This Is Autism

This Is Autism

Adrian, meet autism. Autism, meet Adrian. I’ve never really minded you, you know. I was writing a story about Julia, praising the new character with autism on Sesame Street, the very morning of the day that we were introduced. The day before, Al Roker shared that you were part of his family too and truthfully, I thought that was pretty neat. It was neat until you jumped ship and got ahold of my family. We were doing just fine on our own, therapy plans, a great classroom and now your presence feels like a foreboding wrench.

ABA, Teacch, holistic diets, experts, advisors, summer programs, parent training sessions, dozens of blogs devoted to autism, family resources at the state and national level, more people, men and women, ones covered by insurance and ones that will break the bank. How do we choose? When will I find time to weed through all the carefully offered advice? I don’t want to miss a chance for Amos and yet, I can’t stop thinking you’re at the wrong house.

You see, I’ve got more than enough going on and plenty to keep me busy. We’ve been doing pretty good and gotten quite used to saying Amos has “extra special needs.” Really, I can handle that, but now you? I’d like to lock the gate to my precious family and throw away the key, but somehow I don’t think you’re going away so my heart tells me to grin and bare it. Bare what? That’s the thing, I don’t even know. This autism thing seems like a complicated sea of prehistoric animals swimming along futuristic creatures. You never strike the same way and so, I’m scared of what to expect. I’m scared you’re asking too much. That’s all. Perhaps strength feels like more of a philosophy than a truthful qualifier.

Just give me a little time, okay? I’ll get used to you. After all, Amos stole my heart long ago.

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