Sitting by the beautiful Lake Ontario with my eldest it was the perfect opportunity to not only teach my son about his internal emotions but to actually visually show him by using the flow of waves.
What wonderful moments they are during the calmness of him being still and lessons that flowed through me to pass on to my sons; as I would do for any child/adolescent/young adult/adult/elderly I encounter throughout my nursing career within the community.
I find preparing lessons sometimes can get too time-consuming and doesn’t really prepare you for the unexpected, the fixations, etc!
Another fact; having a son on the spectrum- he learns and develops his skills differently.
While also testing me to see if I react!
Stimulation is great although too much may cause his dopamine to extremely rise and there you will have acting out just to gain a response!
Drum Roll Please… 🙂
I praise his intelligence every chance I get!
Especially, with transitioning and change in routine/ activities of daily living.
I keep reminding him that all this work is applied to his skills he will have!
To help him take that fear away that he can hold on to at times.
This is why let it flow learning and role-play has embarked an inner voice for him now (while still at times trying to remember how to apply it to everyday life and knowing this, returns to me a humbled heart.
It is a continuous, consistent lesson we practice!
Visualization Is Learning!
Creating images to deliver a message really helps me as a mother and nurse!
I can take each encounter I have with my sons’ growth on the spectrum (ASD) and apply it to everyone else in a sense depending on the barrier/individualized care needs.
Let me try to break it down. Visualization works!
Grab empathy and really listen without words. Reaction to a behaviour or challenge has and will be a tiring spiral especially if a child or individual has echolalia in relation to being on the spectrum or feeds off of your reaction.
Self help tools should be created at a young age and growth a continuous milestone!
Furthermore, the context of their words may not even relate to the situation at hand.
Processing the words to say in that moment is very challenging for them. They may repeat a set of words or phrases that are familiar to them to communicate to us!
The best way to keep the flow of communication going is to paraphrase or ask open-ended questions to what they say.
The mom in me wants to correct yet creatively and smoothly; I have grown and transitioned into a more understanding phrase that has to do with context of conversation while displaying it through my consistent, patient actions.
I try to wisely range my wording so that a constant no/ what are you doing/ doesn’t come into play.
I’ve trialed many different ways and tools. Demonstrating and asking open ended questions to comprehend his thinking techniques is my goal!
I try to deal with heightened anxiety or high functioning with more ease and assertion.
Motivational coaching has always sparked a light in my heart and it feels good doing it!
In turn, it shows my son how to remain assertive and to stay motivated as well!
These children take mental notes on us too..;)
Understand that, my child and any other child/ young adult with challenges are very intelligent beings and they will constantly thrive and learn by keeping it exciting, brand new showing them positive coping mechanisms on the regular while being supportive to their emotional needs.
Reward them when they present to you modifications and positive efforts towards their behaviour!
Trust me they need to hear it and feel it even if they didn’t have an extended meltdown! Maybe it was only two minutes. They need to feel safe, they need to feel love and support unconditionally!
Echolalia is basically learning by imitation. Repeating what is heard. In child terms (“Don’t Copy Me”) “Stop Copying Me” someone with echolalia will repeat these words even if it doesn’t apply it is like it is stored in memory and it is challenging to decipher it.
It is possible although!
Initially, we need to bring forth real awareness of these cues to all children/ adolescents/ adults/ elderly so that we can all work towards, while truly inner stand the different cues received to deliver the best optimal care and guidance for everyone!
When a child has no recollection on how to start a conversation or initiate play or conversation we need to be able to prompt, ask and really dive in with both ears and listen while taking notes on what works and what doesn’t!
Sincerely, this has become competence, repetition, consistency for me in teaching, coaching, integrating, flow of fundamentals so on and so forth.
YES! There will be days when your question a set back or a regression and your question your core abilities to the point where your can burn out!
Don’t think it won’t happen because it will!
Just have your necessary thinking tools with you!
For instance, to give you a visualization….
Some days and this can be due to tiredness, hunger, sensory overload, not feeling well.
Initiate body scan as I like to add humour to fluency and comprehension.
I try to have a little marker board or something I can write on at hand in case my son(or an any child/individual) needs to see me write down the word down.
The focus shifts. It is very helpful! This cues in at times “Mom, what are you talking about?”
