Our Journey Raising Two Children with Special Needs

This blog chronicles our life raising two children, Nicholas 13, diagnosed with Prader-Willi Syndrome and Weston 16, diagnosed with Autism/Asperger's/ADHD. It's the ups, the downs, the joys, the sorrows and most importantly, the beauty of living...a life less perfect, a life more meaningful.




Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Nieces and New Years

I have two nieces who are young and smart and beautiful.


They are very hip
 
and very connected to the internet.....and to the world.
 
I feel very fortunate to have them in my life.
 
They keep me feeling young, inspired and in-touch with humanity.
 
I believe our younger generation is very awake and aware of the world around them.
 
They seem to understand already
 
that no matter where in the world we live,
 
we are all of us.....human beings.
 
Instinctively, they seem to find
 
inspiring websites,
 
talented musicians 
 
and the most touching YouTube videos
 
 from around the world.
 
And so, please enjoy the following,
 
compliments of my nieces:

 
Wishing you all
 a peaceful, healthy and
Happy New Year
wherever you live and love
 in this world.
 




Sunday, December 20, 2015

125

I believe too often we underestimate children.

Let me explain.

As part of Nick's transition to his new school, it was agreed that a PWS presentation would be offered to his entire 8th grade class. This, I believed, was important so fellow students could understand how to relate better to Nick.

The idea arose from the inclusion success we experienced last year at his previous school. You may recall Nick's sixth grade teachers asking me to speak to their students about inclusion and the tremendous response that occurred once the children were enlightened.

To learn more, read here.


Nick's new school however, was not interested in allowing me to speak to their kids. In fact, parental involvement has always been vehemently discouraged in this school district. So instead, it was suggested a PWS "expert" present the show. I decided it really didn't matter who gave the discussion, as long as the children were educated, so I agreed.

A speaker was hired and scheduled to visit the school in November. A letter was sent out to parents informing them of the upcoming assembly and providing an opportunity for those students who were not interested to opt out.

A few days before the big event, I received a call from the special ed coordinator. She informed me that the "expert" expressed deep reservations about speaking to middle school children. She feared that students at this level would not want to help. She feared that Nicholas would be bullied.

Since this was an "expert" making these statements, the coordinator canceled the speaking engagement and begged me to reconsider my request.

I used only one word to answer her:

NO

I told her "the so-called expert" seriously underestimated these students.

I told her I knew this because I had done this before. I had spoken to teens about inclusion and experienced spectacular results. I described how last year's students became enthused about inclusion and wanted to help. I told her how several teens expressed how they were no longer afraid and appreciated learning about how to relate to children diagnosed with special needs. I told her how the experience moved students, teachers, and administrators to embrace change.

Still, she did not believe.

"Middle school children are different," she said.

"No," I argued, "They will surprise you."

She disagreed.

But since my request was written up as part of Nick's IEP, she had no choice but to comply.

She agreed to move forward but requested that SHE give the presentation. She asked to use the PWS PowerPoint slides I had presented to the staff. She asked if I would attend the assembly as her assistant, there only to answer any medical questions.

But I had no idea how well she could speak.

The PowerPoint presentation was my baby, my blood, sweat and tears. Would she do it justice? Did she have an ability to connect with an audience, particularly one she didn't trust.

I was worried.

When suddenly I was struck by an idea.

I realized I had a chance to enlighten not just the children but this  "nonbelieving" special ed coordinator too. I couldn't resist.

"Let's do it!" I told her.


The big day arrived. The coordinator was nervous. I told her not to worry and that she would be pleasantly surprised by the student's response. I told her she was about to change the world.

Still, she did not believe.

We entered the empty auditorium where the PowerPoint projector was prepped and ready for our use. Unfortunately, however, the remote control to change the slides was missing.

Luckily, the assistant principal entered the room. I asked her if she or one of the 8th grade teachers could kindly help us to switch slides?

She laughed in my face at my audacious request and told me that I should be grateful they were attending at all. It was clear from her tone that the teachers were NOT interested in this inclusion presentation. They were not convinced that this would work and resentful to be asked to participate in such a ridiculous farce.

I ignored her behavior and told the coordinator I would switch the slides.

Slowly, the students began to enter the auditorium.

They were excited and animated, speaking loudly among themselves. More and more students arrived, filling the room to it's capacity, most of them sitting directly up front. Nicholas and I were seated before the crowd.

