Highly Functioning Autistic Kid

Let me begin by re iterating that I do not write for sympathy or help, but to provide clarity and space for my tumultuous mind. Its a wild, frenetic land in the recesses of my medulla.

This week has been a mountain of a climb, “no rest for the wicked”, so they say and as a child I was pretty wicked, to all who cared for me, from parents, family and hospital staff. But I digress, remember its a frenetic place I am reaching out from to even verbalize the shit that goes on in my head.

I write today from my perspective, my families perspective and the perspective of Kid 1 (K1). K1 as you may remember or not even care, was diagnosed a year ago with high functioning autism or Asperger’s. Although he is not severely affected, he definitely has traits and tendencies that smack him on that imaginary line of whatever it is..

Sometimes I wonder whether its a good thing we know or not? Yet, it is a very bumpy road, one I often want to get off, to take a smoother path and I am sure he does also. A path where he does his homework without screaming daily (he is now 8),  a path where he does not constantly harass his brothers and scream at them, a path that is not always black and white, a path that is not literal but has some bend, a place where he can sit still, or make wild noise, where he can cope with activities, changes in routine, school parties and holidays without imploding and losing all control of his behavior and screaming he hates us.

It is because he gets over stimulated and I have learnt his brain scrambles and he cannot calm it down. Life would be calmer, less noisy and explosive, I would not internally dread every time we go out, or go places as I am never sure which kid I will have? The sullen monotone, willful, stubborn, unresponsive child, or the wild hyperactive kid who bounces all over the place shouting in faces and using baby voices, or I may get K1 where I can see him through the forest of his mind, that amazingly brave, strong, powerful kid who really will take over the world.

My greatest fear is that I parent him incorrectly, as my strategies to help him are very different to K2 and K3. Sometimes I cannot even get to parenting the other two as I am spending all my time managing and helping my eldest. Am I failing, I feel like I am , but I remember that I love them so much and I too am a mentally flawed human, who too deals with her own issues on a daily basis, so I am truly doing the very best I can , all the time. Yes I openly cry a lot, but I think its good for them to understand emotion and that I too need help and love. I have always tried to parent with love, transparency, kindness and honesty.

The hardest thing we deal with as a family is the fact that K1 does not seem different or have this alternative way of learning, unless you are with him 24/7. It is like being beaten over the head with a sledgehammer, it never leaves or goes away it is always there to be dealt with. Learning that people do not want to be touched in the face and that homework needs to be done, that running around at school, because you feel like it, is not what the teacher requires. That he forgets his work every day and we have to drive back to school everyday to get it. Yes he genuinely does not remember, repeatedly, its traits of his HFA. People think he is naughty, insolent, he is always at the Principals office, I get letters home, phone calls about behavior, (its him coping with the demands of his day, its busy and loud and full of stimulus, of course he implodes).

This week, we have had one meeting with the school, I have driven back 3 times to school to get home work, he actually forgot it a total of 4 times, he decided that he would not do hockey (there is never any convincing) he got out of the pool during his swimming lesson as he had had enough, he lost recess for two days at school for something that was not his fault , as the school seems to like to jump to the conclusion, that it must be he who is responsible, he was banned from the school garden because he decided that running and jumping over a bench was a far more exciting thing to do rather than listen to the teacher ( I may have to mildly agree with him here). This has all happened in a mere 5 days and this does not include all the little things that happen. Thank Fuck for the weekend ..

The thing is I totally understand everything he does, yes homework sucks and I forget things, listening to a teacher is not the most exciting thing about a day, yes a kid is a “ass hole” if they trip you over and sometimes you really do not want to play games or swim, so why should you? As adults we do not?!

I am not articulate enough to fully describe what our home life is like, its explosive, we wade through parent hood rather than skip. The little two are frequently waiting for their turn to be seen or heard. It is tough and wondrous and I will not lie, sometimes I do wish he were different and easier, but that is my selfishness and desire for a calmer life. Truly, though I am in awe of him, his drive, passion and ability, he is 100 x smarter than I could ever dream to be. I am exhausted by him and I am scared I will never be the parent he needs me to be. I am reaching out for guidance and help and reading as much as I can. We are looking for groups of parents for support. Its harder because he is high functioning, we are not given help or advice, because he is gifted the school fail to recognize his Asperger traits and coping mechanisms, our medical insurance will not pay for therapy, because he is not fully autistic, but he still needs some degree of Applied Behavior Analysis therapy, to help him cope with the demands, routines and sociability of life.

It saddens me, that with the rigorous, normalcy of life, that is peddled to our kids, we fail to see the wondrous differences. K1 is a beautiful artist, a natural with music, his physicality for sport is limitless, he can add huge numbers in his head and he sees beyond the regular. He is quick to see the beauty in nature and to care for the weakness in others. He is articulate and dexterous, he can build Lego like no other, with patience and tenacity. But school fails to see the way we can use these skills in a multitude of arenas and to nurture them. They see him as a thorn in their side, he slows them down. Maybe I should move him to a smaller, private school, but he loves his school and his friends and he knows the routine.

