Laugh with us, cry with us, and learn about AUTISM!

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Being An Autism Mom

This image was posted to my Facebook yesterday, along with the message  "I saw this and thought of you! XO RK."  You can find the creators blog here, and her post about the image here.  I liked this picture so much that I wanted to talk about it, but first I wanted to talk about the man who posted it to me...  my brother-in-law.

My brother-in-law is one of the best members of my support system.  He may not think he is, as he is forever saying things like "I don't know what to do.  I don't know that anybody knows what to do."  and "I don't know what to say, nobody can really say the right thing."  (by the way, that last one has sparked an idea for another post.)  Well dear brother-in-law...  you always know what to do.  You always manage to call at just the right moment, when I'm having a horrible day.  You always let me vent and get it out, and you always say the right thing - you are supportive than slowly change the subject to take my mind of off things.  You are willing to listen to me and talk, even if you can hear the meltdown in the background.  You can carry on an everyday normal conversation with me, even when I'm near tears.  Heck, you give me blog post ideas!  You may live far away - but you are important, you help keep me sane. :-)  (I haven't forgotten all the rest of you wonderful people don't worry!  Thank you!!)

Now that I'm done blubbering, back to the picture.  This shows the reality of autism, at least in my opinion.  The pictures don't all directly relate to me - my best friends know that I'm not constantly dealing with meltdowns, my mom knows I don't have a Facebook addiction, and I'm not an activist so I hope the government doesn't see me in that light.  Here is how it does relate to me:

It's all about perception.  How people in my little world perceive autism depends upon me and what I tell them, and Josie and what they see of her.  

Sometimes my friends may think that all I do is deal with meltdowns - cause sometimes, that's all I tell them about autism.  However, these are the friends that let me vent - and I am eternally grateful!

A lot of the times our family and friends only see Josie on good days.  Therefor, they don't understand what I go through on a daily basis.  Most of them readily admit that fact.  

The community will mostly not take notice of a child behaving well...  but almost everybody notices a child who is behaving poorly or inappropriately.  It's unfortunate, but true.  So I've no doubt that there are Walmart and Freshco employees who see me as having a brat.

I have no idea how the government see's me and other autism parents - but, I must say they clearly don't care enough.  (Most of them!  There are some who do amazing work for us!)

Almost every day I feel like I'm fighting a war.  This picture...  This is the one that hit me the most.  Some days I am bruised, exhausted and want to give up...  but I don't, because I am loyal to my cause!

The reality of living with autism.... is that I am a Mother.  I want the very best for my child.  I want to do everything I can to help her succeed in life, and be happy in life.  The fact is that I have to do a lot more than the average mom, I have to deal with a lot more than an average mom, and the details of my life just aren't the same as an average mom.  But I am a mom.  People don't see "just another mom."  They often see any of the above.  I often see myself as some of the above.  There are plenty of good moments mixed in to every day (well, nearly every day!) and those are what keep us going.  

So I will fight every single day to help my daughter - I am an Autism Mom!

PS.  My new favorite quote: 

"I'm raising a child with autism - what's your super power?"

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