I was in a situation recently where my opinion of what occurred was so vastly different than that of the person I was talking to, I found myself wondering if I'm delusional. Can two people really see the same situation so differently? Is one of us wrong? Or is it that we are correct in our experience of what happened, and having a hard time seeing the other side of it? I'd really like to think that it's the latter...I'm willing to admit that there is another side that I have a hard time seeing, because I'm so wrapped up in my own view of things.
Which got me to thinking about my son TJ and his autism. Is my experience with TJ's autism even close to Sean's experience with TJ's autism? Does Sean think about every little detail of TJ's interactions with other kids as much as I do? I'm I overbearing in doing so? Is it wrong that I can't look too far down the road where TJ is concerned, because I have no idea what things he'll be capable of in the future, or should I be planning now for all the great things I dream he'll be capable of accomplishing? Will he be able to make these plans for himself, ever? Do I treat him differently than Peter, even though I try desperately not to?
So many questions.....so many fears.....none of which can be answered at this time.
I have prided myself, throughout our almost 10 year journey of living with autism, on making sure that TJ knows he is no better, and no less capable, than any other kid out there. Did I do him a disservice? The fact is, he IS different. As he gets older these differences are becoming clearer to me when looking at what the other 6th grade boys are doing. Are these differences clearer to TJ too? Does he notice, and does he even care? And if so, how will it change him? 6th grade, in and of itself, is such an awful time of change and insecurity. Have I adequately prepared my oldest for such trying times?
Am I prepared for them myself?
And of equal importance, is this something that EVERY parent goes through, or just us parents of special needs kids?
Time will tell.....breathe deep and buckle up.
Here we go.....