Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A Parent's Perspective - Having a Fields Day

I'd like to give a big welcome to the first blogger to share a parent's perspective on life with a child with special needs. Allie is mom to three year old Cameron, who has been diagnosed with autism, hyperlexia, sensory processing disorder, pediatric eating/feeding disorder, and mixed expressive receptive language disorder (MERLD) and four year old Sarah Hazel, who has been diagnosed with sensory processing disorder, expressive language disorder, and has early signs of auditory processing disorder. You can read all about their journey at Having a Fields Day

Our life in five words:

chaotic, tiresome, confusing, loving, ever-changing

Four qualities I look for in a therapist:

  1. Empathy
  2. Compassion
  3. A real interest in helping my child
  4. Someone who is open to trying new things if something is not working 

Three resources I can't live without:

Kid Companions Chewelry Necklace - Sarah Hazel has one that she chews on when she is away from home and beginning to go into sensory overload. It's really helped to keep her calm and focused.

Affordable Therapy Solutions Pressure Vest - This helps to calm Cameron quickly and get him back on track, especially during therapy sessions and in classroom settings.

My children's therapists - One of the resources I use the most is actually my children's therapists. They have provided me with information about my children's disorders, places to find more info, ideas of things to buy for carryover therapy into the home, information about area conferences and mom retreats and support groups. We have been blessed with the best therapists, many of which have become great friends.

Two words (or more!) of advice for therapists working with children:

Get to know the family and listen to their concerns. Help them find resources so they don't feel lost, alone, and confused with their child's diagnosis. You may be the only support they have!

A word of advice for the parents of a child newly diagnosed with autism:

Reach out for help. Network with other parents who have been where you are and also some who are newly diagnosed. Be each others should to cry on. Nothing is better than having someone in your life who truly gets it.

One dream for my child:


To be whatever it is he wants to be and to never let autism stand in his way.


And finally, what I do to rest and recharge:

You have to have some time for yourself. I can't stress that enough! Too often, we special needs parents end up using our free time to research our kid's needs, but sometimes we have to force ourselves to take a break from all of that and do something we truly love. I enjoy gardening and doing crafty things like sewing, crocheting, and origami. Sometimes just stepping outside alone for five minutes and taking in nature is enough to recharge my batteries. 

Thank you so much, Allie for sharing your perspective! Your kids are adorable and look like two partners in crime (or at least childhood mischief)! Be sure to check out Allie's blog at for more information about autism, MERLD, sensory processing disorder, and to just see what Cameron and Sarah Hazel are up to this summer!


  1. Thank you for having me over here Abby. It's a real treat!

    1. Thank YOU, Allie! Your answers were great and I'm sure will be helpful to many parents!

  2. Wonderful post! Finding a therapist that has those qualities is a must!

  3. Allie is a wonderful mother and great resources for parents of special needs children. It was fun to come here and read her responses and see the photos of those two beautiful children! The answers are clear and concise and I completely agree with her advice to therapists! Very nice feature! :)


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