Friday, October 24, 2014

Motherhood the journey...

Motherhood the reality is so much different than how I daydreamed it while pregnant.  Actually, my idea of motherhood changed when I lost Lily.  I was a mother but a childless one.  Then, I got pregnant with Cooper. I spent that whole pregnancy hoping and praying that I would be able to raise him and there hasn't been a single day that I haven't said "thank you, Lord" when I open Cooper's door in the morning.

The last 5 years have gone by so fast.  I'm sure all new moms feel lost but here I was as a "first time mom" so I don't know much about kids but I know NOTHING about raising a child with special needs.  I remember crying when Cooper was 6 months old when he was diagnosed with Hypotonia (the first of several diagnoses) and being so sad because hadn't we been through enough (infertility and Lily dying)?  I had daydreamed of music class and storytime but for 3 days a week for his first 3 years were spent at PT/OT/ST.  I was jealous and angry at other moms for their easy weeks of playdates, music or tumbling classes, etc.  I was jealous of how their kids could just do things so easily.  There were a lot of days where I just didn't want to be around other people.  I felt moody and lost. I loved him with all my heart but I was lost and felt alone.

Something snapped as soon as we got the Autism diagnosis. I decided to stop comparing my motherhood journey to other moms. I decided to stop comparing Cooper to other kids.  The Autism diagnosis was also my flashing sign that I needed to take better care of myself and my marriage.  I lost 60 pounds and my marriage and best friendship status with my hubby is better than ever.  Your marriage and your identity can be demolished when parenting a child with special needs but I'm not going to allow that to happen anymore.  I research every day on ways to help Cooper to flourish.  I accept Cooper for where he is today and I focus on each day as it comes. I've re-evaluated my circle of friends and have kept those that truly love me and Cooper.  The friends that always have my best interest in heart, tell me the truth and not just what I want to hear and will bring over wine...

With all of that, my jealous, anger and sadness are gone (well, most days. I'm human after all).
My focus is my family.
My focus is my health, spiritually, physically, emotionally and mentally. 
Motherhood is a beautiful journey. I'll never take it for granted.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Our week!

This week has seriously zipped by!  It's a fun and busy week though!  Cooper's had early release at school and I've really appreciated that extra hour with him this week...

We enjoyed a nice walk on the trail which has become our daily ritual.  He's such an explorer and has no fears...I do though, so I have to keep myself together when he goes to grab the daddy longlegs, haha! 

10/21/14 I took Cooper to see a scarecrow exhibit and we had a picnic lunch! The weather was wonderful and some of our favorite friends met up with us so it was a perfect afternoon!


Cooper's school had a spirit night at CFA.  He's slowly getting over to his aversion of things on his head so he actually wore the cow hat!

Not always the correct way but whatevs...

I let Cooper chose the family pumpkin. There should be certain perks to being an only child and "pumpkin picker" is a perk!  It took him 45 minutes but he was having fun and I really had put an  hour down in my head mentally for the activity...

Another perk to being an only child and this was our first year doing this BUT we carved the pumpkin exactly how he drew it...We'll definitely be doing this every year! 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Boo at the Zoo!

Yesterday, marked two weeks until Cooper's 5th birthday and our favorite Halloween activity, Boo at the Zoo!!  Cooper received too many to count comments on how he was the cutest Super Mario ever!  I mean, he is, haha!

I also got up early to make a new trick or treat button for his talker!  The folks at the zoo thought he was even cuter when he used his talker to participate :)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

16 days until 5!

I spoke with Coop's teacher at school today about bringing in birthday cupcakes so his birthday is really coming up soon!  My throwback Thursday pic today was a pic of his homecoming from the NICU and it just seems so surreal that he's going to be 5!  I mean, people tell you that it goes fast but no one mentioned warp speed (sniff, sniff)

We meant a friend for lunch but first we needed to take some selfies...

Coop's drawings are getting more and more sophisticated!  I mean, he gave the dude a nose!  (He needs to work on the dude's legs or at least draw on some shoes, haha!)

Do you want to buy a snowman?  Yes, I'm putting that sentence to the tune from Frozen...

I really, really wanted Cooper to be Jack Skellington this year. I even pinned DIY costumes but he wasn't budging from being Super Mario for Halloween this year.  He's his own person so who am I to sway his decision?  He found the show on Netflix and loves it! 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

And, the beat goes on!

The birthday beat continues!  The round-up of our last couple of days...

The Walking Dead returned on Sunday so it was walker everything at our house!  We had zombie figures as our table centerpieces, a stuffed zombie as our dinner guests and zombie themed meals. It was tons of fun!   Cooper is obviously too young for the show but he still had fun throughout the day!

Me and my fellow walker stalker!


I had taken several funny pics of Cooper from yesterday but realized that he's wearing a tshirt with his school name on it. While I'm pretty much an open book, I hesitate to volunteer such identifying info...but, there's still his funny school pic to discuss!

Yeah, this is his school pic.  Seriously, he looks like he's in the 5th grade. Also, he looks angry.  I'm hopeful that picture retake day goes a lot better! 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

3 weeks!

3 weeks from today and Cooper turns 5!  Here's some pics from our last couple of days :)

October 9th
Cooper works hard and OT is something we incorporate all day long...A big thing that he's mastered lately is using utensils for the entire meal!  

October 10th 
We played at a local playground after school and I got some very handsome pics of my little man! 

We also did our October handprint craft yesterday...

Not a great pic of me but a cute one of us together! 

October 11th 
We recently joined a meetup group for Autism parents and we went to park/music therapy playdate today...

Coop had a wonderful time during the music therapy and it looks like we're going to need to sign him up for music therapy asap!  

Thursday, October 9, 2014

5th birthday countdown continues...

October 7th 
I need coffee to start my day and Cooper needs Sesame Street...

Cooper reading a train book while we wait for his OT 

Cooper decorating our family pumpkins...

October 8th 
I let Cooper play hookey from school and we went to the aquarium instead.  I'm going to miss these days when he starts kindergarten (which isn't until the fall of 2015 so I'm not going to get weepy now, lol)

We were out on our daily walk and Cooper was checking the map...

Cooper loves when his new Highlights magazine arrives! 

Monday, October 6, 2014

26 days until 5

October 6th- 26 days until Cooper's 5th birthday!

Buzz Lightyear to the rescue!

Our weekly trip to the library...

It's finally starting to feel like fall but he still loves to play in water! 

We were enjoying a snack by the fountain...

Sunday, October 5, 2014


We came home from camping today and, no lie, it was nice to be back home.  There's a lot to be said for not sharing a bathroom with strangers in a state park, haha!

October 5th 

Cooper has a bit of baby fever after spending time with his baby cousin...(not gonna happen!)

 My hubby and I are huge The Walking Dead fans so my friend bought Cooper these little zombie figurines. The zombie figurines go with an app on the Ipad but we didn't get the app. He just plays with them like any other toy, lol.  As you can see, Cooper was excited to see his toys again...

Cooper reeked of campfire and was covered in nature grime so he took a nice and warm bubble bath!