LIFE IS A SPECTRUM

Pinocchio_nose

Billy, what are you doing?!

I'm pinching Willow's head!

Billy, WHAT are you doing?!

I feed the TV a sandwich!

Billy, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!

I'M WASHING THE TOILET PAPER!!

Ask a stupid question ... get an honest answer. That's one of the few “upsides” of autism: honesty.

There are others. My fellow autism parent/blogger Big Daddy has written about the fact that his 13-year-old son will still happily show affection and hold his hand while walking down the street. Other parents have mentioned the imperviousness to peer pressure and the dedication to subjects about which they feel passionate.

Where Billy is concerned we can also count an amazing memory, perfect pitch, perfect rhythm, and a scary-good sense of balance among his strengths; whether they can all be attributed to autism is impossible to say. After all, whether or not he was autistic, he might have still been a good singer, a good gymnast, or a spelling bee champ. But autism has impressed its indelible stamp on my son, so each of his favorite activities are enjoyed in a slightly different way because of his beautiful, unique brain.

I'm in no way, of course, trying to minimize the downsides, the challenges, the often heartbreaking difficulties faced by autistic people. But those are the things that usually get the press and attention, so I thought I'd mention, ever so quickly, a few positive things. And honesty is one of them.

By contrast, my two-year-old daughter is already discovering her inner sociopath. She can lie till the cows come home.

Lately, she and Billy have been physically fighting like cats and dogs. Usually over toys. And he'll come running, screaming from the other room, with her literally nipping at his heels like some kind of rabid badger. “No pinching! No pinching!” he screams as he tries to keep his Lightning McQueen car out of her grasp.

One morning, I sat them both down on the bed and ordered them to watch TV quietly while I finished getting ready in my bathroom. Poking my head back out of the bathroom a few moments later, I caught Willow, with her fingers in pre-pinch mode, ready to strike at Billy any second.

Her eyes met mine. Her hand froze. Then she wiggled her little fingers in the air. “I tickle, Mama.” Yeah, sure you do. Sure you do.

Because I now know how things look when they don't develop normally, I've come to appreciate, believe it or not, this deviousness in my daughter. I'll never have to worry whether she will wear all her feelings and thoughts openly on her face, making her a target for the con artists and bullies in the world. I'll never have to wonder whether she can understand the concept of lying at all and have to explain to her one day that everyone doesn't always tell her the truth.

Of course, I hope this tendency to fib is something she grows out of for the most part as she gets a little older – or at the very least, uses sparingly.

Maybe her brother will have a good influence on her.

Reader Comments

Security text:*

Enter both words below, with or without a space.
The letters are not case-sensitive.
Can't read this? Try another

monster beats

Katie tries to lie, sometimes, and it is hilarious. She can't keep it going for 2 seconds. She instantly begins to laugh. She does try, though. Ben, isn't a great liar either, typical kid that he is. He will do it, but then come to me a few minutes later, seemingly guilt-ridden, and needing to tell me the truth..ha. Fine by me.

Great SIte

Great Site. Found you thru SITS. I have a sweet 13 y.o. boy on the spectrum. He has recently discovered lying. But he sucks at it LOL
He still holds my hand and runs to greet me at the door after work for my welcome home hug.

So glad I found your site!!! I LOVE IT! My son also has Autism (one psychologist thinks it's Aspergers), although he's already trying to do the lying thing. And the stealing.... pretty frequently, I might add. It's driving us nuts!
Very excited to read more!
Kelsi
Come say hi at modernmomredefined.blogspot.com

It really is interesting to watch how different kids learn about and test the concept of lying. Both my boys enjoy giving lying a whirl, but neither one has learned to do it with a straight face. I like to think they'll grow up believing I can read their minds rather than their tell-tale smirks. And if they never learn to lie convincingly, I'll never have to worry about them blowing all their hard-earned coin on poker.

I love Billy's innocence and Willow's street smarts. I hope you're right in that they'll learn from each other.

I too have a terrible time lying...I feel really guilty, and can't keep a straight face...

I also hate being lied to...

Hugs,
Wendy

Pants on Fire

My NT daughter is not a cumpulsive liar like her daddy. Yet. But she is better at it than her big brother. On ocassion, Griffin will attempt to fib, but as soon as confronted, he confesses. He would make a terrible criminal.

What a Great Topic!

I should address this issue! LOL

I can't really get a read on Audrey yet. She's so godawful about answering questions or relating past events that it's impossible to tell if she's lying or just bungling the story. If it has something to do with scoring chocolate, I have a feeling that she'll learn quick.

Total 11 comments

Happy Autism Awareness Month!

Merry Autism Awareness Month?

Be AWARE!

