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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Lets Pretend!!

So as many of you know (or possibly don't know)...imaginary play is a very important part of childhood development that typically begins around 18 months of age.

Imaginary play typically starts out with children mimicking what their parents do-talking on the phone. Pretending to mix things in a bowl.  The skill will develop further into more advanced pretending- dressing up like super heroes, wearing costumes. Making up stories.

Seems pretty normal right? Probably something a parent really never thinks about.

Kids just play...

Right??

Well, my kid doesn't really play and that is not unusual for a child on the autism spectrum.

Autism is a spectrum disorder so I am sure there are children with autism who imaginary play, but the majority of young children diagnosed with autism do not have imaginary play skills.

The CDC recommends speaking with your child's pediatrician at age 3 if a child does not play pretend or make believe.

I remember getting those stupid news letters from Baby Center.com telling me that now that my kid was 18 months to start to look for imaginary play-they used the phone and the cooking as examples.

I waited and waited and...nothing.

Anywhoo-When Mason went to his autism evaluation,  during Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule , the neuropsychologist who was evaluating mason focused a lot on Mason's lack of ability to pretend.

She wanted him to pretend a block was a flower.

I sat there thinking to myself he didn't even know he was supposed to sniff flowers. I actually wasn't sure if he even knew what a flower was. How would he know to pretend a block was a flower? He didn't even play with blocks!

The whole thing boggled my mind. Are 1.5  year olds really supposed to know how to do that?

She also wanted him to wash a baby doll.

Again I sat back...dumbfounded that these were skills he should have by now.

I thought of my niece and nephew the same age. My niece was putting her Mickey Mouse toys in her stroller telling us all that they were going to work. My nephew was shooting imaginary spider webs from his wrists at me, pretending to be Spider Man.

Ok...I guess sniffing a block and washing a baby isn't that big of a deal.

But...it was to me.

Mason seemed so far from that. And it made sense why.

Mason, at 21 months I was told, was developmentally a 9 month old.

Here are some "highlights of the 4 page evaluation






So...pretty disheartening. Especially to see it right in your face in black and white.

Even last March when he was evaluated by our school district...I KNOW he has autism, I know he is severely developmentally delayed. But to see it written out on a big screen...it feels like the day we confirmed he had autism all over again.

It makes me dizzy and I feel like someone is punching me in the stomach over and over while stomping on my heart.

But enough of the being negative because that is not what this post is about!!

I want to share with everyone what Mason has done over the last few days!

There has been a whole lotta pretending up in here!

He is not yet pretending to be different characters, dress up, or make up stories but he IS pretending an object is something different.

So first he has been handing me various objects-cups, airplanes, hangers and putting them to my ear and telling me that it is various family members on the phone.

A few nights ago he handed me his cup and said  "It's TT" (but like imagine him saying it the way Johnny Carson was introduced 'Herrrrreeeee's Jonny!!")

I said "Hi TT!" and Mason yelled "Hi TT! How are you"?

It was so hilarious! Since then we have talked to various family members on airplanes, cups, cards. Whatever is around. And he always "lets me know they are on the phone" using the "Here's Johnny" voice!

Mason has also been making his toys dance. If we are watching a show, he picks up his toys (which normally he just lines up and stares at) and says "Dusty Dance" or "Shark Airplane Dance" and he proceeds to make them dance with the music.

While he does this, he does a nifty dance move on one foot.

He is also pretending to crash cars and make his airplanes fly in the air-as opposed to just lining them up which is very exciting.

I remember when he was one year old,  he was "playing" with a toy truck but he was just intensely watching the wheels go back and forth as he rolled it.

There was no real playing involved-such as when my niece would play with the same truck and fill the back of it farm animals and say she was going to the farm and then "drop them off" by dumping them out.

It is progress like this that makes me so hopeful.

Finally-he is pretending objects other than airplanes are airplanes.

Fruit snacks, hangers, You name it.

