a few days, and i was just surfing as you do, i found these pictures that i liked, so Ive sneaked in another wordless Wednesday! I'm generous like that!! (Well i just couldn't help myself!)

Monday, 26 November 2007

Things are not always as they seem

1. A firefly is not a fly - it's a beetle.
2. A prairie dog is not a dog - it's a rodent.
3. India ink is not from India - it's from China and Egypt.
4. A horned toad is not a toad - it's a lizard.
5. A lead pencil contains no lead - it contains graphite.
6. A silkworm is not a worm - it's a caterpillar.
7. A peanut is not a nut - it's a legume.
8. A panda bear is not a bear - it's a raccoon relative.
9. A guinea pig is not from Guinea and is not a pig - it's from South America and it's a rodent.
10. Shortbread is not a bread - it's a thick biscuit.
11. A shooting star is not a star - it's a meteor.
12. A funny bone is not a bone - it's the spot where the ulnar nerve touches the humerus.
13. Chop suey is not a native Chinese dish - it was invented by Chinese immigrants in California.
14. A bald eagle is not bald - it's got flat white feathers on its head and neck when mature, dark feathers when young.
15. A banana tree is not a tree - it's a herb.
16. A cucumber is not a vegetable - it's a fruit.
17. A jackrabbit is not a rabbit - it's a hare.
18. A piece of catgut is not from a cat - it's usually made from sheep intestines.
19. A Mexican jumping bean is not a bean - it's a seed with a larva inside.
20. A Turkish bath is not Turkish - it's Roman.
21. A koala bear is not a bear - it's a marsupial.
22. A sweetbread is not bread - it's from a calf's or lamb's pancreas or thymus.
23. Bombay duck is not a duck - it's a dried fish
24. A prairie oyster is not an oyster - it's a calf's testicle
25. An autistic person is not just autistic, they are also a person.

Did you know all those?
Do you know any others?

Sunday, 25 November 2007

Optical illusions

Please take care if epileptic

They seem to move yet they are static

Angry face on the left and happy on the right. Step back away from the screen and see what happens!

And here's one last one for today

Its interesting to look at things differently.

Saturday, 24 November 2007

Where Mother of Shrek was created

Whats on your PC desk?
I went out last night with my Aunt for her 70th birthday , we had a super meal. My aunt is in a wheelchair. The difference in attitude from the public to someone in a wheelchair compared to when i am out with C was so different. People were helpful, polite and friendly! A new experience for me!! A lovely evening had by all!

Friday, 23 November 2007


Today is my 100th post day! So very fitting that i am blogging about one of my favorite subjects!

I mentioned poo yesterday. I could fill many a post with stories of poo. But don’t worry I wont!
C used to smear up to 5 times a day, this has only got less in the last few years. Its just something you deal with. One of my favourite professionals who used to come and see me was an incontinence advisor, as she and I could have great poo conversations! (does that make me sad? Or is it just because no one else wants to talk about it after their child is potty trained!) In Japan they worship poo! There are many reasons why some people like to smear (its not just an autistic thing) and am still to this day not sure why C does it. Its just part of him. I should put it to good use really being the green mum that i am!
And the next time you sit doen to enjoy a cup of coffee, this about this!!!

Here is a poem I wrote a few years ago.

Poo here, Poo there
Poo on the walls, poo in his hair.

It’s in his ears, eyelids too,
Between his toes-dried on poo.

Poo on his face,
poo on the floor

Poo everywhere there can’t be any more!
It’s all over the bed,
All over the chair,
The smell of poo lingers in the air.

Behind the radiator, inside books,
At the ceiling I dare not look.

The most poo you have ever seen,
But at least the toilet I do not have to clean!!!

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Life does evolve

And the winner of this most prestigious award goes to................. Chopski with "Captain Kirk's nicked my dildo so its your lucky day!"

I have posted about a few embarrassing moments with C. There are many more as I'm sure you can imagine. C has changed over the years and we don't have many such incidents, and some things have become easier (some harder.) One of the great changes is bath time.

This used to be an absolute nightmare. And because C used to smear daily, it was a daily nightmare. I would end up wetter than him. There were times when i used to take C to my friends house so her husband could bath him as i was just unable to.
Today, aged 19, C loves a bath. I use a lavender bubble bath, candles and music. He will even sometimes take his fingers out of his ears just for a few moments. C is unable to wash himself and still wont allow me to ( if he is in the bath long enough any poo dissolves!) But he will get in and does lay there!