Beware ...?

loving_lampposts_title-graphic

Whether you're "lighting it up blue," sporting ribbon magnets on your car, or are feeling kinda Grinchy about the whole thing, as I was this time last year, your perspective on Autism Awareness Month is appreciated and welcome here. If we're truly going to be "aware," we need to be honest. And my "awareness," I'll admit, has been an ongoing journey.

Last summer, I wrote a post called "Loving Lampposts, Curing Autism and the Dark Night of the Soul." It has been suggested by people who love me that I made myself sound crazier than usual in this post. I countered with the fact that it was in no way unusual.

Anyway, shortly after I wrote the piece, including my heartfelt wish that Tallahassee would soon screen the film Loving Lampposts, I got an email from the filmmaker. Todd Drezner, father of an autistic son about the same age as Billy, wrote to just say "Thanks" for mentioning the film. And he said he'd keep me posted if the film made its way Southeast. What a mensch.

Flash forward to Autism Awareness Month 2011 and guess what: Local screening of the now award-wining "Loving Lampposts: Living Autistic!" If you're local, details (date/time/place) are in the sidebar at the right. If you aren't local (or even if you are and can't be asked to attempt campus parking), you can now order the award-winning film on DVD (click on the banner ad above).

ll_boxart

"Loving Lampposts: Living Autistic" follows Todd's journey as a parent from diagnosis of his son's autism to acceptance and beyond. He poses the question, "Is autism a sickness or simply another way of being and thinking?"

He introduces the audience to the recovery movement: those who think of autism as a disease that needs to be cured. Among their most notable advocates is celebrity Jenny McCarthy, a proponent of the anti-vaccine movement.

And he speaks to advocates in the neurodiversity movement: those who believe autism is simply another way of thinking and being. They promote the importance of support for and acceptance of autistic people. Speaking for this camp are scientists and autistic adults like the brilliant Dora Raymaker, working on her graduate degree in Portland, as well as Stephen Shore, a professor at Adelphi University. As an autistic child, Stephen was recommended for institutionalization. Now he teaches music to autistic children and lectures around the world.

I'm not giving away any more of the details of this moving film, but I highly encourage you to see it. As a parent of an autistic child, I believe the message of this film is important: The more we can do to introduce the world to real autistic people, the better prepared it will be to embrace and support their unique brains.

And now, because no holiday would be complete without presents ....

PRIZE! PRIZE! GIVEAWAY! FREE! FREE! PRIZE! ENTER! PRIZE! GIVEAWAY! FREEBIE! SOMETHING FOR NOTHING! FREE! FREE! PRIZE! PRIZE!

I'm going to give away a copy of the "Loving Lampposts: Living Autistic" DVD to one randomly selected reader. To enter the giveaway, here's all you have to do:

  • "Like" LifeIsASpectrum.com on Facebook. That's easy: The button is right there at the top right-hand corner of the page.
  • Post a message -- ANYTHING -- about autism awareness on our Facebook page. It can be a personal experience with autism. It can be an urging to "Light it up blue," or it can even be a "Happy Autism Awareness Month" song you've written. You can even write, simply, "I'm aware."

Post a comment on this blog after you've completed these steps, so that we can give you credit for them. That's all you have to do to enter.

BUT ... while not required to enter, you can get one ADDITIONAL entry into the competition for doing EACH of the following:

Again, post a comment here to let us know that you've completed any of these extra entries.

The winner will be announced on Friday, April 15, 2011. If local, that person will also receive reserved seating at our Tallahassee screening of the the film, along with their family.

I want to say thanks to a few people who helped make this screening happen:

Todd: I can't wait to see your next film, after seeing the thoughtful, honest and beautiful way you addressed our community and posed some very controversial questions.

My sister, Sam Strickland, CEO of Pea Green Solutions: Without your social network (and I mean that in the old-school "I have to actual KNOW people" kind of way) I'd simply be some nerd with a website ... whose son would be going to a school half an hour away.

Florida Commerce Credit Union: Board member J.R. Phelps spearheaded the sponsorship of this screening, and we couldn't have done it without him and them. FCCU is more than a financial institution; it's a community leader in Tallahassee. (And I'm not saying that just because I have two mortgages there ... wait, make that THREE mortgages.)

The Florida State University College of Motion Picture Arts is the best-kept secret in Florida. No, make that the COUNTRY. Seriously, this is one awesome film school, and I would go on and on about its phenomenal alumni and dude of a Dean, but you should really just enroll and find out for yourself.

And the CARD Center. Where do I even begin in thanking CARD (Center for Autism and Related Disorders)? From the moment we started suspecting a "problem" to our most recent IEP meeting, the CARD Center has been literally at my right hand. I always feel like I have an advocate, that Billy has an advocate, whether we're facing an autism diagnosis or the equally daunting challenge of potty training. CARD's commitment to the family dealing with autism is the reason we chose their Autism Foundation as the beneficiary of this fundraiser.

