Autism & More Autism
I have said it before that I like to read articles, books, and watch movies or documentaries about autism to learn more about it.
Another thing I love to do is read other parents blogs about their lives raising kids with autism. Some are really sad, some are really funny, but all of them are honest. Which I need.
What's the point of writing a blog about autism and pretending it's all achievements and amazing savant skills when it's not!
Anyway, that being said, today I wanted to share a blog called "Yeah. Good Times", and a excerpt from a series she hosted called: "All Kids Do That".
There are times as a parent of a child with autism that I want to know if all kids do something, or if it's just autism. But even in those situations that might be an "all kids" sort of event, there is a twinge of something different. For instance, Caleb has been a little more obnoxious than usual. I inquired about it, and I guess between the ages of 8-12 boys can start to push the boundaries more, and act like they know everything. The difference with Caleb though, compared to other boys his age, if you can talk about something, and prove where they are wrong, they will back off. A typical boy will take the facts, process them, and may not bring up that subject again.
Caleb can be told the facts, but still push and push, and argue about something until you want to rip your hair out.
For instance, last night we're reading a book he brought home from school, and it's all about pumpkins. At one point the book said something about a pumpkin being a fruit, and Caleb interrupts me to say, "Uhhh......pumpkin is a vegetable". I said, "no, look here (as I point in the book), it says it's a fruit because it grows from a flower". He interrupts me to say, "a pumpkin in a vegetable". "Nope", I tell him. He thinks about it and says, "a pumpkin is LIKE a vegetable". I roll my eyes because I know this means he will forever say how a pumpkin in LIKE a vegetable, and if you tell him, "yeah, but it's still a fruit", he will reply with, "but it's LIKE a vegetable!". It won't end. It. Won't. End.
Anyway, back to this other blog, I am sharing one post from a series of 20 about "all kids do that". You can find all the posts here, and I would check it out if I were you.
The guests that write each post are informative, funny, but mostly, they are honest-the best thing. They help to bring faces to autism (there are so many faces to it), and bringing a face to autism creates understanding and empathy. So, read on, share on, and learn on!
"All Kids Do That"
From: Yeah, Good Times
This is a guest post written by Bobbi Sheahan, the co-author of a book, "What I Wish I’d Known About Raising a Child With Autism; A Mom and a Therapist Offer Heartfelt Guidance for the First Five Years (Future Horizons, 2011)
Things That Take Years Off the End of Mom’s Life
You know that getting-to-know-you chat when moms meet each other and begin to exchange basic information about our kids? It’s a little different when your child has autism.
There's always a How-Much-To-Say dilemma: usually I am content to come off as Crazy Helicopter Mom until my child does something that frightens Our New Friends. Fortunately or unfortunately, that never takes long, and then there’s A Situation. If the word "autism" hasn't come up yet, it does at that point. I'll acknowledge that my child doesn’t have the caution that other kids have, or that she’s done some objectively zany things, or that she's a risk-taker, to a greater degree than the norm, and that's when the fun starts. The responses seem to fall into one of two categories: either our New Friend will run screaming into the night and I'll never see her again, or – surprisingly frequently – she’ll dismiss it with some version of All Kids Do That.
Example: My kid puts things in her mouth that aren’t food.
Response: All Kids Do That.
Light bulbs? Really? All kids eat light bulbs? How about thumbtacks? Sticks? Mulch? How about mulch? And mulch consumption before age 3 doesn’t count.
Or: My kid used to like to run away.
Response: Yeah, All Kids Do That.
For six and a half years? Without stopping?
Or: My kid took a while to potty train.
Forget the Q&A; just hold me while I weep. Maybe someday Jill will have me back to write an article called Potty Train Your Child in Ten Years or Less. Wait, we’re in danger of getting off topic. Let's get move on to dangers with electricity.
Or: My child doesn’t exercise caution around electrical appliances.
Response: Yeah, All Kids Do That.
No, really. She’s not a toddler anymore, and she has conquered a half-dozen floor lamps, tried innumerable times to toast her hands (yes, Toast. Her. Hands.), and once she grabbed a hot light bulb and burned the skin off her hand. Not the same light bulb that she bit into – this was a different light bulb, on a different day. But thanks for asking. Would you like some toast?
You get the picture. Our kids’ senses are often calibrated completely differently than the rest of the world’s senses. That can be maddening to your child – say, if he has very acute hearing or smell – but it can also be dangerous. Sensory issues can mess with your perception of pain, for example. My Sweet Baboo used to stand on anthills and watch the fire ants march up and down her legs, biting as they went.
Now, let’s be honest; before I had a kid with autism, I would have seen those welts on the child's legs and thought, “Dear God, what is wrong with that mother? How could she let that happen?” Well, I'll tell you. I successfully dragged her off of about 386 anthills that spring, and I missed a couple.
Then again, the next kid with autism might have just the opposite reaction, and might be tearing at his skin after it’s been brushed against a leaf; I’ve heard mothers tell me about how their kids basically scratched their skin off, too, for no apparent reason. My child has attempted to take the skin off of her arms with a potato peeler, but I have managed to stop her. About eighty times.
So, please, please don’t tell me All Kids Do That. Or stand back if you do. I might just have to come after you with a potato peeler and some fire ants.
Well, I hope you enjoyed this post today!
9/11/2014 10:38:16 pm
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Hi, I'm Amy-Lyn!
I am the lady behind this here blog! I live in the sticks with my animals, my super handsome husband, and my
3 amazing kids!
Here you'll find things from recipes (gluten-free, paleo, and strait up junk food!), DIY ideas, thoughts on raising a son with autism, and whatever else pops into my brain! : )
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