Sunday, December 11, 2011

Taming seizures with Topamax, Calcarea Carbonica, and Osteopathy

Happy Holidays, everyone!  I hope each of you is enjoying moments of peace, joy and camaraderie with your loved ones during this special time.  These days our household is filled with Christmas music, lots of sunshine, and a mixture of hope and worry over Dante and his seizures.

Abuelo gets Dante's train running again

Monday, November 14, 2011

6 weeks into Topamax for seizures

Dante enjoys his toy train
Dante has been on Topamax for six weeks now as we attempt to control his new seizure variations.  These were the types of seizures he was having before starting Topamax:
  • Myoclonic seizures:  a very quick head nod forward, followed by a jerk back, sideways or forward, any of which may cause him to fall down
  • “Nods”:  his head nods forward but there is a slight or no jerk and no fall
  • Staring seizures:  he stares without moving, drools
Two weeks into Topamax, the number of falls, nods and the frequency of him staring off into space greatly increased.  That was very concerning.  The doctor’s response was to continue increasing the medication until we hit the target dose.  I believe his brain was taking a huge hit from the medication as it slowed down the electrical storm going on.  Weeks 1, 2 and 3 on Topamax were the worst.  

Sunday, October 23, 2011

3 weeks into Topamax; the med, not the clearing!

My little cowboy.
I ran to his side after taking the picture!
It has been very difficult to write since Dante has been having the falling down seizures.  We are currently on week 3 of a new medication, Topamax, and praying non-stop that the seizures will slow down and, hopefully, stop altogether.  So far, they have only increased in frequency, putting everyone who works or lives with Dante on "high alert".  Because he can drop backwards or fall to the side at any moment, we are basically hand-holding him, or standing behind him, whenever he is on his feet.  He is only slightly annoyed to have someone "guarding" him all day long.

At this point in time, we are not using any homeopathic remedy, as we try to gauge the full effect of the new medication.  I am very interested in using a new remedy with Dante, Calcarea Carbonica.  This remedy includes the epilepsy and the developmental delays, among many other characteristics.  I learned about it after we had started the new medication, and our homeopath has been reluctant to add any variables to the mix at this time. 

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Happy Birthday, Dante!

Dante's cake, masterfully done by his babysitter, Johanna
My dear son turned eight this past Friday.  He was the happiest little boy and the prince at his school for a day.  I am so happy that was the case, as I think he deserved the most wonderful birthday celebration.  Dante has gone through so many improvements these last few months, and such a rough patch lately, that I deeply wished for a special day that was just about him.  Dante was so excited he got up earlier than usual.  I sang Happy Birthday to him many times and sent the Dr. Seuss book, Happy Birthday to You! in his bookbag with a note for the teacher to read if she had the chance.  Dante's day turned out much better than I would ever had hoped for.  Here’s the note from his teacher:

Sunday, September 18, 2011

What have we accomplished?

Dante on the pony, last week
This week has been mixed, with Dante performing well in school while having detox symptoms, plus the seizures also continue.  I don’t have many details from school because the teacher did not have time to write me, but she did say “lots of work today” and that there were “many reasons to celebrate”.  I wish I had more details!

Right now we are trying Dante’s constitutional remedy, Lycopodium Clavatum 1M, to see if it helps decrease the seizures.  We will have to wait and see.

I know Dante has been detoxing after completing the Prevnar clearing:  he is eating less, drinking lots, peeing more, drooling again (this had stopped and I hope it’s only temporary), and has darker circles under his eyes.  However, it is amazing how much better he is coping during this period.  This used to be horrible before we did the vaccine clearings and now Dante is much more tolerant while he is detoxing. 

With that in mind I thought I would do a pause and recount the lasting improvements Dante has had since we started the vaccine clearings in January 2011.  This sort of review is what keeps me motivated to continue!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Finishing up the Prevnar Clearing – more good surprises

Dante is ready to pick the 'different' object, notice his gaze
This week was exciting because Dante continued to be connected in the ways we enjoyed last week.  That is not usual at all, he has always been very inconsistent.  I’ve always felt that he knew much more than he demonstrated, but I could not prove it to his teachers because he was never consistent at school.  This week that changed!

