Don’t judge what you don’t know!

IMG_7140If you have been following Lessons from my Daughter for awhile, you know about the famous elbow to the head.

It happened on October 2nd 2013 and I wrote about here: It’s not nice to hit

Come on, go back and click the link, it will help you follow where I am going.

I rarely write about the downside of having a child who doesn’t quite control her movements.

That hit on October 2nd 2013 did something to me.

To start, it gave me a concussion.  I tried to ignore it for a week before the headaches and discomfort made me consult.

It took me 2 weeks before I woke-up without a headache.

By Halloween (29 days later) I was still not well so I treated you to pictures of Emily dressing up.  The art of dressing up! Not just for halloween…!

A couple of days later I went back to work but I was careful not to over do it.

Over the following 2 years, I have had what I call concussion headaches, hopping on a plane now means serious headaches on arrival.  I asked the dentist if my teeth were turning bad as they were hurting so much but the dentist said they were fine.  I consulted various specialists and therapists about my headaches, my concussion, my ears, my teeth and my jaw

I thought I was losing my mind.

September 2015, I was enlighten From concussion to TMJ  and embarked on a new recovery path.

My dentist changed my little metal bar behind my teeth to a retainer around that same time.

Within days it was obvious that I clench and lock my jaw overnight which contributes to my headaches and jaw pain.

As of yesterday 29.5 months later, I now have a bite plate to wear at night to help reduce the stress on my jaw and eventually, hopefully reduce the headaches…

I haven’t been on a plane since May, we will see in June if this is still an issue.

I can’t imagine ever riding a roller coaster again as the movements are too much for my brain.

This is my reality.

The reality of many parents out there.

Our kids are not trying to hurt us, Emily never meant to hit me exactly where it would trigger all of this.  None of this is her fault but this is my reality.

I rarely write about the downside of having a child who doesn’t quite control her movements because I don’t want to dwell on it.

I try not to think too much about how over the years, I had my hair and nail pulled, I got slapped, pushed, bitten, kicked or hit.  How much sleep I didn’t get, how much vomit I cleaned or how many vacation days I spent in hospital or in therapies.  I don’t want to know how much money and time we spent on tutoring, sign language classes, PECS system and other therapy equipment.

I don’t want to associate my back pain, my headaches and TMJ with my child so I don’t.

This is my reality and the reality of many other parents of exceptional children!

Recently, I have witnessed parents of children with special needs being verbally attack for taking care of themselves, for mani-pedi, for going to the gym or tanning salon.

To those parents, good for you, take care of yourself, we all need to take care and spoil ourselves for our own sanity and to continue fighting and advocating for our kid.

 To those commenting, pointing fingers and verbally attacking these parents please know that when you do that, you attack all of us.

All Of Us!

We are a big family who can be kicked and pushed around but we won’t stop moving forward, we will not stop defending our kids, we will not stop advocating for them and we will not apologize for finding tiny pockets of time to take care of ourselves.


NEW!!!  We have a facebook page: If you want short updates and timely pictures of the little things that are happening in our life, please like and follow Lessons from my daughter‘s page.

You can also find me on Twitter at @plebrass

I am on Pinterest too: Lessons from my Daughter

I just discovered StumbleUpon and added a StumbleMe button in my sharing options.  I have no clue what to do there but I believe you can find me under plebrass.

Find me and other mommy and daddy bloggers on Top Mommy Blog

Find more about about Cri du Chat syndrome at 5p- Society

Emily has a her own page in the family stories , you can find it here: Emily


From concussion to TMJ

What am I talking about?

Some of you might recall I took an elbow to the left side of my face on October 2nd 2013. 

Almost 2 years ago…

I wrote about the hit and about my not so quick recovery in the following posts:

It’s not nice to hit
Slowly but surely
That was 2 years ago…. 

Every time I tell the story of the elbow hit, I have to say it was Emily that did this to me and I feel compel to add that she didn’t do it on purpose.  

She couldn’t hit me that way if she tried. 

She doesn’t always controlled all of her body parts. Over the years, I’ve been bitten, slapped, scratched, vomitted on, coughed on, sneezed on and much more. 

The elbow, was an accident. 

Why am I still talking about it?

It looks like I am not done suffering from the hit, I just adapted to my new reality and now it caught up to me. 

A pain in my left arm 3 months ago, led me to see an amazing massage therapist who would work on my arm and hand. 

After 3 weekly visits, I felt better but still had issues so she recommended a chiropractor. 

I had to tell him about my not so proud history of hurting myself. 

I explained that for the last 2 years I have massive headaches when I travel by plane.  I talked about my headaches and earaches and eventually told him I tought something was wrong with my jaw. 

Well… almost 2 years after the famous elbow to the head, I now understand a little bit better the damages that were done. 

Not only did I get a concussion, I also got myself a TMJ (or TMD)

Last Monday, my massage therapist started adjusting my jaw and on Thursday my chiropractor took a shot at it too. 

I’m in discomfort but full of hope that this will help me in the long run. 

If you want to know more about TMJ, keep reading. 

WebMd says:

Temporomandibular Joint Disorders (TMD, TMJ)

Common symptoms include:

Pain or tenderness in your face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew, speak, or open your mouth wide (yes, that applies)

Problems when you try to open your mouth wide.  (Yes, that’s an issue)

Jaws that get “stuck” or “lock” in the open- or closed-mouth position (I have been catching myself biting so hard that it could give me headaches)

Clicking, popping, or grating sounds in the jaw joint when you open or close your mouth or chew. This may or may not be painful. (Maybe the popping a little)

A tired feeling in your face (yes, I can still feel where the elbow made contact)

Trouble chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite — as if the upper and lower teeth are not fitting together properly (can’t chew gum anymore for more than a minute or so)

Swelling on the side of your face (I don’t think so)

You may also have toothaches, headaches, neck aches, dizziness, earaches, hearing problems, upper shoulder pain, and ringing in the ears (tinnitus). (Yes to all of these)

Home Treatments for TMD:

There are things you can do on your own to help relieve TMD symptoms. Your doctor may suggest you try some of these remedies together.

1. Take over-the-counter medications. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like naproxen or ibuprofen, can relieve muscle pain and swelling.

2. Use moist heat or cold packs. Apply an ice pack to the side of your face and temple area for about 10 minutes. Do a few simple jaw stretches (if your dentist or physical therapist OKs them). When you’re done, hold a warm towel or washcloth to the side of your face for about 5 minutes. Perform this routine a few times each day.

3. Eat soft foods. Add yogurt, mashed potatoes, cottage cheese, soup, scrambled eggs, fish, cooked fruits and vegetables, beans, and grains to your menu. Cut foods into small pieces so you chew less. Skip hard, crunchy foods (like pretzels and raw carrots), chewy foods (like caramels and taffy), and thick or large bites that require you to open wide.

4. Avoid extreme jaw movements. Keep yawning and chewing (especially gum or ice) to a minimum and don’t yell, sing, or do anything that forces you to open wide.

5. Don’t rest your chin on your hand. Don’t hold the phone between your shoulder and ear. Practice good posture to reduce neck and facial pain.

6. Keep your teeth slightly apart as often as you can. This will relieve pressure on your jaw. Put your tongue between your teeth to control clenching or grinding during the day.

7. Learn relaxation techniques to help loosen up your jaw. Ask your dentist if you need physical therapy or massage. Consider stress reduction therapy as well as biofeedback


And now, to make you smile…  As we are experiencing the warmest September ever, the snowblowers are out for sale…  I guess winter is coming!