Medical Cannabis and Autism: Month Two Update

I promised I would give a weekly update on our journey with medical cannabis for our severely autistic son. We are just over two months in! We’ve seen amazing, huge, gigantic, breakthroughs. I am so excited to tell you all of them. But with that, we’ve also seen a huge increase in behaviors. We’ve learned that while awareness is an AMAZING thing, it can bring issues that we’ve never had before.

In week one we saw a reduction in anxiety. In week two we saw improved engagement with his surroundings. In week three Cooper began joining our family in the living room, during meals and in the evenings. Jamie and I learned what it was like to sit down. To not constantly worry and chase.

In week four we saw a combination of everything. He started sleeping better, sitting, interacting, noticing kids, ‘singing’ songs, relaxing, etc. I could go on and on. Week five was all about awareness. He was aware of his brother, his toys, forts, kids, who has the ‘better’ iPad, even Pokemon cards. We even visited a store for the first time in years. It was amazing.

In the last month since I updated, we had huge changes at home. We had a baby! And while Cooper is doing better than I had thought he would with the baby, he seems to be spiraling in other areas. Screaming, pacing, hoarding, and an increase in anxiety to name a few.

Here are a few examples of things we’ve seen over the last month:

  • Cooper is doing so great with his new baby brother. He has shown no aggression towards him or jealousy. For the first few days he covered his ears when he cried and laughed when he sneezed or coughed. We offered noise canceling headphones every chance we could. Cooper mostly declined. Now that Harbor is a month old, Cooper doesn’t even react when he cries. I am so happy the noise doesn’t bother him anymore.
  • We have done very few car rides with all three kids. Mostly because Cooper gets very stressed in the car. But the few car rides we have done have all been successful.
  • Cooper is showing hilarious awareness around his dad. Cooper’s hoarding bothers Dad a lot more than me. I watched Cooper hoarding items that Dad would not want him to have. Mostly photos. When Dad came in the room, Cooper hid them immediately. I know that sounds like such an odd positive. Well, in our world it IS HUGE. For Cooper to be aware that his Dad is entering the room is huge. Acknowledging people is actually a goal of his in therapy. And then to hide the items he should not have. Even huger. This mama is proud!
  • Like I mention in the video, Cooper’s hoarding is out of control. I think he is pouring all of his stress of the new baby into his treasures. We are talking hundreds of photos, coasters, DVD’s, books, color books, UNO card, Pokemon cards, etc. I could go on and on. Mail, bills, magazines, CD’s. He finds whatever he can and makes a nest around himself. As his mom, I know he is self soothing and comforting himself. So that is a priority. But the mess is a lot for our family to handle. It feels like we’ve lost control at home.
  • Cooper’s screaming is at a max. He is so loud right now. If we tell him something he doesn’t want to do or hear, he protests by screaming. At max volume.
  • He is waking up earlier and earlier. We are back to 4 AM’s.

When I filmed this video a few days ago, Cooper was in the middle of a pretty big regression. On Monday, November 5th, we changed Cooper’s dose of Medical Cannabis to a stronger blend. We also cut out all gluten and dairy again and limited sugar. Since then, we have seen HUGE improvements again. The mystery continues.

For more information, here is the initial post I did about cannabis, our decision to start, and how we went about getting our son approved. If you have questions start with these. You can also find out if medical cannabis is legal in your state: Click HERE.

Here is a high level overview of the results we’ve seen over the last week. As always, I encourage you to watch the video. I go into greater detail. Also, to here are links to videos from WEEK ONE, WEEK TWO, WEEK THREE, WEEK FOUR and WEEK FIVE.

I share so much more in the video!

Month Two of our Journey with MC

Hey all,I promised I would give a weekly update on our journey with medical cannabis for our severely autistic son. We are just over two months in! We've seen amazing, huge, gigantic, breakthroughs. I am so excited to tell you all of them. But with that, we've also seen a huge increase in behaviors. We've learned that while awareness is an AMAZING thing, it can bring issues that we've never had before. In week one we saw a reduction in anxiety. In week two we saw improved engagement with his surroundings. In week three Cooper began joining our family in the living room, during meals and in the evenings. Jamie and I learned what it was like to sit down. To not constantly worry and chase.In week we saw a combination of everything. He started sleeping better, sitting, interacting, noticing kids, 'singing' songs, relaxing, etc. I could go on and on. Week five was all about awareness. He was aware of his brother, his toys, forts, kids, who has the 'better' iPad, even Pokemon cards. We even visited a store for the first time in years. It was amazing.In the last month since I updated, we had huge changes at home. We had a baby! And while Cooper is doing better than I had thought he would with the baby, he seems to be spiraling in other areas. Screaming, pacing, hoarding, and an increase in anxiety to name a few. Take a listen to hear where we are at currently. And also, how I still have so much hope for our medical cannabis journey. For more information, here is the initial post I did about cannabis, our decision to start, and how we went about getting our son approved. If you have questions start with these. You can also find out if medical cannabis is legal in your state: https://www.findingcoopersvoice.com/2018/08/27/medical-cannabis-autism/?fbclid=IwAR2fVxpKEoyiDW6ZcUlIA4GzYtznde1qOCn8_xfrJrKY77uSot1F4Q36kFwWeek Five Update: https://www.facebook.com/findingcoopersvoice/videos/276548789859768/Week Four Update: https://www.facebook.com/findingcoopersvoice/videos/2177158712502975/Week Three Update: https://www.facebook.com/findingcoopersvoice/videos/924750594390192/Week Two Update: https://www.facebook.com/findingcoopersvoice/videos/740156296336147/Week One Update: https://www.facebook.com/findingcoopersvoice/videos/710177465981985/Thanks!-Kate

Posted by Finding Cooper's Voice on Monday, November 5, 2018

I plan to update weekly on Cooper’s progress. Check back!

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  • Fran Wald

    December 8, 2018 at 5:05 am
    Reply

    Jamie, I have been following you for a while now, I think your marvelous. If I may, I hear you say you think your going backwards […] Read MoreJamie, I have been following you for a while now, I think your marvelous. If I may, I hear you say you think your going backwards and as an outsider looking and listening from this end, no way you are so going forward. Let me explain what I see which actually comes out of your own mouth. Cooper is getting more aware because of the cannibas, when anyone becomes more aware of something there is some kind of adjustment to be made. Cooper is seeing that the world does indeed effect him and some of those effects he doesn't care for therefore reaction. Or maybe some of those things he's finding he enjoys but not quite sure what enjoyment is yet he screams. If I were you I would stop at some point and just think and observe I really think you'll see growth not regression, it's just going to be a slow growth maybe because each awareness may bring a behavior. Remember this is a child who ran around in a virtual bubble the world never touching, and now it is. I am sure sometimes this is frightening for him. You and Jamie are very good parents, you got this!!!! Always praying for your family thanks for sharing. Hugs Fran Read Less

  • James

    April 20, 2019 at 11:30 pm
    Reply

    Have you looked into other cannabis products like zygel (https://zynerba.com/in-development/zygel) or Thornes hemp oil + - https://www.thorne.com/take-5-daily/article/beyond-cbd-supporting-the-entire-endocannabinoid-system.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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