Long ago, I wrote our Top 11 Hardest Things About Our Autism. Now it’s time for the good part!
First I would like you to just soak in the absolute beauty of his gorgeous face.
This is more about how his autism relates to me….not him….
- He’s so SMART!! It’s so much fun!! I mean what parent doesn’t think their child is smart right? It’s true, I think my neurotypical is way smarter than me but it’s no secret that Silas is gifted in academics and music. It’s super fun having conversations by spelling out loud with your 3 and a half year old…it was pretty intense! It’s hard to share things with him now because he knows more than me, like cmon kid, I know some of my times tables but only up to 11…gimme a minute to figure out 13 x 42!!
- This is a bit in line with the last one but I’ve been dreading the day the kids will come to me with math homework. When I’m with my niece and she asks me a question I just laugh at her. Are you kidding me? Anyway, Silas won’t need help and hopefully, if we play it right, he’ll still be interested in it enough to help Isaac with his! Get out of jail free card!!!
- I have patience of steel. I mean, who can keep their cool in the middle of a grocery store while their child is screaming, you’re bleeding, baby is crying, people are looking?? I can…yup. I may have a cry after but I’m SO patient now. You should have seen me with him at first, I had about a quarter of the amount of patience. With a child with autism, you don’t want to make a big deal out of their negative behaviors, you want to be as poker faced as possible. It’s a bit of a challenge when their teeth are sunk into your skin like a badger and you need to keep your cool. It sucks at the time but I will never give back the patience I have earned from it.
- I have a new perspective on life. Silas sees the world so differently than I do. Silas sees beauty so differently than I do, and its amazing to see things his way.
- You get help raising your child. There were times where there were 5 or 6 intelligent adults in my living room, brainstorming ideas on how to get through behaviors. For that I will always be grateful. Every parent needs a think tank!
- TAX BENEFITS!! C’mon, who wouldn’t like that??
- I get to see development in a whole new way!! What parent celebrates and cries when their child first asks why? Or points at a bird in the sky? Or eats a carrot? Or picks up a small object? Or hugs them for the first time? Or looks in your eyes for the first time? Or shows empathy when you’re sad? Or brings you something they made or has you come see what they did? Or stops themselves from whacking someone the moment they get a bit upset? The milestones are even smaller than that…we build little skills upon bigger skills and every time they get a new one we FREAK THE FREAK OUT! I wish we had a confetti machine and a limitless supply of champagne because I feel like I need it with each step!
- All my preconceived notions about people with exceptionalities have gone out the window. My heart opened, I became bigger, I loved more and judged less. You know the awkward man in the mall who walks up to you and starts talking to you and you’re kind of weirded out and insulted and a bit annoyed and mostly impatient…perhaps he has autism? I bet you he does. I was never interested in working with people with special needs. I didn’t understand them, I didn’t think ill of them, I just wasn’t….interested. Things have changed…wow.
- I am an expert! I’m an expert on Silas’ autism. I have a wealth of new knowledge, I’m an encyclopedia of Silas’ autism. And autism in general…try me. You really have to decide to become an expert. I’ve seen all kinds of parents, some who have teenage kids with autism and still don’t know the resources around here or even what the word “sensory” means. I’m not that parent, it’s fun to know, it’s nice to feel well educated in a subject and it sure comes in handy!!
- The snuggles. I know this isn’t the case for some people with autism, they don’t like being touched. But our Silas LOVES snuggling, he almost OVER snuggles. Snuggle snuggle snuggle, love love love, kiss kiss kiss.
There’s so much more, you can’t really understand the full beauty of parenting someone with autism unless you do it yourself. Yes, it’s hard times a million but if you can’t take the bad with the good, if all you see in that your child is hard, if all you think about the negative, how lost will you be? What will your child’s self esteem be like? Children with autism aren’t unintelligent, they are amazing at knowing what’s going on in your head. They might not understand when you make a negative face but they feel your emotions about them. Sometimes I’ll have a question in my head, should I make chicken or pasta for dinner? Silas will answer me without me asking it verbally. They’re more than meets the eyes, there’s so much glorious beauty bottled up in their little, floppy bodies…I almost cannot stand it!!!
What makes parenting YOUR child amazing?
I feel tortured with all those beautiful pictures of Silas….I just want to see him and have one of those great conversations with him….oh yes!! Again let me say what wonderful parents you both have been . Love Roselle
I can really relate to the part about celebrating every little achievement. As you know, things that come so easily to neurotypical kids are a struggle for our blessed little ones. Cameron struggles to write anything. His grasp on his pencil has always been weak and almost ineffective. He is in an autism support classroom, where they have helped him to come far with his writing. When he writes his name on a card or a note for me, tears come to my eyes, because I know the effort it took to produce those letters.
The first time he got off of his van and said, “My foat hurts,” I cried for joy. I said, “Your foat hurts? That’s great!”
The driver must have thought I’d lost my mind, but it was his first reality conversation, and my heart was so full.
Your comment brought tears to my eyes.
It’s amazing how the “little things” are no longer the “little things” when it comes to Autism. Every stride is a blessing, each time they step out of their comfort zone, it touches a special part of our hearts.
This little person has a special place in my heart. He has shown me what a truer and deeper love can really mean.
Yes I agree with Maxine, be grateful of the little things. Comparison is the source of all anxiety.
Sometimes I feel sad that he struggles with things that others take for granted. A friend of mine was bragging that her daughter is about 5 (I think), and writes so well. I felt a bit of sadness, because my little Cameron has such a difficult time just writing his name.
But when I compare how he was two years ago, before the Autism Support classroom, I see how far he has come, how much he has changed. They have done great things with him. I am so proud of my little boy!
Silas really struggled with the pincer grip too, it took him a while. It’s really hard sometimes to not make comparisons to other kids. Just remember that typing is what he will mostly do anyways and that it WILL come, it really will.
You are very encouraging. I appreciate your positive outlook. I too try to be positive. I am more blessed than stressed. If you are on Facebook, you may feel free to look me up.
I tried but there’s a lot of people with your name on Facebook, if you like my fan page (same name) then I’ll be able to find you easier 🙂
It’s good to stay positive, positive thoughts do so much more good than worrying about the negative.
I found your page on FB and “liked” it. I also included a comment. You should be able to find both my personal page and my author page now. It’s good to stay connected with like-minded and open-hearted people.
and I am so honored to get to be one of his grandmas. I love you Silas.
And I am honoured to be his Aunty. And I am honoured to be the owner of that darling little rat … he is SO STINKING CUTE!