Happy New Year! We’re I’ve been…

It has been a year since I have made my last post and I thought I would put my thoughts down as a way to look back at all that I have been through and all that I can look forward to.

2018 has been one of the worst years of my life. I won’t hold back on what happened because I believe that sharing what I went through can help others who may be dealing with the same thing.

During the start of the year I started having pelvic floor issues that led to a lot of health fears and anxiety. Much of the health fears manifested into symptoms of illnesses that I was afraid of having (i.e symptoms of cancer, etc…there more to than that, but I’ll keep it short) It also brought up a lot of fear of having to go through fears. I have agoraphobia which is caused by emetophobia. It mostly is triggered by going to places that cause me to feel fear, which in turn causes me to feel nauseated. My type of emetophobia consists of fear of nausea, fear of vomiting in public, and of others vomiting. To make a long story short, having to deal with doctors and various appointments left me overwhelmed, afraid, and severely stressed out.  I became severely depressed and had thoughts of suicide. I’ve tried medications and they didn’t help and in many cases made me worse. I gained weight and I felt more depressed. I sought help from Mental Health and while the few therapists I’ve seen were really nice (still have not started therapy yet), there was a nurse who was “helping” me that made me feel more depressed.  Right now I am in a better place now that the holidays are over. My anxiety has been subsiding a little and I do not feel depressed. I am not on medication. I see a psychiatrist in the next few weeks but I think I will avoid medication if prescribed.  My goal is to be able to go to my son’s graduation in May. There is a lot of shame and embarrassment around it because no one really seems to understand what it is like to have an anxiety disorder and I feel I will be judged if I don’t go.

Despite everything, there are still many good things that have happened. My youngest son who has high functioning autism has been seeing a therapist and has made a lot of progress. He is a little more outgoing. My oldest son has been to the UK with the Canadian Army Cadets, and then to Alberta for a National Cadet Expedition. He has been selected to go on a International Expedition to Chile in the new year. He has also been offered the career of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering Officer with the Canadian Armed Forces and will be studying at the RMC in Kingston in 2019!

I think it is important to look back at the past to see not only the good in it, but to reflect on the bad and realize that it takes a strong person to get though it all. I made it through it! It may seem so trivial to someone who doesn’t experience mental health issues, but for those of us who do experience it, it can be agonizing. Unfortunately for some it is too much to handle. I urge those who read this who have been fortunate to never struggle to please have empathy and understanding for those who struggle.

I am looking forward to what 2019 has in store for me and my family. I’m excited and scared but I know I can get through it. Best wishes to all who read this. I hope your new year is full of positivity and joy.

 

 

Advertisements

Viva La Juicy VoxBox Review

 

2017-11-23 10.39.55

I’m here today with another blog post about a recent VoxBox that I received for free from Influenster to test out. This time it was the Viva La Juicy by Juicy Couture VoxBox.

The VoxBox contained 3 cards with sample sizes inside each for myself and to give to friends. So far I have given one out and my friend was really loving the scent.

This was my first time trying this fragrance. I have heard of it and seen it while in stores, but I have never sampled it. I really like the scent. I am someone who likes perfumes with sweet notes so this one really appealed to me. It was sweet, but sickly sweet. It had some warmth to it and I found it to be inviting. It is a beautiful, feminine scent.

I think the fragrance is one that can be worn anywhere from a trip to the mall to a night out on the town. I also think it would have a certain age market. I think it could be worn by all ages, but I especially think that teens would love it.

I think it would make a great gift for the holidays for those who enjoy fragrances with sweeter notes.

 

 

Influenster #RecessVoxBox

2017-09-21 14.36.44

I know it has been a LOOOOOONG time since I posted, but I figured I’d post about my recently Voxbox that I received for free for testing purposes from Influenster.

This was the Recess Voxbox and it contained items that could be used for your children’s school recess or snacks along with a side dish and a mascara. Let’s go over what was included and my thoughts on each.

2017-10-06 11.35.14

  • Kiju Organic Juice. I had seen Kiju previously but since I rarely purchase juice from the health section and since it was a little more costly, I never bothered to buy it. My son, Avery, was eager to try it out and he really enjoyed it. I honestly didn’t think he would since he is very picky and isn’t a big mango fan, but he said it tasted really good. I have since purchased it for him.

