I’ve taken a hiatus from writing since my last posting. It’s allowed me to decorate, prepare and begin to enjoy the holiday season with my family. It has been nice and relaxed which is a new feeling for me. This brings me to my post for today.
In the recent weeks I’ve sometimes thought or rather felt that I’ve become a complacent mom. I haven’t stressed about how I’m going to work with J when I get home. I’ve given him his space. I’ve watched and observed and have engaged and participated when he is ready to allow me, rather than pushing myself onto him. I’ve let him do his own thing which includes flapping, bouncing and walking on this toes to let him have that simulation he enjoys without redirection. In essence, I’m letting him be the kid he is.
So have I become a complacent mom? Or have I come to realize this is the type of mom I need to be for my son, would rather be for my son? It’s a catch 22. I want my child to grow as much as possible; socially, educationally and cognitively. However, I think there comes a time for all special needs parents, at least this one, when the thought of how much of what I am doing in my life for my child’s life is actually working, being beneficial and is helping rather than hindering.
So yes I’ve become complacent, from how I was, but could it be that I’m enjoying my child? Worrying more about if he is getting enough play time vs. therapy time. I’m truly seeing my child for what he is, not what or how he should be through constant guidance and therapy in all the interactions we have. I’ve let him be a kid who loves to engage with his books, movies and cars with their racetrack. I’ve let him be a typical 6 (almost 7) year old boy who loves his toys over his mom nagging him through instruction and telling or asking him to use his words. With this change, I feel that my times with him now are more purposeful and meaningful as they are done when both he and I are ready. I’m letting him breath and come into his own without always feeling like I’m needing to partake in every minute of every day to make it a learning opportunity for him.
I really do love just watching him play. Seeing his face light up with emotions from how he is playing, how he wants to play. I absolutely love the feeling when he is ready and wanting me to play with him. It’s fun and doesn’t feel forced now. It might not always work out, there are still trial and errors on my part, as he may decide he in fact doesn’t want to play with mom or when he’s done, I know as, he’ll wander off to another activity without me.
The last few weeks have probably been the least stressful I’ve had as being J’s mom. As this seems to be working now, I’m going to see where is leads. I enjoy spending quality time with J, making his play time fun and educational as it’s much more simpler to be on his playing level than trying to force, bribe or beg for him to be on mine. I like this being our new normal at home.
Instead of teaching your child to be great ‘despite’ autism, teach them to be great ‘with’ autism. Perspective is everything. ~Stuart Duncan