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The Tragedy of Forgetting a Child in a Car . . .

28 Jun

The Tragedy of Forgetting a Child in a Car . . .

These stories hurt so much I can almost not breathe while reading them . . .

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I Am a Daddy’s Girl and I Like How My Daddy Sings, Too . . .

29 Apr

I Am a Daddy’s Girl and I Like How My Daddy Sings, Too . . .

 

A heartwarming story . . .

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Instagram and Being Part of the In Crowd!

24 Apr

Instagram and Being Part of the In Crowd!

Using Instagram as a symbol for the deep human need to be included.

I so identify with the author’s description of the end of his senior year in high school.  I had lots of friends but was never in a clique.  I did much better at one-on-one relationships, and I still do.

When it came to walking down the aisle at graduation, it turned out even my three best friends had someone who was more of a best friend to them than I was . . .

I was class valedictorian and I walked with a virtual stranger, another person left out after everyone paired up.

See how much we desire to be included?  I can remember that time vividly, almost 40 years later.

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When Families Facing Autism Also Face Isolation . . .

16 Mar

When Families Facing Autism Also Face Isolation . . .

I remember one of the sweetest compliments I ever received came from a female admiral in my Navy community who, seeing Joey walking on the beach with Noel and me during a Navy “wetting down” celebration, told me how much she admired us for bringing him to as many events as we did.  

She said there had been children with autism in her extended family and they were kept hidden, out of the public eye. 

We couldn’t do it any other way.  I am a fairly social animal!!!

Even when Joey had a hard time handling gatherings like this wetting down, we would just take a half hour off and go walking down the beach, hand in hand with him.  

Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

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Reaching a Child with Autism through Disney!

10 Mar

Reaching a Child with Autism through Disney!

Amazing first person story by a journalist who raised his profoundly autistic son using dialogue from Disney films!

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If You Want People to Stop Making Parenting a Competition Sport . . .

25 Feb

If You Want People to Stop Making Parenting a Competition Sport . . .

I absolutely can give a witness to this. I have looked at life from both sides now (oh, wait . . .)!

Really! If it feels as though people (read: other moms) are competing with you, just stop it. Don’t play the game. It will be amazing how many allies you will develop after that. You probably had them all along . . .

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How We Church People Undermine Marriage!

21 Feb

How We Church People Undermine Marriage!

Three very good points here about how we teach children that marriage is not very important after all . . .

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How to Set your Son up to be a Porn Addict . . .

14 Feb

How to Set your Son up to be a Porn Addict . . .

Shortened version of an earlier post, showing us by dramatic negative example how to porn-proof our homes and our families, especially our sons.

In an era when most seminaries don’t ask their students whether they have viewed porn, but rather how often they have viewed it, we must remember that this can easily become an addiction.

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A Severely Autistic Man Has Private Worship Services at Home

10 Feb

A Severely Autistic Man Has Private Worship Services at Home

I was prepared to disagree with the decision to have home worship for this man with autism . . . until I saw how big he is and how aggressive he gets.

God bless the team of autism caregivers who have tailored their church services in the home for this brother in Christ.

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When our Kids have to Drag us Away from our Technology . . .

10 Feb

When our Kids have to Drag us Away from our Technology . . .

This is too good. I sometimes resemble that remark!

We have had a few key conversations lately about such important topics as responsible use of electronics in church. Truly we can put a harness on this beast and ride it or . . . it can ride us.

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The Restaurant Manager Approaches the Family at Table 9 . . .

6 Feb

The Restaurant Manager Approaches the Family at Table 9 . . .

Awesome story of humans having compassion for each other . . .

Destroying Your Child’s Heart – One FB Picture At A Time

10 Jan

Strong language but a good point. The parents who feel they need to publicly post a picture with a sign about their child’s transgression (in the news, on Facebook) must be so insecure in their parenting that they need to have public opinion confirm their discipline. Ya know?

I wrote recently about the Private Parent and shared a few things I do in an effort to build a solid, if somewhat hidden, foundation in the lives of my children.

A heartbreaking situation between an acquaintance and her teen son prompted those thoughts several months ago.

Intense conviction flooded my heart and mind while we shuffled awkwardly and flushed red with him as she ranted and railed in a fit of maternal frustration and helplessness.  His eyes filled with tears and his voice cracked in an attempt to maintain some kind of composure and dignity while his mother stripped him naked and flogged him with her words.

In the middle of my kitchen.

In front of our whole family.

