Well it’s been to long friends! I can’t believe as I logged on to the blog I hadn’t posted in so long. Honestly last year was so autism friendly that things just coasted along. We had great teachers, great support, & things just worked. In my mind I thought ‘This is it! We’ve Crested!’ I think it has taken this long into the new school year to realize I had tricked myself. I have tricked myself & let others trick me into forgetting my son is autistic. I feel guilty even saying that because I know so many of you have lower functioning kids that you get none of those moments but none the less it’s how I feel at the moment. Don’t get me wrong we still have some great teachers but middle school is hard, impending high school is scary, & life is crazy. We started off with little missed assignments here & there then more didn’t make it home or were turned in half done. Grades fell, social interactions slumped, & I allowed myself to stay in blissful ‘normo town’. The other day I logged in to take a look at his grades to find them spinning downward so I reached out to the special needs staff asking them to take a look & give me some insight as communication about school is not our strong point to say the least. I asked for any missing assignments to be sent to me so we could work together to knock them out. What I got was a big black folder with around 20 front & back pages of work from multiple classes that he had not done. Lost on the way home, finished & lost before they got turned in, didn’t feel like doing them so he tossed them, you name it it has probably happened but it doesn’t really matter in the end. I wasn’t as vigilant as I should have been this year so when it was left up to him to get signed up for Robotics club it didn’t happen. He disliked band because he just didn’t fit in & hated all the noise so we dropped that as well.
Now that my eyes are open I realize we have taken several steps backward. Its hard to see it when you’re not looking for it because he is just so happy and positive. Even when we had bully problems he was just positive all the time. When a kid is that content with himself and his life its hard to see problems as they arrive when your rose colored glasses are firmly attached to your face like mine have been.
Our little family has had a rough go the last month or so. Between our car that we owe an obscene amount of money on breaking down & the fight that ensued with the warranty company who considers it a total loss leaving us on the hook for the $$ to a burglary at our home while we slept in the house things have been better. All that being said I had a realization over the last several days that my priorities are out of whack! I’ve been focusing on the problems, the worries, & the un-controllables instead of whats important. Yesterday it rained all day long & we stayed home. We made holiday cookies, watched pete’s dragon, & played video games. It was one of the best days I’ve had in so long. I realized that while I had my rose colored glasses on it was super easy not to see the problems but I also didn’t see some of the good things that were peeking through that I used to foster. He loves making comic books & then he puts them for sale in his ‘Store’ in his room where you can buy them for a couple of dollars so he can earn money. A couple of years ago I would have jumped on that & sent it off to blurb to be printed professionally so he could see his idea come to life but instead I just said ‘Thats awesome buddy’ & moved on with my day. I’m not trying to throw a pity party here… well maybe a little bit but hey, it’s my blog I get to do that… I’m just trying to say it out loud (okay, type it out loud) to help open my eyes and hold myself accountable. I need to be a better husband, a better father, a better special needs advocate, & even a better photographer as I realized I haven’t even been photographing my own kids. I walk in from a work shoot and put down the camera only to let it sit there until I am ready to work again. I guess its just time for re focusing on the things that matter. So this is one of those things. This blog helps me hold myself accountable. It helps me get feedback from other parents who know what the hell I’m talking about. It helps me tell horrible off color jokes that other parents cringe at but other special needs parents belly laugh at because they’ve been in the same shoes. Today is a new day.
Side Note: I thought I would share a few photos of our little moments & adventures since I last updated. Thanks for reading my ramblings! 🙂