autism, lesbian family, supportive, Uncategorized

Making Autism Look Good

April is Autism Awareness Month and I have to take a minute to talk about our sweet boy and his journey.

Three years ago I knew very little about autism. We didn’t know that 1 in 68 children are diagnosed with autism, boys are 4 times as likely to have it and early intervention is key. I had all the typical assumptions that autism was a disorder where the child made no eye contact, had melt downs, non social, not affectionate, and a child locked inside themselves. The truth is that autism can present itself differently in every child diagnosed. We have learned Noah is all about eye contact, has very few melt downs, is very social, extremely affectionate, and is not locked inside himself at all. But we did learn that he had many of the classic early signs of autism.

Noah was a happy and healthy baby. He was developmentally on track and met all of the milestones that each baby achieves in the first year. When it came time for his first words we waited patiently but they never came. He babbled a lot but still no words. This was our first sign that something was wrong but just assumed that he would just start talking in his own time. Our next sign was that he did not answer to his name.We thought that he was just ignoring us and being stubborn. At one point we even thought that he might have a hearing deficit. Then our next sign was when we noticed he wasn’t playing with toys like other kids his age he was fixated on lining them up and organizing them by color or size. He wouldn’t point to anything he wanted. He wouldn’t mimic our sounds or facial expressions. He couldn’t understand simple directions and it would always upset him when he couldn’t do what we were asking of him. Large crowds and loud environments seem to overwhelm him. He loved to dump everything he could get his hands on: cups of water, baskets of clothes, boxes of toys, etc. He would him or sing the tune over and over again to songs he had heard on movies.


 
 At his 2 year check up my heart sank as we answered no over and over again to the questions that they asked about what he was able to do and say. Realizing just how far behind he was developmentally. I remember crying as we left his appointment thinking this was something that I could have prevented or done more as a mom to help him. But the truth is that there is nothing I could have done. We were referred to our states early intervention program. They came to our home to evaluate him and  determined that he had significant development and speech delays.  He also had sensory processing problems. We began speech, occupational, and developmental therapy. We slowly started seeing progress. Two months before his 3rd birthday we finally received his official diagnosis of autism.

 They strongly encouraged us to put him in blended pre-K class at our local elementary school. As hard as that was we did it and he has just bloomed since then. He is talking more and more. He knows his colors, shapes, letters, and numbers. He can identify body parts and animals. He still struggles with expressive and receptive language but we are making progress. He can tell us when he wants to eat or wants a drink now but has trouble telling us other things that he wants or needs. If he has injured himself somehow he cannot tell you what hurts or where he is hurting. He is getting better at understanding directions and things that we are asking of him but that is still a daily struggle.
Being a parent of a child with special needs is something I never imagined I would experience but here we are. It’s our new normal. We celebrate all of his progress and all of his successes no matter how small they may be. We don’t take for granted that he is such a loving and sweet soul. We adore him and would never change him.

We are beyond thrilled with his progress and know the reason he is doing so well is because of early intervention! I can’t say enough to parents about seeking answers when you see red flags. We can’t wait to see what the future holds for our little guy! We know he’s going to do great things and continue to teach us about the beauties of autism!
***He still sings all the time. He loves singing his ABC’s, Head Shoulders Knees and Toes, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and many other nursery rhymes. I’ve added a few short videos of him singing and talking.

 

 

 


~ M

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baby, Baby girl, parents, family,, Full term pregnancy, known donor, lesbian, lesbian family, lesbian moms, LGBT, Newborn, two moms, Uncategorized

Welcome to the world Miss Quinn!!!

This past Friday we headed to the hospital to have a baby. Apparently my cervix didn’t know I was pregnant and hadn’t dilated past one cm at 40 weeks so our doctor recommended just going ahead with the c-section and that is exactly what we did. Everything went well. Mom and Miss Quinn are both doing well. She has stolen our hearts and has us wrapped around her fingers already!




She was 8lbs 5oz and 19inches long. The boys met her later in the day. Nathan just loves her and Noah had no idea that she was coming home with us. Haha. 

We left the hospital on Sunday to spend a couple of days at my parents before heading home.



On Tuesday we had her first doctors visit and first photo shoot. I couldn’t be more excited about these pictures.



Then on Wednesday we made the trip back to East Tennessee to get started in our new routine as a family of five.



I feel so happy that my heart could just burst. 

~M



Full term pregnancy, gay family, known donor, lesbian, lesbian family, lesbian moms, pregnancy, pregnant, two moms, Uncategorized

Full Term Pregnancy

37 weeks

I’ll be 38 weeks along in just 2 days.  And that means we’re here at the end of this pregnancy just sitting back and waiting on Miss Quinn to be ready to make her appearance. I still feel really good considering how huge I am. Of course I’m not moving very fast these days but at least I’m still mobile. 

My new favorite thing that everyone says to me is “ooh you’ve dropped. You look like you could go any day now.” Well thank you for your input but I promise I haven’t dropped…been carrying her low the entire time and no, I won’t have her any day now bc she’s not due until March 13th and I don’t get lucky and go into labor early. My body likes to be pregnant the FULL 40 weeks before it let’s the baby out. I mean really I can’t tell these ladies who have their babies at 36-38 weeks enough about how much they’re missing out on by not enduring a full 40 weeks of pregnancy. The last two weeks are probably my least favorite. So for those that have missed out I’ll just tell them how wonderful it is to wake up every hour to pee then spend 15 mins getting comfortable again to go back to sleep. Oh and who can forget the fact your sweet baby is finally out grown their space and you can feel every little move they make as if they are trying to climb out of your tummy themselves. I don’t sound bitter do I bc I’m not just resolved to the reality that my babies want to be full term. And that’s ok with me especially this time bc I’m trying to cherish the last couple of weeks that I have with just the boys. 

