Monday, April 21, 2014

Autism ..........

How to start this blog ?

what do YOU think autism is ? Before you knew my son or any other child with autism , how did you define autism or did you know what is was or did you refer to the movie Rain Man with Dustin Hoffman.

Don't feel bad, after Logan's diagnoses at 2, we thought oh my he will have no life, he will be like Rain man because we had NO other examples of what autism was.

Things that annoy me

NO my son cannot do  tricks like Rainman when it comes to dropping toothpicks

Well NO of course you can't tell he has autism just by looking at him, he's NOT deformed

Wow I bet he gets all kinds of therapy for free.

So he doesn't like to be touched  ?

Wow he speaks ?

Aren't you mad at God for doing this to your son ?

The Worst and I MEAN WORST thing people do when they find out Logan is autistic is they give that look of pity at me. I really just want to laugh in their face when they do that. At times I would even tell someone please don't look at me that way, it's not a death sentence.

seriously though, it was almost like a death when we got the diagnoses, the child we thought we had was gone, our image of what we wanted for Logan had died and now we had this child who would in turn have his days filled with therapy, constant learning , rages and melt downs.

But we found new life within Logan's autism. So much more than I could've imagined and I know he's only 10 yrs old but I'm pretty proud of him, our proud of our family. I have to say i'm especially proud of Ava.

Ava has had to experience a lot thru Logan's autism and i'm sure it was frightening at times, lonely and also wonderful. She has a brother who loves her dearly, they protect one another. Ava is pretty much always aware when she needs to include her brother along. There are times she gets upset because Logan seems to be perfect at everything he does. The other day I told Ava you know NOT to ask people if they are poor or rich to not offend, your brother doesn't. You have no trouble making friends as to where your brother does and your heart,love and compassion is a real God given gift that cannot be taught. 

I have met  some really wonderful Amazing people that if Logan didn't have autism our family might have never known them.  For one, Rachel, who was Logan's shadow at church for years thru the special needs buddy program at church. I can't even imagine her not being in our life, even though she lives in Africa now, her presence is always felt with Logan. She is someone I look up to everyday to try and be better in life.

Judie Mark and M, even though Ava and M have been in the same class pretty much their whole school life, Maybe I wouldn't be as close to them if it wasn't for autism.  It's awesome to sit with another mom and not have to stop to apologize to the other mom for what your kid has asked or said or to stop your conversation to explain something.  I treasure our time together,  I love how Logan and M and Ava play together even though they aren't exactly playing together. I love how Logan and M autism is very different from one another, they can have friction against each other during play but then high five each other because they have autism and they get to go first at the Easter egg hunt. I truly love this family and they are great friends.

Or Dj at my church who is autistic , the gentle giant who runs a business for his art work. He's an amazing person who does speaking engagements, I'm even jealous that he has met Temple Grandin several times !

I've met so many awesome people thru autism and then of course the other side, the bullying, the weird looks. It has happened several times over the last few years but the school they attend is on it the moment I notify them. The middle school years approaching and it will only get worse, I hope it won't but middle school was hell, I hated every day of it.

Have I ever been or am I mad at God for Logan's autism ?

In the beginning I felt like maybe I was being punished, why us ? we did everything right, we got married before we had kids, had been married a long time before having kids, I stayed home with him, ate right while pregnant and exercised but mad ?   NO.

God has created some of the most intriguing and unique things on our planet and I think this includes those who are not " neurotypical " I think God has a sense of humor, I think he understands the pain and heartache we have felt at times with the autism but then there's that light that shines thru in Logan and I know he has BiG plans for him.

A month ago at Logan's 2nd guitar lesson, he asked his instructor if he could play something, my son sat there and played Bach in minut G, brought tears to my eyes and I was breathless, I had NO idea he could do that but he did.

I have a child with autism that doubts me a lot in what I say because he knows he is smarter than me, it's okay, he is. 

I have a child with autism who has a heart of gold even though he might ask offensive questions like are you poor  cause you live here or are you rich cause you travel, or WOW you are fat while pointing at someones stomach.

I have  a child with autism that has a sense of humor that is emerging and is trying to learn to laugh at himself and NOT be so serious.

I have a child with autism who can hear music once or twice and turn around and play it on a keyboard or guitar.

I have a child that can make a Mayan math chart  that could stump even the smartest of math folks.

I have a child with autism who refuses to give up our morning snuggling ritual.

I have a child with autism who discussed with us his desire for all of us to be baptized.

I have a child with autism who is terrified of bees and will melt into  a puddle if he thinks one is near

I have a child with autism who has trouble getting conversations out without stumbling over words or has to have absolutely no one else talking when he wants to talk to me

I have a child with autism who played the birth of Christ and crucifixtion  with his friends on the playground at his public school

I have  a child with autism who is amazing, brilliant, loving, kind, who loves to be touched, held and times demands it.

I have a child with autism and I don't think vaccines were the cause ( yes it is true, I DON"T think that is the cause ) I think people want something or someone to  blame.

I am so thankful for Logan and everything he has taught me what it means to be his mother.

Speaking as a mother ............

Now when I lay awake at night there are no tears as I worry about will he live on his own ? hold down a job, or have a family of his own, years have passed since I've laid in the dark, tears never ending, it will be okay.

There are days when I am so frustrated at him, I say Logan did you brush your teeth ? His response, well you didn't tell me ? My response,well I don't tell you to breathe either , ya KINDA JUST DO IT !  NOW, brush your teeth dragon breath !

As a mother I feel like I haven't pushed Logan hard enough with his conversation abilities but I pushed so hard in the beginning and honestly I get tired of pushing and pushing. There are times I just throw my hands up and say Lord, please let common sense fall into his  head ( especially Ava's ) I can;t do this anymore without going crazy.

I know I'm doing plenty wrong, I just hope the good out weighs the bad in the end. I know we are blessed that Logan is high functioning compared to what some families go thru but we have to remember they all have a light that needs to shine, just let it shine.

This blog is all over the place, done over a course of a day and i've been thinking of how to write is since April started , I can't collect my thoughts enough in one space today ;) There's so much I want to say about Logan and autism but if you know us and or you met him then you know, you understand, if you are a parent, relative or friend of  a family of someone with autism or just know someone with autism in their life, then you understand.


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