I’m pretty sure there are many words Dante is able to read, or at least identify visually.  I decided to test him on this.  I showed him 3 words, each printed on a different piece of paper:  apple, pear, and banana.  I asked him, “where does it say apple?”, and he picked it correct.  I asked him, “Where does it say banana?”, and he also picked it correct.  I know he’s not familiar with “pear”, so I read it to him and spelled it as well.  Next I wanted to try something a little harder, so I presented the words sun, moon, and rain.  I know he knows sun and moon, so I asked him, “Where does it say rain?”  and Dante picked correctly!  What I also loved so much was that he celebrated quite a bit getting the answer right.  From there on I asked him to identify his dad’s name, my name, etc., all from three choices, and he got those all right.  That was very encouraging.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Prevnar 10M

The Prevnar 10m dose made Dante very calm and the Prevnar remedy in general has given him a longer attention span.  He has enjoyed very long walks with me without becoming fussy, we have read books for up to an hour, and today, to my surprise, he answered many questions for me without becoming tired.  I asked him different questions and presented two answer choices in papers in each of my hands.  Dante answered very well, including the questions:  Where does Grandma live? (Puerto Rico) and where does Dante live?

Words continue!  He was not feeling well on Monday and clearly told the teacher he wanted to, “Go Home”, poor baby!  But he made himself understood!  I was very proud.  He also said “Computer” when it was his turn to work on the computer at school.  Last year he only spoke at school once, so this is great.  He was sensitive to water on Thursday and said, “No, Go! No, Go!” when in the bath.  Plus he used his Proloquo2go to let me know his tooth hurt, so that got pulled out right away.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Prevnar Clearing Continued

Dante manages the Prevnar aggravation with an Epsom salt bath
The Prevnar Clearing continues, with Prevnar 10M the last potency- coming next.  Dante has been so happy and well behaved with this remedy!  However, he is aggravated on the second and third day after the remedy.  He is fussy on and off, sleeps more, has had some pretty toxic/yeasty BMs, and his seizures increase in frequency.
This week I began giving him calcium for reasons explained further down.  I am pretty amazed at how connected and verbal he has been.  Dante occasionally says a word here or there, but this week these have increased in frequency.  He has also been understanding commands and communicating his needs so well.  That has made me very happy.  Some stories of Dante this week:
  • This week was the first time ever that Dante has looked at me from his seat in the school bus; he blew kisses to say goodbye!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Re-starting the Prevnar clear

I am happy to report that things seem to be improving for Dante.  I have been optimistic because his overall wellbeing and his behavior have been so awesome since we were using the hyperbaric oxygen chamber.  On the other hand, the numerous seizures hes been having have been very depressing.  We finished the hyperbaric oxygen chamber therapy for now, and I am hopeful because the total number of daily seizures has gone down.

Riding the mall train this weekend

A week ago I gave Dante the first dose of Prevnar 200c (for more information on the dangers associated with this vaccine which we are clearing, please see the bottom of the post).  He became fussy a little while after, and then went down for a nap.  He woke up from the nap super happy and energized, and that pretty much describes what Dante has been like since then.  He has been On, very aware.  He was very resistant to putting on his helmet and also very resistant to taking his medications.  He is more aware when the medicine is coming and will quickly move his head to avoid the spoon.  His eye contact has been great and persistent; and his eyes are very aligned.  I believe that the hyperbaric oxygen chamber helped him in these same areas (except for the eye alignment), but I saw an even greater shift after the Prevnar dose. 

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Dante and the Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber

The Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber really helps with sleep!
During the last few weeks we have had a rented Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber at home to use with Dante.  His autism specialist recommended it as something that should benefit him.  I was hoping that it would help with his seizures, but that is not what we have seen.  However, if I forget about the seizures for a moment, I must admit that Dante has been doing very well on every other front.

