Having an autistic child is not the end of the world--far from it. It is my hope that through this blog, at least a handful of people will get to understand that. My child is amazing, she brings us tremendous joy. We have good days & bad days, but we CHOOSE to focus on the good. Our belief is that by loving our daughter, giving her the most comfortable environment we can, and by most of all accepting her differences, she will continue to blossom--in her OWN way.

11/5/07

Random Thoughts on Acceptance, Parenting, and Love

My husband and I have approached every chapter in our children's lives with "what do we need to do?" And, then we tackle the problem or situation head on. Behind that question, is always the idea that the end goal is for our children to be happy, to feel comfortable, to flourish--in their own, unique way. This holds just as true for my autistic daughter as it does for her sister.

Perhaps my husband and I are just built much different than most (and to be honest, that wouldn't surprise me!). It just seems we are of a minority group--parents who don't have preset expectations and goals for their children. I personally do not want to live vicariously through my child. I want to watch in amazement & joy as I see this being, who once resided inside of me, grow and blossom. I watch with astonishment as little by little my children come into their own (in each, again, their own unique way). I cannot wait to see all the world has in store for them. I will respect & support whatever life goals they have. I will enjoy seeing them get to know themselves, embracing their true self.

Yes, I said "them." I have the same mindset for both of my children. I don't feel like my autistic child will not have goals or dreams, I know she will. They might be different than what I'm accustomed to. It may take some time and creativity to figure them out correctly. But whether it's something she takes interest in next week, next year, or 10 years from now...I will support her in any way I can. Autism has not stolen anything, especially dreams and future plans, from my child.

I don't get what is so hard about realizing that your child is their own individual human being. You do not own them. They are not possessions. You teach them, guide them, hug them, support them. But, you must let go. They are not you. They are most certainly not the you you always wanted to be. They have nothing to prove to you.

It rattles me hearing so many parents of autistic children pity themselves and all that their child will never do or won't be. It's pathetic. If, at the end of the day, my daughter is content and feels safe, I've done my job. What more could I want for her?

2 comments:

Casdok said...

And a job well done.

Suzanne said...

ABSOLUTELY! I don't "get" the parents who gripe and sob over such things as she'll never go to the Prom, he won't be a doctor/lawyer, make them proud or whatever. Don't they know about self-fulfilling prophecy?
My boys make me proud every single day. Nice to meet a parent who feels similar.
Also, I like your little spinny gif. :o)