Through my essays, articles, and book, I am trying to make sense of autism and find a way to my oldest son, and help others with this challenge of autism at the same time. This diagnosis does not mean the end of the world, but it is the end of some things. It is also the beginning of a very long road. If you can accept that this person is different, but a person nonetheless, you are halfway there. For the rest of the way, you need a few great friends, a lot of information, and a sense of humor. As Ned Batchelder, my husband of 21 years, says, ÂLearn to declare victory and get the hell out!Â Throw away expectation, and you may be pleasantly surprised.In Idiot Wind she writes:
No, this is not a post about the President's State of the Union Address or strange false alarm in Los Angeles, his denial of being tied to Jack Abramoff, or his godawful budget proposal. It could be, but it is not.In Island in my Storm she writes:
This is about nothing. My own Idiot Wind. The wintry weather, which I hate, has inspired a blank, cold breeze blowing around in my head. I've run out of things to do with myself, I feel stuck indoors and stuck in time.
Idiot Wind is one of my alltime favorite Bob Dylan songs, a paean of pain about a love whom he now hates (apparently his wife of eight years, Sara). I'm been playing it on my guitar quite a bit, having found a site that gives you the lyrics and the chords to just about any song you want.
Then he surprised me: he reached up and wrapped my hair around his hands, very gently, and pulled it to his nose, breathing deeply. Breathing me in.This is a challenged life written well, poignant, intelligent, and worthwhile!
"Natty, do you like that? You like my hair like that, in your face?"
"Yes," he said, a big grin stretching across his face.
"I didn't know, Honey." I felt a quick stab of pain as I realized that here was something easy I could have been doing with him for all this time, some happy thing I could have given to him so easily had I known. Had I tried sooner.
I sighed, and looked at his long fingers, clutching at my hair so gently but also so definitely. He wanted me. He still loved me, I was still Mommy. The wonder of it spread through me, soothing my heart.
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