One important detail is that during the time we have used the chamber Dante has not been doing any vaccine clearing, so he hasn’t had any discomfort associated with that.  The oxygen has provoked detox, but I am amazed at how well Dante has been doing despite that.  I have written quite a bit about how hard detoxing is for Dante, so this time it has been very different.  Here’s the list of what I have observed with the use of the oxygen chamber:

Friday, July 29, 2011

Still battling the big wave

Dante, happy inside the hyperbaric oxygen chamber
I haven’t written in some time because we’re still battling the big wave that hit us a few weeks back.  Over five weeks ago, we stopped the MMR clearing because Dante began a detox period triggered by the clearing.  We have seen this before.  It is a tough period with little visible progress until the end.  Over a week after the last MMR 1M dose, Dante began to fall unexpectedly.  Within a week these falls became more frequent; they also began to look to us like mini sudden seizures.  He would drop this head forward suddenly and fall on his bottom, totally awake when he hit the ground.  The neurologist confirmed that Dante was having myoclonic seizures and his seizure medication was increased. 

Friday, July 8, 2011

Trying to ride the big wave

The Great Wave off Kanagawa, by Hokusai
I am very thankful to have tried homeopathy for myself.  As we go through this healing process with Dante, I need all the patience and grace I can scrape up, and that is what homeopathy helps me have.  The way I think of it is that when I am facing this gigantic stressful wave, homeopathy helps me ride the wave instead of sink within it.  It helps me stay afloat, above the dark depths of depression.

At this point in time my husband and I feel like we’re navigating a huge gigantic wave and trying to keep Dante and ourselves inside our tiny boat.  We are trying to not flip over!  My remedy and my husband’s remedy are working.  We have actually had some very good moments throughout this stressful period.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

It got worse before it got better

Dante, much calmer during the week
I last posted on Sunday, before things got a whole lot worse; here’s our story.  Dante was headbanging on and off pretty much all day.  Mid-afternoon I decided to check whether one of his teeth was coming loose, thinking that may be what had him so unhappy.  That was not a good idea.  Dante was extremely sensitive and my pushing on a couple of his teeth sent him into a horrible tantrum. 

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Roughest Part of MMR Clearing

Two months ago, while on vacation, we gave Dante the MMR 1M vaccine remedy.  We noticed that clearing was definitely harder for Dante than the lower potencies.  It is no different this time around.  He had his second MMR 1M dose four days ago.  The next morning was rough; he was very uncomfortable and unable to eat much.  The day after that was very rough.  To describe ‘very rough’ – it is as though Dante becomes desperate.  He runs around crying and lies down on the floor to hit the back of his head on the floor.  He also did not want to eat much and had a lot of pain after meals while he is aggravated. The aggravations mean that Dante still has a toxic imprint from this vaccine.  If that is the case, we might want to repeat this MMR clear yet again sometime in the future.

PECs for the things that soothe Dante

Are the aggravations worth it?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Halfway through second MMR Clearing

New:  I just added a new page to the blog to help anyone looking for the summarized information on the MMR clearing.  The page is called “MMR Summary”, and you can access it via a tab on the top of each page.  Soon I will provide the same type of summary for the DTaP clearing.

This past week: Dante had his two MMR 200c doses, bringing us to the halfway point of this second MMR clearing.  Dante had the week off as his Summer Camp begins next week.  He was happy and well behaved for the most part of the week.  Towards the end of the week, things took a downturn.  He had pain after meals more often, and creamier BMs.  Yesterday was very rough, as he was extremely sensitive over any little thing and would tantrum often.  He also did not want to eat much.  I had given him two small teaspoons of my chocolate ice cream the day before and wondered whether that did it.  Today’s BMs were very yeasty, so I know that part of it was classical and painful yeast die-off.  Today Dante was much better, Thank God!  I was able to take him to Target, Old Navy, and the supermarket with me and he really enjoyed looking at everything.  He loves being out and about.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

MMR Clearing – a second time around

This week was Dante’s last week in first grade. Here are pictures from his last day of school, as we waited for the school bus. He had a very happy week. We will definitely miss his teacher Mrs. B, the classroom aide Mr. Matt, and all the wonderful staff and bus people that cared and taught Dante so lovingly this year. Dante will go to a new school for second grade.

