Me and Jacob

Me and Jacob

Friday, May 30, 2014

Small Steps, Big Victories

Another trip to the beach is under our belts. Each year brings new challenges but also wonderful victories. Jacob changes so rapidly that things that may not have bothered him last year could potentially bother him this year and vice versa. You never know what his reaction is going to be to things.

He has once again amazed me. His courage, encourages me!

I want you to take a quick look at his picture from the bay last year and his picture from the bay this year.



I love to watch him grow and conquer his fears. You will never quit hearing that from me. His small steps are undeniably huge for him and it delights me more than life itself. With all the struggles and hardships we have it makes the victories that much more special. 

The best part about this trip is that getting in the bay is not the only success he had. He really outdid himself this time!!! Before you see these next pictures I want you to understand that Jacob has never ridden ANY ride ANY where until this last fall at Caleb's birthday party (which was a total shock to everyone)
. Not only has he never ridden, he's never shown a desire to ride and always protests even if we tell him he doesn't have to ride. Not only did he ride some things at The Track but it was HIS idea...yes I just said that, yes I'm writing that because I'm still trying to believe it myself. Let me say it one more time for clarity...HE made the decision to ride some rides and for that there is no scale large enough to weigh how proud I am of him and probably no measuring device long enough to measure how much courage it took him. Ok I'll quit gloating and show you the pictures.

I'm actually proud of both of my boys for this. Caleb will hop on any ride any time but he knows that Jacob is typically scared and this was him during the swing ride. Constantly checking on his "brudder."

 I know that each year we will see growth in both of our boys. It makes me have hope for Jacob and with each year I pray that Caleb continues to be Jacob's best friend.

We had a great time at the beach with or without Jacob's triumphs (of coarse, that made the trip better) but I will leave you with some other pics from our wonderful trip!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Field Day Tears

I had the chance to attend Field Day with Jacob today. I wasn't really sure what to expect from him. Sometimes he likes to participate and other times it's just lots of tears.

Today it was lots of tears, but not from Jacob, from me. I was thankful for my sunglasses!!!

When I first arrived, all the kids were sitting under the gazebo listening to instructions. Not so long ago I would have been able to spot Jacob immediately because he wasn't following directions or sitting with his class. Today, when I pulled up, It was just a sea of little 1st grade heads and no Jacob to be seen. I walked up to his teacher and she quietly pointed to Jacob, sitting so still with his classmates, listening to the directions. No one would've known what that scenario would have looked like for him just a short year ago.

The first station was tug of war. He was not enthused at all but he jumped in there and was a trooper! He was ready to be finished after the tug of war. Sweet boy didn't realize that we had five more stations to go.

The next few stations were uneventful. except for me pulling Jacob along trying to assist him with a few tasks.

The last station was my favorite and the most emotional for me. Jacob was faced with a relay race where you have to link arms with a team mate and hop down and around a cone. He was not interested in this at all and has a hard time when people hold him or link arms with him. Jacob's aid asked the girls if any of them wanted to be Jacob's partner and a few of them raised their hands begging to be Jacob's partner. The girl that landed the job was a sweet little girl named Kylie. I quietly stood by and watched as she took Jacob's hand and said to him "come on Jacob you can do it."


It came to be Jacob and Kylie's turn and they started off great. Then Jacob sat on the ground protesting. I was about to step in and assist when I saw Kylie kneel down and say "get up let's go." He got up and proceeded with his task at hand.


I started saying "go Jacob" like I normally do, then, all of a sudden Jacob's entire class was chanting his name. "Jacob, Jacob, Jacob, Jacob"

*Tears, tears and more tears*

He began smiling, proud of himself for completing the relay. When he got back to the starting line, the entire class yelled "YAY, JACOB!!"

*Niagra Falls!!*

I spent all morning listening to kids making fun of each other and making each other mad. I never once heard anyone say anything bad about Jacob. They all were rooting him on with each difficulty he faced.

Thank you to the teachers for looking out for him and thank you Jesus for placing sweet people in his life!!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

"The Talk"

I never thought I'd be having "The Talk" with my 7 year old. I'm not ready for this. It's too much. It's too soon!! Why can't he just stay little a little longer.

I'm not talking about "The Talk" that you are thinking about though. I'm talking about "The Talk" where I have to explain to Jacob that he's different than other kids. That he sometimes struggles more than other kids. That he has autism.

He told us the other day that he's not normal...that he's not like the other kids. We didn't know what to say. We want Jacob to know that he's different, in hopes that it helps him understand what he needs to do to overcome his obstacles in life. But, How do you tell your kid that he's not like the other kids at school? I wanted him to stay unaware as long as possible. Ignorance is bliss, right?

I know I can't really postpone telling him any longer though. The sooner I try to explain his differences the better off he will be. I don't want him to be confused or frustrated with himself and I'm hoping that explaining his diagnosis will help him.

I might as well explain it to Caleb while I'm at it. He is starting to notice that Jacob has more fears than he does. The other day I was trying to trim Jacob's toe nails. A task not for the faint at heart. He was screaming and crying and Caleb said so sweetly "Jacob it doesn't hurt, see, mommy did mine the other day!" As much as Caleb was trying to console him, it didn't work, and it never does. A small simple task turned into a screaming fit with Jacob pounding his fist into my back as I held him down to trim his toes. Him screaming "am I done" at the top of his lungs while violently kicking his feet.

By the end of the fiasco he and I were both crying. I put the clippers down where he could see I didn't have them anymore and then I sat next to him and held him close. I told him that I was sorry that it was so scary for him and that I just wanted to make sure his toe nails weren't cutting him. I tried my best to explain that what I was doing was for his own good. The anxiety is just too overwhelming for him to understand that concept. With a waiver of sadness in his voice he asked, "mommy, why does it scare me more than it scares other people?"  I sat, bewildered at the question he had just asked. As my mind raced to find the words, my heart was broken. Why, oh why does my sweet boy have to struggle with life.

I went on to explain that other people are scared of other things. Daddy is scared of heights and I'm scared of spiders. He seemed to be satisfied with that answer, Thank you Jesus!! It was then that I realized that it was time, it's time to explain to him how different his mind is, but that we love him just the way he is.

Oh how I wish life was easier for him, but his life continues to teach me so much about mine.