Monday, April 27, 2009

A Few Autism Emotional Moments

As the parent to two teens on the autism spectrum I have not been through the stages some families go through during or after the initial diagnosis. I have never been in denial or cried for what could have been or lost time, etc. I read stories of how Dads are sad they will never play ball with their sons or whatever.

While I do not understand that since it is not the end of the world to have a child with autism or for the person who is on the autism spectrum I have had a few moments over the years when I got emotional.

The ones that I can recall are when I listened to Temple Grandin at a Back to School Conference in August held in Pasadena. I felt the tears start as I got up to leave the auditorium to see the exhibitor tables out in the hall. A little while later I went up to Temple at the table she was hanging out at and felt awkward trying to come up with something to say besides great speech. It was like meeting a celebrity.

The other day we went to the autism fair at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. I was parking the car and got that emotional feeling come over me. It was quite a sight to see all these cars and families with their kids getting ready to do the fair and the walk. I am not sure if I was emotional because it was just me and my kids while the other vehicles had extended family members and friends with them or just knowing that this many families were at the same location at one time seemed amazing to me.

Then yesterday while I was agitated over some rude remarks on twitter my nonverbal son who likes to flip through the photo albums brought me one with a picture in his hand that fell out. He needed me to put the photo back into the plastic . I turned it over to see the first picture taken of him with me at the Hospital the day he was born. It was like he knew this was a special picture and it was a great moment to see that picture again after all these years. I got up from the computer and to be with my kid instead of dealing with individuals online that pushed my buttons.


tiffrutherf said...

Our kids keep us grounded...and remember you are never alone..all of us are just a key stroke, email or phone call away!! sending big hugs to you!!

hellokittiemama said...

I had the emotional rollercoaster but not the breakdown/depression that some people talk about. Everyone copes/reacts differently.

I can relate to the moment with meeting Temple Grandin. I had no idea really what to say to her other than to Thank her for sharing her perspective and knowledge with everyone - she was inspiring for me to listen to and watch, and she had a great sense of humor that I did not expect at all.

We went to one walk with a big group, team & extended family and then another it was just the 4 of us (me, kurt and the kids). Both times I just really felt so proud of my Alex for who he is as a person. He inspires me so much as I watch him grow.

That's neat that your son likes to look at the photos. Alex made a photo collage the other day from pictures he found on my hard drive "my pictures" folder of the family. He couldnt find one of Kurt (all of those would have been in a different directory) and he drew a picture of kurt next to me, belle and him. I often feel the need to just power down and go be with the kids.

Thanks for everything you do, Bonnie. You and your boys inspire and help me so much.

K said...

great post Bon !How nice of your son to know just what you needed
For me it was meeting Serena Weider at the Floortime conference . I was so embaressed I was almost choked up

Tanya @ Teenautism said...

That is so beautiful about the photo. A very touching, emotional moment indeed.

lonestar said...

What a sweet moment! I kwym about that emotional feeling at large gatherings w/ other autism families. It's pretty amazing b/c most of the time in public it's easy to feel rather alone (even knowing we're not thanks to all the great ppl I've met online!) so being among so many other similar families in person is pretty cool.

Numb said...

My autistic boy is the light of my life. He can recite all his favorite shows by heart and loves to act them out. You should see him imitate Jeff Dunham and Peanut!

He first started learning how to communicate his feelings by reciting relevant movie lines to a question or a situation. Once we realized what he was doing we began to guide him toward using more of his own words. He has made tremendous progress.

These children have a place inside them that lives in the truth of Life. And every once in a while (such as when your son brought that photo to you) we see just how wonderfully beautiful they are.

The moment I read about that photo, my eyes grew moist.

Thank you for sharing!

I couldn't imagine life without my Spencer.

ConnieFoggles said...

I bet it would be like that if people from online met you in RL. You're an inspiration to so many all you do to educate people about Autism.

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