Last day of first grade!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Inchstones instead of Milestones

This week I had dinner with a wonderful group of moms, all of whom have boys considered “low performing” – ranging from six to nine years old.  Our dinner was a blast – the Martinis really helped!- and we really had a chance to compare notes and vent over our children’s behaviors, and there were all sorts:  one boy has become very violent, two take prescription medications for their behavior, three don’t really watch TV but run around stimming, three have played with their poop and spread it (not Dante, thank God), none play purposely with their toys, none speak well, etc.  Dante is the only one with huge digestive issues, on a restricted diet (GFCF and vegetarian at this point), and who headbangs.  On the other hand, Dante is also the only one who loves hugs and is able to sit and enjoy the TV.  Understanding the common autistic symptoms helps me notice whether or not Dante is moving away from them, and I believe he is.

As we complete the vaccine clearings, I have definitely noticed lots of small positive changes in Dante. Most parents probably agree that if their kids have a lot of issues, sometimes small changes are just not noticed – because there are so many other issues left!  However, small changes count. 

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.
Lao-tzu, The Way of Lao-tzu
Chinese philosopher (604 BC - 531 BC)

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Our Timeline so far

As we pause after completing the MMR vaccine clearing, I thought it would be a good idea to see everything we have done so far since starting CEASE therapy in January, 2011.  I like to organize things visually so I created the diagram below of the steps we have taken so far this year. 

As I went through my notes I realized that the two biggest changes in Dante so far have been with his digestion and with his speech.  We have been able to expand the things he eats, although we did remove all animal protein during April.  His digestion is really good and his BMs are excellent.  We will continue to evaluate this vegetarian diet and hope that it really does help him.

As far as speech goes, I began to hear words after the DTaP clearing.  Within the MMR clear I began to hear phrases.  He's vocalizing often but I make out phrases here and there.  It's not often, maybe once every few days, but it's 1000% more than it used to be!

His behavior has been good in general, but as we tweak the diet we have had ups and downs - with more or less headbanging.  I can't wait to see that stabilize and have no headbanging.  That is the goal!

I pray that as the warm weather begins all special kids get a sunny boost of improvement and that all their parents get some welcome rest and joy.

Friday, May 13, 2011

MMR Clearing Update

Dante on pony, this week
The MMR clearing is the second vaccine clearing Dante has gone through.  The first one was for the DtaP vaccine.  Dante has reacted very strongly to the MMR vaccine clearing, much more than he did to the DtaP.  Therefore, we slowed down on this clearing while we were on vacation.  And as we slowed down the process, we got to see some very good behavior.

Last week was our first week back and Dante got the first MMR 10M dose.  His clearing symptoms started two days later, when he head-banged substantially more at school.  Mother’s day weekend was pretty rough as well.  He was very uncomfortable constantly.  My Mother’s Day gift, however, was this wonderful exchange we had while Dante was on – of all places- the potty:

Mom:  “Dante, are you done with the poopy?”
Dante:  “Inotdone”
Mom:  ?
Mom (2 seconds later): “WOW!  YOU JUST SAID “I’M NOT DONE!”  YOU ARE TALKING TO MOMMY!!!!  GOOD JOB, DUDE!  YOU’RE NOT DONE!  Of course you’re not done, you’re still sitting on the potty, aren’t you?  I LOVE YOUR WORDS!!!…”

Sunday, May 8, 2011

All About my Mother

Back in the 70's when my family was living in San Juan, my parents were raising three kids:  my two older brothers and me.  Like many moms, mine was the stay-at-home kind:  the cook, the maid, the launderer, the decorator, the gardener, the nurse, and the loving and supporting wife.  She worked very hard to stretch each dollar so that we could attend Catholic school and live in a very decent, and spotlessly clean home.  Thirty years later and now home as a visitor, it dawns on me with painful clarity just how dedicated my mother has been to truly making our lives easier.  So many of her personal pleasures were put on hold so that she could endlessly worry about how much my dad was working, what to cook for us in the evening, and how to guide and discipline the three kids.

