Things that I have learned, being a autism mom.

I have learned a lot in my nearly 24 years, at being an autism mom.

I have learned that my son can find the correct button to work the DVD player in his room, to find the exact part of the video that he wants to watch.  Even if it is a totally different player than he had the day before.

I have learned that I cannot sneak a bowl of ice cream, to eat by myself…the unwritten rule is: all desserts on Mom’s plate must be shared equally with the boy, or you will be required to refill the empty plate until the boy has satisfactorily gotten his share.

Cookies of all kinds must be accompanied by a cup of milk…in the dedicated “milk cup”.

If Magic Shell is found in the pantry, (that mom has forgotten was there) ice cream will have to be also found, or added to the grocery list.

Pasta must have grated cheese and bread to be eaten.

If items are hidden, no one is allowed to mention the location of said item, if the boy is within 50 yards of the conversation.

I have learned the power of counting to 3.  I rarely get past the number 2, before I see him responding.

Singing silly songs will make the boy smile, allowing for a tooth brush to enter his mouth for as long as the song lasts. And singing the Barney song, will get a kiss and a hug every time!

Pretending that you are clueless gets him to figure out how to communicate his wants and needs.

I have learned that the boy understands most everything we say to him, however, like most kids…he ignores me.

I have learned that he thinks he is outsmarting me, especially when he does something he isn’t supposed to, while covering himself with a blanket…”The cloak of invisibility has no power here, Son”.

I have learned that the boy understands, and if you want something, you have to ask nicely, by kissing your mother on the cheek to say “please”.

And most of all, I have learned that you don’t have to have words to make someone feel loved.  One hug from the boy, says “I love you, Momma” louder than 100 PA systems at a rock concert.


Putting Autism in Perspective.

Yesterday, I attended the funeral for a young man Buddy’s age. I didn’t know the boy, but I know his mom.  As I sat there, pictures of his life scrolled on a screen.  I saw him go from an infant to a grown man in 10 minutes time.

As I watched this vibrant boy grow into a man, full of life and smiles, people were sharing about his love of surfing, fishing and hunting, as well as his joyful, loving demeanor.

At first I was thinking about this young man being my son’s age and having such a full, active life.  As I realized that I was feeling sorry for myself, I switched gears, and focused on this boys mother.  What a horrible feeling it must be to be saying a final goodbye to your child.

After the funeral, I was very sad for the rest of the day, trying not to think about how I would feel in this other mother’s situation.  And then it occurred to me,  Buddy will never surf, fish or hunt…but he will also never suffer from depression, suffer addictions, or commit suicide.  I am the lucky one here…my son just has autism.


Welcome to my autism super mom blog!

I am the proud mom of an awesome 23 year old young man.  He is non-verbal, handsome, incontinent, funny, loving, affectionate and silly.   He loves music, watches, helicopters, planes, trains and ME!

I work full time and have 2 different companies that provide services and day support for Buddy.  He goes to a day program as well as getting out into the community.  Without this support team, Buddy would not be doing as well as he is.

Buddy’s dad and I divorced a while ago and I have remarried a wonderful man that treats Buddy as his own.  Hubby, helps me with Buddy, with everything except baths…it makes him uncomfortable to bathe another man, and I am totally fine with that.  How many other step dads will get up at 3am on a work night to shampoo vomit or other bodily fluid out of a carpet?

So what prompted this attempt at blogging?  It is March 31st, and tomorrow starts Autism Awareness Month.  For the last few years I have tried to do something during the month of April to help bring awareness.  This year, I decided to try blogging.

I see a lot of informative blogs and articles on autism, but they usually are a bit out of my grasp.  I think it’s great that parents are sharing the wonderful strides that their children are making…going from non-verbal to verbal…going from Depends to independent toileting, winning medals at the Special Olympics and more…but that is not where we are.

Buddy vocalizes, but no words.  He plays with the light in the bathroom, but the closest that he gets to using it, is laying on the floor in the hallway and pulling the bathroom door closed.

But he can grab a box of cereal, bowl and the milk when he wants to eat Capt Crunch!  Or hand me the (correct) remote when he wants me to change the channel on the TV.  Poke my chin when he wants me to sing to him. Poke my shoulder in the car to change the song on the radio…not to be confused with pulling my sleeve, which means “Turn up the radio, please”.  Or my favorite…kiss my cheek for “Please, Momma”.

Hopefully, as I get the hang of this, I will make you smile or even laugh. But most of all, I hope you realize that we don’t have to be Super Parents, to be super, parents.

So this is my blog, welcome to my world!