Sunday, November 17, 2019

What It's Like To Love Someone With Autism

Running.

Running after my son.

I had been in this position many times throughout his life. When he was two, he would randomly dart off in another direction, his legs moving quickly. I would chase after him, my breath coming out in puffs, a stitch at my side. I would always be thankful that I had him young because I wasn't sure if I'd be able to do this if I were older.



I would eventually reach him and gather him in my arms. Sometimes he'd giggle as if it were a game. Other times he'd screech in my ear, because it turns out he was running from something that triggered him. In many cases it would be florescent lights over head. It would especially be bad if one was blinking and humming. It got to the point where I'd avoid areas if I saw a blinking light.

He got better as he got older. The lights didn't bother him so much. But other things did. Sudden noises. Too many people around him. He'd dart off.

And I'd follow him.

Chase after him. Because that's what mothers do.





If you're wondering if the chasing stopped as he got older, well, no. Tommy has gotten better with dealing with things. Therapy has helped. I've helped. If I see him upset, I remind him to take deep breaths. In and out. In and out. Don't focus on what's upsetting you. Focus on me. Focus on your mother. I'm here.




He's 17 now and still runs. He ran the other day. My daughter wasn't listening to me. So my husband raised his voice, reminding my daughter to listen to her mother.

This set Tommy off.

He can't take it when someone is upset, even if it's not at him. Sometimes if people raise their voices he can deal with it. He'll take deep breaths.

Other times?

My husband raised his voice. My son opened the front door and took off down the street.

And I followed him.

Chased after him. Because that's what mothers do.

I found him at the end of the road, his hands clamped over his ears. He saw me and looked a little ashamed, because he knows better to run, but I also know he can't help it.

"It's okay," I said. "You're okay."

He took some breaths and walked back to the house with me.

Loving someone with autism is always being there for them, through the triumphs and the tough times. And believe me, there are tons of tough times.

But they notice when you show up. They notice when you are there, patiently waiting for a meltdown to dissipate. They notice.





Loving someone with autism is an adventure.


Loving someone with autism is knowing you will always be behind them, making sure they're okay, for as long as you possibly can.








47 comments:

  1. I love reading your posts about you and your son. You have a beautiful relationship and that makes the world a better place!!! He is a lucky boy to have you!!! And you are lucky mom to have him. :-)

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  2. Reading your child from your words is always a great emotion is the story of a mother in love with her son ... You have a wonderful relationship.

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  3. I absolutely adored reading this, you're such a great mom! Thanks so much for sharing this with us!

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  4. What a wonderful post! I am actually currently watching Atypical on Netflix and your story relates so much with the one from the movie. If you haven't seen it yet, I recommend it, it's a great way for people to understand what it means to have autism and be a teenager.

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  5. The journey with your son is quite inspiring! Loving him and being there for him in tough times is commendable. Be blessed as you continue taking care of your son.

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  6. Your dedication to your son is so amazing to see you are a fabulous parent. I hope the holidays bring you and your family much joy.

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  7. What a wonderful post! You are such an inspiration for the world!

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  8. You and Tommy have such a wonderful relationship, I love reading about it.

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  9. He is so lucky to have you as his mom. My 3 year old nephew was just diagnosed with autism, so I am sure his mom is in for some adventures.

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  10. aww he is so lucky to have you as such a caring and incredible mom- thanks for being so open with it :)

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  11. This was a lovely read. You're an incredible lady. Honestly, I love to see this from parents. Thank you so much for continually sharing your journey.

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  12. I can feel the great love you have for your son in the cadence of your words. You breathe with him. As a former SPED teacher, I have so much respect and appreciation for you. Keep sharing: someone out there got up and faced a new day today with hope because you do.

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  13. I know a couple friends with children with autism & I can see how difficult it could be. But they are such great parents...I have nothing but respect for them! Thanks for sharing!

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  14. There is so much misunderstanding of the special needs community. I'm so thankful for posts and bloggers who take the time to help educate the world about it!

