Sweet reasons to be cheerful

It’s funny, I remember contacting bloggers ten years ago, when I worked as a PR in Dublin, yet until recently it seemed that parent bloggers were of little interest to brands in Ireland.  That is now changing, and I occasionally get invited to something.  And this invitation was once again thanks to the Irish Parenting Bloggersgroup, who were out in force for the launch of a new Irish family website.

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How to tackle school refusal

You get a sick feeling when the alarm goes off on Monday morning.  It’s not the first alarm, the one that has you crawling out of bed.  No, this is the reminder to wake your child for school.  The child who doesn’t really want to go.  You climb the stairs, take a deep breath, and enter.  Using a calm and positive voice you tell him the time and ask him to get up.  He simply tugs the duvet over his head.  But you know that this could mean anything.  So you try again in 10 minutes.  Sometimes you get lucky, sometimes the dance continues until the school bus has been and gone, and then you taste that feeling of bitter failure once again.  Mornings like these are guaranteed to make most parents feel helpless, hopeless and useless.

Your child will be feeling miserable too.  True school refusal is nothing to do with your child being naughty or bold, but more to do with fear and anxiety.   They know you want them to go to school and they may want to go themselves, but they just can’t.

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Reasons to be cheerful

So it’s been another challenging week in special needs land yada yada yada.  Issues at home and indifference (almost) everywhere else.  I think the powers that be would like us to just go away where we can’t bother anyone as we’re messing up the Irish turnaround story that the Government would have us believe.  Anyway I’ve hunted around and found a couple of reasons to be cheerful for this week:

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Going public with this story..

Eight year old girl denied free medical care in one of the world’s richest countries. Absolutely desperate 😦

Lucy fights Cancer 2014-

Anyone who knows me well, knows I am actually a very private person😞
But in this situation, I felt I had no choice but to go public with Lucy’s story!
I know it has been very difficult for family and friends to see Lucy’s photo everywhere and to hear me speak about such private details on the radio!
But I had to do it, I was raised in a household where you worked and paid tax, I would think I am raising my own children with the same attitude
Sadly the one time I have approached the state for support, it has been declined 😞

The HSE issued a statement yesterday, which said “we don’t comment on individual cases…. But they were over the means ”

1. They should not have released that information publicly
2. Of course we were over the means back then, we were both working!
3…

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Lessons learned from an International Autism Conference

If you care for someone with autism in Ireland and have not signed up with Middletown Centre for Autism, then please don’t wait any longer.  I’d been to one of their excellent courses before, and today I attended their first International Autism Conference, and it was well worth all the arrangements and bribery of the children.  Not only were the speakers absolutely first class – of which more in a minute – but all the basics are FREE, including the conference, coffee, lunch and parking.  When you’re used to everything connected with special needs being UBER expensive, there’s something very special about a free event.  It feels like somebody cares.

It was a day of listening, chatting, putting faces to names and even relaxing just a little bit.  And I learned some important lessons too

Read about them here:

Reasons to be cheerful despite School Refusal

So the return to school did not go quite as planned, and I won’t tell you about my feelings as they are not pretty.  I’ve taken to posting Facebook updates that only I can see.  But, as per my resolutions, I am still maintaining a calm facade.  Ditto the school, as I have been unable to make contact, and no-one appears to have rung me either.  I’ve promised not to write about him on here, so I can’t ask you to help me, and I’m sure that my Facebook friends are sick of this problem too, so I’ll probably just grit and grind my teeth and try to focus on my reasons to be cheerful instead…

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The Existence of Mud

There I was crouched down by the back door attacking my runners with an old toothbrush and thinking about how life has changed.

Long ago days of running barefoot with a hat hanging down my back pretending to be Laura from Little House of the Prairie.  Of knees with scabs on scabs and dot the dot bruises and dusty brown ankles.  When trees were for climbing and naming, not admiring and instagramming.
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