April 2, 2019 was Autism Awareness Day. The blog below was posted on Facebook two years ago. It was a hard post to share then but did so feeling like others need to know the bad that comes along with the good. To give understanding the next time you may be a witness to such odd, erratic behavior. Autism is a roller coaster ride. This year the day was uneventful. YAY! Those are my favorite. I did wear blue in honor of my boy, he happily attended his day program and I went to work.
The clip art below is a pretty good summary of a description of autism. I do like the logos and clip art that feature colorful puzzle pieces. The word autism and puzzle go hand in hand. For those on Facebook, this is a repeat but perhaps you can pass this along to someone you know who is living this story. For those not on FB, here is my autism awareness post.
Sunday, April 2, 2017: This morning, Jacob was quite cooperative getting ready to go to church. But once we were in the garage, he didn’t want to get in the van. He went from side to side examining the garbage can, contents of the recycle bin, and anything else of interest. At one point Mike thought Jacob had gotten in and raised the garage door. Quickly he realized Jacob wasn’t in the van but was going to run out of the garage so he reversed the door and grabbed Jacob as he was dashing under the door. This act, sent Jacob spiraling. He tried hard to keep from getting in the van and he didn’t want to wear a seat belt. His cooperative mood quickly disintegrated and became volatile in seconds.
It was a struggle to get him in the church. Finally we got him to his Sunday School classroom but he didn’t want other people in it. He ran across to another room and just sat down on the floor. It took three of us to get him up. I felt eyes boring into me. What was wrong with our son? Why was he crawling on the floor? Once we got him back in his room he started grabbing people. Why was he grabbing people? We had to leave. Even walking down the sidewalk he was fighting us. Autism. Today I hate it. I really truly do. Don’t get me wrong. Those around us were kind. How can I help? One staff member walked all the way to the van with us. Is there anything I can do?
It is just hard. I needed a big sign—THIS. THIS IS AUTISM.
Autism is called an invisible disability. At a glance an outsider will not know something is wrong but upon observation will quickly jump to the conclusion that something isn’t right and judge accordingly. Sometimes I jump to my own conclusions and let those unspoken words sting. However, please understand that we have soooooo many amazing moments. It just so happened that Sunday morning was not one of them.
Jacob couldn’t deal with it today nor could we. The best thing for all of us was to escape to the comfort and security of home and that is just what we did. The day got 100% better once he was in his room surrounded by the things that make him happy. God calmed Jacob quickly and he enjoyed watching the Weather Channel and listening to his music all afternoon. Oh that it was always that easy.
When the day was over we could say it was a good day.
This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24
That is my favorite verse. Thankful that no matter what, His mercies are new every morning. And here two years later, Jacob had a good day from start to finish. I can certainly rejoice in that!