Thursday, November 24, 2011


Today is Thanksgiving.

I could go on and on about all the wonderful things I'm thankful for; topping the list would be my awesome husband and amazing kids.

This is the first holiday in 12 years The Hubs and I have spent apart, and while I was/am a little (okay, more than a little) bummed about it, a few wonderful friends had me over for Thanksgiving dinner. It was delicious, fun, and not lonely :)

And to add to the fun, today Audrey ate some stuffing, and JT ate blueberry pop tarts (he ONLY ate strawberry before, and anyone familiar with autism and eating can tell you how big of a deal it is for them to try something new - even if it seems small!). I'd call it a win!

I hope everyone else had a wonderful day, too!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011


I got my transfer through Starbucks!

I am super excited. I met this store manager on my last trip down there, and while she didn't think she had anything, by some miracle a spot opened up!

Here are a few pics of my new work home:

Sunday, November 20, 2011

When it hits me...

Most of the time, I don't notice JT's progress.

I think it's a combination of trying to bury the old memories (I swear I have PTSD from the early days of aggression and non-stop screaming when he was 2-3) and just seeing it unfold slowly - so I'm not seeing the overall monumental steps he's taken.

Then every once in a while, something happens where I think, "Oh my God. This is INCREDIBLE!"

Yesterday was one of those days.

This time last year, we had a snowstorm here in Central NC. I had to take JT to the grocery store to buy groceries for the few days we'd likely be stuck inside. It was a disaster. He tried to knock things off the shelves, threw himself on the floor, even tried to toss a case of bottled water on the floor. To clarify, I never took JT to the grocery store back then because this was not uncommon. I just had no choice that day.

Fast forward to yesterday. I was in the bottled water aisle with a calm, happy JT. He was talking my ear off, giggling with his sister and picking out items for his lunch this week.

Suddenly it clicked, and I had to stop. What the hell happened?! I can't even explain in words how amazing and astounding JT's progress has been. Or how lucky we've been (because trust me, I know not everyone is as lucky as we are). But how, in one year, did we go from single words, not going in public, constant tantrums, anger, rage, diapers... to THIS? This happy go lucky, funny, ornery, smart little guy?

The enormity of his progress just paralyzed me for a moment.

And I said my thank you's to God, the universe, and whoever else played a part. I kissed his head, laughed at his silliness, and moved onto the next thing he wanted for his lunch next week. And I prayed that in a year, I can have that moment again.

Saturday, November 12, 2011


I just imported Audrey's and JT's blogs to this one - trying to manage 3 blogs is just a little too much.

Just in case anyone still goes to those addresses, it will redirect to this blog, so it's all good :)

That means it'll be more convenient and less confusing when I post (no double posting, etc).

All done, promise I won't clog up your Blog Reader again!

Friday, November 11, 2011



Today, JT had to get immunizations.

It was sad.

We've been behind for a while... even though JT never had a reaction to shots, I know there are a lot of moms of kids with autism who swear their kids had a reaction and lost skills or developed major issues. Yes, I've read the scientific articles that they don't. But I still question it in the back of my mind, and we've come so far... it would CRUSH me if we lost any of it.

But I know that if JT were to acquire any of the illnesses that vaccines prevent and I hadn't done it (which is more likely than a reaction to said vaccines) I would never forgive myself.

So today we braved the shots.

It was sad holding him still to get not one, not two, but FOUR separate injections :(

He was SO brave, though. He didn't fight me, he just cried a little and was a little distraught after we were done. No big tears, no fits, no meltdowns.

He finished, and was wiping the tears off his face, and turned around and said, "Now I not gon get sick, momma." Yay for understanding! He was listening when I told him we get shots so we don't get sick, and knew what was happening.

Then they brought him the treat basket, and he picked out two suckers, and promptly turned and gave one to Audrey.

I should probably mention that she cried for him more than he cried for himself.

Definitely feel blessed that I have two kids who love each other so much... so sweet.


Yet again, the Duzan fam is moving!

A few weeks ago, I got a note from Audrey's teacher about how she was getting 100 percent (or higher) on all her benchmarks, yet for the first time EVER, her scores on schoolwork were dropping - all from simple errors. She has also been super emotional at home, especially on weekends The Hubs comes. Then, JT's been having issues with panic attacks at school (hyperventilating and having to do breathing exercises), he's getting a little more trigger-happy with the moodiness.

I decided we needed to try to get back together as a family as soon as possible, since being apart was obviously having a pretty negative effect on the kids.

And... My boss agreed to a transfer, so we're all clear! I have to get in touch with store managers in the area so that I can get my transfer.

The Hubs found us a house in Huntersville that's REALLY cute.

I got in touch with the new school district, and with JT's recent changes in his IEP (did I mention he's now in circle/literacy time, library, art, music and PE with the general education classes, with his ONLY accommodation being sitting in close proximity to the teacher/materials? Yeah, that's my boy!), the coordinator we'll be going through said he would be recommending placement in their resource-type program AT HIS BASE SCHOOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That means my kids will be going to the same school, and JT will be mostly mainstreamed :) I don't need to even explain how happy that makes me (and let me tell you how excited Miss Audrey is that she can walk her brother to class!).

So, all that to say, we're going to be residents of Huntersville as of December 1.

A big, scary change, but we're hoping for the best :)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

"20 train number"

I just walked into the living room, where JT was sitting with the iPad.

He had the YouTube app open, and had gone into the search function.

In the search field, he had typed in "20 train number".

He was looking for one of his favorites - a video called the number train.

Smart little man!

"20 train number"

I just walked into the living room, where JT was sitting with the iPad.

He had the YouTube app open, and had gone into the search function.

In the search field, he had typed in "20 train number".

He was looking for one of his favorites - a video called the number train.

Smart little man!