2017-10-04 12.22.15

  • Welch’s Fruit Snacks. We had already purchased these regularly. My kids like to eat them for recess or after-school. I like them because they are a healthier option compared to candy, but still satisfies a sweet tooth. They’re delicious!

2017-10-04 12.24.48

  • Bear Paws Granola. My kids have been eating Bear Paws for years, but this is the first time we have tried the Granola variety. They really liked them. My youngest son really like the texture compared to regular granola bars.

2017-09-29 17.41.18

  • Knorr Selects. I received a free product coupon, so I was able to buy the variety I wanted. I picked the Four Cheese Risotto as I figured that would be most widely accepted by my family. They really liked it. My hubby and oldest son said they tasted like the cheddar harvest Sunchips. They said it was really rich and filling. I have since purchased this again.

2017-10-04 10.28.39

  • Maybelline Lash Sensational mascara. It was just okay. Not a favourite of mine. I prefer a dryer formula. This mascara left my lashes separated in sections and wet looking, as if I had a good bawl. I had to use a lash comb to make them look okay. I also found it took longer than I would like for it to dry, which often caused it to transfer. At the end of the day it wasn’t easy to wash off.

2017-10-04 10.07.20

  • Herbal Essences Hello Hydration. The duo was okay. It smelled really nice. I found that they left my hair feeling weighed down, but not really any less day. Maybe continued usage of it would help improve the hydration. I wouldn’t buy it in the future.

So there we have it. This was all the contents in the Recess Voxbox. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to try out some new products and I look forward to getting more in the future.

If you would like to sign up for Influenster, you can do so at http://www.influenster.com.

 

L’Oréal Paris Hair Expertise Nutri-Gloss Luminizer Review #hairexpertise #luminizerworks

About a month ago I was sent a “L’oreal Paris #hairexpertise VoxBox from Influenster to try out for free and give my opinion on. I was lucky enough to get selected for the Nutri-Gloss Luminizer line, which is the one I wanted because my hair is pretty dull.

DSC_0998

 

In the box was the shampoo, conditioner, and the High Shine Glossing Mist.

The shampoo worked good. My hair felt nice and clean after using it. The conditioner rinsed clean and left my hair feeling soft and shinier. Both the shampoo and conditioner smelled very nice.

My favourite out of all of the products was the glossing mist. When first applied, it left my hair looking somewhat greasy and then it quickly absorbed and left my hair looking nice and shiny.

Since using the products though, I have started breaking out around the back of my neck. When I stopped using the products, the breakouts started to go away. I’m going to start adding the products back in one at a time to see if it is just one or all of the them that has been causing it.  I am hoping it isn’t the glossing mist, since I really like that one and think it works great.

Have you tried any of these products? How about any of the other #hairexpertise lines? If so, let me know! I’d love to hear how they worked for you.

*disclaimer: I received these products for free from Influenster. All opinions expressed are my own.

 

 

Review of Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Comforting Crème #getinthebubble

A few weeks ago I was sent the Lise Watier HydraForce Hydra-Protective Comforting Crème to try out from Glam Sense in exchange for my honest review. It came with a numeric corneometer that you can use with your smartphone to detect your skin’s current moisture levels so you can monitor the effectiveness of the product.

2016-04-26 19.33.58.png

 

Unfortunately, I was unsuccessful at getting the Hydra-Detect application and device to do a reading on my iPhone. Hopefully it is an issue that will be resolved in the future because I think it is a neat idea to be able to check the moisture levels.

2016-04-26 19.36.02.png

The cream is very nicely scented. It goes on really well and leaves my skin feeling really hydrated, but I find that it doesn’t absorb as well as I would like. I have normal to combination skin and have some areas that have been feeling parched, but it was still a little too heavy for my skin. I had to blot the excess off whenever I used it. A few days after using it, I noticed I was getting some minor breakouts and the only thing that I have changed in my routine is this cream

So sadly, this cream didn’t work for me. I think the gel formulation may be best suited for my skin. If you are someone who has severely dry skin, I think it may work great for you.

I’m still alive!

I know it has been a while since I posted last. I’ve been pretty much hibernating during the colder months 🙂 I ended up getting pretty bad SAD this winter and didn’t have much of an interest in anything.

Now that it is spring and the clocks have gone ahead, I have started feeling a little better.

