Tag Archives: autism

To keep this locomotive of positivity a-movin’…

• Alex hasn’t fought me once on homework the last two weeks. When I pick him up he gets in the truck and starts talking about doing his work so he can get the reward of some computer time. We start as soon as we get home, and we’re usually finished before 6:30. It makes the evenings so much smoother than last year, when we would battle for his attention, take sensory breaks and spend an hour or more doing the work. Read More


I know better than this. All the books I read say it’s crucial to spend more time bragging on the positives than correcting the negatives. But I haven’t even thought to put together a post in the last month or so. I didn’t realize it had been so long until my mom hit me with a “You don’t have to wait for something bad to happen before you update your blog, ya know?” over the weekend. And of course she’s right. Read More

If you’ve got a television, you’ve probably been watching a lot of coverage of the Olympic Games lately. If you’ve got internet access (Editor’s note: I typed that last phrase, realized how stupid it was and decided to leave it in to teach myself a lesson. Feel free to mock me in the comments; I deserve it.) If you tend to frequent blogs that critique the folks who bring televised sports coverage into our homes, you’ve seen a metric ton of bitching about the NBC commentators, particularly the gymnastics crew and ESPECIALLY that mean old Tim Daggett. Read More

Did you spend time in your youth looking for the place you belonged? That one place where you just fit in without any effort and everything made sense? I didn’t. I belonged on a baseball field. From the time I could sit up, my parents didn’t need a babysitter between the months of April and September. They could plop me down in front of a ballgame on television, and I wouldn’t move for the next three hours. Read More

I follow a very specific pattern for my writing. I don’t do rough drafts. Never have. I sit down and think. I organize a pattern in my head for the message. Then I put it on paper. Well, on screen … online — you get it.

The last couple of weeks, though, I haven’t had much of a chance to sit down and think. Now that I can, I’m having a hard time putting words together. The last week, in particular, has been overwhelming. Read More

Independence. I, like the rest of the country, have got the day off Wednesday to celebrate it. I know what it means to me: Self-reliance, taking control of one’s own destiny, resolving to sink or swim on one’s own. I hate asking for help, even when it’s just a small favor from someone who loves me and doesn’t mind in the least. I don’t like relying on others to get things done, and being in someone’s debt gives me ulcers.

I find myself wondering, though, on this July 4th, what will independence mean for my son? Not today or tomorrow, but 20 years from now, when he’s an adult. The short answer is, I simply don’t know. But I hope. Read More

We went to a birthday party last week at the park near our house. The featured guest was a classmate of Alex’s from kindergarten. Birthdays are always a hit-or-miss proposition. It’s a weird mix of free-for-all fun with sporadic but important periods of mandatory ritualistic participation. Throw in the cake and juice, and you never know how it’s going to go.

This one went great, though. We were the first ones to arrive, and he played in the bounce house with the birthday girl for about half an hour. I give him his space when he’s around his peers, but I also take every chance to watch and try to pick up clues about what helps him interact with other kids. I think bossy little girls are the kryptonite to his social stumbling blocks. Read More

We wrapped up a very stressful and uncomfortable week today with a long, fun day at Sea World. With the possible exception of his grandmother’s house — and I’m not sure it’s as close a race as I’m making it out — this is Alex’s favorite place on the planet.

He loves the water park and would stay there playing and riding slides all day if we’d let him. But his little brother is an animal fanatic, so Alex endures the live shows put on by the marine mammalian performance troupes. We coerce him with the promise of riding rides between shows, but I think he likes the animals more than he lets on. I catch him leaning forward with anticipation and even clapping from time to time. I think he’s just letting us talk him into it to guarantee more thrill-seeking opportunities. Read More

As bad as Tuesday was, Wednesday was a total about-face. I had a great conversation this morning with an advocate for special needs services who turned me on to some outstanding local resources that just weren’t showing up in my Google searches. Also found out my sister is flying in Thursday night to help out until we get a permanent solution for summer care.

I’m looking forward to learning more about what we have available to us and finding a way to help Alex get the most out of his potential. I’ve gone from incredibly low and frustrated to incredibly optimistic.

Couldn’t find any wedding pictures in the middle of the night. I was fat in all of those anyway. This is much better.

Tuesday was the eighth anniversary of my wedding. I celebrated by getting the “It’s just not working out” talk. Thankfully, my wife wasn’t the one delivering it. No, we got broken up with by another daycare provider.

We had to find a new daycare for Alex for the summer. The place that handled his after-school care this past year doesn’t do regular daycare during the summer. They have a high-activity, transition-filled “Summer Camp” program with a bunch of field trips and the sort of schedule that Alex finds overwhelming. They came to us early in the spring with concerns about whether he would be able to continue to progress within this program, and we mutually agreed to find a better option during the school break. Read More

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