When it’s hard to treasure every moment, because of autism.

When It's Hard to Treasure Our Days Together

As parents, we love our children with all of our being. They are so much a part of us that we feel joy when they smile and pain when they cry. We are bombarded with messages to treasure every moment. Life is fleeting. Our children are only young for a short amount of time. That’s true; but sometimes it is hard to treasure our days together. There is another truth that I have come to know. Sometimes, autism can be an asshole.

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Things That Hurt

Things that hurt

C was diagnosed with autism over a month ago now. Although we expected the diagnosis, it was difficult to process. I have had time to process it and am doing well now. We know where he will get intensive ABA therapy and are in the process of getting that started. There is a plan in place. Even though I am doing well with this new status as an autism parent, I still find myself sensitive to certain things.

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On life pushing forward when you need to hit the pause button.

After posting about C’s new autism diagnosis, I stepped back from this space not knowing what to say next. I wallowed yesterday. I didn’t shower until the afternoon. I skipped my scheduled run for half marathon training. I stayed home from my weekly church growth group in favor of fuzzy socks and Chinese food takeout.

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C was diagnosed with autism

They say most people know a family who has been touched with autism. If you didn’t before, you do now. We are that family.

C was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. Under the old DSM IV, he would have been classified under Asperger’s or high functioning. He is severe in areas of rigidity (fixations and needing things to be his way) and social interaction. It was suggested that a center-based intensive therapy might be best for him so that he is around peers instead of one-on-one with an adult. The Early Start Denver Model was suggested as best for him as a developmental approach. Now comes more work on my part to speak with insurance, interview clinics and find the best fit for his needs.

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On the Threshold of Change

Do you ever feel like things are about to change in a big way? Like something big is about to happen and life will never be quite the same again? I felt this way before my wedding day. There was a similar feeling when I went to the hospital in labor with C, and when those two lines appeared and we discovered we would have Baby Jo. Our family is on the threshold of change and it is making me anxious.

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Some days, my heart is on my sleeve.

C standing and watching tv

Grinding his teeth, growling with his hands clenched, C came at me. On exceptionally difficult days, he is like a lion on the prowl, ready to strike at any moment. Like a lion’s prey, we need to be on constant alert as we wait for him to strike. That strike comes in different forms: hitting, head butting, squeezing, scratching or biting.

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