He makes them all airplanes!

He is able to use his imagination to think of one object as something else and I have to be honest, a year ago the ability to do that seemed like it was so far away.

Ignorance is bliss-it is a statement I think of probably once a day.

I seriously long to be blissfully ignorant autism...to watch my son develop and not think anything of him pretend talking on a phone  (other than "oh isn't that cute") as opposed to practically doing a back flip.

Autism has given me the ability to appreciate the small victories-at least by society's standards.

In our world, the small victories are the equivalent to winning the Super Bowl.

And I cherish every moment.








Monday, September 1, 2014

Looking Back...


I put these two pictures side by side because I am a big dork and I like to compare baby pics to pictures now-when Mason is 3.5

There was really no purpose other than to see if he looked the same as a baby as he does now.

I did not expect the wave of emotion to hit me like it did.

I look at the first picture-my peaceful sleeping little guy.

I guess he was a few weeks old in that picture.

I remember when he was a few weeks old, I thought about him turning 4.

I don't know why I thought of the age 4-I guess it seemed so far away.

I remember looking at his tiny squishy little body and thinking how one day, he would be able to sit up.

I looked at his little legs and were amazed that one day, they would carry him to walk.

I held his little hand and pictured him with a fork eating a hot dog, drawing on a chalk board.

I pictured Mason as a little boy without Autism.

I pictured him at 4 understanding what a friend was. Understanding his birthday, Christmas. Playing with kids. Maybe being interested in a sport.

I pictured him talking like other 4 year olds...developing language like any other kid.

In my head, my thoughts never seemed excessive-I was not picturing him as the next great sports hero or the future President.

I guess when I took that picture...my life seemed normal.

I look at the picture on the left.

I remember the feeling of being a new mom.

My new mom thoughts never included Early Intervention, an Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis before the age of 2, and 20 hours of therapy a week.

Now I just feel heart ache. Fear. Confusion.

I look at the picture on the right and I seriously feel like a lion circling him, to protect him from the outside and from autism.

It actually makes my heart and my head hurt.

I know when I took the picture on the left, I did not have these feelings...but... I don't remember NOT having them.

I wish I could go back to the short time where I happily watched my son grow and did not worry for oh all of those 6 months.

I am not saying people don't worry about their kids but I am pretty sure most people don't stare at their kid waiting for them to do what every other kid their age is already doing while anxiety grows and grows and grows.

I have never sat back and enjoyed watching my child grow.

I look at the picture when he was a baby and I see my dreams in that picture.

I look at Mason now at 3.5

I no longer see my dreams.

I see a little boy who needs me in a way I never imagined, and the responsibility of being his mom really really scares me.

My biggest fear is regret. 

I hope I don't let him down.












Sunday, August 17, 2014

I Really Don't Get It...

It is hard for me to look at another child and think to myself...

Why? 

Why my son?

What is the reason?

Will I ever find out?

I see videos on facebook of kids Mason's age (and younger!!!) participating in the ALS ice bucket challenge with their parents. These kids are totally aware of what is happening.

(As a side note-I really think the awareness being spread for any disease or disability-in this case ALS-is AMAZING!!! Awareness is an amazing thing. It is easy to brush aside disorders and diseases if they don't affect an individual directly. I try to do the same with autism.)

I see  kids Mason's age age and younger. Cognitively they are so ahead of him.

It scares the crap out of me.

I have to be honest-I just don't want to deal with autism.

I know that individuals who suffer from ALS don't want to deal with it either.

I am not suffering. I don't know if my son is. But it is my job to advocate for him.

If I don't... then who will?

I don't want Mason to be a different person. I want Mason..my Mason...the same Mason that love and cherish...to be a child without autism.

I know there is this big neurodiversity movement going on where autistic adults get offended when parents of autistic children are not skipping through fields of daises, celebrating autism.

Maybe I will write about that soon because that is another subject that really annoys me.

