The Other Side

Autism came, uninvited, into our lives. I have often resented its presence. I love my son just as he is and would not want him to be anything other than this amazing boy in front of me. But, this intruder – Asperger’s as it wants to be called – has infected all aspects of our lives.  From the morning routine with socks that ‘feel wrong’ or breakfast foods in the wrong place on a plate, to bedtime strife riddled with sensory explosion – all of it being far too much (the cars are too loud on the street) or all too little (I need more blankets!).  And never quite knowing which it might be.

This thing…Asperger’s.  It spreads through the house, weaving in and out of every room.  Hiding in corners.  Like a fog it silently covers everything in its path.  Shielding what is from what might be.  Leaving bewilderment in the wake of unanswered questions. Masking the truth beneath a haze that cannot be moved by any effort – not until it is ready to be moved, on its own terms.  In its own time.  It is not ready.  It has no plans to be ready.

This word….Asperger’s.  It’s meant as a label for him.  But, more accurately, it labels me.  He is who he is.  No word will change that, nor should it.  But, it calls me out.  I must now, somehow, be more than.  I am not.  I am lost in the fog, I am drowning in the infection.


We do not suffer with Asperger’s.  Our lives are not so different from other’s.  There are quirks and nuisances.  Some, perhaps, bigger than the quirks in other families.  But we are not a non-verbal house.  There is no physical violence in our home. We hug, we talk, we stare lovingly at each other every day.  It is not a sad house.  It is not a sad life.

And yet when I look I see all the can’ts in our life.  I see the children enjoying water slides at the park and long to hear my child laugh while riding an inner tube.  I pass families out for a bike ride and wonder if my son will ever trust enough to ride his bike – I want to ride bikes with him.  I find recipes that look so yummy and I remember cooking….really cooking, creating my own masterpieces with spices and wonderful ingredients.  Then I look in my cupboards at the stacks of the same foods, the only one’s I’m sure he’ll eat – one thing at a time, no casseroles, nothing touching.  I miss cooking.  I miss lighting candles.  I miss going to stores.  I miss being able to buy clothes and not having to return them because of a seam somewhere that no one else even noticed but it makes the garment completely unwearable in our world.  I miss planning a vacation without having to plan three contingencies.  I miss spontaneity.  I miss simplicity.


I wish I could push all that aside and truly see what a diary of a mom sees.  I love her posts – the way she sees her child, and the world through her child’s eyes.  I admire the peace I find within her writing and long to find that in my own heart.  I love the things my son teaches me – about himself, his mind (and all its detours), and about life.  He makes me smile all the time.  He keeps me guessing and thinking and exploring.  And then I turn and weep for all that we are not.

I want to see the other side of autism.  I want to see the amazing view through his eyes.  I want that to be what invades my life daily.

I will continue to read and search for inspiration from Brooke and her mom – to turn my mind off at the smile he brings me and not let it get to the can’ts.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Website Built with

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: