Tragedy? w/e not in this house.
Excuse me? Someone forgot to tell me that is is a burden to me! That I should whine and cry about how close to utter despair I am. bleh.
I don't FEEL sad, or devastated. My son is not a 'ghost' or a 'shadow' nor is his 'lost'. I raise him with much the same outlook I have been raising my non spectrum children.
When my oldest struggled with Science, I found tools to help him. I researched the subjects he was learning. I became an somewhat expert at his grade level scientific terms. I found after school help. I used all kinds of techniques to inspire him, from sticker charts to rewards. When as a toddler he would runaway, regardless of the danger, I discussed, taught and prevented, by whatever means necessary. (Yes, I DID use that halter and lead with him in public. No I DON'T feel it shamed him. What it did do was prevent him from running into traffic. Safety first please!) When he started 'dating' and was a doofus to his girlfriend I again used every tool I could find to teach him better male-female relationship skills.
When my daughter demonstrated a natural talent for music, I found her cheap instruments, a karaoke machine, got her lessons. I learned more about music than I even knew was out there. I encouraged. When she developed a habit of bullying her pals I again researched, became a somewhat expert and found tools to teach her. I set consequences and rewards.
With my youngest I do the same things. I research, I find tools, I encourage, I set consequences. I find the tools he needs and I find ways to teach that are appropriate for him
With all of my children my goal is to work myself out of a job. To provide the tools they need to grow to be independent and happy. To nurture their strengths and strengthen their weaknesses. To love them, accept them and enjoy them.
They are each unique. With every child I have ever cared for there have been vast differences between their needs and responses. No one parenting rule has ever worked with all of them. Why is it so startling to some people that the same is true with a child on the spectrum? How is doing the same things I do for the others, but because he is autistic, make my life harder? or a tragedy?
Do these parents ever have joy of their children?
Ever giggle hysterically at the literal translations of our very sarcastic based society?
Accept the love their child gives in their unique way?
Take joy in their successes?
At the end of the day, my heart is full. Like any mother I worry about my children-but they fill my heart. I am so very proud of all of them.
Tragedy? What is truly tragic is our (people as a whole) desire to force others to conform. Our inability to be comfortable with differences. Our lack of self responsibility. (I don't really care WHY he is the way he is. I care how to raise him to maximize his potential and support his endeavors.)
So no, I do not feel cheated. I have three happy, dynamic children. What more can a mommy ask for?
Hugs and Laughter