Not Enabled. No customer reviews. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a product review. Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon. Any expat who's whined that they can't buy their favourite brand of shampoo or the local coffee shop doesn't put enough foam on your cappuccino, needs to read this book. I thought I had it tough when we moved to Azerbaijan in but it doesn't hold a candle to the trials and tribulations of Rosie Whitehouse who followed her reporter husband to Romania and beyond just as the Balkans went into complete meltdown. With her young son and pregnant to boot. She uses her very British deadpan humour and 'let's just get on with it' approach to life to paint a detailed picture of her everyday life, as it lurches from the mundane to the extraordinary as history unfolds.
This is one of those rare books where I was truly sorry when it came to an end. I do hope she'll write a follow-up. Disclaimer, I won a free copy of this book in a blog comment competition. Go to Amazon. Back to top. Get to Know Us. Length: pages. Word Wise: Enabled. But again, sometimes that mom guilt really, really gets in the way. So, let me ask for this resource. So, my daughter has which is great. She can get coverage and services at school. Different accommodations to help her in the classroom. And IEP recognizes that my child has a disability which gives her more coverage. That does give her access to additional resources.
I need you to work with her. I need you to follow this educational plan that we have in place. So, she continue to be here and receive the services because what we fail to see is people implementing the resources that they have. And we allow our children to be circumnavigated in taking all of these different ways.
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This is really not beneficial to them when the tool the you had works really well, if you know how to use it. This is good.
She does— currently, she utilizes her mostly. Her has accommodations such as she can have extra time on her homework. She can get an extra day on her homework or she can get extra time on testing, regular testing and standardized testing. She can test in a small room. She can test on the computer because my child, due to her processing issues, works better on a computer then with pen and paper. I need you to look at her strengths and work there.
This behavior is driving me bananas. Remind them who they are and how awesome they are. But okay, you are awesome. You remember that? You fixed the computer? So, if you did that, please remember that you took the time to go in and look at the system and figure out what the issue was and you work through that process. And you made it correct. You can do that. And we relate them back to how they can manage their own care. Speaking of self-care because I know when you said, your self-care. So, tell us right now, are you swimming?
Are you drowning? Are you treading water? I suck at treading water. I float. And that is my preferred method. I go to the pool and I just float. I look at the lights in the ceiling or I close my eyes and I just lay there and let it all go. We just need to sit it down somewhere and let it go for a little while. You want to purge all the unnecessary weight.
You just carry what you need. And generally, we find what we need is going to be inside of us because a plan is always in our head. We let all the rest sort of it go. Meditation is a great way to take care of yourself. I write notes to myself. I write notes on my mirror. I do aromatherapy. I do a nice lavender linen spray that I spray on my bed when I change my sheets. Before I get into the bed. I did a peppermint and eucalyptus one, just for like a refresher and it helps too with memory.
It uplifts and kind of invigorates so you can go off and do your thing and you smell good. Cakes and brownies and cookies and stuff. And most of us are advocates. I mean we absolutely have to be a net for our adolescents. And adolescence is a very challenging time. How can you identify ways to ground yourself.
How can you talk to your psychiatrist or your psychologist. How can you let them know what you need. So, helping young people advocate for themselves is really important to me. I really appreciate it. Copyrighted in by Mothers on the Frontline. In this episode, we listen to Fidelia from Northern California. Fidelia has three children: two sons with behavioral challenges and a 11 year old daughter with anxiety. She shares her journey of mental illness, motherhood, incarceration, and advocacy.
Our podcasts consist of interviews of caregivers by caregivers out in the community. This results in less polished production quality, but more intimate conversations rarely available to the public. Caregivers determine how they are introduced and the stories they share. In this series, we hear from mental health advocates about their journeys to advocacy, and what it is meant for their lives. I am pleased to be speaking to Fidelia from Northern California today.
Fidelia has 3 children, 2 sons with behavioral challenges and an year-old daughter with anxiety. She also experiences mental health challenges herself. But so many challenges that I had on the day-to-day basis, making good decisions, healthy decisions, became overwhelmingly just non-existent. My daughter was taken from me twice. I keep ending up in these terrible, you know, situations with, you know, not very good results.
And in order to be a good parent, I needed to be straight. So, I was given an evaluation, a psychiatric evaluation, because I requested that. And then, I requested a therapist. They gave me a therapist. And then, I started seeing a psychiatrist, then they prescribed me medication. And once I started taking medication and talking to my therapist on a regular basis, things completely changed. I caught up with myself. I caught up with my mind. I was able to put her in speech therapy. Now, she talks all the time. You know what I mean?