Mami, in her 'happy' place

Monday, May 2, 2011

CousinFest and Coming Home

One of the best parts of our trip to Puerto Rico was to meet with all our wonderful cousins who live on the island.  I grew up within a large tight-knit extended family in San Juan.  We would see our cousins often in get-togethers, during highly desired sleep-overs, and on trips to the beach or around the island.  I have cousins of all ages and personality types, and am grateful for how sweet and loving they are. 
Here Dante is getting some of Juliana's brightness!!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Addendum to Water-based Detoxing Vacation post...

I can't believe I forgot to add a key piece of Dante's water based vacation: 

Dante's therapeutic water festivities with little cousins Juliana and Mariana!  My nieces are a total feast in the miniature pool my mom set up for them on her deck.  Dante is totally amused by their games.  Their joy was refreshing for us all.  

¡Gracias, Primitas!

Mariana displays her usual 'joie de vivre',
while Juliana played with a teapot
Dante is always amused by Mariana

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Water-Based Detoxing Vacation

It's been a full week since Dante and I have been on vacation with our family in Puerto Rico.  During this time he is also 3/4 of the way into his first MMR vaccine clear.  Sounds incompatible, right?  You would think that the words "vacation" and "detox" should not be on the same sentence.  All I have to say is:  Thank God for Water.

Yes, the reason we have survived these days in the sun is because of the sheer amount of water applied to all of Dante's needs.  A summary of our water-based detoxing vacation is:
Dante's connected smile

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Homeopathy makes a Tropical Paradise even Better

Dante, soaked from Grandma's water hose

Yesterday Dante and I traveled to Puerto Rico to visit our family. I was a little concerned because Dante had not slept prior to the flight as much as he usually does, and I knew he would get sleepy and uncomfortable on the plane. I always get stressed out about how he will do on the plane when we travel.  I want him to be happy and I don't want to inconvenience the rest of the passengers. Later on I was telling my husband how surprised I was about how calm I had felt during our whole trip! I slept only 5 hours the night of the trip, yet I was not stressed out nor in a hurry – I felt awesome! My own homeopathic remedy is really helping me to be very well balanced.  That makes any vacation truly enjoyable!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

More days into the MMR Clearing...

First MMR Dose
Dante had his first ever MMR dose nine days ago.  With that first dose, here were his clearing symptoms and some good things observed:
- Huge appetite, waking up early to eat
- He was very angry and desperate (with headbanging) when hungry, this passed after he ate.
- Spitting out food often
- Multiple bowel movements, many creamy or fluffly
- Warmer hands (his hands are usually cold)
- More tired and sleepy than usual
- Some hyperactivity, passed quickly
Dante swims backwards on his own initiative

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Some lessons and the start of MMR clearing…

New Discovery: Coconut water,
Tried and True:  Probiotic
Note:  This post is about clearing the toxic imprint from vaccines homeopathically.  A lot of children are left with non-resolved issues after a vaccine, like my son Dante.  This blog is about the process we follow to help Dante detox from the vaccines and become the full boy he is meant to be.

We’ve taken a few weeks longer than expected to begin the MMR vaccine clearing, but I won’t complain.  These past few weeks helped to somewhat stabilize Dante after the DTaP clearing, got him over a cold, and taught me a few things before we move forward.  Some key things I’ve learned, and some I have had to re-learn are:

  • No matter what you may think, Do NOT stop the probiotics!
On several occasions I have blamed Dante’s probiotics for an increase in his pain and headbanging, and have stopped giving him the daily dose.  The truth is, when yeast die-off occurs, those negative symptoms are going to increase and it is not because of the probiotic!  
I want the good bacteria to be there when the yeast leaves.  If probiotics are stopped and weeks pass, Dante’s behavior gets worse, he gets more pain, more intolerance, and with it more headbanging.  Stopping the probiotics actually works against what I want to achieve.  So I had to re-learn to NOT stop the probiotics.  Time has taught me that probiotics help Dante come back to his best behavior as soon as soon as any aggravation passes, including any yeast die-off.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Dante's Deep Dive ~ On Film!

