When it comes to the despair surrounding the news of Silas’ autism, I pretty much can say I’m doing WAY better. I’ve embraced the autism, I think it’s fun and exciting and interesting, I don’t cry at the thought of it anymore….well…not often. I feel pretty good about it in a lot of ways especially because Silas is so high functioning and holy cow it could be so much worse.
There’s still mass amounts of stress though, wondering about money and the future. Thinking of all the things I should be doing but I’m not doing. Guilt is a beast.
Sometimes, though, it’s like I get a flashback of the pain an agony I went through at first. I was walking Ikey back and forth, back and forth, back and forth while he pushed his lawnmower outside. Silas was gone to the park with Alesha and I was incredibly bored ha ha. I saw a lady who lives in my complex who obviously has cancer because she’s completely bald, but she wears it proud. I thought about how her world must totally be cancer, just like my whole world is autism. I thought about how she felt about seeing my full head of really long hair, perhaps the same way I feel when I look at a child Silas’ age without autism. For some reason the pain just rushed back for a moment. It was sharp and I was completely dizzy and I felt like I could throw up.
As fast as it came it was gone. Was that pent up emotion? Was it a friendly reminder of how far I’ve come with this? Was it to keep me humble? I’m not sure. But it happens now and then.
I know that inside, I’ll never be the same. I’m sure the autism, despite the fact that it has broken me, will also make me a better person. I remember very clearly, saying out loud, that I couldn’t ever handle it if I had a special needs child. Now here I am, handling it…sometimes barely, but I’m handling it.
Yes the guilt gets the best of me. It’s hard not letting your own issues get in the way of mothering. But I’m always striving for better. Always trying to open myself up more, understand more, judge less, be better.
When the pain hits, I always remind myself that it could be so much worse. He’s alive isn’t he?