11 years on the spectrum – happy birthday to my boy!

With an audible “pop” at 6:30 am on a Saturday 11 years ago my water broke.

it was unmonumental at the time, lack lustre really, just a tiny kick and pop and I sat on the edge of the bed thoughtless… Almost as if I unconsciously knew as soon as I stood up my world would change as I basically wet my pants.

Shortly after 9pm to the most ludicrous one hit wonder ever “Tarzan boy” my 9 lb 6 oz beautiful love of my life came into the world with a hearty but peaceful cry.

For all the childhood crushes, broken hearts and love gone wrong … Love gone right and crazy love I had experienced to date, nothing prepared me for the love of a child.

The maternal bond I wondered if I’d feel with the stranger that shared my body for 9 months seized me fast and hard and has yet to let me go. He holds my heart in his smile and I am forever thankful to know what real love is.

To my boy who makes me thank god everyday for him, who makes me laugh and smile. Who holds my hand even when he is a big boy now. Who asks if it’s ok he doesn’t have a “special someone ” and loves snakes and obscure animals I thank you for making me a Mom. A role I could never appreciate the value of until I was one myself.

I am so very proud of your loveliness and strength. Adversity will not stop you and you will not bow down to any challenge.

Happiest birthday my son. May your every wish come true.



2016 -A new beginning on the spectrum

Welcome 2016!


It snuck up on me as a child might when playing tag or manhunt.

I was not prepared for the birth of a brand new year as I have been for past ones. There is a specific mental state that normally possesses me and I am prepared to begin anew with clarity of goals and desires for the next 365 days.

Perhaps it was due to the milestone birthday year of 2015 or maybe the sleepy way the year closed out but I found myself sitting 11 days in to the year feeling like a girl on a less-then-perfect blind date.

A tad uncomfortable, and unprepared. A little gipped that this was it.

It was a sobering reality to look in the mirror and evaluate the situation.

Perhaps the bleakness of the non-committal winter so far adds to the less then glamorous feel of a 40 yr old Mom of 4 boys contemplating how shes fared in parenting this year that just ended, but something felt “less than” and I was perplexed by it.

I did a little reflecting and self critiquing and found this.

Maybe I was feeling less than stellar as a parent because of the false expectation everyone seems to have on what a successful parent is.

The need to be “super parent” increases when you have a child with special needs. You feel a failure every time your child struggles but the reality is, we all struggle.

Each and everyone one of us.

That is not a failure, it is a consistent theme in life. Strife is gain. And we are not failing due to it. We are actually succeeding.

On a rainy, soggy Sunday in January I sat caged in my home with my 4 boys. All of us suffering cabin fever and a bit of seasonal depression we were a bit bonkers and wanting to spread our wings and explore as we do all summer long.

I sat pretending to read a book while studying the boys playing and asking myself why I felt so disappointed in myself.

I kept feeling like I was not doing enough with my kids. That I shouldn’t be tired after a full time job, brutal commute and house that never stays clean.

“Why is this so hard?” I ask myself. “Why can’t I do it all!”

I look around and start to inventory the situation.


Shirtless kid, but smiling. Using imagination. Hardy and strong. –check. This is a pass.

Two kids fighting, but not to aggressive. Seem to be working it out without parental interference. Getting tall. Little boys now resemble little men. –Check. This also a pass.

House, could use a little TLC but tidy enough, nothing major out of place or needing attention. Floor, although JUST vacuumed looks like it needs it again… Iffy, but pass.

Dog, slumbering peacefully in the sunlight. ..Pass.

Cat, curled up on chair out of the way of danger. Check.

My almost 11 year old ASD superstar is in the kitchen, I hear him recieting an amusing “scooby Doo” episode to himself zestfully.

I pad out to the kitchen barefoot and peak my head in.

“Hey Mom! I am making a treasure map, do you want to see?”

I smile, and stroll over to take a look.

