Sunday, January 4, 2015

In the beginning

   First an introduction:

   My name is Rea. I'm a mother to one awesome little boy, Nixon, he's 6-years old. I'm married to Mac, who retired from the Navy last June.

   Our life kind of changed in 2014. See, Nixon started Kindergarten and the issues that I'd been bringing up to our doctors since he was around 2, suddenly became larger and more urgent. Nixon was not adjusting to school, at all. He was the disruptive kid in class. His teacher called me on the first "preview" day of school. (It was a full school day, but only 1/3rd of the students attended. It was meant to give the kindergarten students an idea of what to expect when school started.) His teacher called to tell me Nixon sat on a table. And screamed at her. "NOOOOOOOOO!" when she changed the activity. I apologized and assured her I'd talk to him about it.
   When school started, the phone calls got more frequent. It was never anything like "he hurt a student" or "he's swearing", that was my consolation. But the calls were almost daily. I requested a meeting the first week of school. I got a meeting request a month later. After Nixon was suspended for a day. He had a giant meltdown and while no one was hurt, his actions did lead to the classroom being emptied of all students. He was throwing objects, not at anyone, but throwing them none-the-less.
   When the meeting happened, Mac and I both went to it. I went armed with an appointment with our doctor for a referral evaluation. A referral to have Nixon evaluated because I was coming to believe Nixon was on the autism spectrum. The meeting went well, except for his teacher who seemed to believe Nixon was an overly indulged only child.  

   The school requested to do their own tests, so that they can better help Nixon on an individual level.

    After all was said and done, and the test results reveled, our life changed. Nixon was found to be on the autism spectrum disorder (ASD), as well as have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and also sensory processing disorder (SPD). With these diagnoses, the school started moving forward to develop an individualized education program (IEP).

   This blog is going to be an outlet for me, a progress tracking method of Nixon's behavior at school and a way to show life doesn't stop when the acronyms begin. It's a struggle, seeing you child defined by acronyms and it'd be easy to let those define him, but those acronyms are not all he is.


  1. Continue fighting for Nixon. From what I've gathered, the school hesitated to get the evaluation and develop an IEP, but quickly labeled Nixon as a spoiled child. They are blinded by their own ideas of where he is(by labeling him as spoiled) instead of finding out what his needs are and acting accordingly. Between you,Mac, and an understanding and collaborative school, Nixon should thrive in the classroom. As parents, we are our children's first line of defense against a cruel world.

  2. My son (15 now), also has some type of disorder, mostly lack of focus in school and lack of socializing outside of family. He would also not pay attention at soccer or tee ball practice at an early age; he was the one playing with the grass or not listening to the coach. He doesn't seem to like team sports at all now. I'm the opposite; I love watching/playing football, volleyball, etc.
    Part of me feels doctors are quick to label and therefore prescribe meds (for their benefit). The other part of me thinks that we as parents have consumed so much genetically modified foods or poisons that we passed on to Justin. Then there is what if he is normal and I'm all messed up.
    He still struggles in the classroom environment, with the IEP too, but he seems so intelligent as he plays around with his electronics, takes and passes practice GED exams and overall conversations with me and his Mother. Sometimes, I feel it would be best if he just took the GED, but society says a High School diploma is better. Better for who? We continue to love him, which is the strongest medicine, like I'm sure you guys do. Patience and Love. I know I jumped around a lot; thanks for sharing. Brian Jenkins