I’m Kylie a single mother to 3 boys, Eldest diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and Intellectual Disability and Youngest with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Unfortunately, my middle child was just so eager to see the world he come just before 19 weeks. My life has brought many ups and downs, I’ve suffered from depression since I was 16. Which in turn I ended up with post-natal depression after each child. I’m so fortunate to have the most amazingly support from family, friends, and professionals to get me through those dark times.

I’ve always been semi ambitious person since I got my first job at 15. I worked my way from the bottom as a cashier, to kitchen hand all the way up to store manager at 20. By the time I was 23 I had suffered a mystery illness that took the function of my arms away. I was unable to work and then months later I found out I was pregnant with my first child. I worked hard during those 9 months to be able to hold my child when he was born. Over time I was able to build the strength back up in my arms.

After having my first child I knew I never wanted to miss a moment with my kids. I became a qualified nail tech and had a home-based business for a couple years. In 2016 I opened my candle business called Handmade with love by Kylie. Unfortunately, 6 Months later I had to close down to help run my family’s courier business.

End of 2017/ early 2018 I decided I was going to reopen my candle business with a new name. My 3 sons inspire me every day, so I used their initials for inspiration.

E – Is for my eldest son with special needs. Whom shows me every day is a new day and enjoy the small things in life.

P – Is for my angel son. Who entered this world at 19 weeks.

M- Is for my rainbow baby. He tests me every day but always shows so much love and affection.

After an awful 2020 like the rest of the world.  I was struggling to manage my children’s therapies their behaviours, school plus orders. Just something had to give in my life. I made the hard decision to close EPM Emporium. Another blow came when I received my eldest sons end of year report card. It was so full of lies. After speaking with my eldest son’s therapists, I had to make another hard decision – Go back to special school and keep failing him or take the plunge and home school.

Early 2021 I was at breaking point. I was struggling with my children. Managing everything on my own was just stretching me thin. I needed help. Then one day I was scrolling Facebook for an independent support worker. I came across an ad that had the experience we needed. I immediately called and spoke to Annissa. She was excited to work with my eldest. My eldest met Annissa and hit it off immediately. Annissa started taking my eldest to therapy sessions. There were things I needed her to ask our therapists, or they needed Annissa to give me a message but sometimes I forgot to ask. So, I came up with the idea of therapy diaries. So Annissa could write what was happening in the sessions, ask the therapists questions for me and write the answer down. etc.

Then the therapy and support worker diaries were born.

 I just hope they help more families that use support workers like it has helped me with my boys.