Back to school for Owen, Anna, and Charlie! What's going on at the middle school? Besides being pumped about his math and science curriculum, Owen has another reason to wake up every morning. Girls! Although Owen is socially awkward, like most people his age with autism, he still has feelings for girls his age, just like many of his classmates and friends. So, what will this year bring for Owen? Stay tuned for updates.
Owen, Anna, and Charlie are spending time with Grandma and Grandpa in the Great North. They have a cabin on the lake, with plenty of opportunity for fun with all the swimming, boating, fishing, and playing available. But Owen is feeling a little homesick. Why? His cell service doesn't stretch that far north and Grandma and Grandpa don't have WiFi at the cabin, of course! First World problems, indeed.
What's in a teenage boy's space? And what do they call it? Owen turned his walk-in closet into a "man cave". Apparently, this was so he wouldn't have to share his space with Charlie, like he shares a room with him. Anna is not allowed in the "man cave" (although she sneaks in every now and then). Owen keeps his valued possesions neatly organized (!) in his personal space.
Owen, like many others with neurofibromatosis, doesn't just have the cafe au lait spots, he has "lumps and bumps". Tumors can show up at any time, and when they cause pain, they should always be checked out. Sometimes, Owen thinks it isn't fair that he was saddled with NF, and that's understandable. It's not easy to have a positive outlook on life when you have a tumor pop up, especially one that hurts. But Owen, he's a fighter.
Stay tuned for Owen's MRI and results... (Just like Maureen and the rest of Puzzled Family.)
Owen has a special talent for math. Even with his mathmatical mind, he sometimes needs a little assistance. His mom is no math slouch, but there came a point when she was no longer able to assist. It was time to call in Norm! Stepdads all have unique talents, and one of Norm's is math. Sometimes it's difficult to get kids to see the benefits of a stepparent, but Owen and Norm have forged a relationship over Trigonometry.
Sometimes, oftentimes, Owen feels isolated having NF. With a liklihood of 1 in 2500 to 1 in 3000, nobody in Owen's everyday life is afflicted. However, Owen belongs to an awesome neurofibromatosis support group. Once a year, the group gets together for a family camp, and those with NF can get to know others affected on a personal level. Owen loves the closeness of his NF family!
Owen's surgery on his leg, due to NF, causes him to rely on family members for the neccessities. Somehow, though, he gets what he thinks he absolutely needs on his own! (Much to the chagrin of his sister.)
Owen has one of the most common genetic disorders, called neurofibromatosis. It affects more people than other disorders, like cystic fibrosis, yet so many people have never heard of it. Look for Owen to show what it's like to live with NF (what most people who have it refer to it as).
Neurofibromatosis type 1, or what Owen has, is diagnosed using criteria. To be dignosed, an individual needs to have two or more of the following:
- Two or more cafe au lait birthmarks over 0.5 cm in children or 1.5 cm in adults
- Two or more neurofibromas of any type or one plexiform neurofibroma
- Freckling under the armpits or in the groin area
- Opitic glioma, which is a tumor of the optic nerve pathway
- Two or more Lisch nodules of the iris
- Thinning of the long bones or other bony dysplasia
- A first-degree relative with NF1