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Heading into GCSE Territory

So our beautiful eldest and only daughter, almost 15 years old,  is heading into GCSE territory… about to start back in Year 10! Where the real hard work begins. Options are chosen and the next 2 years will probably be quite stressful at times. She’s panicking already!

“Mum!! We have to learn and remember 15 different poems!”

Wow! I don’t envy her at all. I was rubbish at learning! I was rubbish at school. My GCSE results reflected that, I wasn’t interested in school and I fully regret not paying more attention and knuckling down. I have since studied a few courses and really enjoyed them but I suppose the difference being as an adult student I have chosen what subjects I want to learn about. She has chosen her three options for GCSE and they are Art, P.E and French. She is feeling the pressure already and they aren’t even back to school yet! I think there is a lot of pressure on the kids these days but as I have said to Izzy, as long as she does her best then I will be proud of her as you can’t do any better than that.

 

I’ve recently found out about Education Quizzes! This is a site with quizzes for ALL children of all ages. The quizzes are aimed at all key stages including GCSE and can aid revision too which I think is a fantastic idea! The quizzes are actually written by teachers and the main objective is to help children to be successful at school. I will be sharing this with Izabel as she is petrified of revision and being able to remember everything she needs to. I will help her as much as I can as will her Dad, but anything that can make the process fun in anyway has to be a bonus. I wish they had these kinds of things around when I took my exams 20+ years ago! Gosh that makes me feel so old!!

 

She has just under 2 years until the main GCSEs take place but will have mock exams before that. I just want her to have confidence in herself and her abilities as she is incredibly bright and talented and I know that she will do well and will go very far in whatever direction she chooses to take!

 

Art work credit to Izzy Aiston.

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Renewing our Vows

 

Ed and I met and got together in October 2001! Yes that is almost 16 years together!! That is such a long time to spend with someone! It has been awesome and it has been horrible at times. He won’t mind me saying it and will agree. We have had some very tough times over the years but here we still are going strong.  Three months we had been together when we found out I was pregnant with our first child! Oops! Not planned no but seen as we didn’t know each other very well at that point I was petrified that he would do a runner and I’d be a single parent. Quite the opposite! He was over joyed to find out he was going to be a Daddy! We got a lot of stick from people thinking it was too soon/ things wouldn’t last…. HAHA! Here we are!

We’ve gone on to have 2 more children since and he really is the most awesome Daddy! He isn’t around a huge amount of the time because he works, he works his arse off in fact! Ed has just achieved 15 years service at his job closely followed by a promotion! I am so proud of him for that. He really deserves it. He NEVER takes time off sick even when really is poorly.

So June 2008 we tied the knot, it was a very small affair but was beautiful. We had our 2 children with us and a handful of family and friends. Next year we will be celebrating 10 years of marriage and have decided to renew our vows and this time around we will have our THREE children with us. Our family is complete now and we are stronger than we ever have been so decided it was the perfect time to do it.

 

I loved my dress so much and had so many wonderful comments on it. Truly felt like a princess. I don’t have my dress anymore but would no way fit into it if I did!

 

Collectively we don’t have a huge income so our wedding day was only ever going to be a small affair but that suits us! We don’t have a huge circle of friends to invite to a sit down meal at a fancy venue so we would never have had a celebration like that even if we could afford it. Its just not us.

 

Our Wedding Day was all done on a budget … just over £1000 for the whole day. We are hoping to do the renewal day on the same kind of budget or less really if we can. So the ceremony is already booked at the Registry Office. On our actual 10th Wedding Anniversary but that is as far as we have got so far! I have until June next year and I have spent hours if not days completely lost in Pinterest trying to get some ideas. Seen so many wonderful things I don’t know where to start!

It is likely there may be a series of “Planning” Posts as we head towards our second big day! I can’t wait to share with you. I’m so looking forward to the day and exchanging vows again knowing how far we have come in our relationship, knowing how much our love has grown, how many obstacles we have swerved along our journey! I love this man so very much and am very proud to be his Wife!

 

 

 

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Little Adventurous Type – Review and Giveaway!!!!

I have been so excited to share this with you all! We have been sent a personalised print for Fraser from Little Adventurous Type! It is such a stunning picture and can’t wait to get it up on the wall when he eventually moves into a room with his brother.