Everyone donating $25 or more to CARD's Autism Foundation will receive a copy of the DVD of "Loving Lampposts: Living Autistic." If you're local, we hope to see you there. If you aren't local and can't find a screening near you, click the banner ad at the top of this page and you can order your own copy of this inspiring and hopeful film.

Reader Comments

Yet another slight controversy from the previous few years in the hiking/backpacking local community continues to be that regarding backpacking boots versus. walking shoes or boots. A number of never look at this a controversy, as many hikers & backpacker

Normal water gets into boot styles easier as compared to shoes or boots. This affirmation will not be the better choice to me. If you're sporting either mid-cut or high-cut footwear, walking through a number of inches water, the particular start may protect you higher than a low-cut boot. To me, this can be obvious. In conjunction with a set of gaiters, h2o have a more difficult period entering the trunk & taking your feet moist.
Shoes or boots last longer. Portion of [b][url=http://www.isabelmarantfanstore.com/42-isabel-marant-bekket-high-top-leather-and-suede-wedge-sneakers-black.html]isabel marant bekket high-top suede sneakers[/url][/b]
us sways towards a indeed, but unwillingly. With regards to the design trunk, these boots lasts longer than some shoes or boots. Hefty natural leather boot styles produced for mountain climbing may last longer than each lighter in weight boots & footwear definitely. This type of start may be resoled more than once, indicating that this lone can degrade a long time before the actual start itself will. I've come across men and women need replacing shoes or boots faster compared to I have worn out boot styles from the same amount of occasion. What sort of individual hikes can much to look for the lifetime of any trunk or even footwear.
Boots tend to be constricting. This really is something, I think, that is completely susceptible to each individual hiker. I use light and portable trekking footwear of all regarding my own nature hikes. They may not be constricting on my own ft.
Footwear are better suited for snowy conditions.
Backpacking shoes, getting brighter, reduce the stress on ft & lower limbs whenever hiking over a number of a long way.
What it in the end depends upon will be your private personal preference. There's really no right or wrong solution to notebook computer for you to stroll within, boots and shoes. The treatment depends giving you. No one can inform you which in turn seems much better in your ft, which is convenient, or even that will stay longer. These are just about all subject to your current walking [b][url=http://www.isabelmarantfanstore.com/42-isabel-marant-bekket-high-top-leather-and-suede-wedge-sneakers-black.html]high top wedge sneakers[/url][/b]
individuality, the way you stroll. Enter any local supplier and attempt upon many twos of boots & footwear, and then decide. When you've made the decision, emerge and set those ideas to function! Even if you buy you're not happy using, after they don't result in ache, exclusively use these people till it's the perfect time for any brand-new pair.
Ft are generally cooler throughout sneakers.
Those are only Eleven fast assertions We have study the following & right now there over the past a long period. For many it seems like, regardless of what, footwear win without doubt. Some people stroll year round inside hiking shoes, that is certainly good. Once again, In my opinion it is a scenario of the matches upward better with all the surfaces you are spanning. Backpacking footwear are better appropriate, I think, for a few situations. Hiking shoes, I additionally believe, give a great advantage above boots in some other scenarios. Below are a few subsequent findings from our perspective.
Hiking boots weigh more than sneakers. Certainly. Though there are numerous forms of supplies used in trekking shoes or boots, for example full-grain buckskin, divided natural leather, nubuck & artificial, boot styles are on typical heavier when compared with hiking footwear. You will find various kinds of boot styles designed for separate problems, which is exactly what should be deemed when selecting whether or not to opt for shoes or boots.
Boots will not provide better rearfoot support. With regards to the form of start, they are doing actually have better rearfoot [b][url=http://www.isabelmarantfanstore.com/42-isabel-marant-bekket-high-top-leather-and-suede-wedge-sneakers-black.html]isabel marant bekket leather and suede sneakers[/url][/b]
support. Higher-cut boot styles can aid inside foot help & offer far more power upon uneven paths as well as cross-country routes.
Footwear normally stay longer.
Boots tend to be stifling.
Boot styles take longer to destroy in. With regard to hefty [b][url=http://www.isabelmarantfanstore.com/5-isabel-marant-bekett-sneakers]Isabel Marant Bekett[/url][/b]
natural leather shoes or boots, the solution is certainly indeed. But using the light and portable walking boot styles currently available, this kind of feature is very similar. However, I do give the side in order to shoes or boots on this.
Boot styles remain damp over shoes or boots.
Boots are better suited for wintry problems. Should there be a large amount of accumulation, sure, boot styles needs to be chosen in this situation. Nevertheless I've come across & realize hikers that still don walking shoes or boots by incorporating inches wide of snowfall in the grass. In case you are simply transferring using an place this way, then its probably not gonna prevent you significantly. Nevertheless for winter trekking inside known snow-country, I think it is irrational to not don some sort of backpacking shoes or boots.
Footwear continue to be wet more time. Once again, this depends on the type of shoe. Weighty natural leather shoes or boots is going to take quite a long time for you to dry out when greatly soaked. Lightweight footwear that happen to be constructed with fabric & nubuck buckskin may dried up from the same given time like a couple of hiking shoes. The amount of resources within the start as well as footwear & materials by themselves establish drying out time.
Shoes or boots be more expensive than footwear. This can be generally accurate. Common price of boots can be between $120-170. Shoes regular any where from $30-120. However weighed against the actual life expectancy of each and every kind of shoes or boots, one can possibly reduce expenses for a set of two boots than for 2-3 set of footwear.
Footwear be more expensive when compared with footwear.
The greater ankle assist that boots supply is a misconception.
Trekking shoes or boots, as they are brighter, acquire stress off of the toes, hip and legs & again. Once again, To be sure. A report completed many years ago from the Ough.Utes. Army Investigation Institute regarding Enviromentally friendly Medication revealed that 1 single pound around the feet utilized all the electricity while having 6 pounds in the back pack. If this sounds like true, then it is evident in which hiking footwear, because of becoming brighter, would likely save don & tear on our bodies.
Boots call for far more break-in occasion.
Pursuing are a handful of assertions manufactured by other backpackers, hikers as well as authors as regards to walking boots compared to. hiking shoes. These kind of have already been gleaned from your other content articles about the subject, along with articles upon sites & in community forums.
Trekking shoes or boots are heavier when compared with walking shoes.
Feet are usually chillier in shoes. Another point Certainly using. For the reason that amount & width of components utilized in their own construction, a walking boot is lighter and you will be cooler to utilize. In case you are backpacking in a location that is very dried out & scorching, footwear might be a better choice to suit your needs.
Drinking water gets into boots with less effort than footwear.