Today Dante's school teacher reported, "Dante worked great this morning!  I mean EXCELLENT!"  "*did a beautiful job working today!*"  YEAY!!!  We're working on getting those news every day!  

This past Wednesday Dante also had an awesome swimming lesson.  He was very interested in all the activities and I was able to film him in action!  This post is a tribute to his teacher, Ms. Karyn, who always finds creative ways to take him to the next level.  First, I wanted to capture the joy he shows when first stepping into the pool.  It is as though he can't contain himself with pure excitement...   

Dante is joyful as he steps into the pool this week 
(more movies...)

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Other children are great teachers

This week has been rough for Dante because he again displayed yeast die-off symptoms like in December and January (pain on and off until 11am, very thirsty, very hungry, did not really want to work), and this morning he had a runny nose.   That means that part of his attitude this week was the cold coming on. I am glad that we still haven’t received the MMR remedy, so I don’t feel the pressure to begin that clearing just yet.

Dante with his cousin, Angela, 2008

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sometimes Mom complicates things for Dante!

This past week proved to me yet again that it is a very bad idea to try different things on Dante at the same time, even if all these things are supposed to help him.  Dante is very sensitive so even things that work for most of the other children may have a negative impact on mine.  Let me describe what happened.
Dante with his awesome swim teacher, Ms. Karyn

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Moms know for sure

After a third dose of the DtaP 10M seven days ago, I believe Dante has been clearing out the many ear infections he had when he was a baby.  Why I think that is a long story, but here it is…

While Dante naps, mom blogs...
This week I had the pleasure of speaking with two other moms whose boys are also clearing vaccines using homeopathy.  It was so awesome to compare notes and notice all the similarities in our experiences.  Mom support has been the best blessing to come after I decided to blog about Dante’s process.  I encourage anyone else out there who is interested in this method, or is using it, to write a comment so that we may get in contact.  Everything changes when you share your experience with others.  I have learned so much.  These exchanges help me better understand how the process works to heal my child.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

DTaP continued

Dante, being very good at the supermarket
On page 65 of Amy Lansky’s book, Impossible Cure – The Promise of Homeopathy, Lansky states, “Autism and other behavioral problems have also been linked to the DPT vaccine (for diphteria, pertussis, tetanus), because of convulsions or cerebral inflammation that occurred hours or days after administration of the vaccine [Coulter 90].”  This statement matches some information I posted on 2.23.11, where I listed the symptoms associated with the DPT vaccine, as investigated by a British homeopath.  Within these symptoms the homeopath listed convulsions and epilepsy.  This information, echoed in different publications, matches some of my observations of Dante over the last week.

Monday, February 28, 2011

Post DTaP Summary

Dante just had his last dose of DTaP yesterday and I am super happy with the results so far.  First of all, most symptoms post-remedy have lasted a very short time and have not been difficult at all.  I wonder if the fact that he was using homeopathy for over a year before we started CEASE is currently helping him with the clearings...I don't know.  Anyway, he had a wonderful weekend!  

Dante went sledding on the snow for the first time!  He went with his babysitter’s family, her 8 year old son and his friends.  Dante had a great time with no tantrums!  He sled down four times, in spite of the fact that he complained climbing up the hill, of course.  He would have preferred to be carried up the hill! 

He is showing more age-appropriate behavior, standing casually and patiently while us adults chat.  He also engaged for a little while in a video conference call with my brother and his baby girl.  Dante also stayed with me on the couch while watching the Oscars last night, instead of standing by the TV requesting one of his DVDs be put on!  

Lastly, Dante is requesting more and more to play with his wood letters, spelling out words!  His desire to learn really warms my heart.  Today his babysitter tested him placing by 4 letters on the board and requesting that he give her a specific one.  He got 3 letters correct before he got tired (Yes, we need to work on that stamina!), and he got 3 colors correct on a different test she tried.  He is asking for this work every day, whereas before we would be able to do it maybe once, and then for months he would no longer show interest.  

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Post DTaP 1M: Joy and Some Initiative!

