Friday, July 10, 2015

Why I turn to Michael Buble when my daughter with autism has a meltdown



What is a "Meltdown?" I don't know what other ASD parents call a meltdown, but I know what a meltdown looks like and feels like in my house!

Tonight, was going GREAT!! Both my girls were in their beds and asleep before 9pm! That is Awesome in our House. 
I was sitting down getting ready to clean my kitchen and do the things I do when my kids are sleeping. 

Then I heard it...screaming and banging! I rushed into Zoey's room to help her from whatever it was that was bothering her.
Checked her diaper first and that was fine. As I'm trying to figure out what could be setting her off, I notice that she's trying very fast to get her long sleeved onesie off and she is agitated! I go over with a short sleeve shirt and a pair of bloomers and I keep telling her "Zoey, it's okay, I can help...it's okay, I can make it better...you're okay."
As I'm doing this, she's thrashing and kicking and screaming!! I take a kick to the face and another to my throat and I just continue to change her and tell her she's okay!

My husband comes running out to help and I yell "Get my phone!"
He quickly returns with my phone and I immediately go to my music and I start to play one of her "calm down songs"
"Lost" by Michael Buble

As I sit next to her I sing along to the words, and she leans in next to me and I'm able to quickly kiss her forehead. I took her hand and placed it in mine and I just held it and she grasped her hand around my thumb and laid down next to me with her blanket over her head! She's never done that before, I sat there with the song on repeat for like 10 times. She started to make a sound like she was humming or at least trying to hum the song in her way. Then she looks up and smiles! That's what a meltdown is like in my house!

It is not a tantrum, it is Zoey's body and mind telling her and making her feel like she just can't handle or cope with whatever it is that is bothering her. It could be her clothes, it could be a sound, it could be that she just doesn't feel good and she wants to tell me but she can't because the words are trapped. 

I try and imagine myself as Zoey, and I have a very good idea of what it feels like for her, and it breaks my heart. Imagine having conversations and screaming for help but no one can understand you or hear you, you get so frustrated because you want milk, but you don't know how to point and say "milk" you don't know how to point or verbally express your needs or wants at all...and you so badly want to and when you try, only screams come out! Your voice is trapped...screaming and yelling are now your words as your speech is lost in translation. Frustration takes over and the only way to release that frustration is to rock back and forth, bang your head, flap your hands, or spin and sometimes you even just hit your limit and you throw yourself to the floor and cry and thrash around until that frustration eases. 

For Zoey, music helps her to calm down during a meltdown. She can hear the words and whoever is singing is singing to her, she has her favorites like Michael Buble...he sings to her and he's singing "baby you're not lost!"
If he only knew the impact he has and how when he sings to my baby she becomes calm, relaxed, and definitely not Lost! 

"Cause when you feel like you're done
And the darkness has won
Babe, you're not lost
When your world's crashing down
And you can't bear the thought
I said, babe, you're not lost

Life can show no mercy
It can tear your soul apart
It can make you feel like you've gone crazy
But you're not
Things have seemed to change
There's one thing that's still the same
In my heart you have remained
And we can fly fly fly away

'Cause you are not alone
And I am there with you
And we'll get lost together
'Til the light comes pouring through
'Cause when you feel like you're done
And the darkness has won
Babe, you're not lost
When the world's crashing down
And you can not bear the cross
I said, baby, you're not lost"


1 comment:

  1. I'm so happy you have found something that helps calm her <3

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