Liked the Facebook page!

Hugs,
Wendy

Happily did all of the liking and following! Looking forward to checking out Loving Lampposts at the screening no matter who the random selector picks. =)

Would have done these things without prize incentive

I would have done these without the prize incentive :-P Like (love) your Life is a Spectrum FB page, Like Loving Lampposts, and now following LifeIsASpectrum on twitter.

And I already follow you on twitter @heatherlisa82

I liked Loving Lampposts on FB

I liked Life is a Spectrum on FB and left you a comment :)

Follow you on Twitter @ASDsupportNC

Total 11 comments

Grinch_Heart

“What a difference a year makes.”

I've said those words a lot lately. Mostly, of course, I've been referring to Billy's phenomenal progress. Since this time last year we've had the following breakthroughs: total potty training, asking all kinds of questions, reading (sight words and sounding out), riding a tricycle, awesome holidays (his birthday, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas – all thumbs up!) ... the list goes on an on.

But I've changed too.

About a year ago, I called myself The Grinch Who Stole Autism Awareness. Because that's how I felt. You can read the words of cranky, Grinchy 2010 me, if you want. I'm still cranky and Grinchy about a lot of things. But this year I'm on board with Autism Awareness.

Why? Let me count the reasons ...

Reasons I am on board with Autism Awareness Month 2011 (also known as "April")

Because autism in our house looks different than autism in other people's homes and as reflected in the brains of other children and adults, and if I don't share our perspective, I can blame the people in the world who think autism just looks like this:

Rainman_rage

Also, with budgets getting slashed left and right, the most vocal group – the one of which the most politicians are “aware” (aware=scared will show up at their office with an army of autistic protesters) -- is least likely to be forgotten when funding is being doled out.

protest_poster

There are plenty of parents still unable to afford therapy for their children, and there are autistic adults unable to find the supports in their community that they need to live as independently as possible. Awareness helps connect people with the services, supports and programs that exist and helps identify the gaps in he community that we still need to fill.

So with that in mind, we have quite a few plans for Autism Awareness Month this year. In fact, there's so much going on in the Broadfeet household that you'd think this Grinch had discovered a whole new holiday season.

We're planning a local screening of the wonderful pro-neurodiversity film Loving Lampposts scheduled here in Tallahassee, a screening that will raise money for the Autism Foundation of the Center for Autism and Related Disabilities. This foundation directly serves families in our region dealing with autism, from childhood through adulthood. I'll have more on the filmmaker and this remarkable film at the end of March.

I'm sponsoring a "Life Is A Spectrum" art competition at Billy's elementary school, from which we'll be creating a special autism awareness postcard. The winner will also receive a cash prize and four tickets to Disney. It's our way of turning a bullying experience into a positive message about autism!

We also have some special autism-awareness-themed giveaways planned, including some designed for parents, some for kids and one special prize for other bloggers out there who will help us spread the word. And from now through the end of April, I'm going to highlight awareness events in the sidebar of the blog here, so if your community or organization has one planned, send me a message, because I'd love to share your hard work with everyone here.

