Jake's Journey with Apraxia

And the Friends We Met Along the Way

Happy Halloween from my family to yours!


In case you don’t remember from last year, I am known by family and friends as being a Halloween fanatic. My house is always the gaudiest in the neighborhood (complete with fog machine on trick-or-treating night) and although I am almost forty years old, I still dress up every year.

I am proud to say that I have not repeated a costume in 39 years. Yes, it is silly, but it makes me smile … and the last time I checked, we all need to smile every once in a while.

This year I am dressing up as a hunter and I’m looking forward to being in comfy, oversized camo and a ball cap all night. I make an effort to wear attractive costumes at this point in my life and I vowed at the age of 30 to never paint my face again. Seeing pictures of myself dressed as a vampire, complete with white face paint and blood, and holding my oldest son who was a baby at the time, just didn’t seem quite right. I probably should have thrown in the towel earlier when I was in my mid-twenties and painted my face yellow and used blue mascara for my Marge Simpson getup, but some lessons take a little longer to learn than others.

This is the first year in my adult life that I have not decorated for Halloween. I do have the basics covered – fall wreath on the front door, a carved pumpkin, a string of orange lights on the stair rail inside, and a couple of seasonal items on the mantel – but it is nowhere near the norm for this time of year. It feels a little different, but just like everything else in life, I know this crazy time is only temporary. One missed Halloween without skulls or tombstones in the yard is certainly not crisis material. I will still have my Halloween playlist pumped up outside, I may even drink a glass of wine out of the plastic brain that was part of my costume from last year, and I can’t wait to see all the cute kids running around.

Jake is going to be a Power Ranger and my other son, who is notorious for creating his own costume at the last minute will be doing much of the same this year.

There are certainly many challenges that surround us right now:

  • Trying to teach an apraxic kid how to sing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer in Spanish.
  • Healing a boy’s gut that responds in a life-threatening way to 7 food allergies.
  • Keeping calm after a severe behavioral reaction to Zaxby’s fries.
  • Coming to grips with the reality that although Jake is so much better, it is because he lives in a protective bubble. There is still much healing to be done.
  • Prepping for Halloween goodies & class party with a food allergy kid.

But, for today, none of that stuff matters. It is Halloween and we are focused on having fun! And besides, challenges are also always paired with blessings. And this five-year-old boy has had many blessings this week:

  • Saying trick-or-treat for the first time.
  • Getting Halloween chocolate from Premium Chocolatiers – BIG deal!!!
  • A school teacher who has gone out of her way to make sure he feels included (food-wise) for the class Halloween party.
  • A Kindermusik teacher who loves him enough to go out of her way to buy allergy-friendly treats for her class.
  • Wearing jeans with a belt for the first time (usually he hates the feel of jeans & struggles from a fine motor perspective to button & zip).
  • An early frost that has sent the grass and ragweed on its way for the year. Goodbye seasonal allergies!

I hope you and your family enjoy your evening. Jake’s costume party at school is at 10:45 and I’ve gotta run! 🙂

5 thoughts on “Happy Halloween

  1. naomi says:

    Hope you had a great Halloween. Yes, I feel like a mad scientist now, too!

    Please keep us posted on how the GAPS diet is going. I am also trying to incorporate GAPS diet, but with my picky eater son, I have to be very creative and patient ….

    1. tstarmom says:

      Naomi – Glad I’m not alone! Currently, I am trying to get Jake to eat a wider variety of foods – specifically veggies, a few more fruits, & eggs. My thought is, if we need to start a specialty diet, I’ll have more things to choose from. Also, it is probably good for his immune system to be exposed to as many foods as possible. The problem I had with GAPS is that Jake seemed starving on it. He’s always been a healthy eater b/c of his allergies & he had no problem with the GAPS food, but I just couldn’t keep him filled up. He was eating all day long! I think starchy carbs keep his belly filled up better. I know they do for me! 🙂

  2. Tammy DeTray says:

    Love hearing updates on your family! Miss you all so much! Would love to get together over holidays to visit! Love and hugs! Tammy

    1. tstarmom says:

      Thanks Tammy! I didn’t know you read my blog! 🙂 Would love to see you over the holidays also.

  3. jomo86 says:

    I’m enjoying reading your story. We’re just beginning a nutritional approach for my son’s apraxia at 29 months. I’m no expert on GAPS, but from what I know it can take a few days for the body to detox and adjust to it. An unhealthy gut craves the foods that are bad for it (because it feeds the pathogens that have taken over). It is quite common for a person’s palette to widen AFTER they’ve been “starved” of the negative foods for a few days. You should be able to find some filling meals with some digging. Definitely do some more research like you said, and don’t give up on it just yet!

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