The assistant principal stood beside us and held up her hand,

"Quiet down," she barked, "We are here today to learn more about one of our new students"

The boisterous crowd became silent.

The coordinator who was standing quietly behind the podium, began to speak.

She was nervous and spoke very softly.

In an effort to finish, she breezed through the slides too quickly

I began to worry that she was losing the audience, neglecting to pause after each slide to give the crowd a moment to reflect.

But the presentation was filled with powerful images and it appeared that folks were listening.

"Sometimes real superheroes live in the hearts of small children fighting big battles"

She finished the show in record speed and asked,

"Does anyone have any questions?"

There was complete silence.

No one moved.

The coordinator shoulder's sank, her worst fears realized, the kids, she believed, were not ready for this.

The assistant principal smiled smugly.

But I knew better.

I sprung from my chair to speak directly to the children.

"I know what you're thinking. This is scary stuff. I was scared once too. And I am Nick's mother. But right now we have an opportunity, a chance to learn all about this frightening stuff. In fact, once you ask your questions, I am sure you will find that its not so scary after all. You will find that Nick is the BEST friend you could ever have. He will not talk behind your back. He will never say an unkind word. He will ALWAYS be happy to see you. So, please raise your hands and ask the questions you want to ask."

I looked beside me and asked Nick if he wanted to say anything to the children. He smiled and turned his head to the side, telling the kids,

"Aw Mum, I'm too shy."

That was all it took. One by one, a few hands went up.

The coordinator, using a microphone, walked over to the students and asked them to speak their questions directly into the hand piece.

"Will Nick always have this?" A brave boy asked.

"What is a seizure?" another one said.

"Where is Nick's classroom located?"

"Is he coming with us to Camp Kiev?"

And pretty soon a sea of hands shot up from the crowd, a mighty collection of boys and girls, all wanting to know more. The coordinator ran from one side of the room to the other trying to keep up with all the questions. The students were motivated and engaged, anxious to learn exactly how they could help Nicholas.

I was surprised to see a few teachers raise their hands.

The assistant principal's jaw dropped open wide as she stood speechless beside me.

Soon, we ran out of time. The bell rang to signal the end of our time together.

The coordinator announced loudly to the students that before they left, there was a sign-up sheet located up front for anyone who was interested in visiting Nicholas in his classroom.

In one collective movement, all of the students rose and headed toward the front. No one left.

Lines and lines of giggling students clogged the aisle-ways.

All of them interested in one thing,

getting to know Nick.

The response was overwhelming.

The coordinator and assistant principal scurried out of the room to rustle up more pens and paper so more children could enlist.

What was immediately noticeable, at least to me, were the smiles on the student's faces.

The kids, I believe, were inspired, hopeful to have an opportunity to make a difference and become empowered.

It was a beautiful bonding experience for the entire room of participants. The energy was electrifying.

Surprisingly, on the face of the special ed coordinator....a tear.

I thanked her for her bravery.

The very next day, I received an email from her. She told me that a boy she did not know approached her in the hallway and said,

"Nice speech!"

She told me the assistant principal made a special effort to describe the energized climate at the staff meeting held shortly after the presentation. At the meeting the teachers were inspired and exuberant, anxious to discuss ways of including Nicholas into their classes.

And the number of students who signed up to come visit Nick's classroom you ask?


 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Absurdity and a Broken Foot

"The absurd hero's refusal to hope becomes his singular ability to live in the present with passion"
-Albert Camus

Things have been a little hectic at the Peters household.

Would you expect anything less from us?

Our latest adventure?

The kind-hearted Nicholas has broken his foot.

He stumbled on the last few steps of our stairs and twisted his ankle, coming down hard on the right side of his foot, landing with a very loud BOOM!

He hobbled over to a chair in the living room, embarrassed and wincing in pain.

Children diagnosed with PWS do not feel pain, the sensation is diminished. Since he was hollering that it hurt, I knew something was wrong. I pleaded with my sobbing son and asked if I could please take a look at his foot. After a lengthy and very tearful negotiation, he agreed.

I tried to keep a straight face as I observed a very unnatural swelling.

It looked like he had broken a bone.

Luckily, Pete had just walked in the door from work. I told him not to get too comfortable as it appeared we needed to transport our youngest son to the hospital.

Welcome to our world.

The question was:

Do we travel into Boston during the height of rush hour traffic?

Or do we visit a local hospital for an x-ray?

More of those nasty decisions.

