Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Interview with Billy Ray on AM NW

I was looking through some things this morning and found the video of an interview I did on KATU's AMNW program in September 2007. This interview is the only one that Billy Ray has participated with me and I thought you might like to see it. We couldn't get it to upload on the blog but put it on youtube here if you want to watch it.

As some of you experience with your children, sometimes you just never know how he feels about things. KATU is the station we used to watch when we lived in the Portland area so he was familiar with most of the news anchors. One of the hosts for AM NW used to be the anchor of the early morning news and he called her "Red" because of her red hair. He was so spellbound that he didn't say a word in the interview and wouldn't talk to anyone else the whole time we were waiting.

He called my first book that "damn book" I guess because when I was working on it I couldn't do everything he wanted me to do. One day we were in the bank drive up window and he wanted to know where we were going I told him what he was going to do with Dad and that I was going to go work on my new book. He said "tv" so I asked if he wanted to be on tv again. His response was "tv- go puter, work" and he repeated it daily until the new book was finished. Apparently he liked it.

Until next time,

Peggy Lou Morgan


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Planning for and Protecting Your Child or Adult Child Who Experiences Disabilities or Special Needs

I have been thinking about planning for and protecting my son, Billy Ray, even more lately because of my recent health problems while I was writing my second book. The stress of the present economic situation adds to the concern. Budget cuts are threatened in many areas. That adds another dimension to “that nagging question” (what will happen to my child when I can’t be there for him). Funding for programs that are working for him may be cut, facilities and homes may close due to economic constraints. Even a more independent adult child may have difficulty getting the things he needs in bad economic times. I find myself wondering what if this economic downturn happened after I can’t change planning.

We are not the same close knit society portrayed in programs like Little House on the Prairie and other television programs or movies. Neighbors were there for neighbors and could be counted on to care for children if something happened to their parents. Families are more mobile and lead busier lives so they are not always close. We have learned to depend on the government rather than each other. As we explore what the government will really be able to do it gets scary.

Sometimes there is great resentment on the part of some taxpayers about spending money for special education and other programs for people with disabilities even when times were not as difficult as they are presently. I believe that is because so many of our children are never really known as individuals with strengths and weaknesses like everyone. The more community awareness is improved the more accepting society is of the need for programs and other assistance.

Community awareness that actually brings change is that which helps our children to actually be known and understood to become a part of the community and have others involved in their lives and vice versa. As our children are known and understood protests about their need for programs and other adaptations are reduced. Sometimes it is the community needs who needs training as I wrote here.

It would be easy to become paralyzed with fear for our children. There is peace in knowing that you have done everything you can do to assure a happy and secure life for him or her. In my new book, Parenting an Adult with Disabilities or Special Needs and in future blog posts and video blog, we can share the journey together to protect our children or adult children. There are so many things that we can do such as:

· Assuring that he or she has friends who will stay involved.
· If appropriate, training her to be a self advocate.
· Having various people involved in her life who will maintain different roles.
· Maintaining her “story” so that she can share her memories and history with new people and old friends.
· Appropriate estate planning documents.

That is only a few ideas but it sounds like it will take a lot of energy. Worrying about your child’s future takes a lot of energy too but the peace that comes from planning for and protecting your child is revitalizing and reassuring.

Until next time,
Peggy Lou Morgan
For a complete list of my websites and blogs see www.peggyloumorgan.com

Monday, December 1, 2008

Wellsphere - a Valuable Resource on the Net

I am so pleased to invited to participate in the Wellsphere internet community. There is so much for everyone on this site. I urge you to take the time to review the various communities and resources available there. Resources include blogs on many different topics as well as communities on more topics than imaginable.

This blog will now be carried on the Autism Spectrum community. There also communities for Down syndrome, Adhd, bipolar and many more.

Many types of experts are available for you to inquire from depending on your particular interest. You can set goals for you or for your child and they will send you tips and encouraging reminders if you wish.

Wellsphere has a new Health Maven program where you can ask questions re your various interests for you or your child. They describe Health Mavens as: “Health Maven is the term we use to describe the carefully-selected, knowledgeable, health and healthy living experts who volunteer their time to help support community members by answering their health questions and concerns. Health Mavens include doctors, nurses, psychologists, personal trainers and nutritionists, as well as patient experts and opinion leaders. Health Mavens are wonderful, caring people who are committed to helping others live healthier, happier lives.” I was very pleased to be asked to be a Health Maven for the Autism – Autism Spectrum Community. You can read more about this program here .

I'm so humbled by Wellsphere's award to me of the Top Health Blogger Badge (displayed on the sidebar).

Take a look at their site for yourself - there is truly something for everyone there.

Until next time,
Peggy Lou Morgan
For a complete list of my sites go to peggyloumorgan.com

We're Still Here - 12/1/08

Hi All:

I feel a bit out of touch with a lot of you. It has been hetic. For those of you who have written I'm recovering pretty well and back in the groove more and more. We are learning to deal with Billy Ray's chronic pancreatitis and doing better at managing his pain so that he is able to enjoy life so more.

Hard to imagine that Parenting An Adult with Disabilities or Special Needs: Everything You Need to Know to Plan for and Protect Your Child’s Future (AMACOM Books) is finally coming out in January. It seemed as if it was never going to happen and now it is next month. I am even more excited because several of the ideas are even more important than I knew when writing it because of all the budget cuts and economic things going on everywhere.

I have wanted to start video blog conversations with you for a long time. In the process of figuring out how it would work we had a computer crash and had to replace a computer and now Larry is trying to figure out how to get the video editing software to work on Vista - the new computer. I'm bugging him because I am anxious to talk to you.

While the new book has much to do with adults and transition planning there are many things that you can start soon. For example, I wished I had started the form of Chronological History that I talked about in Parenting Your Complex Child (AMACOM Books 2006) much younger. The same applies to many of the skills I am teaching Billy Ray now to have his own home (as soon as we can get him more medically stable). I hope to video blog him learning new things when we get the video working.

Finally, I have gotten opportunities to communicate with lots more people through other communities on the internet which is thrilling. I am going to do posts introducing those to you within the next couple of days.

Until next time,
Peggy Lou Morgan
for a complete list of blogs and websites check out my primary website