I want my son to not struggle.

Is that really so much to ask for?

Is anyone listening?????

I would dump 1000000000000000000000000 buckets of water on my head for him.

And for anyone, for that matter.








Saturday, August 16, 2014

Spinning

Mason has always had a fascination with spinning objects.

I have written about it before.

A fascination with spinning objects is a sign of autism, and Mason displayed this fascination when he was very very young.

As a baby, he would look at ceiling fans. At the time, I thought nothing of it because...uh...lots of babies like to watch fans spin. There was nothing unusual about the behavior but it was noticeable that he did really like to watch them spin.

As he got older, things started to seem "off" to me.

I started to notice in his first year that he did not play with toys like other babies did.

He would not bang things on the floor, or hit things to light up.

His "play" was very methodical-it never seemed spontaneous to me. He would spin his toys-no matter what toy it was, and would watch.

I could tell he was looking for or at something specific, but I really had no idea what.

Again, at the time although there was a little nagging voice in the back of my head, I just brushed it off.

By 1 year I knew something was wrong. He was not developing any type of imaginary play. He was not interested in toys like other 1 year olds.

He would just watch objects spin.

By the time he was 1 and a half, it was obvious his preference for spinning objects was becoming somewhat of an obsession.

Preoccupation with specific objects is also a sign of autism.

Although Mason had a toy in his hand, he did not "see" the object for what it was intended. For example-stacking rings. He would just spin the rings over and over. By the time he was 1 he could spin two at a time.

He would spin the object, step back, watch, and was very serious.

He was looking at...something.

Here is a video of Mason two weeks after his 2nd birthday.

Spinning a quarter.

Here is another video of him spinning some bottles. (please excuse the television on the floor, I was waiting for my television stand to arrive at the time this was recorded)

Spinning bottles

As you can see, he is pretty good at spinning.

I am pretty sure he could spin anything!

We have really worked hard to eliminate how much time Mason spins objects.

When we first started Early Intervention, it was his preferred way to play and when we would try to get him to do something else, he would FREAK OUT.

We actually removed all spinnable objects in the house.

It was not because I wanted to be mean-I actually felt guilty.

The reason was that he was not interacting with anyone around him, or doing other things for enjoyment.

He was one and a half and would not do a puzzle, he would not sit and stack blocks.

So in Early Intervention we worked on other types of play for Mason.

His therapist suggested getting a mimi trampoline for him to control his sensory input which was causing the desire to spin.

All of these things worked!

He still does spin things but it is mostly when he is tired.

Sometimes he does it for fun which I am ok with because he is interacting, playing with other toys, can do puzzles, etc...

I loved when he spins something and then looks at me, very proud.

Spinning  is a part of who he is.

While I do want him to continue to play with other toys so that we encourage pretend play (which he still is in the very beginning stages of) I will never stop him from spinning.

Along with spinning, Mason LOVES fans. Any type of fan.

Last Christmas, there were 10000 toy commercials on television.

There was not one reaction from Mason when a commercial came on.

One day on the television, some low budget commercial for an injury lawyer came on.

There was a ceiling fan.

I didn't even notice it, but Mason went crazy and I had to laugh.

All the Christmas commercials and he was excited for a fan.

At the Zoo last week, while he loved all the animals, the fan that was spinning in the room with all the reptiles is what he was most excited about!

So Mason likes fans and he likes spinning...which brings me to what I wanted to write about today.

If I turn on my ceiling fan, Mason knows what speed it is on even really before it starts spinning.

He is not watching me turn it on-I mean the fan really does not even start to move.

If I turn it on medium or low, I am immediately called out.

"Fast."

Um...what?

Is this kid for real?

I have tested this numerous times to see if it is a fluke and every time I put my fan on a lower speed, Mason demands it to be on "fast".

I have put the fan on medium, then fast.

When the fan first starts spinning .0000001 second after I turn it on...the speed looks the same to me. Like...literally the fan doesn't even go around one time, and he can tell what speed it is on.