More information on our stuff is coming very soon, I promise, but I would like to go ahead and encourage you to get involved with your autism community this April. If you can join a walk, make a financial contribution to a cause, share information or, best yet, donate your babysitting time to the parents of an autistic child, your “donation” will be appreciated by all of us.

Reader Comments

monster beats

<strong><a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/">Monster Beats</a></strong>provide you the best joke ,hope you can happy all life !
in a bar a man sat down ,he told the bartender, "I bet you two hundred dollars that I can piss into the cup all the way over there on the other side of the bar and not miss a single drop."
The bartender said, "itis impossible. So, I'll bet you three hundred dollars."
The man then begins to undo his pants and begins pissing. He starts pissing all over the bar, spraying on the bottles and the bartender, not making a single drop in the cup.
The bartender starts smiling and laughing and says, "That's it, you owe me three hundred dollars."
The man then gets up and walks over to the pool table and starts laughing and shaking hands with the men standing there. He walks back to bar, sits down and starts laughing at the bartender and hands him the money.
The bartender asks, "Why are you laughing? You just lost the bet."
The man said, "I'm laughing because I bet those guys over there one thousand dollars that I could piss all over you and your bar and you would still be laughing when I was done."<a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/monster-beats-pro-headphones-performance-professional-black-p-186.html">beats by dre pro black</a><strong><a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/">Monster Beats</a></strong>provide you the best joke ,hope you can happy all life !
in a bar a man sat down ,he told the bartender, "I bet you two hundred dollars that I can piss into the cup all the way over there on the other side of the bar and not miss a single drop."
The bartender said, "itis impossible. So, I'll bet you three hundred dollars."
The man then begins to undo his pants and begins pissing. He starts pissing all over the bar, spraying on the bottles and the bartender, not making a single drop in the cup.
The bartender starts smiling and laughing and says, "That's it, you owe me three hundred dollars."
The man then gets up and walks over to the pool table and starts laughing and shaking hands with the men standing there. He walks back to bar, sits down and starts laughing at the bartender and hands him the money.
The bartender asks, "Why are you laughing? You just lost the bet."
The man said, "I'm laughing because I bet those guys over there one thousand dollars that I could piss all over you and your bar and you would still be laughing when I was done."<a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/monster-beats-pro-headphones-performance-professional-black-p-186.html">beats by dre pro black</a><strong><a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/">Monster Beats</a></strong>provide you the best joke ,hope you can happy all life !
in a bar a man sat down ,he told the bartender, "I bet you two hundred dollars that I can piss into the cup all the way over there on the other side of the bar and not miss a single drop."
The bartender said, "itis impossible. So, I'll bet you three hundred dollars."
The man then begins to undo his pants and begins pissing. He starts pissing all over the bar, spraying on the bottles and the bartender, not making a single drop in the cup.
The bartender starts smiling and laughing and says, "That's it, you owe me three hundred dollars."
The man then gets up and walks over to the pool table and starts laughing and shaking hands with the men standing there. He walks back to bar, sits down and starts laughing at the bartender and hands him the money.
The bartender asks, "Why are you laughing? You just lost the bet."
The man said, "I'm laughing because I bet those guys over there one thousand dollars that I could piss all over you and your bar and you would still be laughing when I was done."<a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/monster-beats-pro-headphones-performance-professional-black-p-186.html">beats by dre pro black</a>

monster beats

<strong><a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/">Monster Beats</a></strong>provide you the best joke ,hope you can happy all life !
in a bar a man sat down ,he told the bartender, "I bet you two hundred dollars that I can piss into the cup all the way over there on the other side of the bar and not miss a single drop."
The bartender said, "itis impossible. So, I'll bet you three hundred dollars."
The man then begins to undo his pants and begins pissing. He starts pissing all over the bar, spraying on the bottles and the bartender, not making a single drop in the cup.
The bartender starts smiling and laughing and says, "That's it, you owe me three hundred dollars."
The man then gets up and walks over to the pool table and starts laughing and shaking hands with the men standing there. He walks back to bar, sits down and starts laughing at the bartender and hands him the money.
The bartender asks, "Why are you laughing? You just lost the bet."
The man said, "I'm laughing because I bet those guys over there one thousand dollars that I could piss all over you and your bar and you would still be laughing when I was done."<a href="http://www.beatsbydrdrefans.com/monster-beats-pro-headphones-performance-professional-black-p-186.html">beats by dre pro black</a>

Grinchy grinch heart no more!

Wow! I am soooooo impressed with the Disney tix giveaway. We r on our way back from Disney now and I was just telling my family your story. Good karma is coming to you someday my friend.

Proud of you

So proud of you
you and I are on the same journey

Brava!