Without that extra help, you know. Also, she suffers from anxiety. She is diagnosed with anxiety at the age of 2 because she was taken from me twice. She stayed with her grandmother, and then when I got her back, it was separation anxiety. I had no advocate. I had no family partner.
I had none of those things that are in place nowadays. I had to do it for myself, so I spent a lot of time just trying to ask questions and getting help. Well, I used all these people as my support. I needed somebody to keep the fire lit underneath me, so I would never have to go through this again. And so, I began advocating for myself. I began completing case plans. You know, you need self-care or, you need help with SSI, how can I support you? Do you take medication?
Every day. Tammy: That must make you just a great advocate. With you having lived experience, it was a game-changer at being able to help someone, so you give this great example. What about with working with parents helping their youth— Is that, can you give other examples? Fidelia: Well, I share it with them all in time. I need you to write that down, so you can voice that because your voice needs to be heard at these IEP meetings. You need to tell them what it is that you believe your child needs to get through a productive school day, not being called to come pick up your child.
You know what? I helped them through the process of personal relationships. Tammy: What kind of things are you saying that have changed, that might make it more likely someone in that situation gets a diagnosis and gets help? Fidelia: You know, the thing that I noticed and has changed is just on approach, and, you know, to culturally— different cultures and how they approach, and how they deal with mental health, a multi-cultural. You prayed, and you asked God to fix your mind, you asked Jesus to heal and touch your mind and cure you of whatever mental illness that you had.
So, I see, now, that there are clinics for children, and when I was growing up. If there were some, we never heard about them. That was it. And that was it. It turns into something really serious as an adult. Tammy: I guess my next question is, what keeps you doing the advocacy work? What keeps you going through it? I just refuse to hear it. Fedilia: So, I keep going. This is what it is, and this is my child?
This is my child! No no no. And also, again, as a parent, I love to see success stories, they give us so much hope and to get people hope for the middle going throughout this themselves right now. The music is written, performed, and recorded by FlameEmoji. They discuss the importance of support groups, recognizing your own needs especially when they might be different than the needs of your family members and making sure to honor them.
In their case, the need to be social and get out with other people. Speaker: Welcome to the Just Ask Mom podcast where mothers share their experiences of raising children with mental illness. Today we will speak with a mother and Grandmother from Iowa. We have a mother-daughter pair.
Yes, some other ones too. Tammy: Great. What were your passions? Mom: Oh boy. I used to like to sleep. Grandmother: And I as the grandmother, prefer reading. Not that. I like to garden and just be current. Go on little road trips. Grandmother: Yes. Tammy: Awesome. What would you say to family members or relatives, grandparents? Mom: I would just say something that helped me was to just research, research, research. Again, the internet, I googled everything. You know and then we kind of fell into a support group that helped us.
But we found out that they have a support group there on Saturday mornings. And so that really was our saving grace. And each doctor you talk to has a different field of expertise. And they want to lead you down the path that they think you should go. Even though it may not be the right path. So then you go back and you try and find another doctor. You start all over again and hope for the best. It took, it took months before we were actually able to face the fact that well, my grandson had a mental illness.
We did not have it at least recognized in the family before if it was there. No one knew about. No one was directed to any special person to take care of it. So it was new to us and we were, we were just lost. Physical, mental. So even if you get a diagnosis, that might change. So you can be lost, found for a little bit, lost again [laughs]. Has that been some of your experiences as well? Even once you find that support group — is that journey helped with the support group as well or…? Mom: Well, I mean the support group has definitely helped us because there were periods where we would go through really, really deep lows with what was going in the family.
Then you kind of get to a point where you can celebrate one day [laughs] One horrible month might have a good day and you need to learn to celebrate that. And it often happens. We found through dealing with all of this that we have to try to change with them and help them through it. Medication was a big thing. What might work for two weeks will suddenly not work at all and then you get another medication. Pretty soon several medications and it just does not work for their little bodies. Tammy: Yeah. What do you want people to know as their trying to navigate this?
So reaching out is one thing. How do you manage to have hope during that time? To sort of push your way through and take care of yourself during that time? We want to keep them safe.
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And, and in our case, we have a child who can relate better with adults than with children. Very pleasurable, very knowledgeable. But on his pure level, he just cannot communicate with them. And oh the pain just hurts so bad to see them making fun of him. Mom: A lot of it is just the misunderstanding. Why is he saying those weird things? Why is he acting like that? So just making that point with somebody else. And then you talk and you laugh for like 20 minutes. And then you could go back to doing what you were doing.