“Amazing Linc, it looks good” as he explains the ‘cave’ and ‘x’ and mountain ridge I smile again, pleased that he took the time to draw out a map and not insist someone do it for him. He is a big boy now. Up to my shoulders, sturdy and husky. Not too much longer until he is bigger than me.

He is perfect. And anything I feel I have failed him with is not apparent.


Mom is?


Mom is drinking coffee and some semblance of put together. Maybe too hard on self. Dinners get cooked. Kids are clean. Chores get done. Looks ok, hair done, dressed and out of pjs. Maybe she just gets lost from time to time, and maybe that is ok.

I look over and see my 7 year old bouncing over to me. A big smile blossom on his talk show host mouth. A perfect line of pearly whites explode in the biggest grin ever.

“I love you Mom”

“I love you Kid.”

And at that moment, I’m settled.

We are ok and I am doing ok.




My goal for 2016 is simple.

Be kind to myself and focus on the simple things.

Kids need time and attention, not fancy gifts, a clean house or an overachieving Parent.

Welcome 2016.
And thank you for the perspective.




Who doesn’t like to sleep ?!?!?

Was speaking to a friend today, thought I’d reblog :)

4boysandaspergers's Blog

Sleep is a very important factor in my life.

I personally LOVE to sleep.

When I was single, I often came home after work, kicked off my shoes and treated myself to the 3 hour “God, I feel soooooooo good” nap.

Sometimes I even dared to do the “hell it is JUST one night wasted” sleep marathon. Falling asleep after work and sleeping until the next morning.

Since becoming a Mother the naps and marthon sleeps have ceased. I am not bitter over the loss, I can assure you I stored up enough ‘extra” sleep in my 20’s to help me through 10 more years :)

In the 6 years I’ve woke to feed a baby, sooth a sore tummy, bad dream or nudge Jack to put the dog out I can honestly say I have had very little problem going back to sleep. I crawl back into bed, turn…

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DIfferent may be more effective? How my ASD kid watches tv.

My son is 10 now and he is mature enough to be trusted to go down stairs when he gets up and watch a tv show before the other children wake up.


He is in the habit of putting on the subtitles when he is watching something.

I always assumed he did this to be sneaky and not wake up anyone else and enjoy some primo “alone time”. To be honest, I would do the same thing if it meant a quiet cup of coffee without 4 rowdy boys running amok under foot.

Today, I sat painting my toe nails as he clicked on Scooby Doo and I noticed the subtitles click on before he reclined back and settled into to enjoy the hi jinks of a dog and his mystery solving friends.

“Hey Linc, why do you put on the words too?”

His zombie like stare does not waiver from the screen as he answers “To understand what they are saying”

“SO, does it help understand what is going on or just the characters words?”

“What is going on in the show”

“Hmm” I stop to ponder that thought.


As a child with autism something it might be difficult to size up a situation an know what is going on. Reading people is difficult.

By turning on the subtitles, my kid is circumventing this dilemma. Also, Reading may be a different part of brain for processing than visually sizing up the situation.

Pretty smart kid.

Technologically, the world is changing and making life a little more “ASD friendly” let our children embrace the tools to help them comprehend “their way”

A typical Sunday – On and off the spectrum how we spend a day off.

The noise that is coming from my backyard likely would send a childless couple into HUGE reconsideration as to whether children are in the cards or sanity is preferable.

I sit with a glass of wine in hand and smile to myself as I watch my four not so little anymore boys dressed as warriors pay together on the trampoline. They are rowdy, rough and righteous and I love watching them in action.


Their creativity is an endless fount once you detach them painfully from “technology” and force them into the sunshine. They blink, eyes squint as if a second old babe new to the world emerging from his mother. They pause to take in the cool fall breeze and feel the warmth of the late September sun then the ideas start to flow and “boyhood” unpauses and continues.

The best thing to see is how seamlessly my ASD child joins into the play and is one with his brothers. 4 boys playing boyishly. No distinction.