Another phrase my son has familiarized himself with through hearing and applying it where ever he wishes.
Staying positive and forth coming my approach to this is laughter and repeating t he question to him and starting a conversation.
sometimes I catch my son now that he is getting older whispering and doing his self talk to himself!
Therefore, he is practicing the words to use by listening to me interact with him.
Every moment can be a mini miracle when we strive to unite and both be better versions of ourselves!
It’s comical and my sudden instincts want to correct him yet through trials and tribulations what best works for him is when I continue saying what I’m talking about then I enter something simple to which he will understand and carry on.
Context and Dialogue!
I continue to show him that is what I am talking about! 🙂
Do you understand? Yes I do mom or No I don’t.
There will be repeated lessons if you’re truly present in your child/individual’s life by the end of the day your mouth will be so dry from talking and teaching and repeating and showing other ways towards the flow of constant learning!
I like to be humble in that WE ARE ALL CONSTANTLY LEARNING
throughout our life span, so imagine children and all that they have to face as they grow… A Whole Lot!!!!
Adults have a hard time all the time, not so good days so children will as well!
They feel stress and the weight of the world too!
IT’S ALL ABOUT LISTENING!
Let me tell your learning how to cope, manage, interject, redirect, gentle persuasion, encourage, motivate, patiently adapt and alter your care based on the subjective data you are receiving from an individual in turn assists you with care that not only helps but truly supports atypical/”neurodiversity”/dementia/ and many more that relates to illness/challenges/crisis!
When your really tune into someone nonverbally and try to perceive the world from their mind; you really have no choice but to stop and really pay attention without saying a word.
Actively Tune In!
Take into consideration that going into an intense situation abruptly can have a huge range in difference than going into the same intense situation more lightly and softly.
Now, I am not saying be a push over because who has got time for that?! 🙂
All I am saying is listening and absorbing information is listening too. It is communicating. It is an amazing skill to have and be proud of or open to learn more about and implement.
Through listening we can learn about someone, feel their energy vibe, tune into their emotional intelligence sort of speak.
Listening is observing as I like to remind my child and anyone.
Actively listening sometimes needs no response verbally just showing them that you’re there to help them and support them if they need it!
Not to point a spotlight on any given someone.
Furthermore, honestly, we all carry human behaviour it is what makes us human.
It is what makes us all alike/similar in such ways.
More ways than we like to admit at times!
Genuinely though, it’s through nonverbal cues, the things not said where I really learn the most.
My eldest son has made me learn more about this than anyone else and he continues to.
I am honoured to be with him through this journey!
He has been a great teacher to me as I am to him!
Positive feedback and phrases are my set goal with my child and any other child I encounter!
Teach role-play it’s a great way to visualize with your child situations that may play out in their regular day!
Example: My son at his previous school came home and for about a month had in his brain the phrase:
“Go away, your not my friend” Of course my first reactions mentally to myself were who the heck said that to you?!
I’ve caught a couple of kids say not so nice things when I’m not right in front of him while playing trying to make friends the best way he knew how as he was consistently trying to make new friends and non verbally fit in!
Through, imitating (imitate learners) what they were doing or running alongside other children laughing and smiling with them; yet not asking if he could play with them!
He has surpassed the silence and slowly started to open up out of his shell- through vocalizing for about a year now.
The weight of my shoulders has decreased and so has his.
his face is brighter with smiles and my emotions are a whirlwind with his!
He did the best he could with what tools he could use and could process what to say in those moments!
It was a whirlwind of emotions let me tell you!
ABA therapy continues-as he soon will venture into a new therapy school since we have moved. It’s been about three months of no therapy and we are looking forward to continuing again soon to keep his skills adequate and decrease the risk of regression in those set skills!
I always tell him you cannot go wrong with pro action! 🙂
As I show him!
You cannot control how others may respond to you what you can do is not let it bother you and realize you are a great kid and anyone who truly listens to you will resonate with good intentions and will want to be your friend naturally!
(and yes I break down words I use and teach the meaning through spelling and role play too)! I have too!
So my son can gain understanding/visualization!
To this day, I still use keywords and repetitively remind and coach, teach what it means through my actions and role-playing.
Scenario teachings are so great for younger children because instead of waiting for them to face challenges outside of their home they can be invited to learn with those they trust the most while at home!
Call it a pre-introduction if you will.