Dante has completed the two doses of DtaP 1M between Friday and Monday.  He has had very happy days with mostly good things happening.  Below are the positives (+) and the not great (-) things observed.

+ I am SO HAPPY, Dante’s digestion seems to be improving!!!  He hasn’t had Motrin for 3 weeks!!!!  That is huge, since he sometimes needs it several times a week.  This weekend I made him a smoothie with his first mango ever and he did not have pain the next day.  He loved his smoothie!  Yeay!

+ I decided to test Dante’s ability to identify words.  Dante was thrilled.  I wrote two different words on separate post-it notes and either present them to him side by side from my hands, or sticking up side by side on the table in front of him.  He would pick his selection and then hand me the post-it note.  He chose correctly:  dog (vs. cat), two (vs. one), papa (vs. mama), No (vs. Si), and fish (vs. dog).  When he got tired he stopped paying attention and got up from his chair and walked away, so I went to do something on the computer.  A little while later he walked up to me and handed me the Sharpie marker I had used to write the words with, and I couldn’t figure out why he was doing that.  Next he went and sat at his table, where we were working choosing words.  That’s when I realized he wanted more word work!  Dante never wants more work!  That is a miracle indeed for my boy!!!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Oh, so this is what a vaccine clearing can look like!

This week I had a better understanding of what parents go through when their child reacts to a vaccine “clearing” and let me tell you: it is very stressful!  If you read my post from Monday you know how our week started out.  Monday was definitely the hardest day this week.  Dante did become very happy in the afternoon, however.  In fact, when I asked him, “How are you?”, he actually responded via the ipad, “I’m having a tough day”. 
So that is some good news and bad news all rolled into one!  I would never have expected him to choose so appropriately a response!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Not the most fun day in Dante’s World

Bright red cheeks at 8 months 
On those days I decide to indulge in some measure of self-pity, the one thing that comes to mind is how high a price we pay for any slip-up with a child who has autism.  At least in the case of Dante, a missed dose of medicine, eating the wrong food, having too much probiotic, you name it, it may have a dramatic impact on him.  I’ve often been very hard on myself for forgetting this or that, imagining that I could have prevented yet another downturn during Dante’s day.  I Thank God for helping me see the light so that I chose to try homeopathy for myself.  Since I’ve been taking it, the days of self-pity have been pretty minimal.  My mom remarked to me just yesterday, when I told her how much better I cope and how tolerant I am when on my remedy: “Well, that’s what Lexapro does for me!”  :-)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Clearing the DtaP Vaccine – 30c potency

Dante had his first DtaP remedy dose on Friday, Feb. 4th, and had a fantastic weekend following that. He had his second DtaP dose three days later, on Monday. These are my notes on these days after the remedy:

• I began noticing symptoms from the clearing on the third night after the first dose, he slept a bit more than usual and I had to wake him for school.
• He was more tired than usual (especially on that third day), slept longer at night, and had half hour naps at school. His energy has increased as the days passed after the remedy. He went to bed on his own when tired!
• For a couple of days his hands and head were very sensitive. He got upset when I put lotion on his hands, put his shirts on over his head, and also when I brushed his teeth.
Today: Dante and Luna enjoy
the trampoline in very different ways
• His appetite went down in general.
• He was very happy at school, his words continue, and he’s been pretty easygoing. He approximates his babysitter’s name and called me “AM” (instead of “MA”? Yeah, I don’t get that either, but he’s used it with me for a while).
• He continues to play more on his own.
I will report again in a few days on how he is doing after the clearing symptoms pass.

Please wish us continued progress!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Beginning Dante’s First “Clearing” – DTaP

Sacc Off is a good thing!
This past week was Dante’s second week on Saccharum Officinale 6x or “Sacc Off”, and the news is very good. He has been SO different than before this remedy; each day he just seems happier and more connected. Of course coming off of a terrible yeast die-off any change seems good, but this isn’t any change. This is definitely something better. If impairment were like an onion, I can definitely see these very fine layers of issues peeling away -- the changes are so subtle but so noticeable.
So in general, Dante was more easygoing during the week. Some specific good things (+) and not great (-) things we observed were:

Thursday, February 3, 2011

You can actually measure this thing!

