Hello there! It’s been a while. I feel like I have some explaining to do.
I started this blog back in 2011. At that time, G had recently received an autism diagnosis and it turned my world upside down. At first, I didn’t share any thoughts publicly about this diagnosis and it’s impact on me and our family. Gradually, I started sharing a few thoughts on Facebook. As the posts grew longer and more frequent, I realized a couple of things. First, the act of writing was helpful to me in processing changes we were going through as a family, and changes I was going through as a mom. Second, the act of sharing my writing was bringing me closer to many people in my life. My writing helped connect me to others who were on a similar path. My writing helped other people understand the joys and challenges of my life. I created the blog to be a holding place for my writing. Over the years, it gave me a lot of joy to look back and celebrate the milestones all over again. It also gave me a lot of joy to read over the challenges from the early years and realize how far we’ve come.
Now G is 11, turning 12 in a few short weeks. He’s in middle school. And, I’m happy to say, he’s thriving. His world is full of meaningful activities and good friends. He’s earning straight A’s in all of his classes. It’s bringing tears to my eyes just to think about it.
One more word about G. He hates the word autism. Hates it with a burning passion. He once told me that when he hears the word “autism” it makes him think of the word “retarded”. It sounds like an insult to his ears. We’ve stopped using the word with him, and instead talk about strengths and challenges. This helps us navigate some difficult situations, but it makes me sad that G has such negative feelings towards something that is a big part of him. I hope that some day, his feelings will change, and that he’ll recognize the great gifts that come part and parcel with the challenges of his diagnosis.
And so, given that G (and his peers) are standing on the brink of social media usage. Given, also that S and her friends are already here. It doesn’t feel right to me to continue writing about a topic that makes G uncomfortable. G, S and their friends are one click away from stumbling across this blog. When one of them inevitably land here, I don’t want the pages to be filled with stories that are awkward or embarrassing.
However, I discovered that I still have a lot to say. One day last year, I received an email from G’s teacher. She said, “For our morning question, we asked the students to pick a person in their family. They had to write a sentence on the whiteboard to describe that person. Here’s a photo of what G wrote.” Attached to the message was a picture of a carefully lettered sentence written in G’s neat handwriting: My mom is obsessed with politics and inclusion.
So, fear not… I still have a lot to say. I have many thoughts about inclusion. I have many, many thoughts about politics.
Sorry I’ve been such a stranger lately. I hope to be stopping by these parts more often in the days and weeks to come.