Did he shoot his eye out?

You know your kid was screaming way too loud when…

You walk into the waiting room of your son’s eye doctor’s office and everyone turns and looks at you and your two kids with a look of horror.

As you slowly drop all 5 bags you needed to bring, filled with enough snacks and toys to last 2 1/2 days, you can see people looking your son over for injuries.

Surely the ophthalmologist must have poked his eye with a hot rod of iron!

He must have taken one of his eyes out!

The number one or number two machine must have fallen on the child severing a limb!

No folks, nothing of the sort.  He simply dilated his eyes.  Yep, 6 eye drops, the doctor, a nurse, and I holding him down.  But every 6 months it gets a little easier.  We’ve been doing this since he was 10 months old and he’s turning 4 so it’s getting pretty old.

 

Getting the Song out of my Head

Jaylen’s Autism makes him extremely literal, but I am starting to realize how literal most young kids are.  I taught PreK, Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade before having Jaylen, and guess by those ages most kids get sarcasm, and understand what to take literally.

This post on Mommy To Two Boys is about how Jaylen processes the term “private school.”  His literal thinking is one of those things I enjoy, crack up over, and love about him.

We recently moved and every time I mentioned our “old house” Jaylen asked when it was going to fall apart.  When I told him a new family was moving in he was surprised they would live in a house that was old.  When in actuality our “new house” is in worse condition than our “old house.”  In Jaylen’s mind, for some reason, all things die or fall apart when they turn 100 years old, so he assumed the old house is close to 100 and will crumble to dust any minute.

At my grandmother’s 89th birthday party he basically told her she had 11 years left till the reaper came for her.

I could go on and on with stories like this when it comes to Jaylen, but recently Xavi made me laugh hysterically over the same thing.  He was singing a Lady Gaga song which I started singing too.  After a few minutes I told him he got the song stuck in my head.  He pulled my head down and started pushing my hair all around searching for something.  When I asked what he was doing, he said he was looking for the song stuck in my head.

I guess taking things literally isn’t only for kids with Autism, neurotypical kids do it too (even though Jaylen does it a LOT more).  Oh, the things I’m learning by being a mom to both…

*******************************************************************************************

Freedom From Autism

No. My son has not been “cured” of Autism.  But for one night, for one single solitary night I felt free from the constantly overwhelming disorder.

 

It was Autism Family Night at the Mystic Aquarium in Mystic CT.  We got into the Aquarium for free (thank you Pfizer and Mystic) and got to see two shows specially prepared with less sensory stimulation.
Almost instantly, I got chills and a huge smile came across my face as Jaylen:
ran off,
started banging on glass tanks,
groaning,
and yelling repeated phrases of other kids
 
I did NOT have to stop him. 
 
He was free,
I was free,
There would be no yelling,
No arguing,
No threats,
No apologies to other people,
And no embarrassment tonight.
 
And THAT, ladies and gentlemen, is freedom. 
No where else, at no other time, is it acceptable for my guy to be who he is.  It was the most amazing, liberating, and happy feeling. 
Both my boys ran, yelled, and acted silly.  And no one batted an eye.
I didn’t have to feel bad or sorry.  I didn’t have to apologize to anyone because of their noise or running.
I didn’t have to explain to other parents why my son was doing what he was doing.  He got in other kids faces, a recent issue we’ve been having, and no one cared.  In fact, many other kids were doing it too.  I didn’t have to explain why he repeated things other kids said or yelled when they yelled or apologize for it.  Everyone understood.
It was also such an eye opener to see so many kids and adults all over the spectrum.  Everyone is affected in different ways.  But generally speaking, they all have issues that set them apart from the “norms” of society.
At one point my sister turned to me and said, “It’s just crazy to me that everyone else here, all these other parents, are dealing with the same things you are.  You are all going through this daily.  They are all going through what you do every day.”

And for some reason, that makes me cry.  Each time I replay that thought, I cry.