I am not really sure what I am trying to share here, and I am sure no one really gives a shit. But we do, I do, if any part of this helps another realize,  others struggle too, that we all need help and no one is perfect, but what the fuck is perfect? who wrote that manual ? Clearly not me and my family. But if you need to share anything I am here. I am also looking for help and advice if you have any to share?

I will continue to love and learn from my son, I clearly will fuck him up, as I feel all of us were a little fucked up by our parents and in the words of Dr House ” No parent is perfect, we all, ultimately fuck our children up “. Me, I just started early with my genetics.


Mama Mia – Mi

So last weekend was my belated 40th celebratory “Mamas on the loose” weekend in Miami.

This marked my first all girls weekend, NO kids, NO husband, No responsibilities. There was NO cleaning up after everyone, NO cooking dinners that small child like noses turn up to, NO kid piss, shit or snot clear up. Plus, I left the Air B n B for the full 48 Hrs we were there, with my grown up clothes on, that I cannot wear as I usually have some dirty snot sheen or grubby hand print on me somewhere and….. wait for it …… OMG I actually wore mascara and blusher for two whole days, as I had time to apply, clean off and wow reapply the following day. Can you actual imagine that for a moment? From the cocoon of mother I emerged as a fully grown “Me” not K1 / 2 and 3s mum or the darling husbands wife, but fuck me, I was actually me, the full technicolor version, with matching bra and knickers.

We did really weird things together, like talked to each other for a whole 10 minutes without a whiny voice interrupting, or being rammed in the stomach by a 2 year old head mid sentence. I ACTUALLY lay by the pool for 4 Hrs (yup you so read that right, a whole 4 hours) and READ A MAGAZINE and slept!?! WOAH so fucking crazy, us gals went mad for it. I not once asked for the children’s menu or a high chair, I did not carry wipes, binkies or a spare set of clothes.

We danced until 1 am and did not have to wake at 6 am. I could actually look at things, browse in shops, admire art and not miss a thing, because I did not have to consistently keep my head down to break up fights and count that my kids are by my side, muttering 123, 123, 123 as I counted them and recounted every other step.

It was like real, grown up, proper adulting.  Imagine that!


Query of the religious kind

My fascination of the functionality of religion and religious odyssey continues. As I continue to challenge my idea of worship vs mainstream religion, questions continue to be raised in my frenzlicious mind of thought.

It all centers on kindness for me. For the world to survive and continue, one needs to be kind, loving and helpful towards others. To see a fellow human being struggling and in pain and then to try to ease it, share the burden, lighten the load.

I believe I am a kind person, I know I am an empathetic and sensitive person, I can feel and see another persons mental state quite easily and therefore if it feels off center, I am compelled to aid their plight or ease their suffering. Often I hear the phrase, thank God for you being there or I thank God for my good fortune, thank the lord for giving me this gift ……. fill in here whatever you need. People feel compelled to thank God for all that is wonderful and it happens every day.

But my question is, why do we have to thank god for another persons kindness, or a gift you have? I come from the UK where pretty much if you go to church, you are seen as an oddity, against the norm and if you go all the time, maybe a little weird. In England, I would say 75% of people do not go to church, unless it is a wedding, christening or funeral. Churches are shutting down, not being built, due to a lack of attendance and funding. I personally do not believe in a god a higher power yes and do not thank him or that for my kindness, gifts or someones good actions towards me, I thank them, I thank myself for my strength or talents, they are mine not a entity whom I cannot see, touch or speak with face to face. Someone I have never ever seen or met. I am told what he looks like, is he a he? He could be a she, a goat, an elephant, a ball of energy or a manifestation of our energies combined, he could be planted in our subconsciousness by an alien life form. You do not know. We will never know. I mean we live on a planet, in a tiny galaxy surrounded by a dark matter we cannot see… We actually know nothing.

What I do want to know is? If I do a good deed for you, but I do not believe in god, am I still destined for hell and I must be saved? Even though I am a good and kind person? I do not cheat or steal or lie (too much :)) or hurt others mentally or physically, I do not kill, then why do I need to believe in a “something” to be worthy of the owner of the humanity and benevolence I readily give to others? It is not Gods to give, it is mine. Why is Lord above the owner of our greatness and altruism and then we must take the blame for the evil we can bestow upon our race? If we have to keep the evil, please lets us have the balance of good, it does not belong to God or Jesus or the church, but it is our property, the lowly flawed human.

Surely, to make our way through the pearly gates of heaven, we have to be “good” so we need to take ownership of that and if we choose to give this to an entity of worship, then it is our choice to give it. Not his, theirs or any one else for that matter.



I cannot explain the beauty and release of sliding in to a swimming pool. Cool water moving over my sun scorched body, tiny air bubbles releasing as they are forced from the fine hair of my arms, galavanting  gloriously to the surface, to expand and rejoin their siblings in the sky. 

Water undulating across my muscles as they release all tension worn like armour, relaxing briefly only to tense up, as muscles and ligaments are reactivated, working in harmony with my bone, breath and mind . The tension moving with rather than against me, warming my joints, energy flooding cells, activating synapses, lengthening, stretching, repairing . 

Diving deep, rhythmic breath, hypnotizing, anxiety and reality melting away.