Seriously...how does he know?

Mason has spend so much of his life watching objects spin.

When I see him watching, I know he sees something none of us see.

Sometimes I wonder if his desire to watch thing spin will somehow spill over to his career as an adult.

I don't know what it could be-but it is fun to think about.

I know a big part of therapy for autism is to eliminate behaviors that are not typical and while I do understand why...I think it also is eliminating a part of who he really is.

Obviously I want him to interact with people, play with toys appropriately, and develop other skills.

But I think we will keep the spinning, too.




Sunday, August 10, 2014

Situations Are Not Always What They Seem...

So as most people may have read, there was some ridiculous story floating around the internet posted by some douchebag who decided to be "awesome" and stick it to a kid who wanted a fucking pie.

As a side note...the post has since been deleted from Reddit. Before the delete, the "author" claimed he could not produce a receipt for the pies, as the incident occurred 2 years ago and it was when he was living in a roach and bed bug infested apartment, and none of his belongings from that time period made it to his new apartment.

Um...ok.

He sounds really amazing. What a guy.

Reading the post, my personal opinion is that this really awesome dude who likes to make kids cry imagined this whole scenario in his head. 

The particularly stand out part for me is the "climax" of the story when the mother finally orders a pie and is told there are none left. 

She then demands to know who ordered all the pie.

Ok if I was ordering something at a fast food restaurant and I was told they were out, I wouldn't assume a guest in front of me decided to order the entire stock of that particular item. I would just think it was poor management of the restaurant.

But the author proceeds to tell the story like this:

Moments later I hear the woman yelling, "What do you mean you don't have any pies left, who bought them all?"

 I turn around and see the cashier pointing me out with the woman shooting me a death glare. I stand there and pull out a pie and slowly start eating eat as I stare back at her. She starts running towards me but can't get to me because of other lineups in the food court. I turn and slowly walk away.

Give me a fucking break. Did the whole restaurant slow clap as you slowly bit into your pie?

This guy is probably a dick who just hates kids and saw a kid crying in line and came up with this scenario. 

But the more disturbing thing to me is the response to the story.

The guy is called...a hero?

For "sticking it" to a kid who wanted a pie?

Most of the comments are along the lines of the "the little shit" getting what was coming to him. 

I do not understand society today....

Kids are HARD. They are UNPREDICTABLE. And honestly, parents shouldn't stay locked in their homes for fear their 2 year old is going to want a fucking pie.

And like for God's sake it is fucking BURGER KING. They sell crappy junk food and give kids paper crowns to wear. There is a friggin jungle gym in the restaurant. 

And this guy is complaining about kids?? 

Seriously people????

Who is the moron here? 

 13,000 comments  online.

I have a heartfelt blog about my son and I get like 1 comment a month.

With all that being said, there is another perspective I would like to bring up.

What if a child is having an outburst, and the child is special needs? What if they look almost 4  years old...too big to be having a tantrum on the outside, but on the inside their brain has not developed past a 1 year old?

Mason is 3.5 years old but developmentally in all areas, he is between 1-2 years old.

Only in motor skills is he considered "below average" but not delayed.

Every area of development, he is delayed. 

In cognition and language, he is extremely delayed.

Cognition is the set of all mental abilities and processes related to knowledgeattentionmemory & working memoryjudgement & evaluationreasoning& "computation", problem solving & decision makingcomprehension & production of language, etc. 

Mason does not understand abstract concepts. He is 3 and a half but does not understanding waiting his turn, sharing, things like that. It is not that he just doesn't want to-he does not understand what it is. He does not understand why he has to share. He does not understand that he can not immediately get what he wants.

This is all fine and dandy at 2 years old...but at 3.5 do you know what it looks like?

It looks like he is a spoiled brat.

I have gotten looks at the grocery store.

