Pure Matters

I was offered a great opportunity by Pure Matters a month or so ago, and I jumped at the chance! I’m a huge advocate of healthy living, especially for my kids, so when they offered me free samples of the Pure Matters Sugar-Free Multi-Vitamin Gummies for kids and the Pure Matters Complete Biotic , I was thrilled.


GUMMIES: First and foremost, I love love love that these children’s vitamins are sugar free. It’s so hard to find sugar free vitamins that taste good, and these definitely fit the bill. In fact The Older, even with his aversion to foods that are squishy and he isn’t familiar with, pronounced, “I want you to get these every single every time you buy me vitamins. These are super awesome!” The Younger liked them too, although her sentiments were a little less vocalized; I believe there was a “Mmmmmm” and a “Yummy!” in there somewhere though… These are gluten free and vegetarian, and there’s also no milk, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, gelatin… My only disappointment was that there is no iron supplementation listed, and since The Older is borderline anemic, I have to either switch this vitamin to something else or get him an extra iron supplement, which is probably what I’ll end up doing since he loves these so much.

BIOTIC: I have had (ahem) “issues” all my life with staying regular. I can go d-a-y-s without visiting the bathroom to go potty, and it messes with how I feel. I get bloated, tired, and feel generally icky a lot of the time, and I’ve just chalked it up to being something I’ve had to live with. I’ve tried probiotics before, but I could never keep up! The majority I tried indicated that I had to take them 3 times a day with meals, then one before bed, and let’s face facts: I am not that committed. I’d start but take things halfheartedly, and then I’d just give up. So, imagine how happy I was that I only had to take 2 of these, and they could be taken at the same time! I started them the day I got them, and I have to tell you that I am beyond thrilled with the results. Within 3 days things were moving, I was feeling better, and I had none of the side effects that go along with actual stimulants. I have taken these every day since, and I have no plans to stop!

I hardly ever do reviews on my blog, but I had to do this one because I am so happy with this brand of health products. I’m even going to switch from my usual brand of B complex vitamins to Pure Matters as well because the price is right, and I am so pleased with the results of these other two products so far :-)

Madder Than I Thought

I usually don’t use this blog for venting, but I had to get this out before it choked me. I only put it here because I know a lot of you are struggling with the diagnoses your children have and with medical agencies/personnel, and this has a lot to do with those issues. I thought venting about what’s happened to us might show you that you are not alone in your frustrations!

I used to work for a nonprofit agency.  We worked with the mentally ill (my department was responsible for the criminally insane and incompetent to proceed to trial felons), and we were funded through our local DCF office. We had to account for everything we did through activity logs, and each action we completed had a different code attached to it. There were all sorts of codes for client care, and there was even one for administration duties. We couldn’t bill outright for those, but we had to have one for things like paperwork and certain other non-direct client work.

I’ll get to the point in a minute, but I also want to add this: It’s no secret that The Older has been diagnosed with a few challenging disorders recently, both physical and mental. I’ve been working very hard at keeping things in order, making the right decisions, and doing everything by the book so that he doesn’t have to suffer the ill-effects of anything. He has a pulmonologist, a neurologist, an audiologist, and soon a speech therapist. He wears hearing aids. He has to take 3 different medications every day, and he has to see at least 3 different doctors a month. There is unyielding paperwork to fill out, calls to make, appointments to drive to, and specialists he has to see both in and out of school. He has handled it all wonderfully, and I think The Daddy and I have been doing a great job keeping communication between us, the school, and all his doctors open and honest. There are a lot of days that we all want to throw up our hands and say “screw it all!” but we don’t because it isn’t an option. We continue forward because this is the life we have, and we will get through all off its complexity as a family, tears and all.

Anyway, I was told about a great subcategory to Medicaid in November, and I jumped at the chance to get The Older assigned. Basically there are a group of ‘approved physicians’ in this group, and each child is assigned a nurse care coordinator. They are your ‘go to’ guy in this maze of health care, and you call them with questions or if you think something should be getting done that isn’t. You can, I’m sure, understand why I was so excited about this, right? Someone to help me keep everything organized and someone medically trained who could give me advice and suggestions? SIGN US UP! I ran around to get paperwork, fill it out, get it to them in time for the next month’s enrollment, and then called to follow up daily. I was thrilled when we were approved for December, and I was finally able to breathe a bit easier.

Until January anyway, because as of January 1st, the State dropped The Older from Medicaid. I was given little notice, and I was frantic because we’re talking thousands of dollars a month sometimes that our guy needs in the form of therapy and doctors and such! This meant getting him approved for the State health care, and you can’t apply for that until your child isn’t covered by insurance. So, that’s a minimum month of no coverage.

