Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Eew Yuk!

OK.. here goes. Twice last week my son's preschool sent home a note that stated quite matter-of-factly that one of the other children in the class had head lice. Included with this very polite note was a very professional set of instructions of what I'm supposed to do to ensure that any potential new infestation is kept under control. And of course he has very long hair because there's no way he's sitting still for me to cut his hair and so what cutting gets done must be done when he's asleep. But that's another post. His teacher assured me they hadn't found any on him but were informing me of the potential, regardless. Anyway.. for now I'm all freaked out about the whole lice thing and just kind of living in denial hoping that this would be something that would bypass us (and my 2 other kids) and we could go on with our lives as if nothing had happened at all. Then the most amazing thing happened this morning. My son brought me a tissue and MADE ME TAKE IT from him. It wasn't good enough that I might just take it from him in a normal manner.. this transfer of object HAD PURPOSE! Now about then I happened to look at him directly and noticed that he had a spot on his head where the hair had been mussed into oblivion.. you know.. the sort of thing that could only have been caused by the repeated rubbing of a tissue into that spot. Now.. I find it all too easy to dismiss the strange behaviors of this odd little 4 year old boy.. but something compelled me to look more closely at this tissue that I'd been quite forcefully given possession of. And there it was. Despite my pleas to the lice gods I and my family had been sucked into this vortex of hell. Now.. this is new to me but my googling (is that a word?) showed me that it's not really anything to be too upset about and we'll just have to stay on top of it.. but the fascinating part of it all is that this kid, with whom I am unable to have a verbal conversation of any kind (other than reading books out loud) had not only figured out what was going on but how to remove it on his own, thereby resolving the immediate problem without any help from me. He never ceases to amaze me!
You'll have to excuse me.. I'm off to wash my hair! =)

Saturday, January 26, 2008


So one day I'm browsing around on the internet and I landed on a blog that I read regularly and got to thinking how great it was that there was this place that people with the same interests could gather and read up on what's going on in each others lives. I thought about how cool it would be to have such a place that was dedicated to the topic of hyperlexia as I'd had a bit of trouble finding such a place before. And later that day, in an almost magical way, I had it suggested to me that I start my own. And so this blog was born. My hope for this venue is that you can come and learn and contribute your experiences as well to make it a richer place for all of us. We each have learned on our own a tremendous amount about this disorder and sharing that knowledge is key if we're going to do all we can to help those we love. I've had it shown to me that little, seemingly insignificant experiences can have a tremendous impact on the growth and emergence of other, seemingly unrelated elements of development. So let's all share a little and maybe we can help each other to grow. In that spirit of sharing I'd like to send out a great big "thank you" and provide a link that you may find useful if you or anyone you love is struggling with an autism related disorder.

Where Are You Autism

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Movie Credits

Another example of my son's early reading abilities came in his reaction to the end credits of a movie. Now granted, they usually are accompanied by the music score from the film, which in itself might be enough to get him to come running, but he loves to watch the credits roll by! When he was younger, around 2, we would joke that they were his favorite part of the movie. I've heard other parents of hyperlexic kids say the same thing so here we have yet another example of the unique behaviors that go hand in hand with this disorder. I love to hear him blurt out things like "Production Designer" or "In Between Artist". Those certainly are not words he's been hearing anywhere.. what a kick!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Well it finally happened. I've learned to accept that my son doesn't say "I love you, Mommy" like most 4 year olds should.. but when he planted a kiss square on my lips the other day it made all my waiting worth it. He's always loved to be hugged and his favorite place is on Mommy or Daddy's lap.. but a kiss? I never thought I'd see the day! And to have 10 kisses in a row.. well it was just more than my little heart could take and it just melted. =)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

A Great Game!

It's sometimes hard to play with my son as he doesn't really interact in a "typical" way. He has yet to learn how to catch a ball.. but we're working on it. He's bored with his letter blocks and doesn't really like playing with the refrigerator magnets too much anymore. But we recently found a great game that he LOVES! On a doodle pad or even just a piece of paper we'll write a word leaving out a letter or two, depending on the length of the word and its complexity. He'll fill in the missing letter(s) and then say the word. Try it and let me know how yours did. =)

Picky Eating

Even as an infant my son was always picky about the foods he would accept. He spent his 2nd year surviving on almost nothing but a strawberry yogurt and milk concoction that we mixed up. And even now he'll only eat potatoes if they're fried.. not mashed or boiled or roasted.. has to be fried. He is finally accepting apple slices and raisins but he still doesn't eat any vegetable other than peas.. and even those are spotty. His teacher says I shouldn't complain too badly.. she has other kids who will only eat 2 foods! So I won't complain. But it does seem to be another common trait among this group. What I have found about this is that you just never know what he'll accept. I've had him eat spicy Thai food and just this morning he had a few bites of my homemade orange rolls, which he has never even ventured to try before! So if yours is a picky eater just keep trying stuff.. they surprise you!

Way Back Then...

In my case my son wasn't talking by 18 months so we started to do the preliminary research. I learned about late talkers. I learned about autism. I learned about all kinds of things that didn't really fit. My child wasn't violent. He didn't have tantrums or bang his head into the wall. He didn't rock. He didn't sort or line up toys. Despite all of these "didn'ts" there were a few things that did fit with autism. He didn't respond to his name. He never pointed and he loved to spin the wheels on toy cars. It was this fascination with spinning things that led me back into the world of autism disorders when, by the age of 2, he still hadn't begun to communicate with us. I still didn't buy the "A" label as there were so many components of that disorder that didn't fit.. not the least of which was that this kid LOVED to be held. Any personal interaction was welcomed with wide open arms. Then one day I stumbled on a page that referred to a disorder by the name of hyperlexia. This seemed to fit. I had never really considered his fascination with letters and numbers as a potential sign as his older sister was a very precocious girl and was indeed reading at the age of 2. She was also talking to us and behaving like a "neuro-typical" child so we had no concerns for her development. But it would seem that in his case it was very important indeed. Thus began the search to learn more about this splinter.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

What is Hyperlexia Disorder?

Some say hyperlexia is a type of autism. Some say hyperlexia is it's own unique disorder and should not be placed under the "A" umbrella. Regardless, it is a developmental disorder manifesting in the remarkable ability of very young children to read. Hyperlexic children are typically fascinated by letters and will often recite letter names as their first words. All of this would be fine if it were not for the varying degrees of limitations in social and communicative abilities that so commonly accompany this amazing skill. It is this similarity to some autistic traits that leads some to believe that it's just a form of autism.

Check back soon!

Hello! Please bear with me as I get all my information together. In my efforts to find information on Hyperlexia I have found that some of the forums out there haven't been updated for a long time and there was no good place to go to learn about this disorder. The blog format seems to be a good answer to that problem. Lurk, post, share.. but whatever you do please learn and help others to learn who may benefit from this blog. Thank you again for coming!