Hey PHAT Girls! Happy PHAT Girl Friday!
I know that most of my following are mothers, this is another reason why I am so dedicated to sharing our stories. If there is anything that I can share that will help a mother give her child(ren) the roots and wings they need to grow and soar, I want to do that. I also think that it is so important that we connect with one another to provide and strong and positive support systems.
Speaking of support systems, today I want to introduce you to the founder of Single Moms 101; Halaveshia Hall. Halaveshia is a model (both print and runway), a blogger and a host; not to mention she holds down a 9 to 5. To say that Halaveshia is a busy woman, is an understatement, but she always finds a way to sprinkle that #blackgirlmagic around. While Halaveshia is very busy and always on the go, the truth that she constantly shares with the world is:
“The most important thing about me is that I am the Mother of THREE beautiful souls.”
One of those beautiful souls is Halaveshia’s son Landon. Landon is a 13 year old talented and handsome fella that is autistic. I asked Halaveshia to share some of her and Landon’s truth with us and she jumped and the chance. That is the thing that I love most about Halaveshia, she is always open and willing to catering to the souls of her sisters and that is what the “Blue Chronicles” are all about; providing tools and truth that will connect and educate us to one another.
Below you will find a portion of Halaveshia and Landon’s journey, in her own words.
Yes, there were signs that something was wrong but none that led me to believe that he was autistic. Mainly, because Landon is hearing impaired and he was diagnosed by his first pediatrician as having ADHD I had many other thoughts of what could be wrong with him but none of my thoughts lead to autism or him being autistic. In the small town that I am from those words were not used that often the most you would hear is ADHD or mentally delayed.
After moving to Cobb County when Landon was 7 it actually took 6 months to get the complete and accurate diagnosis. The study began in November 2011 and he was observed (by a school psychologist and a personal psychologist) at school and in the home setting twice a week until April 2012.
Most of the challenges I have faced come with Landon’s education making sure that he is not EXCLUDED because of his condition and making sure that he given the opportunity to reach his full potential in a way that is comfortable for him. If it takes him reading a book standing by the chalk board just so long as he is not disturbing the classroom setting, then that’s what I want for him and that’s what I expect to happen for him. Public outings can be a bit challenging not from a behavioral stand point but in choosing things such as where to go, when to go and how long we can stay. Landon can be in crowds of people (unlike most autistic individuals) BUT he has a timeframe of how long he can tolerate it. That’s when the family challenge comes into place because now I have two other kids that do not mind long road trips or mall outings but they are limited to what they can do when we go out as a group. Meal planning used to be challenging and it’s still weird cooking two meals at a time but once you know better you do better (lol) I know what Landon will and will not eat and so I know when I cook certain things for the family I have o cook him a separate meal. That’s life – well, for us!
Words Of Advice
Number one stop asking “Why me?” God gives the biggest battles to the strongest people and you, my friend, were built for this! Number two your child is capable of achieving every opportunity the so called “normal” kids can achieve they will just get their on a different route and it’s your job to make sure they do! Be their voice and their back bone. Advocate for your child.
Use EVERY resource your state and school system offer you. For us the Babies Can’t Wait program was a life saver. They serviced Landon until he reached school age. Partner with your child’s doctor for resources and referrals and the school psychologist. If they are not in public school reach out to organizations such as Autism Speaks and other Autism clinics for support and resources. Take part in small groups and if there is not a small group near you- CREATE one! There are other mom out there that need a listening ear and everyone knows something different.
Halaveshia’s PHAT Truth
I am passionate about the well-being of all people with a special emphasis on single mothers and parents of children with special needs. Which is the reasoning behind www.singlemoms101.net.
Seeing my children happy and knowing that I have made a difference in someone’s life.
The ability to say that I am a “Mother”: a gift wanted by many received by some and perfected by few.
I take time for myself which in return allow me to be the best person I can be for those around me. I have learned the power in boundaries – creating my own and accepting others. I have learned the power in the word “No” – Use ii! You’ll love it!