The beautiful prints comes framed in a choice of white or oak. They are mounted too which gives it a real professional finish. There are choices of prints too. There are animals which is what we chose, there are toys, balloons, princesses, and really really cool Star Wars Prints! You really need to check them out!! You can find them on Instagram.

The detail of the animal fur/skin on the letters is incredible, the fact that the letters are 3D makes it look so so eye catching.

Here is a bit of a closer look so you can see what I mean!!!

 

We are so very pleased with the quality, design and finish and will definitely go back for more prints in the future! Mike, the owner,  is incredibly friendly and the customer service is second to none.

 

Now the AWESOME thing about this is that Little Adventurous Type have offered to give away a free framed personalised print of choice to ONE lucky winner!! How cool is that! So if you would like to be involved and in with a chance please follow ALL steps in the widget below!! Entries will be checked and verified before a winner is announced.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Win a Personalised Framed Print

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Why is it so difficult?

So difficult to get someone to listen? For 14 weeks I have been backwards and forward to the doctors I can’t even tell you how many times! Fraser is 16 weeks old today!

At 2 weeks old we went initially… must be reflux, try Gaviscon. Worked for 3 days then the copious amounts of vomit appeared again. Went back… could be an intolerance…. try this Cows Milk Free formula…. didn’t make a difference. Go back again…. try gaviscon… worked for 3 days and caused major constipation. In all this time too along side the vomiting after almost every feed, Fraser was screaming for hours on end most afternoons/ evenings. So distressing for everyone. Nothing I do comforts him.

Go back again to an out of hours appointment at the hospital. Doctor wasn’t listening, he was referring to Fraser as a SHE and asked me about 4 times if Gaviscon was working. If Gaviscon was working I wouldn’t be sat there! Idiot! He gave me a prescription for Ranitidine, didn’t explain properly how to use it and told me the hospital pharmacy would explain when they dispense it. Took it to the hospital pharmacy and they told me they couldn’t dispense it as it was a green prescription and not a white one. By this point I was more than a little bit cross and was pulling my hair out.

 

Spoke to a GP at my surgery again on the phone a few days after that who was fairly helpful, wrote a new prescription for Ranitidine and explained how to use it. So I picked up the prescription took it to my chemist and they dispensed it but told me that they didn’t have any 1ml syringes which I would need to administer the meds to Fraser! He told me I will have to go round other chemists to see if they had any and he didn’t know when they were getting anymore in stock! Luckily my Mum got one from her local pharmacy! Bloody useless!

 

Ranitidine wasn’t making an ounce of difference. A couple of conversations with friends on Facebook and they mentioned Tongue Tie…. hmmmm my other 2 didn’t have this, I didn’t know what to look for…surely a professional would have picked this up!? I took a picture of under his top lip and it was impossible to get an under the tongue one so videoed 10 seconds in his mouth when he was crying. One of my friends said she had diagnosed plenty of lip and tongue tie in her career and was very sure Fraser had both! A few others who saw commented saying that their babies had this and Frasers looked very similar.

So we booked in to see another GP at my surgery. I explained everything AGAIN from the beginning, about all the meds not working, about the possibility of Lip and Tongue Tie and she looked under his tongue and said oh it can’t be that, he has good tongue movement. Then went to take her gloves off, I said “can you look at his lip too please” She looked and just said hmmm I don’t know. I just burst into tears at this point. So bloody frustrated. I said about feeling like no-one is taking me seriously and I feel like I keep being fobbed off with meds, different milks, Ive tried comfort milk too and that made no difference. I think she was a bit taken aback by my tears. She felt his tummy. She said all seems ok but will refer us to the paediatricians as something can’t be right with all the vomiting and screaming. So she has referred for “Tummy Issues” … nothing to do with lip or tongue tie!!

 

Now we have also noticed that Fraser is losing weight. This is worrying. So I took him to see the Health Visitor as I had done the last couple of weigh ins at home. On the 19th June he was last weighed “properly” and he weighed 16lb 6oz. and then yesterday on 17th August he weighed 17b 1oz. I had weighed him in at 18lb in between that time but how accurate my scales are I don’t know. But regardless of my recordings, 11oz gain in 2 months is not right. Babies should be gaining 1-2 lbs a month.Fraser hasn’t gained 1lb in 2 months. Health visitor advised to come back next week to weigh in again on her scales and we will see from there. She also checked his tongue and lip and is sending us for an assessment for that. FINALLY!! Thank you!! How bloody hard was that?