Mason wants...oh say... goldfish so I get him a bag and let him eat them while I shop to avoid a melt down.

This does not just happen with goldfish. It has happened with bananas...and he doesn't even eat them he just likes to look at them. Toothbrushes. Chips.

You name it.

I cannot bring him a bag of (insert item here) because I have no idea what his item of interest will be on that day.

Literally one day he wanted to hold a banana and look at it.

Anywhoo-

We get to the line and the item has to be scanned.

Kids this age you can say "the lady at the register is going to scan and then you can have it back."

Mason literally has no idea what that means.

I say it to him anyway so that people around me think I am being a good parent...but i know in reality we are .05 seconds from an anxiety attack because I took the goldfish away that I really didn't want to give him anyway.

Goldfish get scanned. My heart is pounding. I am pretty much sweating and taking short breaths because I know what is about to come.

Total and utter devastation.

He thinks I am taking them from him.

He screams. This ungodly high pitched scream that makes your ears pop.

The cashier looks at me-wide eyed in shock.

I freeze. I don't want to look around me because I am afraid of HOW everyone is looking at me.

Yes-my 3.5 year old is screaming bloody murder because his goldfish are being scanned.

And what can I do? 

I cannot leave him at home, I have to go food shopping.

He is already getting $75,000 a year worth of behavioral therapy.

I am not a bad mom, I just don't know what the right thing to do for a 3.5 year old who is developmentally a year and a half behind.

The cashier tries to give him a sticker.

No please God no. Stickers make him freak the fuck out.


I apologize over and over.

"WOW he must really be hungry."

I swear to God this has happened to me about a dozen times.

At Target on Saturday-same thing.

I decide I want to take Mason out and buy him a new toy.

I try to walk in with a positive attitude. This is supposed to be fun! Buying a toy for your kid...yipeeee!

I know the moments from when we pick out the toy to when I get into the car are just...I don't know what is going to happen.

I take a deep breath.

Mason picks out his toy- Dusty of course.

We walk through Target and Mason hands me the box.

"Help, please".

Shit.

"Mason, mommy will open it for you in the car. We have to go pay for it first."

He does not understand what that means.

He looks at me again.

"Help, please"...he says.

His tone is much more worried now.

I am breaking out into a panic, cold sweat, heavy breathing.

Please please please Mason keep it together.

All I want to do is be normal and buy my kid a toy.

I am like RUNNING to the cashier. Mason is getting more anxious as the seconds tick.

I am dreading "the scan".

Mason is starting to lose it.

"HEEEELLLLP PLLLLLEEEAAAASSSEEE" he screams as I am running with my cart.

Why do the cash registers seem like they are located in Antarctica? Why am I running in slow motion?

We finally get to the register and I take Dusty from Mason so it can be scanned.

And you guessed it-he is upset.

His mouth turns down and little tears come out of his eyes.

He is taking short breaths, gulping.

"Bye bye Dusty" he says as if it is his last moment on Earth that he will see Dusty.

The cashier looks at me

"Is he crying because he wants his toy?"

I stare at her. My eyes...I have no idea what the fuck I looked like.

She quickly scanned it and handed it back to Mason.

I moved away from the line and proceeded to open Dusty for Mason.

Know what I looked like?

A mom giving in to her bratty kid that could not wait for his toy.

I was so stressed out by that point I did not care.

But I did think of the pie story at that momeht, and all the people in cyber space who virtually high fived a man who lives in a nasty ass apartment with roaches for "finally sticking it" to a bratty kid.

Mason is going to have so many struggles.

What if some day an adult is cruel to him because he is not fitting into society's idea of how a child should behave?  

I am not a bad mom. I will try to discipline him. But for fucks sake I just want to get in and out of Target.

I just want to get in and out of Shoprite.

Do I "pretend" to discipline just to appease all the haters of kids who scream?

I seriously have enough to worry about.

Being judged, as much as I would like to say I don't care...well...I do.