Brava, Amanda. I'm very proud of you. I'd love to feature you on 36x37 in April for Autism Awareness if you have time and think you'd be interested. Let me know...

I think "the cause" is lucky to have you as such a vocal supporter, Amanda! I'm pleased that you've chosen to share your family's story with us...I've learned a lot from you!

Hugs,
Wendy

My own Young lady Enjoys Orlando Louboutin Footwear -- In which Will i See them to match My own Finances?

Orlando <a href=http://www.bestredsoleshoes.com/>christian louboutin discount</a> sneakers a large number of various things; they're stylish, stylish, forever in design and also the many desired amidst manufacturers. For this reason there are several guys contemplating giving these to the ladies within their day-to-day lives because they be aware that with your shoes or boots they could never get it wrong. These footwear any time talented likely will make appropriate impact all of which will be one particular surprise that isn't likely to languish with your cabinet for very long.

Your look-alike Religious <a href=http://www.cheap-louboutins.com/>Christian Louboutin</a> sneakers spent some time working their own wonder upon numerous numerous as well as they are effective to your lady as well. Current debts present these footwear is unquestionably the most appropriate one. Starting with in places you will see the most effective sneakers along with the proper in shape to your ladies toes along with your finances are on-line obviously. This is actually the spot that you will see a vast number of shoes or boots, footwear for every single situation as well as time of year. Sneakers, which is in the probable developments, styles, styles and colours offered! You'll be able to acquire these people within the correct type of plan for on your own. An allowance to fit and that's right every single tote as well as finances around the planet. To make your girlfriend satisfied don't need to buy your lender good balance to absolutely no. Right now, that will happen to be a chance in case you would've chosen the particular <a href=http://www.super-high-heels.com/>Louboutin shoes</a>. Nevertheless, while using look-alike with you it's not destined to be a new concern.

The actual set Religious <a href=http://www.super-high-heels.com/>Heels christian</a> Privatita Precious metal Strappy Shoe Check out Bottom Water pump is simply to become proficient. This kind of present will make your girlfriend and you also satisfied way too. If you see just how your woman appears with your footwear in, that is definitely gonna send out the shiver associated with hope straight down your own backbone.

These footwear hold the absolute best involving components accustomed to cause them to become. Your nappa natural leather containing long gone in the generating will be smooth as well as intense for you to sense and also effect. Your gold shade contributes they proper amount associated with jewelry and also celebratory method for you to virtually any <a href=http://www.louboutinbotas.com/>Christian Louboutin Shoes</a> these sneakers is going to be donned regarding. The actual strappy peep-toe pumping systems and in what way they've been created should go on high light each and every posture along with contour inside ft .. Your belt band makes it possible for the proper degrees of proper grip about the rearfoot. Additionally, it proceeds along with makes all the ankle joint as well as the slender really feel for it highlighted. Your 5" Stiletto Back heel brings the lady with a top that may get two of you glenohumeral joint to be able to make. Along with, in the event it isn't every thing then a topping for the dessert could be the personal red-colored bottoms. Whenever you staff your red-colored feet using the platinum with the total footwear they are so formal as well as stylish as well. The whole match has been created inside Croatia which means you will not need to actually bother about your quality and in what way they may suit.

How Wonderful!

Billy's progress this past year is really wonderful! You're involvement in getting the word out is also really great! That's been a struggle for me. Other than my blog, I don't really do much publicly. I don't participate in walks or fundraising. I think when the time comes to come clean with my daughter is when my public involvement will take off!

Total 12 comments

S_0211_BillyJammies

Sometimes autism looks like this.

Over a year ago, I was sitting in the lobby of one of Billy's therapies when a well-meaning grandmother of another child remarked about Billy, “He's such a beautiful child. It must make it easier that he doesn't look disabled.”

At the time that she said that, Billy had his nose stuck down into the fake potting soil of the fake house plant in the lobby and was singing something to the plastic tree. I don't know what that looked like to her, but that's what autism looks like in our house.

But I get her point. Those of us with loved ones on the spectrum develop a finely tuned “A-dar,” as we call our ability to identify other kids on the spectrum. But I'll grant you that, especially these days, there are a lot of times when we are out in public when I suppose Billy can “pass” as “normal,” if that's how you want to look at it.

Diz4Train1_S

And sometimes, particularly after an exhausting day, it looks a bit like this.

And that used to be important to me. Not so much any more.

Very early on, it would embarrass me when Billy would crawl under the table of the booth at Beef O'Brady's and want to eat his grilled cheese there.

But eventually, I figured out that he likes sitting flush with the glass wall, his cheek pressed against the glass while he watches the lights of the cars in the parking lot. When I finally got down there with him and looked at it from his perspective, I thought, “You know, it is kind of beautiful.”

