I am a bad autism mother.

And today I say hello to another crack in my heart. 

I was dropping off Loudon for afternoon pre-school, and after finally convincing him that he wasn’t too sick to go to school (something he has been faking of late), I walked out with a smile on my face – mission accomplished! 

You have to walk along the length of the front of the school to get to the parking lot, so I was passing classrooms – one of which is Ro’s integrated K class.  As I was approaching his room, I heard the familiar shrieks.  Uh oh, what’s going on. 

I look inside the windows to see Ro clawing at Mrs. H., trying to get to something she had in her hands.  He is screaming at the top of his lungs, uncontrollably.  The WHOLE class begins to chant, “TOO LOUD RONAN!”  Two little boys cover their ears, and one little girl starts to sob – “It’s too loud Ronan!  It’s scary!”

The teachers (two of whom I see are subs today – of course, he’s not a fan of change) are trying to comfort the kids above the screeches, “It’s okay, kids, it’s okay!”

I am outside, clinging to the windows, wanting nothing more than to dive right through and rescue him.  Do I get his attention?  Try to comfort him through the window?  Go back into the school?  I want to scream his name, and tell him it’s okay.  I want to scoop him up and hug him.

The teachers spot me, and they just try to keep controlling the situation.  I take this as a sign that I should just let them try to handle it.  I don’t want to. 

I tear myself away, and go to my car, where I’m thankful I parked behind the school, so nobody can see me crying really hard.

I knew it wouldn’t be an easy day.  This morning I sent a letter to his teacher, letting her know that he didn’t sleep well (he’s been up since 4:00 am), he has to poop, and he has been very stimmy for the past couple of days. 

It’s getting cold here, and he’s been inside more than usual.  I hate New England for this reason.  Ro always has a hard time in the winter.  Not enough vitamin D, less exercise, etc. 

Then, as usual, I move on to blaming myself.  I should engage him more.  He should be on the computer less.  Why haven’t I enrolled him in a few classes for the afternoons and weekend, yet, to up his stimulation?  Why the hell did I move all the way back to Boston, when he was doing so well in Cali with all that sunshine and activity?  Should we go back to the diet? 

I know all mothers go through these days, but with autism, it’s all encompassing, every day, all the time.  What other kids pick up neurotypically, kids with autism have to be drilled every day, all the time, the same things over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.  And when you have processing that is very similar – well, it’s the blind leading the blind, except the blind has to get its ass in gear, because it HAS to teach this child, regardless of the blind’s situation.  Now, divorce, bankruptcy and total sleep deprivation…I’m sorry, but for those of you who hate autism being referred to as a puzzle – it IS a frikken’ puzzle!!!!!!!!!!

I feel like a very bad autism mother.

And I want to scream at the top of my Goddamn lungs, just like Ro.  But I won’t. 

I’ll go pick him up, and try to do better, because he needs me too.

 

 

And yes, I have PMS.  I always write these posts around the same time of the month.  I think I need some Midol.

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4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Stephanie
    Nov 24, 2008 @ 22:23:16

    how does one send you an electronic hug? It’s odd but thank you for sharing…

    Reply

  2. Kim
    Nov 25, 2008 @ 20:53:53

    MOM!!! You are an amazing Mother, supporter, friend and soo much more! Your child is making amazing strides in a very short time.
    What can he do?
    Get himself to his locker, put things away, go to his class room, get his work items and start working independently!
    Say hello (with names)without prompts ALL day long.
    Hang out with his friends in an inclusion class room, listen to meeting, respond to the teacher, get himself to each table and do the work almost completely by himself.
    Write like an adult, draw like an adult, read like an adult, math expert…..
    He has learned so many ways to help him cope with challenging moments during his day. He loves school and is learning to love his peers!
    Yes-change is still difficult for him, but he is sooooo much better. Screams are very rare and he is learning to accept change EVERY day.
    His friends are not afraid of him, they know he sometimes screams and I have taught them to say “Ronan that’s too loud” so that they feel better and Ronan hears it from his friends not just his teachers. This has helped everyone, including Ronan.
    Stop being so hard on yourself! He is going to be famous one day and I know it!
    It is not every day that the world is lucky enough to have a Ronan in it. The world is a better place because he is here!
    See Ya,
    Kim

    Reply

  3. ronanjames
    Nov 26, 2008 @ 01:45:59

    Stephanie,
    I think just by writing that, you sent me an electronic hug! lol
    thank you so much : )

    Reply

  4. ronanjames
    Nov 26, 2008 @ 01:58:03

    Miss Kim,

    Thank you for being another great woman in Ro’s life. I have two awesome sisters that I am lucky enough to get support from whenever I need it. Also, although his Dad and I are going through hard times, he is there for the kids and he tries as hard as he can, so we are lucky to have that.

    It is something special to hear words like this from someone who is so incredibly important to Ro and appreciated immensely by us!

    I agree that he is so unique and incredible, and I have just as much faith that he will be anything and everything that he wants to be.

    When I have PMS, I kind of forget…lol

    Can you see where Loudon gets his drama from? : )

    Thank you so much again, for your much appreciated kind words. What will we do without you next year? I am still thinking of ways to try and take you with us ; )

    Reply

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