Thursday, October 22, 2009

Autism Isn't Everything

Rosemary's Baby is autistic.

I wasn't sure I wanted to ever mention this. Firstly, it's one thing for me to relay his naughty adventures from the perspective of the frazzled mom that we can all relate to, but it's quite another for me to blab his very personal issues to the world willy-nilly. I have a responsibility to protect his privacy. As well, this sort of thing is SO not what I wanted my blog to be about. I was always just hoping to find the fun in a life that can be mundane, frustrating and exhausting. Turning this into Poor, Poor Pitiful Me, or worse yet, Super Army Wife's Autism Blog Of Heroes kind of makes me want to puke in my mouth a little.

But I'm outing my kid now because I know realistically that if I want to tell these stories properly, it's going to come up from time to time. Rosemary's Baby continues to do outrageous and hilarious things that I simply must share, and it's about embracing him for who he is. Besides, when he grows up and writes his Mommy-Dearest-style tell-all about me, we'll totally be even.

I'm relatively new to this autism business, and I admit the first ten days post-diagnosis were about as bad as it gets emotionally. But having processed what it all means to him and to us, I know really that this is one of those situations where perspective is everything. So I choose to do all that I can to help my boy reach his maximum potential and to live a happy life. I choose to take this seriously and come at it from every possible angle. But I will not let him grow up thinking he needs to be "fixed". I will not raise my little guy to think that his disorder was the ruin of us. I will not choose to be miserable when I can choose to be happy.

Here's a recent shot of us goofing around:




As you can see, we're still finding the fun.

13 comments:

Tater Tot Mom said...

Thanks so much for sharing that part of your life with us. It is a fine line of what do I put out there and what do I keep private.

I'm sure that with you as a mom he's going to do beautifully and grow up to be a happy and well adjusted young man.

laterg8r said...

you're right, happiness is a choice, go with it :D

jeannette stgermain said...

Yes, autism is tiring for the parents! Get support from a group of parents with autistic children and a good back up person who does makes it his/her specialty in doing developmental strategies with autistic children. (next to an artist, I'm also a therapist, but autism is not my specialty).

To see things in perspective -you may be tired and stressed a lot of times, but there is hope for your child - he is able to look into the camera (so he still has some social skills - very important for autistic children!!!)

Give yourself some slack and relaxation time with adults:) to keep your spirits up:)
Have a good weekend, Jeannette

Dimple said...

My 22 yr old has Asperger's. I agree with Jeanette completely.
Blessings!
Dimple

AngeliStarr said...

I'm sorry to read this. I come from a family where Autism might be genetic so I understand where your mind is at emotionally. Depending the severity of the autism, you might either forget its there or try to do anything possible to allow him to have as "normal" a life as possible. Good luck dear. I wish you very well.

PS Look into NJ and Ohio. They have some of the best programs and research facilities for Autistic children. A lot of things you find are very helpful.

Just Jen said...

He is so handsome! We know that you are going to raise him to a great man!!

I have a learning disorder, and it's not the end of the world. I have found ways to get around it, as I'm sure he will!

I know an autistic woman who's family though she would do nothing with her life, and she is now a very talented artist! She's re-doing the libaries in town!

We love you honey! Thank you for opening that window for us!

Theresa said...

"I will not raise my little guy to think that his disorder was the ruin of us. I will not choose to be miserable when I can choose to be happy."

I hear you girl!!!!! I agree 100%!! Coming from a fellow Army wife and mommy to an boy with autism!! I can totally relate!!!

Stephanie Faris said...

He's a handsome little boy! Autism is becoming more and more common. It seems I'm seeing it all around me. You should be able to find a really strong support system online and in real life. What's all this biomedical intervention stuff Jenny McCarthy claims cures autism? Is that why so many people are trying to be gluten-free now?

You have an award on my blog today:

http://stephie5741.blogspot.com/2009/10/and-award-goes-toyou.html

knitwit said...

Thank you all for your very supportive comments! We are feeling positive about things here.
Jenny McCarthy is SO passionate about the diet and detox, and I have to admit, we're seeing some pretty significant success with it ourselves. However, even if it did "cure" his autism tomorrow, I know that my little guy would still need thousands of hours of speech therapy to catch up to where he should be. So I think those who call it a cure take away from the important work of the therapists out there who help so many kids have success.
I firmly believe that a lot of the theories that are being shot down by the medical community actually have merit, and until his doctors can guarantee him recovery, I'm going to seek out and supplement his treatment with alternatives. But therapy has a huge place in the many success stories out there, and I think that sometimes gets lost in all the hype!

Janine said...

I am SO glad you chose to be happy!

Tater Tot Mom said...

Just back to say stop by my site when you get a chance...there's something waiting for you!

So Now What? said...

Hi there, new to your blog but your first post has made me want to read the rest. I too have a son with "a label" Aspergers. I wrote a post on my blog about it too. He looks absolutely adorable. Now, off to read more. Bern

In Real Life said...

Wow! I just found your blog through Tamara at Cheapskate Mom's blog. I clicked on it because I have two kids and two dogs (and two cats) too. I also live in Canada (Edmonton). I also have a child on the autistic spectrum. I have not mentioned that before either - for the same reasons you mentioned in your post; it's like you were posting my thoughts exactly...which is a bit eerie and neat at the same time. I too choose happiness for my family. Thank you for sharing!