It demonstrates each taking a turn in getting bullied for instance how to respond, how do you think it makes her/him feel?
Simply setting out examples on how to get through certain things as a young child.
Emphasizing on responding to it positively and not reacting to it!
I was always trying to figure that out when clearly I had to change up how I demonstrate how he can decipher that phrase heard with more positive ones!
It was a challenge and I use instances where we are out in nature or car rides ( one of the best times while he is visually stimulated looking out the car window to implement great vocal lessons about almost anything from personalities, phrases heard, what he is seeing, etc!!
OR a great auditory book/ lesson can be played surrounding your lesson.
Change the tone!
At home, you best believe I have a stimulation room.
This promotes personal space, adaptation, fluency, compression more at ease, lessons through calmness of the senses.
LED colourful lights move gracefully reflecting off the walls, calm soothing instrumental music, guided imagery in correlation to toleration of course.
The attention is there; when I speak clearly and more slowly I still come down to his eye level as well accordingly when genuinely trying to understand what he is feeling.
While encouraging and redirecting more adaptive behaviours.
ASD (Autism Sensitivity)
Sensory Sensitivity Is The Core feature of autism!
In just this, I apply this to other mental ailments when dealing with the mind at its state of Manic, anxiety, dementia, Alzheimer’s, Delirium, early stages of dementia/Alzheimer’s, grief, loss, death, stress, ALS, developmental challenges, etc!
There are varying ways of outwardly responding and expressing awareness of these sensory sensitivities such as light, sound, touch, smell, hear and pain!.
Please make children more aware of these things.
I make sure Role play is essentially practiced and is magnificent for children/adolescents to not only see it with their own eyes in front of them yet, through being in it sort of like lightly yet mindfully tapping someone into the situation at hand sort of speak.
A kick into someone else’s shoes!!
This is where Compassion and Empathy energy surrounds us.
It is there!
It is just a question of caring or not!
Sometimes Apathy energy is chosen instead.
Please try to inner stand that most of a child’s temperament can be understood through understanding the trait attached to the emotion and the fact that many cannot verbalize what they want to say at times.
It takes constant diligence, resilience, time and some real hard core PATIENCE!!
Asking open-ended questions or a question followed by a yes or no helps me a lot to pin point his processing and understanding is always the GOAL!
I need to know through this navigation if children are truly listening/ processing my words.
Secondly I talk in a clear, tone with inquisition!
Yes, trust me, I can be direct but I remain assertive and proactive!
I always hand out POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT!
Especially for effort!!
Even if it’s just fifteen full minutes of spelling or reading comprehension today!
I reward that fifteen minutes of effort!
It at times extends to more minutes and enjoyment!
Auditory Sensitivity (hyperacusis)
Action- Automatic nonverbal cue of covering bilateral ears with both palms (one on each ear).
Auditory sensitivity’s or being in crowded places like a mall, or fast pace people walking can heighten behaviours with children with auditory sensitivities.
We have to collectively understand that difficulties and challenges with communication, social interaction, behaviour regulation/ abnormal responses to sound are going to repeat/ overly show face and what continues to be displayed through involuntary behaviours such as STIMMING/ FIXATED responses.
Loud noises like music turned up too loud-something I observe/assess when vocalized or nonverbally recognized!
In return, part of my assessment skills is screening sound, fast visuals, sensory sensitivities for the person I’m encountering.
These all become susceptible variables within my integrated compassionate care!
Different Types Of Disabilities/Challenges
Intellectual- A challenge in problem solving, reasoning, understanding completely what is being said.
Social and practical skills enhanced through adaptation.
Developmental- Significant behavioural, social, communication challenges. Can impact a person from day to day/ their lifespan.
Physical- Correlates to physical functionality. Interferes with endurance, stamina, impairments relating to activities of daily living (ADL’s) such as- sleep disorders, respiratory, Multiple Sclerosis, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis(ALS), spinal cord/brain injury, epilepsy for just some examples.
Learning (See, Hear And Understand Things Differently)- Brain is wired differently (neurological) therefore children/adults with learning disabilities/challenges are as smart or smarter than their peers.
Here at my vibrant flow I love to dive into other areas of learning and motivationTo inspire/
coach anyone through any difficult challenges they may face!
I would love to thank you so much for being present here with me and for stopping by!