The one where CAMHS are useless…AGAIN

Around 6 months ago at our CAMHS appointment Ollies psychiatrist asked if Ollie wanted to try medication, for his anxiety and also to help with his tics, at first I wasn’t keen to medicate him and Ollie told his psychiatrist that he didnt want medication because he doesn’t need fixing.
At our next appointment 3 months ago we discussed medication again and Ollie was more keen to try because he is going to start at his new school, which will obviously be a very anxious time for him. His psychiatrist agreed because school is a major source of anxiety for Ollie.
The psychiatrist told us to take Ollie for an ECG (routine before the meds are prescribed) and then he would prescribe the meds.
We had the ECG done, I took the results to my gp and asked for them to be forwarded to CAMHS.
I then phoned CAMHS and left a message for the psychiatrist saying Ollie had done the ECG as requested and could he write a prescription ( made more urgent by the fact that he is leaving our CAMHS this week)
Today he called me and told me he was very busy handing over his cases …blah blah blah… I asked if he could write the prescription as promised and he said I would have to wait for an appointment with the new psychiatrist which could be in a few months !? (Also that our CAMHS is moving so we have an hour long journey to get there now, which is great with an anxious autistic child who struggles with travelling) I reminded him that he had said he’d write the prescription after the ECG , He replied that he’s busy and did I really think we needed to bother with medication. Well, mr Psychiatrist it was YOU who was keen for Ollie to try them it was YOU who agreed that medication would be a huge help for Ollie when starting school. As anxiety causes most of Ollies meltdowns at school and when travelling to school I think its clear that we need to bother with medication.
He suggested I increase Ollies melatonin dose , which makes no sense, that doesn’t help his anxiety or his tics it just help him to sleep.

He ended the call by saying I would hear from the new psychiatrist in due course and wishing me luck 😡

So despite the fact that Ollies statement says he needs long term ongoing support from CAMHS once again they have left him without the help he needs.
Over ten years now neither of my boys ever recieved any kind of actual help from CAMHS whatsoever, aside from 3 monthly appointments (rarely attended because going out is a huge problem for them both) where they were weighed and measured CAMHS have done nothing.

Now Ollie wont even get help to deal with the anxiety he faces over starting his new school .

There is no service in the children and adolescent mental health services

Its not perfect but its sleep .

Ive blogged before about bedtime with Ollie, its frankly exhausting, Ollie has been going to sleep far too late and by the time he does sleep there has always been tears, tantrums and lots of shouting (all him, i promise) which is a terrible way to end the day.
With school approaching fast I’ve been concentrating on preparing Ollie as much as possible, and establishing a calm bedtime routine (as well as getting him to sleep in his own bed) is a very big part of that.
Getting him into his own bed is proving to be tricky, so for now we’ve struck a deal, two nights in his bed, then one night in mine.
Ollie doesn’t love the nights he has to sleep in his bed, but he knows we have a deal, and it helps eliminate the crying and pleading at bedtime.
Although school hasn’t started yet we are already following the evening schedule from our chart…

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Its been 3 nights so far, and all 3 have been a success.
Its been a bit fraught for me, remembering to give Ollie his melatonin at 8:30 on the dot, because its a busy time for me, and being ready to get him up to bed for 9 on the dot is a challenge, but its really important that I stick to the times because it works really well for Ollie when he has a rigid plan, and the dashing about to make things happen on time is totally worth it.
At 9 we have been reading in bed, either Ollie reads or I read his book to him, then we have a quick chat because Ollie wouldn’t be Ollie if he didn’t have a deep and meaningful question or two before bed, then at half past nine we turn the light off.
And Ollie falls asleep, happy peaceful and relaxed.
Tonight he even asked for lights out two minutes early.

So I haven’t got him sleeping in his own bed every night yet but falling asleep at 9:30 is a massive improvement on raging and crying till midnight.
And I’m sure that once the bedtime routine is fully established it will be much easier to deal with sleeping in his bed.

Im going to start practicing the morning routine as well now so Heres hoping it goes as well as the evening one.

The one where I tried cloth pads

As promised, heres how I got on with cloth sanitary pads,

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These are my pads, as you can see I only bought 3 because I didn’t want to spend a lot of money before I had tried, so I wasn’t fully equipped but because they wash and dry so easily (more on that in a bit) I managed to use them every day (as well as some disposables).

