I Am Going To Miss My Mom

Tomorrow my mom will be traveling to Florida to see her mother because she is dying. I know she needs to do this but it will be so horrible without her here. Autism has made me so connected with her. She and I share a special bond and we always do everything together. I am lost without her.

Being fluent with her on the letterboard has been an amazing thing and I am able to do anything with her help…..writing, biking, watching movies, and learning to leave my comfort zone. My mom makes me feel like I can do anything. How am I going to survive 3 days without her?

Autism In The Spring

Autism and I love the spring. The way the world comes alive amazes me. Autism usually dislikes change, but the spring is a welcome one. Flowers and colors are everywhere, and all of the scents of spring fill my lungs….the perfumed flowers, the wet grass, and the fresh breeze. To me the world is waking up before my eyes from a long winter’s nap.

At times I get agitated by the small changes that others don’t notice, like daylight being there at dinnertime. To me dinner should be eaten when it is dark out, not light. I am also sensitive to a change in clothing and changing from long sleeves to short. For some reason it bothers me more than changing from warm into cold. I think that it might be due to the fact that I hate being hot. Autism and I hate sweating and having my clothes stick to me.

I think that spring is the most beautiful season though. Taking walks and bike rides makes me feel happy and relaxed. Taking walks and spending time with family always has a positive effect on me. I love them as much as life itself. Autism and spring have made some nice memories together. To me, life can’t be much better than when my family is by my side.

Being Autistic And Being Listened To

After 25 agonizing years I can finally say I am being listened to, and it feels amazing! Autism and I were on another zoom panel last night and people wanted to hear what I had to say! This is foreign to me but I have to say I am loving it. Talking in front of a group is anxiety provoking for both me and my mom but I am determined to do it so people realize how much autistics have to say! I always remember the point in childhood before communicating. I would get frustrated because no one thought I had any opinions or anything valuable in my brain. I am amazed now because people are realizing that autistics have an abundance of opinions, thoughts, and emotions waiting to get out. Talking and communicating on my letterboard is a liberation and a release of the beast within. Talking and communicating has been a life saver for me and my family.

Autism and I are never going to forget those early days but I believe that the second chapter of my life will be so much sweeter! I don’t have a beast within anymore. It is more like a grateful happy man who wants other autistics to release their beast too!

The Autistic Boy And His Favorite Toy

Autism and the boy didn’t have any friends and his parents were sad. They wanted him to enjoy life and have fun like all the other children. So one day they decided to buy him a toy and make him learn how to play with it. At first autism and the boy were mad because they didn’t know how to play with toys, but after a while they went along with it to please his parents.

It was a train set and it was beautiful! The trains were hand carved out of wood with intricate details. At first autism and the boy didn’t know what to do with the trains, but after a while the boy learned to push the trains along the floor and it was great fun!

The parents were happy to see the boy playing, but they still were sad that he wasn’t playing with friends. So the parents began to have kids come over in the hope that they might start playing with the trains together. Autism and the boy got anxious and insecure because they were not used to having friends, but they began to enjoy it. The parents were so happy!

Then autism and the boy decided that life was better lived with others, rather than in autistic isolation. You already know this but many autistic people may not. They just need to be presented with opportunity to see what life can be like. Don’t assume autism can’t learn to be in your world. Assume that autism can, and be their friend to welcome them into it. Then begin a new world of acceptance.

Autism And The Poconos

Autism and I love going to our house in the Pocono mountains. When we get in the car to go sometimes I feel anxious, but autism does that to me when I have a change in my schedule. My parents always thought it meant I didn’t want to go, but that is not the case. I love it there! The lake is so peaceful and calm. To me water always calms me, even looking at it. I enjoy throwing rocks into the water and seeing the ripples fan out from where it went in. I like the rhythmic patterns and how it is consistent and always expected. Autism enjoys anything that is repetitive and constant.

Being in a wooded setting is calming for me too. You breathe the fresh air full of pine and earth and autism relaxes its grip. At times I almost feel normal! When bike riding on our favorite trail I feel like I am limitless! The wind rushing past and me being in control of where I go feels good. Taking a ride with another person to encourage me onward helps me to stay regulated. Autism and I are so thankful that I learned to ride a 2 wheeler!

Then at night we snuggle on the couch and watch movies together. Autism and I are always loved and cared for by my family. I am the luckiest guy in the world.

