“Hi Mom, here’s 2015!”
I felt his not-so-little anymore body press between me and the little mini Dachshund we have who was snoozing beside me.
“Well Hello!! 2015.” I murmur and smile to myself.
My almost 10 yr old Autistic son was not on the band wagon last night to see 2014 off. We celebrated quietly at home, rather as quietly as a house full of boys allows, and as we hugged and kissed each other with wishes of a good 2015 he broke into tears.
“I don’t want 2014 to go away, it was a good year. Why does it have to die?”
Here we go again….
The same thing happened, this same afternoon as I took down the ornaments off the tree which inevitably leads to the tree being placed at the curb for recycle pick up.
As we have learned about of sensitive son, he is jammed full of emotions, and each are tied strongly to the object which symbolizes the holiday. I have had issues with a larger than expected reaction to the shedding of objects before but as time passes I seem to forget how intense it can be.
As I gently undressed the tree I explained that if we did not end Christmas then we could not begin his January birthday, Valentines Day or Spring which leads to a busy and adventurous summer.
While we love to celebrate and enjoy our friends and family, Christmas lives in our hearts all year round and we must not be sad to pack up the ornaments and decorations because we are never truly without the memories and we should live our daily lives with that happiness in our hearts to gift to others.
He listened and continued crying but eventually asked to help.which I agreed. This was a very mature response for a 9 year old.
He unraveled the ribbon, took down the bows and packed them up with the Santas and angels and then told me “it was a good tree, the best” and nodded at the bare tree as if to confirm to himself that his words were correct.
He then surprised me by telling me he was going to go ask his brothers (who were as always, wrestling bare-chested in the other room and quite oblivious to what was going on with the tree) if they would like to have a moment with the tree before we removed it from the house.
It was very funeral-like and his demeanor was soft and brimming with condolence. THe children humored him and came to briefly stand by the tree and listen to Lincolns eulogy “It was a really great tree, we are going to miss it” and he seemed at peace at once and even assisted with holding the door as I dragged, yanked, swore, bitched and pulled the tree out the front door with a “pop” and struggled with the big monster down the walk ,to a final victory once I plopped it at the curb.
The tears at midnight were similar so we treated it similarly. “The sun has made a full rotation around the Earth, it is the Earths birthday now it is a year older! 2015 brings opportunities for a new Christmas, a new summer and 365 new days of fun!”
“but I am so sad! I don’t want 2014 to go!”
“It will never go LIncoln, it is a part of us, our history”
We back and forthed a lot, lots of big dramatic tears (I think Autistics would make excellent actors or actresses) and finally 2014 was laid to rest with such fine years as 2000. 2005, 2006, 2008, 2010 and of course the artist former know as Prince’s favorite and the one we always to party like …”1999″.
Maybe it was just he doesn’t accept change well, maybe it is that the fear of the unknown is a little unnerving to us all but he chose to vocalise it, as my ASD kids tends to do when others do not, but I felt that his reaction to the dying year and the one just moments old, still innocent and free of prejudgment and still holding excitement and awe, was pretty prolific and he was very astute to feel such way.
This morning he woke up with well wishes and hope for a fantastic 2015 as did I.
TO my friends and families on the spectrum, may you find peace and hope in 2015 for better days and understanding.
May you enjoy your child ‘as is’ for he or she is beautiful and perfect just the way they are.
May your love and devotion guide you through the inevitable ups and down of life, may you see all of said ups and downs as lessons and step stones to a better tomorrow, not punishment.
LIfe is yours for the taking, life is full of mystery and it is yours to take goodness from every day.
Autism is a part of you, you are a part of it. Be one, be wonderful.
Thank you for following me in 2014, can’t wait to see what 2015 holds!
Amanda and Family 🙂