Click on over the HeidiStone.net for the rest of the story.

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When Someone with OCD is Most Precious to You! (OCD #7)

8 Jan

If my first six posts on OCD were to be taken out of balance, it would seem as though life with our son who has autism and OCD has been very sad indeed.  And nothing would be further from the truth.  

Truly, if I had a choice to rid him of the OCD, I would do that.  Not so much the autism.  That is part of Joey’s quirky charm.  But the OCD seems to just separate him from other people, due to its nature of suggesting grudges to his mind and getting him spinning (literally) on them forever. It is like his brain just cannot stop and just cannot let go of certain things.  

Nonetheless, the choice I made to homeschool Joey for over ten years of his fifteen years of primary schooling should say a lot.  Mostly that was a pleasurable experience.  When it was not, it was still worthwhile.  I am not made of the kind of stuff that would have soldiered on indefinitely if I thought I were fighting a losing cause . . . 

Joey has made incredible progress over the years.  Many people with autism who have better abilities at math and English than he does have fallen behind him in overall progress because he keeps on plugging (and we keep on working with him and encouraging him).  

Some mysteries remain.  Even very big ones.  But we have a very big God.  

I have only to look at the pictures or the objects we still have from his childhood to remember the joy of raising this special boy.  

His baby blanket and his longtime stuffed animals still bring floods of joy when I pick them up.  

My joy is the joy of any mother anywhere.  

As I noted when the movie “Children of a Lesser God” won an Academy Award for Marlee Matlin, an actress who is deaf, there is not a separate “God of the deaf” or “God of those with autism” or “God of the mentally retarded.”  There is one God and there is one race of people He has created.  Those with disabilities don’t fall out of the mainstream of humanity.  

And all mothers cherish moments of joy from raising their babies.  Difficulties are present in all lives.  Some have more difficulties than others, but they don’t negate life.  They don’t negate joy. They don’t negate love.

When People with OCD Won’t Let Grudges Go . . . (OCD #6)

7 Jan

People with OCD can be drama queens . . . but so can the rest of us.

People with OCD can have trouble letting grudges go . . . but so can the rest of us.

This is where OCD starts to cross into “normal” behavior and make us a smidge uncomfortable.  

Do lots of us have a smattering of OCD?  I think so.

From watching my son with new eyes this Christmas vacation as he is home after four and a half months at college, I am pretty sure that he finds it difficult to exist with a low adrenaline level.  So he “thrill seeks” as they say.

This would make him a “drama queen” in the parlance.

I am actually pretty fortunate that he does that, not by way of alcohol, drugs, or sex addiction, but by way of living in his own head.  Only that is painful in another way . . .

Far as I can tell, he comes up with his grudges against people out of thin air.  He will describe something that someone at the college or associated with the college has done that he feels is an affront to his dignity and . . . I just won’t see it.  

Or it will seem as though it comes from a parallel universe he has set up, with different rules for behavior.  People will have no idea that they have offended him because they won’t know the rules in his parallel universe.  It is as though he wrote a script for a play and treats other people as actors in his play who got their lines wrong . . .

He has a thing for honorifics.  Whom he should call “Mr.” “Ms.” or “Miss,” as opposed to those whom he addresses by first name.  And this part of his parallel universe has driven several powerful grudges he has developed at the college.  

If I thought that addressing the honorifics issue and defining it specifically for everyone in his world would actually help him cease being a drama queen, I would speak with his school’s administration about it.  But I am fairly certain that, even if they got the honorifics sorted out with Joey, he would have a new “drama queen issue du jour” by tomorrow.  It’s what he does.  

I don’t know how to get him to stop holding on to an “issue du jour” any more than I know how to get him to “reconcile” with people against whom he holds a grudge for reasons totally invisible to them.  

I pray that our brainstorming will help us with this part of OCD, too.

And . . . maybe in the process we will find some relief for supposedly normal Christians who develop grudges against others and say that they cannot find a way to let them go.  

It’s worth a try.  I have known many people stuck in hatred they said they didn’t even wish to carry.  I know it is not pleasant to carry bitterness and vitriol, even for a little while.

Maybe we can find help for us all.  

 

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Maybe Some Films are Irredeemable Muck After All!

6 Jan

Maybe Some Films are Irredeemable Muck After All!

I think someone has finally said this in a balanced way. I agree with him about Les Miz, by the way. I read the book (in English translation, of course) with our son in homeschool when he was about 15.

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