So if you feel at the end of your tether, just remember it may not always be like that. 'Some' things do change.

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Star Trek Nearly Wordless Wednesday (I did try!)

To win this most sort after accolade all you have to do is add a caption to each picture or both together! (Couldn't decide which one to post so i posted both!)

Crystal Jigsaw make sure no one is peeking over your shoulder!
Maybe i should give these pics an 18 rating?
(Or would that encourage your imagination working over time?! But then again remember i do have a C and am not easily shocked!)

If that is all too much i would also like to mention a couple of blogs that i think are worthy of more readers;
Tell them Casdok sent you!

And last but not least, i would like to give Amanda this special Casdok star for making a superb video on autism and respect. Keep them coming Amanda!

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

The day I took C to Harrods

Yesterdays post reminded me of another time.........

Harrods is supposedly one of London's poshest stores. C loves going to London, so i thought i would show him how the other half lives.

C loved the escalators at Harrods.

We even managed to have a look round the beautiful food halls with no incidents.

We then came to the bed department.

C thinks literally.

C saw the beds.

The next thing i knew, C had stripped off......

And was bouncing on the beds! (that's what he does at home!)

This didn't go down very well with the shoppers and unsurprisingly we were escorted from the building.

I don't think we will be going back for a while!!

Monday, 19 November 2007

Public toilets

C loves sitting on toilets! Yes just sitting. He has worked out it is a good place to hide from people when it all gets too much. So much so that I cant get him off the loo sometimes for up to an hour!

When out and about with C it is not always easy to find a disabled toilet and of course I have to remember to carry my radar key. So if I haven’t got my key or cant find a disabled loo I have to take C in the ladies. Being a 6 foot young man this raises eye brows, but what else can you do?
Some disabled toilet doors now work automatically so you cant quickly shut them behind you, as soon as C sees a loo as he works on visual prompts his trousers are down by his knees and the door is still wide open! So I try and avoid these loos.
The other kind of toilet I try and avoid are the ones on trains. This is only since a rather embarrassing incident. C had had an accident, I wont go into too much detail but basically I hadn’t locked the loo door properly and a rather red faced woman was standing there mouth open whilst I was kneeling over C sitting on the loo with me trying to pull his trousers off!
We have also missed our station a few times as he has decided to stay in there! Needless to say we now don’t use the loos on trains.
I also don’t take C to bathroom show rooms, for obvious reasons!
Oh and today is world toilet day!!!

Sunday, 18 November 2007

Optical illusion

I have no idea how this works,

I have never been that good at optical illusions.

But the friend who sent me this said if you stare at it long enough, you should be able to see the ocean......................

I tried for a while, but I can't see ocean!

Saturday, 17 November 2007

Life before blogging

Phil Plasma asked me (yes I am still wading through the questions) What is the 3rd thing you do when you get up in the morning.
1st Go to the loo!
2nd Put the kettle on.
And 3rd - look at my emails!

And what did I do before blogging (Did you know theres even a blogging spectrum?!) I read more books, now I read more blogs!

So what’s the 3rd thing you do? And what did you do before blogging??? And I will throw in, why did you start blogging?!

Friday, 16 November 2007


Today in the UK is Children in Need. It takes over the TV for a whole evening asking viewers to donate money. Terry Wogan hosts the show and apparently gets paid £1300 an hour to do this. The Pudsey bear logo cost £50 000 to design and I dred to think of all the other admin costs.
Should we need charities like this? (Just asking, am not giving an opinion)
With out charities and people who do voluntary work, where would we be? I do a lot of charity work as does my mother (she campaigns for the rights of plants, as she says like C, they cant talk and need a voice!)

Do charities give out the right images?

As a parent I don’t want sympathy. Empathy- yes.

I think Amanda says it very well in Getting the Truth out.

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Social Workers

Official business first - Who is the proud winner of the Mother of Shrek First wordless Wednesday Winners button? Well to be honest i couldn't decide!! (I wont be so generous next week!) So everyone who entered can help them selves to this;

Made by Aunt of Shrek (Thank you sis x) And thank you DJKirkby for the idea!