We both agreed to keep it simple and head to the nearest pediatric hospital to see if, in fact, his foot was broken.

We arrived at the hospital where luckily, the waiting room was empty. We were directed to the x-ray room and greeted by a pleasant, young attendant who took several pictures of the brave boy's foot.

We were whisked back to the ER room.
The physician called us into her office and told us that Nick's foot was indeed broken.
In fact, he had torn off a small piece of bone.


She explained that they couldn't cast it until he was evaluated by a pediatric orthopedic surgeon. Since there was an unattached piece of bone floating in his foot, she told us there was a good chance he may need surgery to remove or "pin" the bone back together. She fit Nick with a temporary Velcro-type cast and referred us to a local specialist.

On the drive home, Pete and I decided that we would call Children's Hospital in Boston to decide how to move forward in treating Nick's injury.

But in true Lisa Train fashion, as we made our way back to the home-front, our not-so-trusty vehicle began to lose power.

The dashboard lights began to dim, the headlights shut off and the engine began to sputter. Pete guided the wounded vehicle off the road and safely into the service station that was situated directly in front of us.

The garage staff was mostly muscled and male and dressed in grease-covered blues. Luckily for us, these mighty mechanics took pity on us and seemed genuinely concerned about our ailing son and unusual predicament. Their stoic and intimidating demeanor melted away like butter as these gruff-looking bulldogs transformed into playful pussycats. They sprung into action, kindly arranging for our transportation home and agreeing to have our vehicle fixed by the very next day.


We were amazed by our good fortune as these guardian angels in disguise seemed as if they were strategically placed on our path to provide us with assistance. We did not even need a tow since our vehicle died as we entered their parking lot. We realized at that moment that we had made the right decision not traveling to Boston. Can you imagine stalling on the expressway into the city?

Oy..!

Anyway, the next day I called Children's Hospital but without a vehicle to get there, Nick's visit would have to wait. The ortho staff decided to place him on the surgery list for the following morning so the specialist could review the x-rays and operate if necessary.

They explained that Nicholas would need to fast over night. But for a child hard-wired to eat, fasting is nothing short of a torturous request. After the trauma and pain he had already endured; he would now need to withstand more difficulty.

But in true Nicholas fashion, he soldiered on.

Without complaint.

We awoke at 12 am to give him his breakfast so he would not feel deprived of food, a little trick we learned from previous surgeries. At 5:30 am our entire family loaded into our newly-repaired vehicle and arrived in Boston by seven o'clock.

In the orthopedic unit, we were met by an eager young intern who observed the x-ray film and like the ER doc before him, suggested that we prepare for surgery. He told us the surgeon would be in shortly to advise us.

We waited on pins and needles.

At long last, a bespectacled and disheveled doctor fluttered into the exam room.


He explained that Nick would not need surgery.

He was certain however that Nick could not tolerate crutches and a cast and instead suggested he be fit for an ankle support device. He explained that it was a convoluted contraption designed out of laces, Velcro and straps but it would be very effective in immobilizing his foot and allowing it to heal. He said he was confident Nick's foot would heal nicely and we did not need to return.

Pete and I let out our breaths and laughed at the absurdity of our life.

Despite "the doc's" diagnosis, I was thankful that we have an appointment in a few months with Nick's regular orthopedic surgeon, who just so happened to be on vacation this week.

And as for Nicholas?

He was genuinely happy.

Unaffected by the chaos.

Thinking instead about what he was going to eat for breakfast.


"I draw from the Absurd three consequences: my revolt, my liberty, my passion."
-Albert Camus
                                                     


Friday, December 4, 2015

PWS and Russian Roulette



If you are a long time reader of our blog, you may recall last year when Nicholas was invited to participate in a new drug trial for a medication called beloranib. The drug and clinical trial was offered by a Boston-based company named Zafgen.

The medication, originally developed to treat cancer, showed more promise in the area of fat reduction and was promoted instead as a treatment for obesity in individuals diagnosed with Prader Willi Syndrome.

The drug provided much hope to families who struggle raising children who cannot control their appetites and thus are at risk of eating themselves to death.

Since we live locally here in Boston, Nick's endocrinologist explained that because Nicholas was diagnosed with PWS and struggled with weight issues, he qualified for the study. She asked if we wanted to participate.

I felt a mixture of fear and hope as I weighed the pros and cons of this difficult decision.

But like the dangerous game of Russian roulette, this reward carried some very big risks.