But, that isn’t even what upset me. What absolutely makes my gut churn are these “professionals” who claim to love children and want the best for them, who sit there and hug you while you cry and promise they will do anything they can for your child… But they fail to mention that it’s only if they can bill your insurance ! If they can’t, they basically forget your child even existed, let alone sat in their office for hours at a time and grew to trust them because they promised they would make their lives better. They can’t even bother with a phone call to let you know they’re aware of what happened and ask if there’s anything you need from them. I called and emailed just about every person who claimed to be “invested” in my son, and not one person bothered to get back to me. No one returned my call when I left a message begging for help because I was so lost, and not one “professional” bothered to contact me to see if there was anything that could be done in the meantime so that The Older didn’t get confused or behind with his therapy, or suffered from not being medicated. You know who did call me? Office staff to tell me that since they ran his Medicaid for his upcoming appointment and saw it was discontinued, they went ahead and cancelled his appointment because they were sure that I didn’t want to just reschedule seeing as there was no upcoming insurance for him.

I can’t even begin to describe how repulsed I am by all of this. When I was working, even if something was ‘non-billable,’ I made calls to people who left me messages about their families. I made calls after cases were closed if people had questions, and I made damn sure all of my clients were taken care of before I closed their cases at all, even if it was on my own time! The fact that these people can just ignore someone who is in need, let alone when that person is a child , makes it hard for me to see them as professionals, let alone human beings. The fact they can just close his file and see him as a “non-billable consumer of care” makes me nauseous. Thankfully we pulled through and made sure The Older was taken care of and got what he needed, but the fact remains that I am beyond disappointed by these people that I trusted with something more precious to me than my own life. They failed . Horribly.

Of course now comes the question of how on earth I am going to continue a working relationship with these doctors. I have to for The Older’s sake because, like it or not, they’ve been there since the beginning and really are the best in their fields, but I am so furious that I worry about how I’m going to handle it all. Mostly with the nurse coordinator I fear, because to me she’s the most despicable of them all…

Senory Issue Support at Theaters

I was hesitant to write this post in an effort to respect The Older’s privacy. However, when something like this comes along, I think it’s in part my ‘duty’ to share information in the hopes it helps other parents of kids who have sensory issues/Autism/Asperger syndrome.

My son’s school went on a field trip to the Tampa Theater this week. It’s a great place filled with history and independent films, and I’m thrilled the kids get to experience that with the school. I didn’t even think twice when I signed the form for him to go; it never crossed my mind that there would be any issue. Part of that was because I thought they were seeing a regular movie, and part of it was, well, I just didn’t think ahead.

They saw the show Little Monster Tales , and it was loud. Not only that, but there was a class of younger kids there who were screaming, and because The Older’s class was in the back, the sound bounced off the wall. According to his teacher The Older, who has been diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder, ended up curled up in a ball with his hands over his ears and looking like he was in physical pain from the noise. Because his brain can’t process senses like other children his age, noises and the like send him into a panic, and he reacts like he is in pain because he truly is in pain. His teacher, a wonderful person who was also his teacher last year, covered his ears as well, but the real blessing was the class mom who was with them. She recognized what was happening with The Older right away, and she ran out into the lobby and brought back foam earplugs ! They weren’t quite as fancy as the ones shown, but they were similar, and he was able to sit through the show; he was able to enjoy the whole experience with his friends with no further issues at all. I am so happy he was able to see everything and not have to leave!

Since this is all new to me, the news that movie theaters even have these available might be well known. However, if even one parent reads this and can help their child enjoy something that they otherwise would have to miss out on, then I had to share what I learned. Because of this I’m going to buy a pair of earplugs so that he has them with him all the time, just in case we go somewhere and are surprised by something, but I’m thrilled to know that movie theaters have these in case I forget!

This is a cause very close to my heart. We are going through some testing with The Older, and we are getting closer to answers, thankfully.

If you have questions about Autism or your child’s development, this is a great blog to visit . There are tons of resources and information for all your questions.

Natural and Organic Products for Kids

When the news came out that Johnson and Johnson and Wal-Mart were being sued for using harmful chemicals in their children’s shampoos, I asked around about the different organic/natural products my friends were using. I used organic products with The Older and mostly with The Younger, but I haven’t been as vigilant with her (I can always be swayed by a big bottle of baby wash that smells yummy). A friend of mine suggested products from The Eco Store , so I checked them out.

Love them! Not only are the safe and eco-friendly, but when I compared prices I was thrilled (I’m a prime member at Amazon , and even with the free shipping, the prices were more with Amazon for products I usually use). I looked through all the products at The Eco Store and selected on a body wash and shampoo to try… and two months later I still have half a bottle of each left. On their site they say “ Our products also help to ensure value for the dollar for our customers. Our super-concentrates means that a little really does go a long way – saving you money by cutting down significantly on cost per use ” and they aren’t kidding!

Not only were they less expensive and lasted longer, I love how they work. The Younger’s hair doesn’t tangle when I wash it, her eyes don’t tear when I rinse the shampoo from her hair, and when it drys, her hair is easy to control. The body wash is great too, and The Older will use it because it “smells good” and it doesn’t bother his sensitive skin. Definite win!