 

So I will keep you posted on any updates but I have such a headache from it all, I am so stressed out. Things can only get better right?

 

 

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What’s for Dinner: Slow Cooked Gammon in Apple Juice

I love using the slow cooker for a variety of meals! This one in particular is a firm fave in our house!

It is ridiculously easy too which is always a bonus! You literally need 3 things:

A Slow Cooker

A Gammon Joint

250ml of Apple Juice

Pour in the apple juice, add the gammon, put on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.

Simple as that!! The meat is so moist and tender when its ready! Thats why in the below picture it looks like I am unable to carve meat… haha! I can but it literally falls apart when I put a knife to it! So delicious!

You could have this in so many ways! With a jacket potato and salad, in an omelette, with baby potatoes and veg, Egg and Chips…… the list is endless!

We had ours with a rice called Nasi Goreng which is an Indonesian Fried Rice. It was absolutely beautiful! I have also cooked Gammon in Orange juice too and it is beautiful too but we slightly prefer the Apple.

I hope you enjoy this recipe! Let me know what you think or if you have any other suggestions to cook Gammon in!

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The Parenting Struggle is Real!

Today…. it really is! Today I cannot win at parenting. I feel like its all out of my control. That makes me feel shit.

I really am not one for making out my life is perfect. It is far from being doused in the smell of roses!! I generally am a happy person, very laid back and quite care free. But today I do care, today I am not feeling laid back…. today feels like a huge pus filled zit on the arse of parenting!

 

My poor baby boy is very unsettled indeed with his colic and reflux issues and no amount of Mummy love or cuddles is settling or comforting him. All I want to do is help him and take his pain away but today is not letting that happen. I long for the day that he grows out of this. It is not an inconvenience at all…. I just want him to not suffer. I just want to not witness him bright red in the face screaming the house down and not being able to help him. I hate it! I hate Colic and Reflux!

 

My older 2 kids seem to have found a whole load of hate for each other. They have always been so close! It breaks my heart. It is such petty crap they argue over too. They literally cannot be in the same room as each other for longer than 2 minutes before all hell breaks loose! I hate it!! What has happened to their relationship?! I cannot win at that either. I do not take sides, I tell them both they are as bad as each other which they are and I get accused of taking sides. I get accused of like the other more than them. I am wrong because I’m not backing either of them. If they had valid arguments then I would but “Mum…. he/she breathed in my direction” is not valid. It’s ridiculous. I am sick of listening to it and I just want them to get along. Having to tell 2 of my children that if they can’t stand each other then don’t communicate or go near each other is AWFUL. Its awful because I have seen these two be so close, have so much fun, laugh together. Where did it all go so wrong? It’s daily! I hate it!!

 

So today is pants quite frankly! I feel like a rubbish mother because I can’t control these crappy things that are going on! How do I make things better? How do I get them to like each other again?

 

Bring on tomorrow!! Tomorrow is a new day!

 

 

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Top Must-Haves for New Parents

Must have items for when you have a new baby?? What would be top of your list?? It’s not cheap this parenting malarkey but I think there are certain things that really do need to be bought to help out!!

I asked some lovely bloggers their thoughts plus have added my own in too….

“Ours is the Snuza Hero Monitor as our second son has silent reflux which causes apnea. It just clips on the nappy to be in contact with the skin. It’s been a god send for reassurance for us as it made me so paranoid.” Emma from Ready, Freddie, Go! 

 

“A tumble dryer as you will never do as much washing as you do with a newborn and you need it to dry quickly!” Kelly from The Best Version of Kelly

“A compact Stroller that lies completely flat. Perfect for having in the car for when the pram isn’t needed.” Lyndsay from My Family of Roses

 

“Car seat bases! They were an absolute god send when my twins were tiny, especially with the British weather – no one wants to be faffing with seatbelt in the rain.” Beth from Twinderelmo

 

“Jumperoo for when they are a bit older, my youngest loved it from about 4 months… was a godsend.” Rachel from Blogging Mummy

 

“Fisher Price Newborn to Toddler Rocker, it’s the only thing my son would settle in when he first came home from hospital. We got 2 years use out of it and it was used daily!” Jenni from Chilling with Lucas

I have to add we have one of these too and Fraser loves it. It can be set to rock mode or sturdy laid back mode which he spends a lot of time in sleeping in the day time.