I wrote a post about the anxiety I felt having to make this kind of difficult decision. You may read about it here.

After much angst, I decided that Nicholas would not participate.

Today, I learned that a patient diagnosed with PWS who was enrolled in this drug trial has died of a pulmonary embolism.

In an effort to learn more, I performed some research and discovered that this is the second PWS participant in just two months who participated in this study and died from a blood clot.

Further still, there has been a law suit filed in Boston against this company.

If you're thinking the suit was filed for wrongful death....you would be wrong!

The suit, has been filed by investors of the company who claim they were swindled out of their money by the company and CEO. The Federal Security Exchange is investigating their claims that the company under-reported the number of adverse events (including clotting) to its investors.

In the world of civil suit is the loss of money more important than the loss of human life?

I would like to extend my deepest condolences to both of these families.

Our hearts, thoughts and prayers are with you. We share in your sadness.

I feel a mixture of emotion

A deep sadness and uncontrollable anger mixed with an overwhelming sense of relief and guilt.

Like a bullet to the brain, I am reminded once again,

like all families of children diagnosed with PWS,

no matter what we do,

or what decision we make,

we live our lives in fear.

We fear the Grim Reaper's icy breath upon our necks,

as he waits anxiously to rob us of our children.
 
 

Sunday, November 15, 2015

One World

 

I would like to dedicate this post to the citizens of France.

Today, I am not an American.

I am a human being.

I am bonded to the people of France NOT by nationality but by brotherhood.

I share with you in the belief

that world peace is possible.

That one day citizens of this world will posses a respect for all humanity, regardless of one's sex, race, religion, nation, personal or political views.


Today's events in Paris remind us that we live in a world that promotes violence.

Where killing is encouraged as a means to end political, civil and religious difference.

It is a cancerous mass mindset that has lead to the intolerable continuation of civilian slaughter.

I feel a loss for the number of precious lives taken so mercilessly, an abominable side-effect of what happens when those among us hate,

when we use violence as a means to end an opposing ideology.

when national, civil or religious pride teaches us to emphasize our difference instead of our similarity.


If we are to end the vicious cycle of hatred, then no matter where in the world these atrocities occur, we must meet violence consistently with solidarity and peace, with our own personal acts of selflessness and compassion.

We must unite, not as countrymen, but as fellow human beings.

We must promote peace, not retaliation.

“Let no one be discouraged by the belief there is nothing one person can do against the enormous array of the world’s ills, misery, ignorance and violence. Few will have the greatness to bend history, but each of us can work to change a small portion of events. And in the total of all those acts will be written the history of a generation.” - Robert F. Kennedy

In 1968, Robert Kennedy gave a speech shortly after the brutal slaying of Martin Luther King, entitled "On the Mindless Menace of Violence"

It is interesting to me, how after almost 50 years, his words resonate on an international scale.

I have highlighted a few of his paragraphs and changed a few of his words (in quotations) to reflect the relevance to today's events.

"When ever a "human" life is taken by another "human" unnecessarily – whether it is done in the name of the law or in the defiance of the law, by one man or a gang, in cold blood or in passion, in an attack of violence of in response to violence – whenever we tear at the fabric of life which another man has painfully and clumsily woven for himself and his children, the whole "world" is degraded

The question is whether we can find in our midst and in our own hearts that leadership of humane purpose that will recognize the terrible truths of our existence

Our lives on this planet are too short and the work to be done too great to let this spirit flourish any longer in our land. Of course we can not vanquish it with a program, nor with a resolution.

But we can perhaps remember, if only for a time, that those who live with us are our brothers, that they share with us the same short moment of life; that they seek as we do, nothing but the chance to live out their lives in purpose and in happiness, winning what satisfaction and fulfillment they can.

Surely this bond of common faith, this bond of common goal, can begin to teach us something. Surely we can learn at least to look at those around us as fellow citizens, and surely we can begin to work a little harder to bind us the wounds among us and to become in our own hearts "fellow citizens" once again.”

 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Losing Heart

As a society, we value intelligence.

We are brain heavy.

Folks with big brains are elevated in status and honored throughout history.

This intellectual power has transitioned us, as humans, out of ignorance and into civility.

Great  minds have hurled us into a new technological world filled with wondrous devices like automobiles, cell phones, the Internet, and HDTV.

Devices designed to connect us as human beings,


While all of this brain work is performed in the name of progress with a desire to keep us connected,

I wonder just how connected we are?

