Living with autism has been a roller coaster ride. I wish I would have had the courage to video some of the incidents that we experienced as a family. A family that is going through a recent diagnosis is probably thinking that they are the only ones experiencing meltdowns, stimming, aggressive behaviors and exhaustion.
Sydney has always been strong-willed. One day when she was 4, her dad was helping her get ready for school. He was helping her adjust her belt. Syd wanted to do it on her own. At that time she didn’t have the words to communicate to him. My ex thought he was always better with Sydney than I was, but that’s another blog.
Before I could intervene. She reached up and dug her fingers in her dad’s face and scratched the hell out of him. He looked like a suspect from Law and Order. Syd proceeded to adjust her belt on her own.
Earlier this week, Sydney has shown us that she wants to be more independent. She loves fresh flowers. I noticed her changing the water for the vase one day. Another day she helped make the pasta. Sydney was trying to fill the salt shaker. As you can imagine there was more salt on the floor than in the salt shaker. As I watched her she went to the closet and found the broom and dustpan. She did her best to clean up the salt. She didn’t yell, scream or complain.
Autism families experience victories daily. Each day is a new beginning and an adventure. There was a time that Sydney wouldn’t have known what to do with a broom. Her fine motor skills wouldn’t have allowed her to pour from one container to another. Yesterday my friend gave her a velcro calendar. Syd immediately began reading and organizing her calendar for her room. She loves to stay on schedule and to know what comes next. This small tool will be a great help to Syd. The blessing is that she is independent now to manage her schedules without much prompting and help from me.
Today I celebrate all of the victories that WILL happen today in special needs homes around the world. Be encouraged.