“There are lots of baby books out there but I swear by Jo Tantum ‘Baby Secrets’ which combines the best advice from all camps (routine Vs no routine). She’s helped me have kids that have proper nap times on a regular basis which is essential for staying sane as parents!!” Jodie from Maidenhead Mum

 

“A sling or baby carrier. They let you keep your hands free but still meet the needs of a velcro baby!” Kim from Raising a Ragamuffin

I have used a baby wrap this time! I never did with my 2 older children. It is great for getting on with other bits and baby is happy because they are close to you, although getting trickier on my back the heavier Fraser gets! Haha! 

“A baby monitor with screen, I was anxious when the babies were small and this was fantastic for letting me potter around the house while they were napping, with my mind entirely at rest.” Vikki from Family Travel With Ellie

“We loved Ewan the Dream Sheep for white noise. It really helped the little man settle at night.” Emma from Me and B Make Tea

 

“Not quite an item but steady hands, cutting a newborns fingernails is terrifying haha! And a little box of changing stuff in different rooms, nappies, wipes, muslin cloths etc makes life so much easier”. Eileen from 2 Nerds and a Baby

 

” I loved having a baby changing table as it totally helped my sore back plus I had a section so made it so much easier. I got the one that doubles as a set of drawers as well so plenty of space for the babies clothes.” Laura from The Breastest News

 

“For me, My Tommee Tippee perfect prep machine was a life saver! Loved it” Daisy from Daisy & Belle

We absolutely adore our Perfect Prep machine too! This would be top of my list of must haves!! 

“A baby sling. So much comfort for baby and a sanity saver for parents!” Arabella from Exeter Baby Activities

“A dishwasher and Washer/Dryer! One of those robot vacuums would be great too!” Victoria from Lylia Rose

 

“Personally I would say those Finnish baby boxes, a carrier, a good car seat, and some books. We were bought so much as gifts after the boys were born so we could have got away with only buying the bare minimum and big items. The Finnish baby box have everything you need for those first few weeks and I loved baby wearing. It really helped my youngest who had reflux. Having a car seat is essential to get home from hospital and gives a lot of freedom to get out and about once the baby arrives and books for both parents and baby because its important to make “me time” and reading to babies can really help with the bonding process”. Emma from Our Fairytale Adventure

 

“Muslin cloths, they were my ultimate baby item. I remember my mam buying me a pack and I didn’t see why I’d need them but I was proved wrong. They are great as burp cloths, bibs, to wipe up spills and muck, to use as a changing mat when you have to change in an unexpected place, to cover up when breastfeeding if you don’t feel comfortable. They are useful for so many things!” Lauren from Blogger Mummy Lauren

 

“For me, baby wearing was a godsend. We used a Mei Tai carrier which provided the close comfort but allowed you to be hands free at the same time. It’s hands down the best thing that we bought, that and plenty of muslin cloths”. Karina from Mum’s the Nerd

 

“For me it has to be the Angelcare sound and movement monitor. The mat lays under the mattress and detects the smallest amounts of movement and therefore monitors babies breathing. Sometimes babies fall into such a deep sleep their breathing can slow a little. If the monitor does not detect movement for 30 seconds it emits a loud beep to not wake but stir the baby from the deep sleep and start normal breathing. If it continues to not detect movement then the alarm goes off. HAs given me constant peace of mind with my first and now my second and I would not be without it. We have recommended it so many times”. Heidi from Southern Mummy

 

A pram you love. I know its a big investment at the time but you spend so much time pushing it, rocking it, walking with it that its worth investing – and it will last for later children. Its worth getting one which will take the car seat so you don’t have to transfer when they fall asleep”. Naomi from The Organised Life Project

 

A decent pram is another one on my list! We went for the Mothercare Orb this time and have had no issues with it other than converting it from pram to pushchair! I nearly threw it out the window, it was tricky but I got there in the end! 

