Monday, March 26, 2012

Autism Is...

World Autism Awareness Day is just around the corner! 
Monday, April 2nd. Be sure to light it up BLUE!

I truly feel it is SO important to raise awareness about this complex disorder. It is of great importance to me because I want people to be more understanding of my son. I love when people ask questions about him because they are trying to understand and get to know him better. I would much rather have someone ask questions rather than just give "the stare". :-)

So, for Autism Awareness Day (and month), I want to kick it off by sharing what Autism is to ME. What it is to his his daddy.

Autism Is....

Many days and nights worrying about our little boy's future.

Obsessions. Many of them. Obsessions over toys, objects, movies, jackets, etc.

Tantrums. Tantrums that are out of Jaxton's control. He sometimes hits himself to let out his frustration. It breaks my heart in two every.single.time.

Sensory issues. Dinner at our house can be quite interesting. Certain textures are too much for him. Certain tastes, smells, noises, lighting, etc.

Lots of staring. Ooooh the staring.

Many moments of frustration, anger, confusion, sadness, self-pity.

Hoping and praying that God knows your true strength...because sometimes you wonder where the strength will come from tomorrow...and the next day...and the day after that.

Not knowing what will happen as he gets older. Will we have to deal with bullying? Will he ever be able to live on his own? Will he be able to have a job? Will he find love? Get married? Have kids? The not knowing can be the hardest part of it all.

Autism Is...

Throwing your expectations out the window. As a parent, you have certain ideas and expectations of what it is going to be like raising a son. You will teach them sooo many things, right?! Wrong. A child with special needs will teach you SO much more than you could possibly imagine teaching them.

Becoming an expert. You read many books, many articles, watch documentaries, talk to others who are experienced with Autism, go to conferences, learn about the newest therapies and research, get involved in the Autism community, etc. In a way, you become a...speech therapist, occupational therapist, psychologist, teacher, doctor, nutritionist, and so much more.

Hugs, kisses and cuddles. Lots of them.There is nothing better than cuddling with Jax on a hard day. He has a way of molding his little self in such a way to where you could lay there forever, holding him, and have no cares in the world.

Feeling so proud and having incredible joy witnessing the smallest of accomplishments. What a wonderful feeling it is to see your child learn something new, say something new, become more social, when all of those things are so difficult for him. It's an awesome feeling.

Meeting new, amazing mommies who have a child/children with Autism. I feel so blessed to know so many truly GOOD people who are dealing with the same thing. They are like family and help me to not feel so alone.

Feeling a love that is so strong, so indestructible, so powerful, so unbelievable, so...heavenly.

Autism Is...a crazy, scary, confusing, joyous, happy, sad, beautiful, frustrating, upside-down world.

At the end of the day, I tuck my little boy into bed and feel so grateful that I have been given the chance to care for this precious matter how hard it is.