I am currently reading Loud Hands Autistic People, Speaking. If you haven't picked up a copy, do it. You will be thankful you did.
As I sit reading this anthology I can't help but cry. I cry on just about every page. But I'm not crying in a bad way. I'm crying in a good way.
The more I read the more I think that maybe, just maybe I am doing things right for my son.
Maybe, just maybe, I am not screwing him up...
When I send away or cancel TSS's and therapists because I know he doesn't have the ability (or spoons) to do anything more that day.
When I let him roam freely around the house lost in his own world chattering for hours on end without interrupting him, unless absolutely necessary.
When I allow him to hole up in a corner on the other end of the house for hours without batting an eye.
When I take him for a car ride at 10 pm because he can't sleep and wants to feel the vibrations and peace of the car.
When so-called professionals criticize me for not being strict enough, enforcing enough, drawing some boundary or another, and I let it roll off because they don't know him like I do.
When I let him crawl into my bed at 2 am because he needs the sensory warmth and pressure of my arms hugging him.
When I'm criticized (again) for not "structuring" his weekend into perfect schedules, instead preferring to let the days go as they may (which he needs after a structured week).
When I break things down into more manageable pieces so he doesn't get overwhelmed.
When I allow him to perseverate, stim, flap, whatever, away without so much as batting an eye.
When I allow him to feel the fabrics of any prospective clothes to make sure he can tolerate how they feel.
When I feed into his Super Mario "obsession."(Which I get criticized for too.)
When I continually ignore the latest Autism "must try" trend. (If it isn't broken why fix it? And y'all know my view on "broken.")
When I let him pick dinner nearly every night instead of having it be a reward (yeah, a reward? pshaw!!) even if it ends up being the same thing 5 nights in a row.
When I remain flexible and open to the fact that I might be wrong.
When I stop and listen. Truly listen. To him. To other Autistics.
When I adjust my day, my schedule, based on the spoons he has left so I don't stress him.
When he is unable to speak and I give him a pencil and piece of paper to write or draw instead.
When I make him promises, no matter how crazy they seem to others, and keep them.
When I let him, be him.
Isn't that what loving and cherishing your child is all about? Embracing every bit of them, adjusting your reality and your perceptions, to give them an emotionally positive, validating environment in which to grow and bloom?
I am told I spoil him, I'm not strict enough, I'm too flexible, I cater to him, I enable him, etc.
I disagree. I love, support, and embrace him. I'm sensitive to his needs, and for good reason.
I have one heck of an amazing young man in my house. I am proud to be his mommy. And I know he's thankful to have me. Heck, he told me he was the luckiest boy ever to have a mom like me. :)