My son has finally had his autism clinic. He managed to get in a few months early due to a cancellation. Results were not what we expected. He meets the criteria for diagnosis but they are holding off a diagnosis because they noticed odd behaviours during the assessment and want him to see a neuropsychologist and a neurologist to rule out other factors that may be mimicking autism before they make the diagnosis. Understandable…but without the diagnosis, we get no help at school. Without help it is a full time job of having to make sure he doesn’t fall behind.  It will be many months before he will get refferals and see specialists.

BUT…the school counselor understands our concerns and has a meeting set up to see if she can get him the help without the diagnosis.  He is now starting to get occupational therapy and is back on the waiting list for counselling. So things are starting to come together.

As for myself, I’ve been back to working out consistently for the last 8 weeks. I just finished Fitness Blender’s 8 week FBFit and will be starting FBBooty and FBAbs on Monday. I’m excited. I’ve gained weight over the winter. More than I am comfortable with. I am looking forward to dropping that and getting more active this summer.

So that is about all for now. Just thought I would make a post with a quick update.

 

 

Update on my son and life.

Hi everyone! It’s been a while since I posted and thought I just give a little update on my son.

Not a whole lot has changed since his Asperger’s diagnosis. He was also diagnosed with a dust mite and cat/feather allergy, but this was something we had suspected since it started about a year ago…yes, it had taken that long to get an allergy test done. He was a little nervous about this since we have 3 cats that he adores and worried that we would have to give them away, but the doctor said there was no need with a daily allergy pill.

We are still waiting on the Special Services at school to come up with IEP, it is slower than I’d like, but he has been doing well enough in school despite it. His marks are a little lower in areas that he struggles with, mostly language arts and anywhere else he has to participate as a group. He is really good at math, but at first struggled with Algebra since most of the that was written instructions which he has a hard time with. Since I helped him understand how it worked (I’m ashamed to say I had to re-learn it first LOL) he has been getting good marks.

He has been doing well in his distance “therapy”. He struggles with some of the work because it is more suited for NT children. He has anxiety but has a hard time with describing it or telling us reasons or causes for it. Many of our questions are answered with “I don’t know!”. It is pretty frustrating. I think most of his issue is with his self esteem and confidence, which this program doesn’t seem to address, but I’ve been trying to help him with that myself.  He has joined the cadet program and faced one of his biggest challenges and fears, which was marching in parade night. He has so many fears of messing up or being inspected. As a mother who struggles with the same fears, I find this to be overwhelming for me as I feel a lot of empathy and fear for him at the same time.

So much of life has taken me away from a lot of what I enjoy doing. I’ve been slack with my fitness routine. I haven’t been blogging as much as I’d like. I feel a little overwhelmed and down lately, but thing seem to be falling into place as time goes on. I’ve been writing down 5 things I am grateful for each day and it helps take a lot of the focus off the negative and put it on the positive. It really makes you realize that there are so many little things that we have and experience that we take for granted. 🙂

So that is it. Not a whole lot of change but things are starting to look up.

Thanks for reading!

Aspergers diagnosis, thoughts, and emotions.

My son had his doctor’s appointment last week with the psychiatrist. I didn’t go, doctors offices are still one part of agoraphobia that I can’t seem to shake.

When we had made an appointment with the doctor for him to be accessed for Aspergers, the doctor was doubtful and said she didn’t think he had it. I can understand that, he is a pretty quiet child that doesn’t talk much in social settings so I can see why it would be hard for her or for his teachers to notice it. Heck, while I always had a bit of suspicion about it, I was even doubtful because the symptoms were very subtle.

Instead I getting a check list and checking off what I think were his “symptoms”, I made a list of the traits he displays and gave examples. The doctor was appreciative of this and after reading that and asking him and my husband some questions, she had no doubt that he had Aspergers. She official diagnosed him so that he could get immediate help at school. Normally he would go for further testing, which he will eventually, but that could take up to a year for it to happen.

Even though I had known he had Aspergers for a few weeks now, and I originally was relieved at finally having a cause of all the issues he was having, the diagnosis hit me hard. In the back of my mind I had a little bit of denial, a little bit of hope that I was wrong.