One way to measure progress with any approach for autism is to use the Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist (ATEC) to evaluate your child before (referred to as "baseline") and then after (or throughout) the treatment.  Even though I have a detailed list of Dante's characteristics on the "Starting Point" page, I really like the idea of an actual metric.  Well, 'like it' is not the best way to put it.  I mean, Dante scores closer to the severe than to mild autism, but that is where we are now.  This is one test were a lower score is a better score.  

I present below the four areas measured by the ATEC score:  Speech, Sociability, Sensory/Cognitive Awareness, and Health/Physical/Behavior.  Each scale has a different range, and is distributed according to the results of the baseline scores for the first 1358 children assessed with it.  I highlighted where Dante's current scores fall in bright yellow.  The first column below shows the percentile each row falls within. Which means, for example, that if severe autism is 100%, Dante's speech falls within 60-69% of that.  Actually his total score (which was 86), also falls within 60-69% of the spectrum.  The goal is to get that number as low as possible; I would like him to totally fail this Autism test!

If you complete the ATEC Checklist for your child (which doesn't even take 20 minutes), you get the results and each of the questions with your answers emailed to you immediately.  I want to thank the mom blogger for The Boy Who Walked Backwards for reminding me of this test.  I had attempted to fill it out years ago from a different site and it never worked for me.  This time I printed out the results and made some notes on why I answered some of the questions the way I did, just to be clear on what my initial assumptions were for the next time I assess Dante.

So an 86 total score it is.  Sounds like a "B", but it's really not.  We're aiming for a full blown "F-" on this one!  Tomorrow we begin the first vaccine clearing, DTaP.  The great week I posted about has continued, so we begin the clearings on a very high note.  I hope Dante's body is perfectly positioned to work through this next phase very successfully!


Autism Treatment Evaluation Checklist ATEC Report

Monday, January 31, 2011

A week into Saccharum Officionale...

One thing that I like to note, as much to myself as to everyone reading, is that when our children our detoxifying, their skills take a noticeable hit.  I believe that when the toxins are moving out of their systems they are flying all over the place, causing havoc for the children.  After the toxins finally leave it is then interesting to see the skills return, and hopefully advance.  Dante has had terrible yeast die-off since early December.  That was my basis for comparison as he began taking this new remedy a little over a week ago and I must say:  the report is pretty good.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Does the remedy Saccharum Officinale fit Dante?

Saccharum Officinale is the first remedy we started Dante on after learning about CEASE therapy.  This remedy, said to help with disorders in the metabolism of carbohydrates, is made from the fresh juice of the sugar-cane.
Dante, looking connected at 3 years old

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Okay, so now we're really starting CEASE...

As a recap, Dante has been using homeopathy since Fall 2009.  We definitely saw a big improvement after a month using Lycopodium Clavatum, but we would really like to increase the rate of progress.  Dante’s homeopathic physician, Dr. Doug Falkner, M.D., recommended we both read about CEASE and decide whether that would be a good option for Dante.

CEASE Book by Tinus Smits, M.D.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

The best gift ever

Today Dante was in such a good mood that I decided to brave a forty minute drive across town to visit our friend Mariela.  It was a very special visit for us.  You see, a couple of weeks ago Mariela got the best gift ever and our visit was to celebrate it with her.  Two Saturdays ago Mariela picked up the phone and the person on the other end of the line said, “We have an offer of a liver for you.”  Both Mariela and her brother thought it was a joke.  It wasn’t. 

That is one happy Mariela!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Good Stuff

Ok, so you really had to see it all lit up!
This year I put up a Christmas tree I actually felt proud of.  I am a happier person now that my PMS lasts maybe a couple of days, is not really painful, and doesn't turn me into an awful intolerant witch.  I am a considerably happier wife because my husband is less argumentative.  The words "high performance team" sometimes come to mind nowadays to describe our household dynamics.  Some months ago Dante began requesting to play with his dad now that dad is so much more fun.  We are all feeling better and coping better.