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  15. Paula @ I'm Busy Being AwesomeNovember 18, 2019 at 1:54 PM

    Wow, you are incredible, I can't imagine the struggle though, thank you for bringing awareness

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  16. I can't imagine how terrifying that would be (him darting out) for you. I can't imagine how terrifying living in this world would be to him. (Rena)

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  17. I knew that their sensitivity was affected but now I know more. I raised a strong will child so I know the daily struggles.

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  18. This is a really touching and beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your struggles and bringing awareness to others.

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  19. I really enjoyed reading this post. It's really touching. Thanks for bringing awareness.

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  20. This is such an incredible post, I am sure it can be so hard, but so worth it. Such a touching read.

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  21. Thanks for sharing this. We have a few friends and family members who have children with autism. It's always fun playing with them and interacting with them.

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  22. I love reading your posts about your son and his autism journey. You are a great mom. I used to teach special ed-autism and it was always an adventure, but very rewarding.

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  23. This is such a beautiful and touching article. I really love the bonding and relation that you guys have. You are a wonderful mom! Thanks for giving us perspective of how is life with a wonderful boy like yours.

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  24. I absolutely adore this post. Your write-ups on your son's autism journey is just so beautiful and always filled with so much love.

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  25. Thank you for sharing that part of your life and your son's. This can help others to understand and learn more about the condition.

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  26. You are such a beautiful precious mother to your son. So much love rises off of your pages when you talk about him. Autism is both a gift and a challenge. I love that you both rise together and see it as a great adventure!

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  27. I really love reading stories about your son. He is such a wonderful person. And you are the best mom for him.

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  28. This is lovely and it reminds me that there are so many people in this world with challenges and you just need to be there for them no matter what the situation. You are a great example for those with children facing the same struggles.

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  29. I used to run from my mom as well when I was kid. You have such a wonderful son and he have a bright future.

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  30. So nice what an amazing article and great read. I have a friend that has an autistic son and it can be so hard at times.

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  31. This had me gulping down tears this morning. Your posts are the best advocate for autism than anything else I have ever read.

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  32. This is such a wonderful post. I have nieces who have autism and they're wonderful. Your son sounds like a wonderful guy too.

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  33. You are an amazing mother, we as moms will always be there for our children no matter how old they get.

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  34. As a mother, it feels difficult to imagine parents who are depressed by their kid's autism. But your post is so positive that I am sharing it right away, so that if there are any such parents, they might be more motivated :) Keep up the good work.

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  35. What a wonderful, heartfelt post. Thanks for sharing your stories with us!

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  36. You are such a great advocate. My neighbor has an autistic child and I see how she struggles also. You are a blessing for creating awareness for those that need the orientation.

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  37. It is such a wonderful and touching post! thank you for doing it for us

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  38. You are a great mom. An example for all of us! I wish you all the best! You have a beautiful family.

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  39. The wonderful relationship that you two have is evident. He is lucky to have you as a mom as you're lucky to have him as a son. So sweet! :)

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  40. Mama Maggie's KitchenNovember 20, 2019 at 1:45 AM

    You have a very wonderful son! Stay strong for your family especially for him.

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  41. Thanks for sharing your wonderful story full of love and patience. It isn't a easy adventure, but it is a rewarding one. My mom learned this with my brother as he had Asberger's. He wasn't easy when he was little.

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  42. Our love for our children is unconditional. I admire you for being such a strong person.

    -LYNNDEE

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  43. No matter how old they are we will always be running after them and helping them to be okay. It's just part of the job of being a mother.

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  44. This was a beautiful article! My friend had 2 autistic sons. One of them was a runner too! But, I can tell you...no matter the age...they will always be running somewhere...and you behind them!

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  45. Its so nice reading this, He is so much like my brothers son, i started taking care of him when he was three, he is now eleven. although i cant trade him for the world but it hasn't been easy looking after him. am constantly worried about him but the boy is really so smart and adorable.

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