Noah may have a harder time adjusting to Quinn than Nate. Les has been super emotional about Noah no longer being her baby. She’s worried about how he’s going to feel with her getting so much attention. I’m sure he’s going to have to take some time to adjust but I know he’ll be fine .

Took a few pics today enjoying the snow. We’re going on week number two of being snowed in. Apparently we in the south think the world should stop when there is snow on the ground especially if it’s more that a couple of inches and we’ve had about a foot of snow. I think it’s beautiful but I’m just ready to get back on a regular schedule. 😃❄️⛄️





lesbian, lesbian family, lesbian moms, lesbians, lesbians ttc, LGBT, pregnancy, pregnant, third trimester, two moms, ultrasound, Uncategorized, V-bac

The Home Stretch

This Friday marks 30 weeks. I must confess that this hasn’t felt like it’s flown by at all. It’s felt like it’s creeping along. But finally feel like we’re in the home stretch.

I’ve felt huge this pregnancy and at my 28 week visit I went from measuring right on track to measuring 4 weeks ahead of where I am! He said he wants to do an ultrasound next visit to see how big she is. So we shall see if we are going to be having a big baby this time!

After discussing it with our doctor we’ve decided to try to have a vaginal delivery instead of just scheduling a c-section. He said that I’m a great candidate for a V-bac because I was able to have a vaginal birth with my first birth, so we know my body can do it. Now if we find out that she’s an extra big girl those plans may change but we’ll see. I’m a little nervous about some of the complications that can come along with a v-bac but he’s assured me that he’s never had the complications that we’re concerned about and he wouldn’t risk my health. We trust his judgement and just hope that everything goes smoothly.

She is a very active little lady and I just can’t wait to meet her and see her face. After letting some of our closest friends and family help with picking a name we have officially settled in on one and I am so excited! Her name will be Quinn!

Below I added some pictures from our Christmas break. Les got a little over two weeks off from school and we couldn’t be happier to have her all to ourselves for the break. Of course we haven’t done anything exciting, mostly enjoyed relaxing. Stayed with my parents for the two weeks so it’s not like being at home but we’ve enjoyed seeing our family and friends while we have the time.
Christmas was wonderful and so much fun this year. Noah enjoyed opening his own gifts. Christmas morning he opened his dinosaur first and wanted nothing to do with any other gifts…took quite a while to convince him to even look at anything else. Nate being a teenager now got mostly clothes but was still up early ready to open gifts. I guess no matter how old they get they will always love getting presents.
And our New Years Eve party was a blast we spent the night with two of our closest couple friends and enjoyed watching our kiddos run around.
I’m happy to have Christmas and New Years behind us and looking forward to what 2015 has in store for our little family!

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home insemination, ICI, insemination, known donor, lesbian family, lesbian moms, lesbians, lesbians ttc, LGBT, trying to conceive, TTC, two week wait, tww

The Deed is Done

All went well last weekend. I literally had to remind myself we were inseminating the next day when I was leaving for work Friday night. All goes to show that this time is very different from the last. I left work Sat morning and arrived at his house all of 5 mins later. Which seems really odd to me that he lives so close and I had no idea. He text me at 7:58 to let me know it was ready and I hustled up the three flights of stairs to his door to find our stuff sitting there waiting in a Whole Foods bag. Back to the car I went where I immediately place the sterile cup with our swimmers between my legs and sped home. Exactly 22 mins later the deed was done and I was there it that old familiar position, legs in the air, until my feet were completely asleep. Went to bed for the day feeling good about it. Woke up that afternoon and did the whole thing over again. Work, pick up, inseminate and sleep.
Les said I was way less intense this go round. I didn’t get pissy or short with her. Didn’t make her feel rushed and frazzled like before so that’s a good thing!
Now we’re in our two week wait! One week down with one week to go. Trying not to think about it and keep busy. I’ll have news either way really soon.

artificial insemination, home insemination, ICI, insemination, known donor, lesbian, lesbian family, lesbians ttc, LGBT, trying to conceive, TTC, two moms, Uncategorized

It’s time!

It’s time! We will be inseminating this weekend. I can’t believe that it’s here already and we will be starting this roller coaster over again. Right now I don’t feel any stress and pressure but I know its coming. I have a distant memory of the disappointment and sadness that I felt when we weren’t successful. I can tell you that I am not looking forward to revisiting those feelings again. I’m hoping that maybe this time I will be too busy chasing after Noah and keeping up with all that Nathan has going on this summer to be bummed out if we aren’t successful.

So fingers crossed.

~M

gay family, known donor, lesbian family, lesbian moms, lesbians, lesbians ttc, LGBT, trying to conceive, TTC, Uncategorized

We’re Ready

We talked to our donor and he’s willing to do the same day insemination again. He said that it wasn’t an inconvenience and didn’t mind doing it like we did last time. We are super relieved and excited that he said yes so now I guess we’re ready to get started! The only thing I’m really worried about is the tight time window that we have to work with. We only have two months to try to conceive this time. I know that we may not be as lucky as we were last time with Noah. As of right now we are planning on trying in June and July. We will be living in Nashville for the summer so it will be easy to plan but if it doesn’t take either of those months then we will have to wait until Nov and Dec to try again. : (

I am doing my best to think positively but I find myself not wanting to get my hopes up either. I keep telling myself that everything happens for a reason and if we aren’t succesful this summer it will be okay.

Well I guess that’s the only update I have for now…

I’ve added some pictures from Easter Sunday. Our boys looked especially handsome and I am so happy with the pictures we got that day! : )

 

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