As a Mom we have certain fears we dare no speak and one of my big ones is being able to enjoy friends and family as much as I have in my life.Bonds. Ties. Commonality that bind us together and swell our hearts and grow our minds.

When I watch my boys frolick and laugh together I know all the hard times and hard work was worth it. While I used to not need a relaxing glass of wine at 4 pm on a Sunday, I know that the strife is just a stepping stone to great things. A hell, wine is an enjoyment. No shame in enjoying one now and then :)

Isn’t this why we had to kids to begin with?

I am sure there are a million little things that go on in that yard that I would frown upon but boys will be boys and that camaraderie is therapeutic and will teach my kids how to be good friends, good husbands, good lovers and good decent people. I can over look a few “boy things” and allow them a little freedom on a Sunday afternoon just to “be”.

While life on the spectrum is challenging and sometimes fitting in is more challenging, I love that my boys accept their brother for the amazing boy he is. After all, he accepts them “as is” Even his best friend and littlest brother Bishop who he wonders often “how he is ever going to turn out ok” :) That superior ASD attitude!

Tonight when I close my eyes and try to shut off my over active and constantly cluttered mom brain, I will know that my kids are ok and they will always have each other.

That is enough for me.

Lighting it up Blue for April- A month of blue do’s and awareness and a great life lesson.

So this is me –>IMG_20150317_173121

But for the most of the Month of April, this was me –>IMG_20150417_194834

I decided this year I would “LIGHT IT UP BLUE” to help spread  Autism awareness.

And spread the word I did!

I had a lot of trepidation over changing my hair, truth be told. Those who know me probably found this hard to believe as I typically don’t fit the norm of professional working Mom of 4 and I often look different anyhow.

But the truth was, it had been awhile since I drew different attention to myself and I was a little worried about it.

I really shouldn’t have been though.

People love blue hair it seems! I got compliments every place I went.

I took the time to explain that I had done it to support the April long “light it up” campaign and most people even seemed to know what that was. It was nice to share with others and a few with first hand knowledge were quick to smile in acknowledgement.

I did actually start my blue haired experience out in a town that everything is “A ok”

Sin City. Las Vegas, Nevada!!

Las Vegas welcomes all to its crazy town and I fit in perfectly. I even got in a few other peoples selfies because they loved the blue, or wanted to “hug a smurf”!

I have to tell you though, as much as I was accepted, there lay an underlying desire for me to “fit in”. I missed my blonde hair and no matter how much positivity came my way I really just felt unsettled.

As the month wore on I started to really feel it.

I wanted to be able to wear reds and pinks, shallow, but for someone that always dressed as she wanted and loved bright, cheery colours, it was a hardship being forced to match my clothing to my hair!

In the last week, I struggled with the fact I either needed to let the colour fade out and look a little “16 yr old punk rebel” or dye it again but have a harder time removing the stronger colour when the time came.

Yep. Vain. Shallow. Even a little petty.

I admit, I felt a decline in my confidence and I even felt less attractive.

So?? Who cares right?

I gave all this a ton of thought and after a long consideration I scolded myself for letting this get to me. And I then drew a comparison that might land me in a light hot water with some readers, but I think it is valid and a great life lesson to a mom with an ASD kid.

While I rocked my blue hair and was “different” then others I really felt a strong desire to be “normal”.

I immediately wondered if this is similar to the way someone on the spectrum might also feel, A strong pressure to be like everyone else.

I had really never felt this. I don’t often even care what others think but with a bright blue head of hair I suddenly felt very exposed and scrutinized.

Does my child feel this? A need to be like everyone else when he just can’t be? And please tell me I don’t make him feel this. I’d be ashamed of myself if I did.

See, I didn’t think I was any less because I had bright blue hair but I did feel like I stood out. And at times, like when my 5 year old decided to throw a fit in Mastermind while I had all four of my children out with me, I felt like I was being judged, and not in a kind way. Dressed in jeans and a rock t-shirt with blue hair and 4 kids, no Dad in sight, did people make presumptions about me? Is that any different than people making presumptions about our autistic kids when they act out of the norm?