We tweet but do we talk?

We post but do we listen?

We "like" but do we know how to love?

I wonder if in our pursuit of greatness, have we lost our hearts?

Has our desire to become smarter inhibited our ability to become deeper?

Throwing us off balance,

creating an emotional vacuum

abhorred by nature

Are we forgetting the simple things?

Why is intelligence considered a strength,

while compassion is viewed as a weakness?

My son Nicholas is not an intellectual mastermind.

In fact, he is cognitively delayed,

mentally inferior

he has been labeled "a retard"

a human being who is somehow less.

A victim of our society's obsession with the mind.

Think about the words we use to describe those lacking in superior brain power.

feeble, incapacitated, dim

suggesting a weakness, a brokenness, an absence of light.

But I am Nick's mother.

And although I may not have a superior IQ,

what I see in my son is something more

not less

Perhaps you believe I am deluding myself

in an effort to "super humanize" my inferior child?

And maybe that is true.

But maybe, just maybe, as a long time observer of my child,

I see something you do not.

I see a boy who engages always with his heart,

not his head.

His life is heart-full.

His spirit bright and strong.

He sees the beauty in simple things.

and loves from his soul.

He enjoys the now

and is able....simply "to be"

Finding an inner peace and ability to love unconditionally.

Bringing out the very best in others.

And although he is defined by some as "simple"

I believe his purpose here on earth is complex

With his silence, he educates,

Defining a shining and seemingly forgotten truth that:

When we see with our brain.....we judge.

When we see with our heart.......we accept.


Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Carry that Weight

Last night, I forgot to lock the refrigerator.

To you, that might not sound like a big deal.

But to a parent of a child diagnosed with Prader Willi Syndrome,

that little slip could have a deadly consequence.

That is the weight I carry.

It is a weight all of us in this family share.

Every evening, we must remember to lock the pantry and secure the fridge.

At one time or another, all of us have forgotten.

And every time we do, we put Nick's life in danger.

But who among us is infallible?

We are all human....aren't we?

We wonder then,

Is it just a question of time?

We live with this fear, burying it every day under a brave fa├žade,

 but it is always there.



Sunday, November 1, 2015

The Great Pumpkin Fire

It's fall in New England.

fyi, I used to work here when I was a girl
 
 Nick's favorite time of year.

The colorful leaves and cold temperatures have alerted my humble, holiday-enthusiast to the undeniable arrival of the "Magic Season".

A time for apple picking and cold cider.

A time for warm sweaters and spooky decoration.

A time for carving pumpkins.


And lots of them.

But the fall activity he enjoys most is this!


There is nothing in this world more alluring to Nicholas than sitting in front of a rip-roaring fire.

But fall is also the time for Halloween and believe it or not, for individuals diagnosed with PWS, this can be a dangerous event.

Think about it.

For a child who is hard-wired to eat, what could be more difficult to negotiate safely than traveling door to door visiting neighbors whose sole purpose is to provide you with an unlimited amount of candy......lots and lots of sugary sweets?

It is a torturous experience for someone who can not control their hunger.


It is interesting to me how much of our culture revolves around food????

Anyway, when Nicholas was a baby, I sweated this out, wondering how on earth I would negotiate such a calorie-infused holiday while simultaneously providing some normalcy to my much-deserved son.

I am happy to report, that so far, for Nicholas, it hasn't been a problem.

Let me explain.

Children diagnosed with PWS often experience difficulty with their sleep schedules. Nicholas is no different. By 7 pm he's ready for bed. His body moves slowly, his legs are wobbly.  So, on Halloween night he has great difficulty negotiating the uneven terrain in the dark. Since 6-8 pm is the scheduled hours for trick-or-treating, Nick's endurance for door-to-door candy collecting is greatly reduced.

Yes, unlike the other children who dash wildly from house to house, the sensory sensitive Nicholas, prefers instead to wander slowly, stopping often to chat kindly with home owners. He asks them if they have garages and clickers or gas-powered fireplaces.

Yesterday was a chilly one here in New England. And although it was a starlit and crystal clear evening, candy coveters were clothed in cardigans and coats. Once again Nicholas was tired and struggling to keep up as we traveled quickly from house-to-house. He lingered at doorways searching, as usual, for talk-able topics.

That is until we arrived at one house in particular.
The white house on the corner.