I don't want people to think Mason is a spoiled brat-he isn't.

But I can see that at his age, he probably comes off that way in some situations.

And believe me, I am not "gentle parenting" shit-as I have said before I just want to get my ham and get the fuck out!

I guess the point of this blog today was just to present another perspective regarding a child's behavior, and their mothers behavior toward the child.

 If a kids seems like he is being unreasonable, or being bratty, it doesn't mean that he really is.

If the mom isn't giving some sort of Hulk Hogan smack down, it doesn't mean she is a bad mom.

But oh I forgot-if that was the scenario then everyone would be calling 911, recording the video, and posting it on youtube.

Seems like we just cannot win!








Thursday, August 7, 2014

I Saw The Sign

Many people ask me if Mason displayed signs of autism as a baby.

The answer to that question...looking back...is yes. And to be honest, I was very uneasy about development as he approached his 1st birthday.

During his first year of life, I did not mention my concerns to anyone other than my mom and sisters and a few other family members-it seemed totally ridiculous to me.  He was a baby. I was probably being a paranoid new mom.

I remember having a conversation with my cousin-Mason was probably 10 months old. In a joking way (even though I was not really joking) said I was scared Mason was showing signs of autism, and I felt like the media had too much information out there which was scaring new parents for no reason.

As I said the words though, in the back of my mind I was pretty sure I was the only person I knew who was worrying about this while other people were enjoying their kids.

If there was so much media attention that it was scaring new parents, why was I the only one scared?

What I realize now is that what I was referring to is Autism Awareness. And yup. I was aware. And today I am thankful for all of the awareness because I was able to start therapy for Mason at 16 months old.

When Mason was very little I was not really worried about developmental delays. Mason seemed to be hitting all of his motor skills on time- he rolled over at about 5 months, could push himself up on his chest at 5 or 6 months, he crawled at 8 months, could pull himself up to a stand around 10 months, and walked by 13 months.

Nothing out of the ordinary there.

Mason was a very good baby. As he got older, he could occupy himself for very long periods of time.

At first, I thought this made me very lucky. I had a GREAT baby! He could sit in the pack and play and I could clean the whole house and he never bothered me to come out, reach to be picked up. He did not look at me to see where I was.

Approaching his first birthday, this did not sit well with me. Not only was he not trying to get my attention, he really would not interact with me.

Now...there is a difference between react and interact.

Mason would react to my actions.

If I did something funny he would laugh.

If I played peek a boo he would pay attention, laugh, and show that he was interested in what I was doing.

He always gave me hugs.

He did not, however interact.

I would try to play back and fourth games with him and could not engage him. .We never did anything that could incorporate "turn taking".

He did not bring me toys or show me anything. In fact, he did not point or gesture at all.

Pointing was first on my radar as an important developmental milestone when my sister took her daughter, my niece Georgia, to her 5 month check up.

I had NO IDEA pointing was an important developmental milestone, but it is. It is actually just as important as babbling.

Georgia was pointing out things to her parents at 5 months old. She would point to lights, to birds...things like that. Before she was 1 year old, if you asked her to show her name, she could pick out her name and point to it.

My sister came home from the 5 month appointment and told me that the pediatrician was astounded that Georgia was pointing so early-most children do not point to show shared enjoyment-which is a child's desire to interact with others by using non verbal gestures- until closer to 12 months.

Pointing to show shared enjoyment is different than labeling which is another form of communication. Pointing to show shared enjoyment would be if your child sees an airplane in the sky and wants to show you. Labeling would be when you ask your child to show you something-for example "show me the airplane" in a book, etc...which would show development of receptive language.

Both skills are very important for language development.

Anywhoo-Georgia pointed at 5 months.

Cool.

I waited for Mason to point.

And waited.

And waited.

Mason did not point until he was around 19 months old.

At his 12 month appointment, I spoke with my pediatrician about his lack of pointing.