You can go back to fighting. Grandmother: Yes, it is important to have someone that you can maybe bond with over your problems that might have the same problem.
Where do you find yourself? Mom: I know. And always relates to social issues, I swear. Mom: And so that was part of my thing today going. I need to try and regroup and get it together and pull myself together from one of the episodes that happened last night with him and other kids because of social issues. He recovered. What can we do in times like that? Grandmother: You dropped him off. You thought things were fine. Yet and then you get the phone call.
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And he did make a couple of new friends and he was texting them on his phone. And then you know, just in a course of like 2 minutes of him getting together with new friends, it took a really bad turn. But then you, and in just 2 minutes it subsides down and then you have to re-evaluate, weigh everything again.
So, reaching out because I will go out with two girlfriends tonight and have dinner and drinks. Because I need to go out with those girls. Tammy: This gets into the next question: what is your self-care routine, or if more appropriate survival technique? Mom: Reaching out to other people and socializing. They all have their own space. So then I am not able — being the social person that I am — to talk to them and just carry on conversations with them and to communicate. So I need to socialize. I need to get out of the house.
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Mom: I have, I have to do that. Grandmother: I have my weekly get-out group. We meet at least once a week and we road trip or we do lunch here or whatever. I have my friends. Sometimes I just take a book. Leave my phone behind. Sometimes you just need to get away from it and find a group situation and I — I do have a good group. Tammy: Good. So we always end this question. And so we just like to open it up. Something that makes you laugh?
Mom: There are so many but a week ago, I put the beef roast in the crack pot and I had it all sitting on the counter and I had it all ready to go and then I turned it on and went to bed. My gosh, it must be broken. Would is actually something to talk about? Tammy: So I can relate to not plugging something in.
That seems completely normal to me actually [laughing].
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Grandmother: Well I guess, this morning. My grandson and I went to brunch and we went to this restaurant. Our server was very nice. We had gone there previously during the week for his birthday. We got the same server today that we had for his birthday. Grandmother: Who was our server.
And then all of a sudden, Bruno came back and he left extra napkins. Which is something that when my husband goes out, we always ask for extra napkins whether anybody wants them or not. So it did, it came quickly and so then we ate and it was very good. And so we left a five dollar tip for Bruno. Grandmother: Yeah. She also discusses the importance of intentional planning of self-care and ways to make it happen. Speaker: Welcome to the Just Ask Mom Podcast, where mothers share their experiences of raising children with mental illness.
Emily: Yeah, I have a lot of different interests. I also really just love creating things so I love to sew, I love to bake, I love to make cards. They do have to have a finite ending to them. So, those are some of my passions and interests. Tammy: Wonderful, thank you for that.
That community is a place where you can get support and encouragement but it really just helps you be a super confident mom and to be the best mom that you can be to your child. One of them is just within the family itself. So, for us we love to play games together. We enjoy Disney together. Traveling is a big bonding experience too. Emily: Our church offers a marriage conference once a year. We do that or we might read a book together just to have those times when we are really building our family together, so that we can be the best parents to our kids that we can.
So, our family is one. Like I mentioned, my faith is really important to me and so our church community is important. We also have a small group that we get together with and ours happens to have other parents with children with special needs. Building community with other moms is really important to me. I just try to really block that out on the calendar and make that time for it. Tammy: Can you say a little bit about that, because I think that is so important, right? Emily: Yes. Knowing that taking the time to be with other moms to get that encouragement and support will help me be a better mom, a better wife, a better employee; all of those things if I spend time with them.
So, that is a really big one. Another one that has been important to me is the online community. We ended up getting together at a park, meeting in real life. Her son was just a couple years older than mine, so I was just able to just ask her about what the challenges were, that we might experience in the future. She was able to give me some resources in our local area, medical resources, community resources that would help my child. Emily: He was. He was able to meet the son of the mom that I had met online, and that was huge for him. I think he felt really encouraged getting to meet him.
Emily: As both a mom and as a child I think. Emily: There were others. A couple of other areas of building community that have been important. One is just at his school. And so, to have that be the medium for him was so important. I just loved how they saw that and used that for him. So just building those relationships. I think every kid loves their kindergarten teacher. To support him in his journey too. Tammy: Things like that. Emily: Sometimes it develops into a tic, and sometimes you just gotta wait and see. Emily: So, just knowing what those resources are in the meantime has been just incredibly encouraging to me.
Emily: So, I do feel like we are swimming at this point. Well you know, if you do think of it like a pool, I would say I feel like we have jumped into the water, we are not looking around getting our bearings anymore, we know where we are heading. And so, we are in the shallow waters. Emily: In the water. Sometimes you never know for an individual, but there are these tendencies with a certain condition, and you can try to prepare, right? And be as ready as possible for those. So, what is your self-care routine? How do you take care of yourself? Now you said some of this already, but are there other things?
