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Resources That “Get It”

When I first heard the news of my boys’ diagnoses, I really struggled.

Not just because it was so hard to accept – although it was and sometimes still is.

I also struggled, because it was so difficult to find resources that felt relevant to our situation.

Many of you have asked me the same question I asked back then – Why can’t I find resources that actually seem to “get” it? I have no idea where to start.

I think after much research, frustration and sometimes anger, I now know at least a part of the answer.

There isn’t one.

There isn’t one or two or even three combined resources that will totally “get” your situation.

The crazy thing about both autism and dyslexia, is that they affect every child with one diagnosis (or the other, or both) just a little bit differently. Just as every single one of our brains function differently, so too does the impact of  these challenges on each individual brain’s functioning.

There actually is a saying I like to quote that epitomizes this , although I have no idea who should be credited for it. “If you have met one person with autism, you’ve met one person with autism.”

Because this has been my exact experience, I am always the first to say, “You are your child’s momma. You know more than you think, and you are just as much an expert as any doctor or educator.”

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Having said that, I would also like to share some of the many resources that have helped me, in case they might help you too.

Know this – I want real. I want honest. I want practical.
If I am going to take the time to seek out a resource to help with my kids, it better be one that “gets it”. (Momma got no time for unrealistic, only sharing the good, glossing over all the messes, makes me feel like I will never get it together options. Can I get a witness?)

I have arranged this list by topic, and have included books and sources that have made a difference in my day-to-day life. Most of them have nothing to do with my little guys’ brains and have everything to do with mine.

Find my must-read, favorite books for parenting a child with special needs here.

Here are my Top Picks for Additional Resources that really “Get It.”

Autism/Sensory Processing Disorder/Anxiety Disorder 

What Color Is Monday? How Autism Changed One Family for the Better by: Carrile Carriello

The Out-Of-Sync Child Has Fun  by: Carol Stock Kranowitz (A must for understanding and coping with sensory issues)

No More Meltdowns by:Jed Baker

Life with Greyson + Parker – a beautiful and encouraging mommy blog with two little boys on the spectrum

Please allow me to also introduce you to my book. Everyday Autism is my story about mothering the first year after my son’s diagnosis. It is exactly the book I wish I would’ve read in those early months.


 Dyslexia/Slow Processing Speed

Dyslexia 101  by: Marianne Sutherland

Homeschooling With Dyslexia  (Website – includes individualized classes and coaching for parents whether or not they are homeschooling their dyslexic child. I have taken the classes and CANNOT recommend this enough. Marianne is an amazing mom with seven dyslexic kids.)

Abundant Life (blog)


Simple Homeschool

Homeschool Snapshots Podcast

My Little Poppies

Kara S. Anderson

 The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas   by: Linda Dobson

Educating the WholeHearted Child   by: Sally and Clay Clarkson

Homeschooling Your Struggling Learner  by: Kathy Kuhl

And my new book: Special Education at Home

Special Education at Home (2)

Overall Motherhood, Marriage and Homemaking

Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe by: Sarah Mae and Sally Clarkson

One Thousand Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are  by Ann Voskamp

Passionate Homemaking

Money Saving Mom (blog)

And, for the days you just want to go back to bed –

Psalm 25

Proverbs 14

Proverbs 3

Titus 2.

(Actually, consider the Bible on all of these lists. In it, I have found by far the most encouraging, practical wisdom for every aspect of my life!)

Please feel free to list and share any resources you think I have missed in the comments below. This is intended to be a page dedicated to providing help, information and ultimately encouragement to this wonderful community of readers.

Also, I want to fully disclose that the links for books above are affiliate links. This means that my family will receive a super small percentage of the Amazon purchase price if you choose to buy after clicking on any of them. If you are not comfortable supporting us in this way, no problem. This link will take you directly to Amazon and you can shop without the affiliate marketing. The primary purpose of this page, and overall blog, is to share support, resources and encouragement.

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  1. Anything about The Nurtured Heart Approach, by Howard Glasser. My daughter is 18, high functioning on the Spectrum, but “very complex”. No one in all the people we’ve ever had teach, evaluate, counsel, provide therapy for, has ever been able to figure this one out. In the early years, we barely had internet! Ultimately, God knows. But sometimes I just can’t help going to the what ifs that arise now that I know about vaccines, food sensitivities, toxins all around, and how different things might be for my 8 kids had I known about NHA.

  2. Hi Shawna, I saw your piece on ‘Scary Mommy’ on Facebook, “What Happened after my child’s Mental Health Diagnosis”. You mentioned your son was evaluated at one of the top children’s hospitals in the nation. Would you mind sharing where/who performed the testing?

    1. Sending you a private message, Brynn.

  3. I am a mother with three of four children with special needs. Two sons are on the autistic spectrum and one son had various special needs related to a chromosomal deletion. Our publication, “An Enduring Gift”, will be launching earlier next year (2017). Our advocacy and consulting company, “Special Needs X Three, LLC”, provides a variety of services and supports to advocates and caregivers of those with special needs. We also aim to support any individual themself with special needs.
    We offer paid writing opportunities for professional and personal stories. Writings submitted for publication and payment are subject to the standard approval process of Special Needs X Three. We are accepting writing submissions during an “Open-Period” of January 1st-January 15th, 2017.

    During this “Open-Period”, pre-order subscribers (with one month’s publication required only), may submit articles for publication, apply for Financial Assistance from the John Michael Scanlon Fund, register for Support Sessions, and apply for Promotional Opportunities.

    I am genuinely impressed with your writing and approach to living as expressed on your site. I welcome you to contact me, should you be interested in sharing your experiences, strength, and aspirations (for payment) to be published on our site. Thank you for your consideration.

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    Special Needs X Three, LLC

    I also welcome any of your viewers with this same faith-based yet realistic approach to living to apply for publication opportunities.
    Thank you again for your inspiration.

    Currently, we can be found on Facebook prior to our website launch early 2017.

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