Not foolin’, this is Autism Awareness Month!
I am going to try to share a daily happening in our household that relates to Autism.
Some of them will be amusing, some will be wince-worthy. They will all be real and honest.
I am not an advocate for anything or anyone involving Autism Spectrum Disorder. In our house, Autism came pre-wired with my younger son, and I adore him. Would I want anything inherent in his nature to be “cured?”
No. Managed? You betcha.
Autism Moment of the Day:
“Mom!” He comes bouncing into my room, wearing blue sweat pants and a red t-shirt. His grin is brilliant.
“Good morning! Are you a happy guy, today?”
“What’s making you so happy?”
An even bigger smile lights beautiful green eyes. “Daddy’s makin’ pancakes!”
Hey, it’s a highlight of my week when Daddy cooks, so I’m in total agreement.
We eat, he discusses the wonders of Minecraft with me (I listen while I re-read the last part of The Hunger Games) and shows me how he builds a mighty fortress on the iPad version of the video game.
And then, we get ready for worship, which we have in our living room.
See, we had to kind of stop going to church. Because church is a problem. Oh, we’re a family of faith, I assure you. But churches – awesome places, filled with people who want to love God and one another – are loud. Children’s classes can be frenetic in their multi-sensory lessons and social times. These can be fantastically stimulating to a neurotypical child.
But for a little guy with autism? They’re dens of chaos and confusion with no escape. Too many bright lights. Too much music. Too much talk-talk-talk. Move-move-move.
We tried for almost a year to have one parent or the other stay with him in Sunday School, but it just grew disruptive. We tried switching off, my husband and I, going to church on alternate Sundays with our elder son. But breaking up the family every week?
That didn’t sit well.
So, I lead worship at home, now. I am trained in it, after all. My husband leads us in prayer and I teach and we sometimes sing if things are “peaceful” in our living room.
They aren’t always. Little Guy sometimes gets annoyed, hides under a blanket, or asks, “Are we done, yet?’
But see, in our family worship, he can do these things. We keep moving forward. He loves to read from the Bible and he gets to talk about things for us to pray for every week for him. He also hears what concerns Big Brother, Mom, and Dad have that we want the boys to “talk to God about” on our behalf.
Is it optimal? Maybe not. But it’s how we “do church” in this Family with Autism. And it works for us.
Have a super day!