There was a warm, inviting glow emanating from within. Brightly lit decorations waved from the leave-scattered lawn. The front door was open. On the threshold, a kind, friendly woman smiled warmly as she held out a bountiful bowl of colorful candy. As Nick reached toward the tantalizing treats, he stopped suddenly,

distracted by the distinct sound of a very large POP!

"Mummy, look!"  he shouted, and without taking any candy, ran toward the glorious glow of a very large fire.


Well, that was it for our weary-weener, he found the perfect spot, and much like the Charlie Brown character Linus, who was happy to stay behind in a pumpkin patch on Halloween eve, Nicholas too, hunkered down happy and alone, eager to enjoy the quiet of the most sincerest kind of solitude.

 
He did not lust for more candy but instead lingered in front of the roaring flames enjoying the sight, smell and sound of a hot, crackling fire.

He found his Great Pumpkin.

Redefining the meaning of the word, Halloween.

Reminding me once again, that he is not here to keep up with the activities of mindless others.

He follows his heart.

He stops to enjoy the simple things in life,

Knowing instinctively just how "to be"


Happy Halloween

Sunday, October 18, 2015

The Grease Monkey

OK, so enough about me and my complaining.
 I can only take so much of my "woe is me" mentality,
and then it's time to move on.
We have a lot to catch up on.

If you are a long time reader of our blog, 
perhaps you recall my son Weston's fascination with motorized vehicles.
 
 
In fact, when he was a small child,
we would forgo trips to the playground in favor of places like this.


He enjoys the sights, sounds and smell
of mud slinging tires
 and gas chugging engines

He loves vehicles so much,
that one Christmas,
Jolly Old Saint Nicholas brought him this
 miniature monster machine


and aided the dwarfed driver
 into becoming a master maneuverer,
capable of operating the battery-powered Jeepster
with the same finesse as a professional race car driver
 
 
Yup Richard Petty had nothing on him
 
 
He happily offered joy rides to his little brother and neighborhood friends
 negotiating hair pin turns or screeching halts
with amazing speed and agility
 
Yes, I guess it is safe to say that Weston knows a thing or two about vehicles.
 

 
Even now, the allure of anything shiny and metal and motorized is tough to resist
 
 
I have found more than a few of these vrooming vehicles
in the pants pocket of his favorite jeans
 or under the back seat of our family car.
 
But over the years, his tastes have changed.
Those faithful sturdy yellow construction contraptions
have been left well-behind
in favor of a more fast-moving kind of flashiness. 

 
 He is now an expert in the identification of
fabulous foreign cars whose names end with the letter "i"
 
You can read more about his new obsession here.
 
Where is all this leading you ask?
Well dear readers, I am happy to report that the time has come
 for Weston to begin transitioning into the real world.
 
You may recall I had Nick's pit bull
(his advocate/attorney)
 
 
working on finding an appropriate technical school for Weston.
One that would recognize his disability
and provide the appropriate supports for him.
 
We were able to find one last year in the neighboring town
 but much like our progress with Nicholas,
our ferocious pit bull turned into a pussycat
and was unsuccessful at negotiating this transition.
 
Seems the only one she had any luck bullying after all,
was me.
So, I fired her.
 
And negotiated (on my own)
several new school programs for Weston.
 
The first was transportation to and from school with Nicholas.
Thus freeing me up to handle my increased responsibilities caring for Mom.
Both boys are happy to be sharing the ride.
 
  
The second program was designing a work/study arrangement for Weston.
Where the first half of his day would be devoted to school work,
the next half working with a job coach
 to secure employment opportunities for him in town.
 
What is his first job you ask?
 
 
Perhaps not surprisingly, he has become a grease monkey.
 
He will be working at the local garage changing oil and transmission fluids.
 
Pretty cool, right?
 
This weekend we bought him the prerequisite blue Dickies and some steel-toed boots.
 
 
For a young adult diagnosed with ADHD,
 job success is directly proportional to personal enjoyment.
In other words, like his father,
Weston needs to love what he is doing.
If not,
you can forget about his ability to focus,
pay attention and successfully complete his tasks.
 
The job coach at the school worked with Weston
to identify his passions
and design a resume, 
geared toward companies where he would enjoy working
Together they set up interviews.
and found this new opportunity.
 
 
We are hoping this experience
will help him to relate to others in a professional setting
and to find fulfillment
in the idea of working at what you love for a living.
 
 
I am very proud of Weston
and will keep y'all posted on his progress.