Our family is not what you would call average.
My husband and I are madly in love (thank god) and have just recently celebrated our third wedding anniversary. We have two children together; Our beautiful 7 month old daughter and our spectacular three year old son, who also happens to be autistic. My husband also has a daughter who is 4 from his past relationship. She is wonderful, and I truly see her as my own.
So there you have it. Three adorable kids, a wonderful husband and a dog (Tiamo), the fairy tale right? Ya... OK. If Tim Burton and Quentin Tarantino collaborated in a retelling of the old white picket fence drawl. No, we certainly don't fit into the ticky tacky existence that others imagine, but I for one am damn happy about that. Normal is the oddity here. Individuality, unique, different, they are what we embrace in this house. Good thing too. Especially when a doctor looks at you and tells you that your wonderful little boy does not fit into the predetermined outlines of normal.
Well I Say to hell with it! Go ahead, be different! In fact, if he were "normal" I'd probably be more concerned about the type of person he would become. His life will be hard, and I do worry, but he is not selfish, or deceitful, or manipulative, he just is... and that's great.
DS has been a challenge from the beginning. I don't mean that in a bad way, I am always up for a good challenge. I believe that when I became a mother I found my true calling. There was nowhere I wanted to be then with him. I was in need of frequent reminders of this however, between sleep deprivation, a baby that screamed 22 out of 24 hours in a day, and ppd settling in, I was inches away from total meltdown. we got through it though.
The old adage: If I knew then what I know now certainly holds true in this situation. If I understood that over stimulation and GI problems were the source of his crying we all would have slept a little better at night... literally. In looking back I think of my time with my little man fondly, but I tend to get a twang of guilt here and there too.. thinking of those moments where I would have sold him for a nickel to the first person who came along just to get some peace and quiet.
To this day we usually dedicate three to four hours to bedtime. This is something that I have never felt as though we were making any leeway with. I have tried everything... and yet, my exhausted babe is still arranging and rearranging his prized number collection and humming to himself at 1 am.
We don't do restaurants, we don't do long or back to back visits, even grocery shopping is strategically coordinated in hopes of keeping the peace in our fragile existence. Not anymore baby!!! Now comes the fun part. We know what we're dealing with (finally) so it's time to tackle one issue at a time. Hopefully the end result will be my wonderful boy still being him, but comfortable to do so everywhere. Wish us luck!