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…

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

You Choose: A Brat or A Behavior Disorder

I knew Jaylen was different by the time he was 6 months old.  By one year of age he did not connect with us, was often in his own little world, and was hooked on repetitive actions.  At 16 months, when he was still non verbal despite scoring normally on hearing tests, we began the evaluation/diagnosis journey.

Tantrums were the other huge indication something was “off.”  At the height of his behavior issues, he would tantrum almost every hour, which left he and I exhausted and confused.  Jaylen’s inability to sleep through the night, common for kids with Autism, ensured we were also sleep deprived.

I called a friend who specializes in infants and toddlers with Autism. She told me he was tantrumming for reasons, despite my insistence they came from nowhere.  Sometimes, I knew he was frustrated or annoyed.  Other times I was completely baffled:  Was it pain somewhere he couldn’t communicate?  Did he want me to play a different way?  Did he need more or less stimulation?  Having a non verbal child is frustrating, sad, and incredibly trying.  I give thanks everyday Jaylen was able to learn to communicate.


Sometimes these tantrums would be severe, last up to an hour, and involve self injurious behavior, broken objects, and blood chilling screams.  At the time I thought nothing could be worse.  I felt sorry for myself and hated Autism with a vengeance.  I was beside myself and at the end of each day wondered how I could make it through another.

I assumed neuro-typical terrible two’s would be simple compared to what I went through with Jaylen.  Was I wrong or what?  This kid is a brat!  Those “typical” toddler issues I had read and heard parents complain about are happening and they are loathsome.

Xavier yells at me in full comprehensive sentences.  He tells me how things are going to be.  When he doesn’t get his way he throws things, hits, and bites.  Jaylen couldn’t even say no until he was almost 3, which killed me at the time, but now I almost appreciate.  At least Xavier warns us by yelling, “I’m gonna frow (throw) this fish stick” or whichever object has him upset at the moment.  Oh and the incessant whining…I don’t even want to go there.

Which is worse?  A kid with Autism, SPD, and ODD?  Or a bratty two year old?  I’m going with the two year old.  Maybe it’s because the two year old terror is my current reality. I definitely have more respect for “normie” parents right now.  I realize it’s not all butterflies and rainbows with the omission of special needs.

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