I recently did a post on support from family and friends but we are also supported by a variety of professionals.
There are some professionals to whom it is just a job, and don’t really understand what they are dealing with (in terms of C that is).
Gone are the days where they could come into your house and have a cuppa and really get to know you, your child and your lives. Now problems are dealt with either by email or over the phone. Very rarely do I now see a professional in person.
Yes we sometimes give them a hard time, or rather the system a hard time. But it is not personal, and the ones who are good at their job know this.
Professionals come and go, the bad ones don’t always last as they cant cope (they actually give me more stress than C does!) and the good ones don’t always last as they get promoted, move on or get pregnant!
When a professional has left, if I then see one in the town (as the mother of Shrek I have my radar fully turned on, scanning for stray dogs, small children, bicycles and teenagers who want to torment, and how I am going to manage to keep walking in a straight line (any of these causes C to head bang) I usually spot them before they see us. When they do see us they pretend not to, or turn away or even turn round. I think they think I am going to lynch them or give them the latest update on C. But all I actually want is a smile, an acknowledgement that we did - do matter and exist.
But anyway. There are good professionals out there, They don’t pretend to be the experts, they listen to you and really support you. These are the ones who want to make a difference and do care. And their reward? Under paid, over worked and poor working conditions.

These professionals are usually the social workers and they get a bad press. The social workers whom if you haven’t tided your house, or if you say you are finding it hard to cope cart your children off into care! This is not the case, if it was C would be in a foster home by now! By having a social worker you are not admitting defeat, you maybe just need that extra support.
I have had a few very good social workers in my time, and I thank each of them for going that extra mile and making me feel like a human not a case file.

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Semi Wordless Wednesday

I had Cs weekly phone call last night. Or rather the staff phone me, fill me in and then put C on the phone (if he will come to the phone) he did last night and i could hear him breathing. I told him how much i love him and what Ive been up to, i didn't get very far as the member of staff suddenly said he had gone! But apparently he had pressed the phone to his mouth with a big smile on his face. How lovely is that!

Well as my last couple of posts have been a bit heavy i thought i would give you something else to think about! Here's a picture for wordless Wednesday. Add your own caption!

This logo goes to the winner!!

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

A concern for all parents

On the train on my why up to London to meet But Why for the first time, I was thinking what if her blog is a front and she’s some sort of mad axe murderer? (she wasn’t by the way, she was lovely, and we did have a laugh about it!) I was also thinking about DJ Kirkby’s blog that I had read that morning, as she had written before she dies she wants to see her sons grow up to be men.
So if I am about to be hacked to death by mad axe woman, what will happen to C?
This is something all parents think about im sure, but for us with our children so venerable it is a big concern.
C has been abused over the years in one form or another and that is with me here to protect him. C cant talk or sign, so who will advocate for him? My siblings all have their own lives, my friends have their own disabled children.
Who will make sure C wears decent clothes, has the latest DVDs, who will notice when he is ill, or fight for him for what he needs?

And a big one for me, who will make a fuss of him? Who will give him love?
There is a possibility that C could die before me as his head banging is so severe. But I obviously don’t want that to happened or I wouldn’t be doing everything in my power to help him.
So it is a real worry. Its such a big subject yet its something we dont like to think or talk about.

Monday, 12 November 2007

No autism in heaven?

Samantha asked the question; 'Scientology says that people with disabilities are non/un human. How do comments like that make you feel, knowing that people like that won't accept that your son is a person?'
Knowing nothing about Scientology, if that is what they think then I don’t want to know!!
To the rest of your question, Ive had 19 years of people not thinking C is human, and it makes me angry, upset and very sad.
This question reminded me of a couple of things that happened.

A few years ago a religious young couple came to my door and asked why I had a disabled bay outside my house. I explained about C and they smiled and said that’s ok as there are no disabilities in heaven. It doesn’t matter what your religious persuasion is, I didn’t like the thought that C would not even be accepted as he is in heaven. I shut the door!
When C was about 7, I was pushing him in his major buggy down a street, when a man knelt in front of us. He asked me Cs name and when I told him, he bowed his head and said, ‘Your son my not speak but one day he will preach to the world.’
And maybe C is through this blog!

The cosmos works in mysterious ways!

Saturday, 10 November 2007

Bevs Wonder Wall

I just wanted to say thank you to Bev for this brillient piece of inspiration, have a visit and see how and why the wall was biult. This wall says it all. (My brick is Autism rocks.)

I think it should be grafitied on the Houses of Parliament!

Why stop there..what about the Great Wall of China?!

But Why asked me 'What one thing other people could do/not do would make the biggest difference to you and C'?
Maybe from this post you can guess my answer...acceptance. Not just the public in the street, but from health care professionals to care staff. Teachers to parents, family and friends.