Also, I've had the opportunity to explain to the wait staff at the restaurant that he is autistic and why he likes to sit down there. At first, they were surprised to find out he's ASD. Then, they sort of shrugged and rolled with it. They always remember his favorite meal, give him a bright smile and never raise an eyebrow when he disappears under the table with his cheese sandwich.

S_BillyWilly

Sometimes it looks like this.

There are times when I wish we had a sign. For instance, when there's a meltdown in a public place, I'd like a sign that reads, “Sensory overload in progress: Please don't touch me or talk to me.” And that would just be the sign that I wore.

In those instances, there are always a few people casting scowling glances, as though the problem is just one of discipline. Those are usually the same people that wish human beings would just spring from the womb already aged 30-ish, so that their dinners/shopping experiences/serenity are never interrupted by the sound of childish squeals.

Some people just stare. Maybe they want to help. Maybe they feel like they should do something. (FYI, if you meet me in the middle of a Billy meltdown, I'd appreciate it if you'd catch him if he runs toward you; otherwise, feel free to go about your day and ignore us completely.)

Mom Old Camera 018

Autism looks like this less and less these days.

Thankfully, meltdowns are few and far between these days. We go out to eat as a family, take Billy to the grocery store, to Disney World, to the beach. Sure, we hit a few speed bumps along the way, but in most instances, our perspective has changed from “How can we make Billy more 'normal?'” to “How can we support him to succeed in a world that really isn't set up for autistic people?”

Is it easier for us because Billy doesn't exhibit a profound physical sign of his special need, as a child in a wheelchair or with Down's Syndrome does? I don't know. I haven't been the parent of a child with those challenges. I can only guess that there are days when, like me, they think every other parent has it easier. But even on those days, I'll bet when they look at their child, they know that they've never seen anything more beautiful.

What autism looks like is really immaterial. What's more important to me is what Billy sees when he looks at the rest of the world. Because from where I'm sitting, looking at him right now, things are looking pretty good.

Reader Comments

I get the "Oh, he looks so normal!" comment a lot. And now that M is becoming increasingly verbal, I get "oh, he can't be autistic, listen to him talk!" Like you, I don't really care that he can "pass," or whatever you want to call it, partially because it makes it so much more difficult for him, or us, to be taken seriously. All I want is for him to get whatever it is he needs to be able to function and grow.

face on the glass

Love the way you capture his heart and the wonder of that moment when you see the world through his eyes (or, rather, through the glass up against which your face is pressed!). It makes the crazy worth it when we "get" our kids. Love how much you do with your little man.

Hunt Club Subs and Grill

@Ashley--Just wanted to tell you that the owners of Hunt Club Subs and Grill are our next door neighbors; a nicer, more compassionate and welcoming group of people you could not find in north TLH. We have been to Beef's in Midtown and Killearn and they have always been outstanding in terms of not freaking out when E insists on emptying the sugar packets on the table in order to sort and count them all.

Wonderful, Amanda. I'm sure you spoke for thousands of grateful parents today. Hugs to you, friend.

Wonderful, Amanda. I'm sure you spoke for thousands of grateful parents today. Hugs to you, friend.

Our kids are constantly beautiful but I'm still glad that we are seeing less of the demeanor in the last picture and more of the first! Sounds like Billy is doing awesome! Is it me or is he your doppelganger?

I don't know if I can say what autism looks like for sure, but I do know autism in our house wears the same adorable green PJs. We haven't been in the loop for too long, but I have noticed my A-dar is pretty darn reliable. What's weird to me is when I'm around grown-ups I've known forever and start thinking, "Man they have GOT to be on the spectrum somewhere."

I love it when we find restaurants that are patient and understanding. That definitely makes me want to add Beef's to our list of kid-friendly choices. We recently went to the Hunt Club Subs and Grill. It wasn't crowded, kids ate free (Monday), they had basketball and fooseball games for free and an electric (no heat) fireplace that kept the kids entertained. They were very welcoming. It was great!

My Awesome Son Austin

I loved your article so much! I remember the eating under the table and the stares that we always got, and I remember wanting so much for other people to just stop judging my baby and see him for the amazing person he is. Austin doesn't hide under tables or chairs anymore and he doesn't have meltdowns like he used to, but he still gets the stares because people see him and they watch him flap or pace back and forth and talk to himself under his breath and think what is with that kid, but I see the most amazing young man, who is self sufficient and confident in who he is and who loves Him! My Austin is 14 years old now and everything you have said about Billy was so true for my Austin, and even though I know we have alot more obstacles to over come, I know and Austin knows that we will face them together. It is so comforting to know that we are not alone in our fight to try and educate society about the wonderful people our children are!

Total 27 comments

S_Train_Bash

Sadly, the train broke down halfway around the baseball field.

This past Saturday was the Bash and Dash at Billy's school, the annual fundraiser for the school. (Let's save for another day discussion of the topic of WHY a public school finds itself in a position of having to hold multiple fundraisers.)