 

“Muslins (for them) and Wine, big old sense of humour and Mum friends (for you)”. Frances from You Have to Laugh

 

“A stretchy wrap! I had an AMA Wrap and I don’t know how I would have done without it! Hands Free cuddles”. Helen from The Mumatron Blog

 

What would be top of your list of Must Haves?

 

 

 

 

 

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The First 3 Months

My word…. it goes so quickly doesn’t it!!? These first 3 months have flown by!

Fraser hasn’t had the easiest of starts but has still been an absolute dream. He was sleeping 4-5 hours a night from a week old. I, as most parents really love my sleep so have cherished this enormously! We have really been blessed in that respect as our older two children were also very good with their sleep!

 

Now this time around I’ve come across and am struggling with a couple of things I’ve not experienced before!! Reflux and Colic!! Wow! Like babies don’t create enough extra washing without throwing up over 5 different outfits a day! Haha!

It started when Fraser was about 2 weeks old. The vomit!! The sheer amount of baby vomit! HE was pretty much throwing up after every feed! Time to see a doc! The doctor advised us that from the symptoms we had described, Fraser has reflux! Well this was a new one to us! He prescribed Infant Gaviscon which was to be put into every feed. We saw the effects almost immediately, which was great. This lasted 3 whole days then the vomit returned! Back to the docs we went. This time we were advised that it could be an intolerance to the formula so we were prescribed a cows milk free formula. Wow that stuff was gross! It had the consistency and smell of a very thick cheese sauce! *gag* ….. it made absolutely no difference whatsoever and we tried it for the 2 weeks that we were told to so we switched back to his original formula. After a little while the vomiting subsided by itself. We were so relieved. Well…. for a while, until the colic kicked in! Another new thing for us!

 

 

At about 4 weeks old, one particular evening Fraser was VERY upset. He had been fed and changed, I had tried to burp him, nothing. I tried my hardest to comfort him, trying all sorts of positions holding him, walking around with him, over my legs, on my shoulder, in the pram… nope nothing worked, he was screaming the place down like I had never heard before. That kind of scream where their little faces go bright red and you are willing them to take a breath. It was awful and I felt bloody useless. I called 111 for advice because I had tried everything and I just did not know what else to do. They asked me a series of questions and by this point Fraser had been screaming or almost 2 hours solid. They said they were sending an ambulance, because he was so little they didn’t want to take any risks. PANIC MODE!!! I am crap at situations like this and stated crying on the phone, that then made my daughter cry, she’s 14 and was a real rock to me that night. Hubby was at work. The paramedics turned up and checked him over and within 5 minutes of them being there he stopped crying! How typical is that!?? They still wanted him to go to hospital to get checked over. All his stats seemed ok so that was something. Mum in Law came over to sit with the older two and I went with Fraser in the ambulance. Got to children A&E and the nurses done all the checks again, asked me a few questions, weighed him…. they couldn’t find a thing wrong with him! I felt like such an idiot!! They kept reassuring me that I had done the right thing. Just glad he was ok!

We have had so much fun and laughter with this little boy! He’s generally a very happy chappy! His 1st smile made me melt and his 1st proper laugh (a real belly chuckle!) actually made me cry! He’s so funny!

 

We still have the colic and reflux issues but we are battling through, the docs don’t appear to be listening but I’ve made the choice to change his milk to a comfort milk. There does seem to be less vomit but it hasn’t cleared completely. Its good to know that colic and reflux are both things he will eventually grow out of.

 

 

Fraser is also suffering from a touch of Plagiocephaly – Flat Head Syndrome. Another new thing to us!! We are following advise to correct it and it is slowly improving. Resting his head to the opposite side that is affected, holding him more, lots of tummy time, he absolutely loves sitting up and seeing whats going on around him at the moment so we’ve bought him a Fisher Price sit-me-up which he likes to sit in but not for too long. Hopefully it will continue to improve and no further action will be needed. In his cot we also use a BabyMoov Cosy Dream, its like a padded cushion/mat that he sleeps on thats moulded around the head and that helps prevent flat head syndrome too.