Emily: What I would first say is that it is really difficult, I think any mom finds it difficult to take care of themselves. For me, one of the changes for me in thinking about self-care, because my husband works a lot of hours and so it is difficult for him to be there and to, you know, watch the kids while I go do something. She talks about how you can redeem little pockets of time throughout the day. I love writing, it is my love language — I love to send cards to other people.
So, just keeping cards in my purse to be able to write those to other people. I just love doing that. And keeping a book I like to read so being able to have a book downloaded on my phone or one in my purse has really helped me to be prepared for those times, because I think something that helps me with self-care too, is having a plan for it. So, yeah, I am looking to working on some craft projects later today. And so, we have tried to find those moments, when we can just incorporate those little moments of humor into his diagnosis.
And so, he has dubbed these his R2D2 noises. I think it can feel really heavy at times, and so just having humor to be able to lighten things has been really helpful. Skip to content. Dionne: …for agreeing to be a part of our podcast. Can you please introduce yourself? Dionne: Yes. The alphabet soup of diagnosis, yes. Dionne: He heard you. Diva: But this analogy was given to him when he was six, seven years old. Dionne: I know. He heard you. He heard it. Dionne: Yeah! Dionne: I see. Dionne: Right. Dionne: Go on. Dionne: Okay.
Dionne: Yes, I see it. Dionne: Good. Dionne: Yeah. Dionne: That would be true. Dionne: How does he do that? Dionne: Like? Diva: So, when you have to lie to your child about somebody else lying, I hate lying to my kids. Dionne: But in terms of their diagnosis and treatment?
Diva: They spaz out and go off, do a whole bunch of other stuff. Dionne: That is wonderful! Dionne: Oh, wow. Dionne: Exactly. Dionne: Right Diva: The Best. Diva: As you see my nails there. Diva: Thank you. And they are mine. I just go get the acrylic overlay and get the nails… Dionne: They are gorgeous.
I have my green nails for mental health. Dionne: yes. Diva: Yes! Dionne: My son calls that his expression finger. Diva: Oh. Dionne: Not for your kids, but for you. And a lot of people think because I have this little girl look, because I everyone thinks I am in my twenties or thirties Dionne: You are very young-looking. Share this: Twitter Facebook. Tammy: Yeah, I love the name. Tammy: Sounds like a good incentive. Tammy: And how do you see Tank as transferring to mental health? So, tell us a bit how you got involved in advocacy, to begin with.
John: Yes. God rest her soul. Tammy: Can I just say this is an awesome orange? John: Thank you. John: I have it in purple, too. Maybe I could get you a Tank Mentality shirt. Tammy: Absolutely love it. Tammy: Can you tell us some of that story? When you needed something, somehow that came into your life, right?
Tammy: Congratulations. Tammy: It does. Tammy: I think we all have a lot of those. Tammy: Thank you so much for sharing your story. John: No problem. John: Awesome. Tammy: Thank you. John: Thank you so much. Tammy: Right, right. Those are fun ages, too. Tammy: Yes. Tammy: Tell us about your advocacy work. Tammy: So, did you do therapeutic foster care yourself at any point? Andre: No. Tammy: I misunderstood. But you work with the agency that did it?
Andre: I… Yes. Not that you want that to be the case, but— Andre: No, but, it put in perspective some of the things you do. Imagine — Tammy: It still makes you spin, right? Tammy: How old was he? Was he a young child or a teenager? Tammy: Just they pulled you back in, right? Andre: My wife is really good. I mean, having a supportive wife. You would have a big family. Tammy: Good for her. Thank you so much. Tammy: Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. Andre: Appreciate it. Dionne: I want to say thank you very much— Shanta Hayes: Thank you for having me.
I love a mani pedi, too. I love aromatherapy. Shanta: Thank you. Tell us a bit about yourself and the kind of advocacy work that you do. Tammy: So, how did you become an advocate? What got you involved? Fidelia: The what? My lived experiences? Tammy: To be able to share that with others. Tammy: You said you went so many years without a diagnosis. Fidelia: Mm-hmm. Tammy: I can tell. Fedilia: Thank you for your time and your consideration. Transcription Speaker: Welcome to the Just Ask Mom podcast where mothers share their experiences of raising children with mental illness. Tammy: That sounds so nice.
Mom: Yeah. Tammy: That does — especially during the winters. That sounds good too.