As you can see from my picture they look lovely and there are so many designs to choose from, if you have to use sanitary towels why not use pretty ones? Thats what I say!

The pads were all very comfortable I was worried that they would be really thick and uncomfortable but actually I was able to forget I was even wearing them.
Even the thicker, longer night pad was very comfy.
I was concerned that the pads might slip backwards or forwards as they obviously aren’t sticky but over four days I didn’t have any issues at all. Once fastened with the snap buttons the pads weren’t going anywhere.

Another concern was that they may be very warm especially the fleecy topped pad, but again there was no issue.

Obviously the main thing was absorbency and leakage, , on the first night I had leakage issues (lots) but I hadn’t washed the pad before using it (washing increases absorbancy) and also the first night is always very very heavy for me (perhaps a bigger pad needed) also my night pad is cotton topped, whereas a fleecy top apparently would be more absorbent. (This is why I only bought 3, so as not to invest in pads that aren’t right for me) I must say though that I had no leakage issues at all with the night pad for the following 3 nights.
My 2 day pads were fantastic, didn’t leak at all, were perfectly absorbent and stayed comfy.

Washing and drying the pads was easy, if id had more I would kept them in a wet bag and washed them together but as I only had 3 I just put them in the machine, once a day, with Ecover liquid detergent (its got a lovely clean smell btw) put the machine on the 40 degree quick wash and they came out lovely. Then I hung them on the airer (which caused all kinds of mixed reactions from the kids) and they were dry in half a day.there was nothing ick about any of it. Once the pad is used you roll it up and fasten the popper buttons, easy!

I absolutely wont go back to disposables now, I am already convinced, I was so impressed with everything about the cloth pads, and its good to know I’m doing my bit for the environment too.
I just need to increase my collection, Ive already ordered more!

I would highly recommend ordering from http://www.luxurymoon.co.uk the service is very friendly and posting is very prompt.

Noggin : book review

Noggin by John Corey Whaley

The 13 year old got this book for her birthday. She read the blurb to me and asked if I would like to read it and I have to say my first thought was that it didnt sound like my cup of tea.

Well, just a couple of pages in I knew I was going to love this book!

16 year old Travis Coates was dying of cancer, then he wasn’t anymore.
He was offered a chance to be cryogenically frozen until it was possible to bring him back. Nobody knew how long this would be.
Travis wakes after what seems like a short nap with his own head on somebody else’s body, its five years later.
Travis has to go back to school, but his best friend and his girlfriend have grown up and moved on.
Things have changed at home too.

This book is written so well, just a few pages in I already really liked Travis, and really wanted things to go well for him. The narrative style is spot on!
Hatton was also a great character, almost my favourite!

I really enjoyed each of the different relationships in this book, Travis and Hatton, Travis and Kyle, Travis and his parents and the main focus of the book Travis and Cate, Cate has moved on, she loves Travis but has grown up and is engaged.Travis wants to win Cate back. Its such a bittersweet reconciliation.

I found the story incredibly moving, Travis is happy to be back but everyone has moved on,and he doesn’t feel he has anything to be back for.
Can he find a way to reconcile his old life with his new one.

This book was an easy read, and it often made me laugh as well as being very moving.
I give it 4 out of 5 on the planet T great book scale
👍👍👍👍

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Snore and peace

I have always been a lover of tea, but I fear I am becoming addicted to new teas, I actually cant leave a shop without a new tea in my hand.
Ive need tried a Clipper tea before and I’m always looking for something natural to help me get a good night sleep, so when I found this

Snore and peace tea

I just had to give it a try.

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Its Chamomile, lavender and lemon balm, and its lovely. The lavender is quite heavy but I really like it , and the lemon comes through as a lovely after taste.
I’ve been having a mug of snore and peace in bed every night and it has absolutely helped relax me, in fact last night I had a terrible night settling the kid but I went downstairs at half past midnight, pretty stressed and made myself a mug of snore and peace, took it up to bed and It wasn’t long till I was much calmer and drifting off to sleep.

If you need a bit of a hand getting off to sleep at night or you just like really nice tea, its definitely worth giving this a go.

