I don’t view autism as a blessing or a gift. I look at it as something to fight. When you read the title of this blog post, you might find it offensive or shocking if you haven’t experienced autism in your own family. As a mom going through the process of trying to unlock my youngest son from this developmental problem, I am sometimes reduced to the most basic and raw expression of how I feel about autism. And that just reduces down to the f-word we all know and usually hope to avoid.
I registered this domain name, AskMoms, when I did not have kids and so many things about babies and raising children were so unknown to me. Especially as an only child, I did not have any experience watching little ones for any amount of time and when I had my first child I jumped into a new world. Every burp, spit, spot and scrape was under my fresh scrutiny. With my first son, there were things I noticed about him that didn’t seem exactly normal and that I researched of course. He flapped his arms a lot when he was excited, but when he started talking shortly after he turned two, any behaviors that were more on the physical side were easy to wait on. This beautiful son of mine – he was unlike any other child (that I had ever met so far) but everything was just fine.
When we had my second son, I was prepared for the possibility of some of the same behaviors. Maybe a little flapping, being slightly slower to talk or even walk, but I knew from experience that everything comes in time. But some things were coming, and leaving, and coming… and leaving. Eye contact was good, then bad for weeks. Babbling was fast and in a frenzy, then gone again.