Bash and Dash was great: well-organized, fun, and amazingly well-attended. There were pony rides and train rides and bounce houses and carnival games. That's the "Bash" part of the day.

But we started with the "Dash." There was a race for each age group, including pre-Kindergarten, Billy's group.

We had been practicing "racing" for weeks. I'd shout, "Ready, set, GO!" in the back yard and we'd run from one fence to the other. During his ABA therapy, Billy would race Ms. Elyse, I would race Billy; sometimes Ms. Elyse and I would race each other. We talked non-stop about the race.

I still wasn't sure how it was going to work out. Despite all our rehearsal, whenever he hears "Go!" Billy is just as likely to run towards the closest available toy as he is to run towards the finish line. As usual, I debated with myself: about whether introducing him to the idea of competition at this stage was even healthy; about whether the crowds would upset him; about whether he might actually fall and get hurt.

I was ready to pull out of the whole thing. Then I got a package in the mail.

When I opened it, I pulled out a trophy. It was about 18 inches tall and engraved like this:

trophyinscription

My mom and dad.

I called them, and sure enough, my mom owned up. "I wanted Billy to know," she said, "that no matter what, he's a winner."

And she was right. Plus, I couldn't back out now that they had invested in what Billy lovingly referred to as "The Statue of Liberty."

Race day dawned bright and beautiful, and we arrived at the starting line with several minutes to spare. Several of Billy's friends turned up, including one beautiful girl who marched right up to him and grabbed his hand in hers, as though she sensed he needed a little reassurance.

As we had practiced, Dave stood with Billy at the starting line, and Willow and I went to the finish. When a volunteer tried to move me out of the way, I explained that my autistic son was planning to run toward me, and if I wasn't standing there, he was very likely to head for that little circle of unattended ponies (the pony rides hadn't started yet). I was allowed to stay.

The boys lined up (girls raced separately). When their little legs started pumping, I couldn't believe how excited I was. I was screaming and crying and shouting for Billy.

Even from a distance, I could see he was beaming with happiness. He was looking from side to side at the crowds lining the race path. Crowds. That was something we hadn't worked into rehearsal.

S_Race_Billy3

Billy's in the red shirt!

Rather than run flat-out, he kind of loped along, half-galloping, watching the other kids run in front of him. He likes to chase.

They all crossed the finish line in front of him and I could see Billy laughing with joy. He was happy for them. And he was inches from the finish line.

And then he turned around and headed the other direction.

He was out there on his own, the race was over for everyone else, and he was running the wrong way. I started shouting for him: "Billy, this way! Come this way, baby!"

At that moment, I just wanted him to finish. The other racers in his group were already getting their trophies and medals, and the older kids were already lining up for the next race, but I so wanted Billy to cross that finish line.

S_Race_Billy_Trophy3

No one raised an eyebrow when Billy got the biggest trophy.

Then something beautiful happened. Everyone started joining in. On both sides of the race path, kids and adults were shouting, "Come on, Billy! This way!" And waving him toward the finish line.

Laughing, he turned around. He saw me and Willow. And he started running toward us. As he crossed the finish line and leaped into my arms, there were cheers all around us.

Of course, everyone was proud of the kids who ran the fastest. I would never want to take away from their winning moments.

But at the moment Billy crossed that finish line, we all felt like winners.

Reader Comments

im internet bestellen cialis rezeptfrei

http://sildenafill.org#sildenafil-online sildenafil citrate online

What a gift Billy's parents gave the community that race day. Your boy ran the race but you put your heart on the line.
Billy I suspect with go far.

?

Amanda, I wanted to tell you all a whole buncha lovely compliments, delightful insights, and inspiring poems ... But after I got through reading the 512 comments, my brain has been erased. Love your blog.

Go Billy!

I loved this! Definitely tearing at the end, and so happy he crossed that finish line with the support of a whole community behind him. And what awesome grandparents he has to think of that trophy.

I reposted this on Facebook, and this was my Aunt Connie's comment:
"Wendy, I read this and cried. I, too, cheered this little guy to the finish line. Your friend writes beautifully. You do, too. I love you. Thank you for sharing."

Wendy

Snippets 'N Stuff

I LOVE this! He has awesome grandparents, doesn't he!? :)

Awesom

Awesome from so many perspectives. Hooray for Billy's grandparents. And the other kids in his class. Most of all, hooray for him.

Mandy, I love all your articles, but this one especially touched me today! You are such a special mommy and Billty is such an exceptional little boy. *I'm so glad he "won" - I n our eyes he is a winner every day. God gives special children to special people - I truly believe this.

Total 15 comments

Subscribe to this blog!

...or grab my button!

Lifeisaspectrum.com button

BUY THIS BOOK!
(Billy and I are in it.)

Tags

Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31