It gets a big thumbs up from me 👍👍👍

I bought this tea myself, I wrote about it because I genuinely love this tea.

The one where we are getting ready for school #autism

The countdown has begun, 9 days until Ollie goes back to school.
In fact he’s starting at a whole new school, in the ASD unit. He has been out of school since november last year, so its a huge change and its actually very scary. Ollie’s experiences at his old school were dreadful so school is a very negative place as far as he is concerned.
Neither the school, nor myself are expecting this to be easy, its expected that I will be staying in the school building for at least the first 4 weeks and that it will probably take a few weeks till Ollie is doing full days so I want Ollie and myself to be as prepared as possible.
Im trying (not entirely successfully so far) to get a good bedtime routine established before school starts, the big stumbling block is the fact that he wants to sleep in my bed. Although tonight he fell asleep in his bed, with no tears by 10:15 pm.
Ive also set my alarm, we are going to start getting up at 7:00 this week, so Its not a big shock to Ollie when he has to get up early for school. (We’ve been waking up at 9 over the holidays)
We have already bought school shoes, and his uniform is ordered, I’ve left the shoes out so he can get used to seeing them around, and I’m hoping his uniform comes asap so I can hang it around the house, little things to help plant the ‘going to school’ seed in his head. Ive also got his lunch bag put where its visible in the kitchen.
I’m mentioning school every day, not enough to overwhelm him, just enough so that its becoming the norm to talk about school.
Ive made some visual charts for Ollie, the morning one is especially important because mornings are very difficult with Ollie. Especially school mornings.

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Is there anything else I should be doing that will help prepare us for Going back to school ?
Any suggestions/advice welcome.

The one with all the tantrums. #autism

Its 11:45pm as i start writing this, Ollie and I came up to bed at 9:30 but as usual bedtime was dreadful.
Bedtime with Ollie always goes one of two ways.
He sleeps in my bed, after the usual routine of hundreds of questions before going to sleep, this can take hours. Its usually midnight before he settles (even with his melatonin) its exhausting trying to answer all his questions, I try to explain that its just not the time for all these questions, that he could ask them during the day and we could google the answers together, but still every night, the questions. I love his curiosity, I applaud his hunger for knowledge, just not in bed every single night
Or…I tell him he has to sleep on his bed (which is less than 3ft away from my bed) this is followed by crying, screaming, shouting, full blown rage, begging, more crying and only ends when I let him come in my bed.
Every night Ollie tells me that if I loved him I would let him feel safe in my bed. I do love him, I love that kid completely, totally, and utterly.
But I cant keep doing this.
He needs to start sleeping in his bed, I have a single bed, I also have Arthritis, I have constant chronic pain and I really need to be able to sleep comfortably at night, not holding on to the edge of the bed.
Also he is nine he’s just too big to keep sleeping in my bed. Ollie tells me this is ridiculous because obviously he’s going to stop sleeping in my bed soon.
When is soon? How is he obviously going to stop?
He’s gotten all the way to nine without being able to sleep on his own, that wont change overnight.
Im not abandoning him, I told him I will lay in his bed while he falls asleep until he’s getting used to his own bed but that isn’t enough.
I hate being angry with Ollie and I really don’t get angry with him often. I make allowances because of autism, I understand his meltdowns and moods but I cant help getting cross at bedtime when I haven’t stopped all day and he wont even try to sleep in his own bed.
When I just want to relax and read a little and instead I have to deal with the mother of all meltdowns every night.
I already make allowances, because he wont settle until I go to bed (I gave up trying that when he was 7 after 7 years of screaming rage every night when I tried to go downstairs.
Now Ollie stays up until I go to bed, meaning I have to always be up in bed by ten, and I get absolutely Zero time to relax alone at the end of the day.I also put Ollies bed in my room so he was near me. (i have the smallest bedroom).

I have 11 days to start getting a bedtime routine in place, before Ollie starts his new school. I cant afford to have him tired in the mornings as mornings are very difficult with Ollie on school days. And if he’s tired we will have all the rage every morning.

I have absolutely no idea how to deal with this.

I just want some sleep, in my bed, alone, without 3 hours of tantrums first, its bad enough that the dog sleeps on my pillow