 

This boy loves his milk! He is on 8oz bottles 4 times a day… generally 9am – 1pm – 5pm – then 9pm then bath and bed! He sleeps right through now… 10 hours a night!! Very very blessed! I think he will be great by the time is comes to weaning. I’m not sure he will last until the full 6 months and I do really want to hold it off for as long as I possibly can. His older brother was a milk and food lover and used to scream when either had finished as he was enjoying it so much! LOL! I can see Fraser being the same! He already is with his milk!

Unlike his older siblings he really loves his baths! He loves to kick about in the water and loves being washed with lots of bubbles! Baby friendly bubbles of course! The older two used to scream the place down at bath time so this is a refreshing change!

 

So Fraser was 3 months old on the 28th July. He is smiling, laughing, holding toys for a short amount of time, he has discovered his hands, he has almost fully rolled from his back onto his front just one arm got stuck underneath him, he hasn’t managed the other way though just yet. He is vocal and starting to “shout”  especially when excited! He loves to watch the colours on the TV, he adores music!!

Despite all the throwing up he is gaining weight well. As of today he weighs 18lbs exactly! He is going to be a bruiser!!

 

Fraser is going to be such a character I can tell! His 1st 3 months have been great even if a little bit stressful. I can’t wait to see what the next 3 bring!!

 

 

 

 

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MyHummy – The Humming Bear Review

MyHummy is a God Send!! I’m sure that anyone who has one would agree!! A cute and cuddly teddy that actually sends your baby to sleep? Genius!

Now… as a rule Fraser is a pretty good sleeper but we are only human and have the odd wobbly bedtime, especially after injections and things like that. He has just started teething too so I’m sure there will be a few more wobbles coming up!

The MyHummy Snoozy is incredibly soft to the touch and super cuddly! Very very cute indeed! They come in 5 different colours. Our one is Slate Grey. The other choices are white, mint green, blue and pink.

Apparently babies love playing with ball-shaped objects and it would be perfectly safe for little ones to have a chomp on the paws. This can be washed at 40 degrees (obviously taking out the battery compartment first). The battery compartment is cleverly hidden behind an almost invisible zip at the top of Snoozys head. It takes 3 x AAA batteries.

This cute little bear can be attached to cot, car seat, pram etc and the sole purpose is to help baby to sleep by playing white noise. There are 5 different noises to choose from, which are: A hairdryer, vacuum cleaner, ocean waves, rainfall and amniotic fluid with heartbeat.

Ours lives in Frasers cot. We haven’t taken it out and about in pram or carseat as yet. Fraser loves him for bedtime.

There is a variable volume setting, plus its easy to switch off, you just press and hold for like 2 seconds and its off. It comes with an easy to follow instruction page. Such a great idea, such cute looking teddies, Fraser has no issues settling, even on a wobbly bedtime with his MyHummy Snoozy by his side! Wish they had these around when my older two were babies!

 

We love the MyHummy Snoozy! Thumbs up here!!

 

 

 

We were sent this item to review. All thoughts and opinions are honest and our own.

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Primary School Finished!!

So I officially now have two children who are of Secondary School age! WOW!

 

I can’t believe Xavier has finished Primary Education! Here he is on his very first day!

Well when this day came we had no idea of the challenges we would face further down the line. We had no idea of the stress and heart ache. We knew absolutely nothing about Autism.

I think it was only a matter of weeks into Xaviers school life before I started getting called in to see the teachers after school because of his “behaviour”. It wasn’t so much naughty, it was “we’ve noticed this, we’ve noticed that” and they were growing increasingly concerned. They suggested a meeting with the schools SENCO. Someone had suggested there may be something wrong with him! My boy?? Theres nothing wrong with my son! I remember he had a few “odd” ways but just thought thats just him, I didn’t think anything more of it. We went to see the SENCO and was told she thought our son was showing lots of traits of having Aspergers Syndrome. She told us the school nurse would be in touch with details of a possible referral to our local child development centre. Again, we knew nothing about it. I went home and googled Aspergers. Well he ticked every box!

Lets cut a very long story short. We got a referral, he was assessed, we went back again 6 months later and he was diagnosed with Autism. By this time he was in Year 1. Very lucky to be diagnosed so quickly as I know of a few who have waited and are still waiting to be diagnosed YEARS down the line!