The Way We See The World

I am sure I see the world differently than you. Autism and I focus on every detail when I look at something….how the light shines off of it, what lines it has, what angles it has, what curves it has, and all of its details. When you look at something I think you see the object as a whole, without all of the detail. I think you don’t get distracted by all the details like we do. Yes, it is beautiful, but we are distracted by it all and lose sight of what is important. Take that we are constantly stimming on things as a part of this. Take the excitement I get from watching credits as a part of this too. Credits are very enjoyable to me. The way the letters scroll down and then disappear off the edge of the screen always gets me amazed and excited! To me, autism likes the way the letters are moving and reappearing. I can’t really explain it but it is cool. Take autism as the reason why people will always be the last to leave the movie theater!

Being this way is fun, but it’s frustrating for the people around us, especially if they are in a hurry! I think you have to be understanding and patient with us. You are going to be late to your appointment because autism and I have alot of cool details to look at! Yes, autism and I are trying to stop but we need help moving on. Take autism as the reason why you are always late!!

I think that autism was put on this Earth to notice the beauty in the simplest of things…..the light reflecting off of water or the shape of the leaves on the trees. Nature at its best!

Being Back In The Swing

I went back to work today and although I was anxious, it felt good. Being afraid of this virus is a normal thing I guess and you have to push yourself to get out of your comfort zone. Make believe that you always do what is comfortable and never challenge yourself, and life would be so boring. The thing autism always does is make you fear anything out of your comfort zone. My mom always encourages me to try something different and I thank her for that because it helps me. To me, autism and I are like a mouse on a wheel. We will keep running until you stop us. Having people to help me move on is appreciated because I can’t do it myself. Take autism and I for a bike ride so I can clear my head and mind. Take me for a drive and go shopping at my favorite store and my anxiety will improve. Being anxious all the time is a terrible way to live.

Today it felt liberating to go to work and forget about the pandemic. I am afraid that my mom may get too used to not having me home! She and I are like Siamese twins. We have not been apart for over a year and I missed her so much! I hope and pray she missed me too. I am like that guest who never leaves!

Autism And Easter

I am a 27 year old man who enjoys getting an Easter basket, not for the candy, but for the special gifts that come in it. I am so loved, and every year there are little things that mean so much to me. This year one of the things I got was a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang replica car! I am sure it was not easy to find, but my Dad knew how much this movie meant to me as a child. He was looking for things that were symbolic for me, and he picked the perfect way to show how much he cares for me.

To me it shows an amazing love that my parents have for me. Taking my likes over what a normal 27 year old would want and proudly expressing it is true love. My dad, I am sure, would have loved to have had a son he could talk sports with, but instead he got me. Autism and I are so grateful that my parents accept me and all my quirks.

Easter and autism are a happy thing in my house!

Autism Before Communication

Before being able to communicate my life was filled with anxiety and stress. Wanting a glass of water and wanting something to eat meant a frustrating time of trying to show you what I want. I would gesture or lead you to what I needed, but many times I would not be successful. Being misunderstood happened on a daily basis, multiple times a day, and would lead to a meltdown. Then autism would make me get aggressive, ensuring that I would never get what I needed in the first place. Try having this happen to you all the time and see if you don’t get frustrated! I am amazed that my parents survived that time in one piece! My mom had 2 other younger kids who needed her attention and she could not handle all of us by herself. Taking us out was a major feat!

When autism and I were getting worse I remember my mom crying to my dad that she couldn’t handle it by herself. I felt guilty for putting her through that! She never gave up on me though. Even though trips were difficult, we went out everyday, to parks, stores, the library, and music class. Taking us out helped me learn to be better in public. Some people I know have never taken their autistic child on a vacation EVER! I have been to Niagara Falls, Alaska, Maine, Florida, California, Nantucket, Boston, Seattle Washington, Chicago, Canada, and on a Mediterranean cruise to Italy, Spain, and France. My goal after the pandemic is to travel to London someday! Taking a plane ride to Europe will be anxiety producing, but with my parents and my letterboard I can do anything!

The Way Water Affects People With Autism

I think that water has an interesting effect on people with autism. As a child the water always attracted me. The pool was a cherished place to go to and the temperature didn’t matter. The water enabled me to feel my entire body. Usually if I am not looking at my limbs I have no idea where they are in space. To me it is like I am numb, and water gives feedback to your body all at the same time. Then you can actually feel it! Autism is a disorder of the nervous system so this makes sense to me. What I think is strange is why my nerves are sometimes HYPERsensitive instead of HYPO. This does NOT make sense to me.

Being in the water is a way to feel what it is like to be typical. This is why I never wanted to get out of the pool. Take your autistic loved one to a pool and most likely you will see the same thing!

Take your loved one to a pool, but watch out for them closely. Autism and seizures are the terrible twins!