The sad part of this whole experience is I knew I could change my hair back and life would continue on as it always had.

When our children feel like they don’t fit in, they feel different, they don’t feel accepted, they DON’T have the quick option to change back to a more comfortable experience.

My eyes opened a little wider this month.

I felt for the first time what my son might feel like when we forget to step into his shoes and see things from his eyes. When we ask that he just do things “our” way, with no respect or consideration for “his view or His way” When we just presume we are the right way and try to make him conform.

It was a $20 dye job and an hr of my time but the lesson was priceless.

Never make someone feel shameful for who they are. Be kind and be open minded. Different, not less.

I’ll never forget this lesson and I am glad I took the time to start the conversation.

I’m not sure that I will ever go “BLUE” again, but I can say I have a new respect for how bravely our children march through the world and refuse to feel “less”.

Becoming an individual -Watching my ASD kid bloom and grow

If there is anything I would fight to the death for it is my right to be my own person.


I am thankful to have parents that have stood back and allowed me to walk my own path, even if they stood brimming with trepidation and worry through much of my teenage years. I do believe that as I approach 40 they are proud of who I have become, as am I.

I will never be considered conservative or the “norm” but I do believe I ended up on this side of “normal” with a decent head on my shoulder, a brave soul and a loving heart full of kindness. That will do in my books.


As a Mom of 4, I try to allow my children some creative input in who they wish to be and although I sometimes am a little militant in what rules I feel must be followed, I have also allowed a lot of flexibility on some of the others.

As Lincoln turns 10 and starts to extend more into the world around him I try to let him choose how he wishes to make his mark on the world. He is a loving and humorous boy, full of curiosity and I try to embrace that and let him run with it as he chooses.

9When you have a child with special needs there is an overwhelming urge to protect them. I cannot even put into words the need. I would wager that it is comparable to a mother bear being faced with a group of hunters. The urge to protect is primal. There is no thought to it, just action.

My natural instinct when it comes to my autistic child is to protect. I want to keep him close, and dare I say it, there is that silent voice deep within me that whispers to me to “make him better”. I fight these instinct everyday for the greater good of my son. If I always protect and always baby him he will never be afforded the chance to be his own man, to see if he can go it alone.

So I must step back and wait. And watch. And hope.

I refuse to take away from him what I so desperately hold fast to. Individuality.

So, I go against my primal urge to protect and I give him freedom to explore, to decide how he wishes to interact with family and friends, with strangers. I sit back, forever ready to pounce into action if needed, and I allow him to grow.

I have been rewarded for this exercise in patience. I have been given a beautiful gift for my effort.

My son has blossomed into a lovely little boy. He is friendly and kindhearted to other children, with a special enjoyment of babies.

As we all know conversation is hard with a kid on the Spectrum. Eye contact is limited and interest sometimes focused solely on the childs likes and not the world going on around him. This is a heartwarming pic of my ASD cutie talking to his Aunt about his new baby cousin.

As we all know conversation is hard with a kid on the Spectrum. Eye contact is limited and interest sometimes focused solely on the childs likes and not the world going on around him. This is a heartwarming pic of my ASD cutie talking to his Aunt about his new baby cousin.

He is a fountain of knowledge who is always willing to share and comment on.

He is affectionate and loving. Even now, I am blessed to have him sneak into my room on a Sunday morning and tell it is time to snuggle. It is often these very mornings that I have bestowed on me something that is irreplaceable. A conversation.

When he was little, conversations just didn’t happen. Eve though he spoke well, and often, it was always one sided or just me giving direction and he answering. Although I understood why, it often broken my heart.

I knew though, in time, it would come. Just like in time, he would find himself. He would find the boy he wanted to be and that would be something the world would be thankful for.

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I am proud of all my children. They are wonderful boys with great personalities but I am especially proud of my first born for never letting anything change him. He is a diamond and he will sparkle for the world to take notice.