Looking back now I am very grateful to the Reception class teachers for picking up on this…and one TA who was with him in Year 1 on and off,  but thats as far as my thanks goes unfortunately. Xavier should have had LOTS of help put into place, instead I was told he was lazy and he couldn’t be bothered, he was shoved into a corner of the classroom with a screen around him so he couldn’t be distracted from doing his work, he missed playtimes because his work wasn’t done. He wasn’t refusing to do the work, he couldn’t do it…. he needed help and guidance. He was bullied and it wasn’t dealt with. The SENCO told me that now he had this diagnosis there are loads of jobs he won’t be able to do when he is older. Those words will stay with me for my whole life. How is that helpful? How is that productive? She also told me that they wouldn’t dream of applying for a Statement for him until he was in Year 6 and ready to go to secondary school.

It was time to pull him out of there. He left in the the December of Year 2.

I had such high hopes when he moved to the 2nd Mainstream school! I was so excited when a week in to him starting there they called me in and told me that they could see that Xavier has clearly very complex needs and they recognise that he needs help and they would start the Statement ball rolling ASAP! I actually cried!! I was so happy! FINALLY he will get the help he needs and the education he is entitled to! Yes!!!

No! It just didn’t happen! I was spun a web of lies for 2 years!! For 15 months I was told The statement process was underway, they just needed this evidence and that evidence and this report and that report before they could send it all off! It was the most frustrating time of my life. In the mean time Xavier was again, multiple times targeted by bullies, his mental health was impacted in a huge way, he kept threatening to kill himself, he was violent, he was aggressive and he was very very unhappy which was not in his nature at all. He wasn’t learning, he was just being left to his own devices in the classroom, he was given a different support staff every single day that he couldn’t deal with. Autistic children like routine and continuity. He couldn’t handle the amount of children in his class or the level of noise they make, he couldn’t handle the smell of lunchtime in the hall so ate lunch on his own in the office. The list is endless.

Then I was made aware of being able to apply for the statement myself! My god I wish I had known this earlier! I applied for him to be assessed with a 10 page report I had written myself and the assessment was agreed! That 1st process took 2 weeks! Fast forward 9 months and after weeks and weeks of stalking the postman, checking emails, making phone calls and generally annoying the life out of lots of professionals MY SON HAD A STATEMENT!!! I actually cried!! LOTS! I was very nearly broken from this ordeal!

Next hurdle was to get him into a Special Needs School as his ability to cope in a Mainstream setting was non existent.

The named school on the statement is the one the county council are saying he will continue his education in… the named school was the one he was currently in! No!! No way! I couldn’t let him carry on where he was! I had to appeal!

So I started the appeal process and contacted the Special Needs school we had visited previously. This was before he had a statement and they told us they would be able to help Xavier but they wouldn’t be able to take him on without a Statement. They said they’d have him happily but its whether the county would agree. The wait for that decision was a killer! ……. but I did it!! I won my appeal! Ecstatic doesn’t even come close! The phonetical I made to his then current school to tell them I would be removing him from the school, relieved so much stress and upset.

 

Xavier started his current school in April 2015, after the Easter holidays. The school and staff are INCREDIBLE! They care so much, they have taken my boy under their wings and the effects have changed our lives!! All of our lives! He is like a different boy! He is learning, thriving, flourishing, having fun, producing work, trying new things without hesitation, he has friends, he gets party invitations, he gets support, he is learning to swim, he has narrated the school Christmas play infant of a hall full of people! Just WOW! He’s so calm, he’s happy, he laughs all the time, we have no meltdowns, no violence …. nothing. None of the bad stuff! Its amazing and the staff are the ones I have to thank for that! This last year he has had a different teacher. They’ve had a great year, had lots of fun, I’ve been to parents evening and LOVED hearing how well he is doing and how he is progressing. He loves to help out at school. Its just so so great to hear all these positives after such a negative start to his education! He actually won the Year 6 prize for the whole academic year for his efforts! I am so incredibly proud of him! Here he is with his teacher receiving his award! What an amazing end to his Primary journey! He will be upstairs after the summer holidays to begin his Secondary journey!! I can’t wait to see whats in store for him!

Thank you so much for nurturing my boy. He has come so far and couldn’t have done it without you!

 

 

Spectrum Sunday