I Haven’t Showered in a Week

Yes, you read the title correctly. I haven’t showered in a week. Gross? Absolutely. Avoidable? Unfortunately, not so much.

When I first started looking into autism, people like Autism Speaks (which I already covered here) had me convinced that I would never have a normal life; my child would take up all of my time and attention, and if I tried to leave the house, my child would make it such a nightmare that I would lock myself in my house and never leave again. No friends, no support, ever.

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As a mother of a child with a disability, any show that focuses on this experience catches my attention. This is a reason I loved the show Parenthood; it helped the world understand what life is like with someone autistic, and they even covered what it’s like to find out as an adult that you’re autistic. It was very well-done, and I’ve watched it more than once.

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Autism and Abuse

I have always wanted to be a wife and mother. While other little girls dreamed of being a princess, a doctor, or actress, I had other plans. When my baby brother was born, I became a second mother to him; in fact, he called me Mama before our mother. So it really hurts me when I find out a child has been hurt, especially by someone who should love and protect them.

About a month ago, I took Lily to the library, as usual. She goes there once a week for a reading group with other kids her age. That day, there was someone new, a little boy with glasses. An older woman was with him, and I assume she was his grandmother. It was obvious the boy didn’t want to be there. He sobbed the entire ordeal. Her response was only anger.

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Buddy’s Summer

I haven’t written in a long while, and for good reason. Having Buddy home meant I was rarely home.

First, there was his graduation. Although his class was full special needs, the school itself was not. His graduation was loud and hectic, and he continually looked to me for reassurance. I had been tempted to skip the celebration, but he had worked hard that year and deserved it. Afterward, we took him to his favorite sit down restaurant: IHOP.

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Buddy in Six Years

Buddy turns six years old this week. The idea baffles me. How could so much time have passed? How could he have changed so much?

Buddy’s conception wasn’t planned, but he was always wanted. Buddy was his own person from the first day, even if I didn’t know it yet. My morning sickness lasted for five months before I discovered that Buddy was allergic to citrus. I loved lemonade. The moment I stopped drinking it, the morning sickness left. He still can’t have citrus.

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The Infamous Disney Trip

Rewind two years.

We had never taken a vacation as a family. Buddy was mostly nonverbal, usually saying only “cup” and “no.” He was almost four, the same age Lily is now. What a difference!

I didn’t know then that Buddy was autistic. Our family doctor just said, “Every kid develops at their own pace, and he doesn’t show any physical delays.”

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