Like I had said before, this is going to take me some time to write because of the tender nature of the subject for me. With that being said, this is part 2 of my journey with Kali girl.
After the initial scare with Kali when she was a newborn had passed, the next few years were what I would call, normal. Anyone knows that no 2 children are alike. We are all so different and so perfect in our own ways. Well, that’s how I looked at my girls. My oldest was extremely bright since birth. She was always that happy child and overly creative. Kali was a little different. Not different bad way, different like every child is from one another. She was such a happy little girl. Always smiling and loved the camera. My little poser. She has always had the sweetest spirit, very loving and always had these eyes that when you looked in them, you knew that she was a deep well. Lets fast forward a few years.
We are now at age 3 and my sister and I are both coaching girls soccer for both Kali and Chloe, my oldest. If you want to learn patience, come from competitive sports and coach 3 and 5 year old girls soccer. 🙂 We were hosting a team party for both the teams in order to talk to all the parents. There was about 25 kids in my house at one time. Kali didn’t want to go hang out with the kids, she wanted to be around the adults. Ok, fine. No big deal to me. At the time, my sister was a teacher and was originally going to be teaching special education. While we spoke to the parents, Kali walked around fixated on a soccer ball, but only having one sided conversations. She was what we call, “Stuck in her own world”. My sister turned to me and said, “I think you may want to get her tested…”. Now, I’m not the type of parent that’s in denial, I realized there was something going on that day that didn’t seem “right”. We took her into her Dr.’s to get evaluated and they diagnosed her with Asperger Syndrome. Now, I didn’t know a thing about this. Being me, I dove in, read everything and studied everything I could get my hands on. Autism wasn’t rampant then, there wasn’t a lot of information about it really. it was still considered a newer diagnosis. I soon realized that she in fact, did not have Aspergers but they really didn’t know what was happening. Fun fact, Aspergers can not be properly diagnoses til the child reaches at least Jr high….So there you go. She was 3, not 13.
After this first diagnosis, things started to spiral down hill fast…Kali was then diagnosed with Pica and started eating dirt, glass, rocks and other non edible substances. She would take the glass balls off the Christmas tree and eat them like they were apples. Glass everywhere. She ate my Best of Sinatra CD…like chewed it up….such a good CD too. (shes was never hurt, don’t worry) She was now in preschool and was tested in. They had her under the Autistic Spectrum. She had also been diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder. Basically, this means that when we need to move our arm for some reason, our brain signals our arm to move. This is a process that happens without us having to give much thought about it. Kali’s brain wasn’t working that way. If she needed to move her arm, she would study the other children on how to do so, then, eventually her brain would send a signal to her arm to move. This is the easiest way for me to describe it. Nevertheless, this was extremely difficult to get Kali to respond to anything because her brain wasn’t processing it quick enough. So, I have a soon to be 3 1/2 year old who has (according to the Dr.’s) Aspergers, ASD, SPD and Pica. This was a lot to chew on, fast. I didn’t have time to sit around and feel sorry for myself. Early intervention is key, so I got to work fighting for Kali. We thought our life was beginning to get some kind of order to it. Then, everything changed….
I remember the day like it was yesterday. I went to go lie down, I had been in my room for maybe 30 minuets and I hear my husband yelling Kali’s name. I knew something was terribly wrong. Its that sense you get as a mother that something is very wrong. I flew out of bed and ran in the room. My husband had Kali standing straight up. Except her feet weren’t touching the ground. She was stiff as a board, non responsive, not breathing, jaw clenched and eyes rolling back in her head. My husband was panicked, absolutely beside himself. “She wont breathe! She wont breathe!! Come on baby girl, come on!! BREATHE!!” I immediately called 911. This went on for what seemed like forever. Everything slowed way down. I could hear the ambulance in the distance and ran to go open the door. They rushed in and she had finally come out of it. They took her, again, by ambulance to the hospital. I was in the back of the ambulance with her. She was really out of it. Very tired. The paramedic tried asking her questions and she wasn’t responding. They rushed her in, she was on oxygen and a very scared little girl. She had a seizure. A very large one and this may have not been her first. My brain was scrambled and I couldn’t breathe. This is not how I envisioned my life! What did I do wrong?! Its funny how we think situations like this are a punishment. Its easy for our brain to think that this child was “broken” in some way, that I did something to “cause” this to happen. I was only just 23 when I found out how strong I was, when Kali first stopped breathing and 26 when I found out how completely wrong my thought process had been…then started my journey….
This was Kali right before everything changed. I have yet to see her that smile like that again. Change is comin though!