I would see pictures of him as a little boy with a big smile on his face, so full of energy and happiness. So outgoing. He had a smile that would light up a room. It is so different from how he is now. A smile or a conversation is so rare. I feel like I have a totally different child. I went from being someone who he once enjoyed to what seems to be an annoyance that he has to deal with when he wants food.

I hate being so negative about this, but it hurts. It hurts me that he has struggled in the past and no one understood him when he said he just didn’t understand things or believed him when he said he really tried. It hurts me that he will continue to struggle. I know he isn’t broken, stupid, or wrong. He is just different and it is okay to be different. I know things will get better. I know he will start getting the help he needs, or at-least I hope he will.

I’m left feeling sad, worried, anxious, hopeless, frustrated, and lonely. I find it hard to get things done. I haven’t been consistent with my workouts or with housework. I’ve been keeping pretty quiet. I am taking the time to de-stress for both myself and my family.

Instead of making this all negative, I want to mention some of his recent accomplishments. I’ve been using some CBT steps with him to set goals. He went to a convenience store checkout alone while my husband was at a distance. This is a big step for him. He also went to Army Cadets 4 times and really enjoyed himself. He has yet to do a “parade night” where he has to march and wear a uniform (this is what he dreads) but we will find out next week how he does. Yesterday he ran 1km in just under 8 minutes. So proud! They may seem small, but for a boy who is afraid of people, keeps to himself and doesn’t venture out to far, this is huge.

For parents of kids on the spectrum, how did you handle the diagnosis? Did you have a hard time with it? Any tips for me for coping, for resources, or any positive stories on yourself or your children dealing with Aspergers? For parents or for aspies, what was the higher grades like in school?  Another post full of questions 🙂 Thank you all for reading!

15327-custom-ribbon-magnet-sticker-aspergers-syndrome
*Image is not my own. I found this via google search and cannot find the original source to provide credit.

Anxiety and Aspergers?

School season has always brought on a lot of anxiety for me. Not only is it cold, flu, and stomach bug season (which is pretty scary for an emetophobe!) but it also brings on a lot of anxiety for me when it comes to my youngest son who seems to struggle in school.

My 12 year old son had been diagnosed with social anxiety last year. He had been prescribed Prozac by the child psychiatrist to help aid him with therapy. I was reluctant to let him try it. Eventually I gave in, and he did well on it for a few months. Nearly a year went by with him being on the therapy wait list and the medication was no longer doing anything for him, except causing him to gain weight. The therapist he is supposed to see recommended he try a new type of therapy that is home based and done through sessions over the phone. We decided to try it.

I gave my son the material to look at in preparation for his upcoming sessions. I asked him about it a few days later and he teared up and said that he didn’t understand any of it. None of it. He said he doesn’t know what anxiety is, and when I explained it he said he didn’t get anything like that. He just has trouble with with talking to people and such.

To make a long story short, I ended up doing a bit of research with the “symptoms” he displays. It led me to many articles on Aspergers which shocked me when I read them, because he has most of the signs. I actually do too. I showed my husband and he agreed that he seemed to be a match. We are now waiting to see the psychiatrist to be evaluated.

I am terrified over this.I feel so lost and feel like I don’t know what to do or where to start. I’ve read all I can about Aspergers. I know individuals who have it are high functioning and lead a somewhat normal life. My issue is with the school and health care systems in my area. He will most likely be put back on a waiting list for any type of therapy. The school here was of no help at all when it came to social anxiety, and I’m thinking they won’t be much help if he does get an Aspergers diagnosis. A family member of mine who is a teacher’s aid at a school here said she believes the school will not offer help unless the child is medicated. He needs the help. He has a hard time with instructions, organization, directions, motor skill and writing.

I really do not want my son to be on medication. Not right now anyways. Right now it isn’t helping him at all. He is gaining weight despite watching his calories and getting him active.  I don’t want him to gain so much that it affects his self esteem. He was also prescribed a ADD medication which the doctor says should help counter the weight gain since it will cause him to lose his appetite. I don’t want this to be the solution.

Anyways, that is that. I’m sorry if my thoughts are all over the place. I’m just trying to make sense of everything that is in my head. I have so much to write but my brain is working overtime 🙂

I’m looking for all the help I can get right now. Do you have Aspergers or have a child with Aspergers? Were you/they able to get help in school easily? Are you/they on medication? What is your biggest struggle? What helped the most? Thanks so much!