My third daughter was born with a triplicated sequence of the molecular structure in the q-axle arm of the 15th chromosome. She is unique and special and fairly rare. There are about 300 kids now with Isodicentric15. Some live to adulthood, some do not. She is now 21. she has high functioning autism and can speak, is potty trained for the most part, and can write her name and phone number for the most part. She can dress her self and she has a gifted connection with animals. I love her laugh, it sounds like a hyenna when she is excited.
Erik, *sigh* Erik is my oldest son. He is eager to please and is dealing with adolescence admirably. He is very active in scouts, mostly to please me but recognizes that it is good for him. He is within a year of earning his Eagle Scout (13 years old) well within the limits of 18. I struggle with the decision to keep him home. It is extremely beneficial for his brother. He is such a social creature, I was crushed that he was bullied at school on a daily basis. The tapes from the bus rides home and the reports from the teachers were gut wrenching. But he misses the good people, it was just a few that made it impossible to remain. He is a complex person. He has an extraordinary high IQ (127) and yet, misses many social cues that would guide him to keep the friends that he makes easily. He prefers long hair, butterflies and dragonflies, and has as many close girl friends as guy friends. He is gender neutral. He is very good at chess, electronics, robotics, and computer science. He has not grown so old that he does not show affection or miss an opportunity to tell me he loves me. He does distinguish the difference between my two jobs. Tells me that he sometimes does not like me (when I am his teacher) but always loves me (when I am his mom).
He has one or two friends that come in to play with him, but mostly they just sit on the bed and play with him on line, which they could do from across the street. It is unusual and so far only one friend has remained willing to do this type of extreme parallel play. He is terrified that someone is going to touch his back unexpected, really does not want people that are not his immediate family to hug him. The song 'happy birthday' is so grating on his nerves that it will send him into a thermal nuclear meltdown. He does not listen to music, he hate for the volume to be up too loud, and will use headphones to muffle ambient sounds in the house. Going to the park is very hard for him, the wind on his skin is extremely difficult, as is water from a shower.
He is orally tactile defensive, and so his diet and menu have not changed in 11 years. Rigid routine are paramount. We have the same food on the same day of the week without fail. If it is not something that is for that day, he simply will not eat. Sunday is stuffed crust cheese pizza, Monday is hot dogs, Tuesday is tacos, Wednesday is tomato soup and grilled cheese, Thursday is spaghetti, Friday is fish sticks, and Saturday is crepes. Bacon / toast / pancakes for breakfast. Ham and cheese or pbj for lunch. A smoothie for snack each day. And a gallon of milk a day. I worry about his health on a daily basis. It is a good day when I can get 600 calories in him.
Now that I am caring for / raising my three grand kids, that makes my life just a little bit more challenging. Jordan is 5 and learning sight words and could be dyslexic or left handed, it is early to tell. Lily is almost 2 and is extremely bright and just need more one on one time and she could be reading sight words as well. Rose at 5 months is a sweet baby and an old soul. She is most likely the least dramatic in the family and most likely to have her nose in a kindle all day. She is already crawling, sitting up, and just into everything. The keep the house hopping all day long.
Once upon a time I went to college, I got a degree in Natural Resource Management in Forestry, a Minor in Geology, with an emphasis in Geographic Information Systems (computer cartography). My first job out of College was publication editor for a magazine. This is when I met my husband online. He was the European expert in pcmcia technology and I was writing an article and needed his help. We were married the next year. But I really fell in love with Photography so that was my main business career since 2002, until all the kids started to need more of my time. I have not picked-up a camera in 4 months since the girls come to live with me. I miss it, but there is just not enough time for portraits and that makes my husband sad. It puts all the strain of feeding 9 people on him alone. And there are days that he wishes we did not have the family motto: