Johnson’s Journies (Back Story Part 3)

I really believe our oldest daughter Michaiah is functioning so well and at school in her daily life because of the encouragement and the fostering of her development. Michaiah is receiving both speech and occupational therapy at the school. Though she is in a contained class, she still has general education curriculum along with sensory breaks and opportunities to use coping mechanisms that will allow her to better regulate her behavior. Michaiah must learn how to cope and self soothe if and when she were to ever integrate to a general education classroom. Though she does do this for the most part, it is not yet fully consistent at this time.

We also notice as parents, just like any other child, she is her own little person. A diagnosis or educational classification in this case, does not define who she is. She still has her likes and dislikes just like you or me. We do notice she is more motivated to work at something when it is a particular topic of interest. In her case, she is extremely motivated by both math and science! She also really enjoys art! We work on cultivating her gifts as parents. There are no limits that we place on her. We look to the potential of her overall full development, yet love on her where she is at. No matter how long it takes or the effort, the more we stick by Michaiah as parents, the more we see her desiring to learn and grow! Boy does she ever ask a TON of questions; especially lately! Everything is ‘why’ these days! Though it drives us crazy as parents, we are grateful she can even have conversation. Can you imagine how frustrating it would be for her not to verbally be in a position to communicate with us? It was not long ago that she had an extremely limited vocabulary! Having in-home therapy and advocating for her classroom program at school has made all the difference! Yes there are so many meetings and meetings for meetings. It can be draining, but when you see your child getting proper support and help in a way that you can truly see effective change like we have, it sure makes our hearts sing! We are overjoyed at all the progress she has made in the last few years of her little life!

We don’t know what the future holds as of yet. We were able to go through our local community health for an actual medical diagnosis. Had we not done this, we would be on quite a waiting list. Michaiah also has an acting neurologist who checks in on her and will be evaluated for genetic testing here in the month of March 2018. We will for sure keep you posted. Us parents sure are looking forward to some answers that only certain blood tests will ever reveal. It’s been a bit of a battle with the insurance approving it, but each step we take, we are getting closer to an answer. Knowing we may have some answers soon makes the fight worth it all. As parents, we know and have come to expect that this is a day by day journey. We do know one thing, our love for one another and the hope that each of us shares together. We did not ask for this, we did not expect this as parents that we would ever be faced with some of the decisions and choices we have had to make it. I can honestly say as a mother, there isn’t any regret that either of us have as her parents. We embrace it, all of it, the challenges, the tantrums, the laughter, the silliness, and the love! Both of our girls were the best thing that ever happened!!! Now lets get this journey started!!! <3

Johnson’s Journies Day 1: The Back Story

I just first want to share what a joy and honor it is to share on the journey with you; the journey of 2 very special needs children, our children, Michaiah Cherie & Alexis Ann.

Some of you may or may not know, our family moved states almost 4 years ago to be closer to relatives back in the Midwest. Our oldest, Michaiah was only 3 years old at the time the doctors wanted to have her evaluated.

We were first time parents, we really had no idea what to expect nor anticipate. We first noticed Michaiah had a ‘different’ set of special gifts on a very special level when we took her to her first structured musical class. Most of the children and their parents were doing things that Michaiah was not yet doing. It was uncomfortable as I got stares at times and parents distancing themselves from us because they didn’t know what to do or say or how to interpret us. I’d like to believe they were giving us space to navigate ourselves. A few of the mothers were very kind and reached out to include us regularly. As parents, we noticed then that the world of Michaiah was delicate and unique, like a flower blossoming; we just needed to get to the layers of who Michaiah really was and is. We so desperately wanted to see Michaiah unlock; we knew she was so full of life and on her time and terms, she would be ready to share.

When we settled in our place, closer to family, we right away had Michaiah evaluated. Though it is clear that we distinguish a diagnosis certainly doesn’t define any child, including Michaiah. We are believing, as believers, for full restoration and healing for her to the level that God sees fit (not looking for criticism, this is a personal belief). It was determined upon closer examination, that Michaiah received an educational classification of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). As her mother, at first, this crushed my heart. It took a lot of prayer and time to process this new meaning and life for Michaiah. Over time I learned to separate the emotion of it, a spade was a spade. I started to see what the educational classification was meant to do, just that, provide extra tools, resources, and supports for her in the classroom.

It was important for us as parents…..

TO BE CONTINUED.

Are You A Mom or Dad Looking For Work? We Are Hiring!!!

I am not sure why this just came across my mind…but a light bulb just finally turned on. There are so many mothers out there that have kids especially kids with special needs. My heart has so much compassion for parents caring for special needs children. So many parents that I am interviewing for our company need to be able to work at home for this very reason so they can have flexibility in providing care, going through testing, appointments, etc.

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P.S. Morning time, I need more TIME!!!

I was thinking about each of you today as I drank my morning cup of tea; especially on my heart were parents of infant through school age children. The mornings can be really tough and brutal for some parents. Sometimes it can almost seem as a physical obstacle just to get through the basic routine and to work on time. Sometimes as parents we just need a few added minutes to the day to ensure all gets done. What you wouldn’t do for an extra 15-20 minutes added to your morning!!! The good news is, you can and there is a way to add those minutes to your time each day. Here are a few tips and strategies that you can apply to achieve this:

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Clarification: Autism Awareness (Part 2)

Hey friends, earlier in the week I posted about our daughter’s recent testing for Autism Spectrum and bringing awareness and clarification to this matter. I had mentioned how in this post I would be discussing how Autism Spectrum can be an actual blessing. Believe it or not, Autism can be a blessing! ‘Most’ children and adults that ‘fall’ on the Autism Spectrum are more hypersensitive. Hypersensitivity can be sensitivity that effects their touch, senses, smell, sight, and sensitivity to certain sounds or noises. What this means is that these individuals experiencing hypersensitivity, are ‘tuned in’ at a deeper level, meaning they can sense at a level that is deeper than most individuals. Case in point, whatever the individual naturally excels at, they will excel at it with a deeper level and passion. This individual will actually master their gifts because they are that ‘focused’ on naturally achieving it. It is not because they are ‘obsessing’ about it, it is because this is how they are naturally ‘wired’. These individuals are ‘wired’ for success in what it is their gifts are in a hypersensitive way. Most individuals who are higher functioning for this reason, are seen as unusually talented and intelligent.

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