I had read if a child does not point by 12 months old, it could be a sign of a developmental delay.

I was told not to worry.

"But...he is not babbling either" I said.

Again, I was told all children develop differently and not to worry.

Alrighty then.

Other signs of autism before his first birthday- he did not "play" with toys-he did not bang things and turn things on and off.

He did not seem interested in different toys.

He would only "play" with toys that had a part that he could flick, or spin.

If I gave him a book, he would flick the corners of the pages instead of turning the pages to look at pictures.

One time, I wanted to see how long he would flick a page. It went on for about 30 minutes before I took the book from him. He never turned the page, just flicked the page corner over and over and over.

As the clocked ticked by during those 30 minutes, I could feel my panic grow.

WTF was this?

He was probably about 10 months old.

Mason always smiled. He always laughed at me. He did not tantrum. He liked to be cuddled.

The signs of autism in an infant and toddler have nothing to do with what they ARE doing.

The signs of autism are based on what they are NOT doing.

Now that Mason is 3-it is much more obvious he has autism than when he was 1.

He is talking  now, and pointing, and communicating.

I am THRILLED!!

This morning when we woke up, he asked for apple juice, cheerios, told me to sit on the sofa with him, and asked me to put on his favorite show.

Oh and he also asked me to built a tunnel with the sofa pillows.

Demanding little bugger-I was trying to make coffee!

However, Mason also has no imagination, he lines up his toys instead of playing with them. He shows signs of anxiety if something is not exactly how he wants it. He flaps his hands when he is very excited. He will probably still be in a diaper when he turns 4. He cannot use a fork, spoon, or straw. He screams with anxiety if I try to get him to eat new foods. He repeats the same phrases over and over.

Developmentally, he is about 24 months but he will be 3.5 next month.

If he wants something in a store and cannot have it, he looks like he is being a spoiled brat but really, he simply does not understand why he cannot have what he wants. He does not understand abstract concepts such as "waiting" and "sharing".

Looking back, I think of the little red flags. I understand why they are called "red flags".

I picture little red flags waving around Mason as a baby and toddler.

Look!

Pay attention!

See us waving??

I look back on that time and wish I could have experienced what parents of typically developing children experience.

The excitement of watching your child develop as opposed to a huge sigh of relief when the milestone finally occurred... a year later than it should have.

Coulda, shoulda, woulda.

Blah.

Here's hoping for more sighs of relief in the near future!










Tuesday, August 5, 2014

What Am I Looking For?

I remember the painful nights leading up to Mason's diagnosis on the Autism Spectrum.

The endless googling I did.

The search for an answer BESIDES autism.

I searched for blogs written by mothers who were afraid,  but everything turned out ok.

I would google the same things over and over...the behaviors that did not sit right with me. The nagging in my head something was wrong.

1 year old not babbling

1 year old spinning objects

1 year old not pointing

I would stay up way past midnight searching for another answer than the one that was hitting me in the face.

There was no way I could have denied anything- Mason exhibited every single "red flag" that was listed online for a toddler. Every single one.

I was sucked into a world of google, a world of learning about and understanding autism.

Of searching for answers.

A very lonely world.

I would read, and then put my head in my hands and the tears would come.

I didn't want this for him.

But obviously...it was not up to me.

A year and a half I still am searching...but I don't know what I am looking for.

I still google autism. I still read about behaviors. I still read and read and read about childhood development.

I read about children that enter adulthood and lose their support.

Who will support Mason when we are gone?

I talk about autism a lot. All the time.

Honestly, it is the only thing I am comfortable talking about. It is becoming an obsession for me to learn anything I can.

I watch my son and see his progress.

I am so proud of him.

But I also see his peers progressing. It is not like their development stops so Mason can catch up.

I see them developing faster and faster.

This fucking clock is in my head, counting seconds every day....ticking away time...

Can I do more? Should I do more?

What the fuck should I do?

I am looking for an answer... that I guess...

Does not exist.