I am a single mom. I've got a 6 year old. He's been diagnosed with moderate autism and his identified as a high functioning individual on the spectrum.
Being apart of the AU community is interesting - because the spectrum is so wide and umbrellas over so many different individual and extensive cases. It is only natural that people who don't have any first-hand experience with autism, but are hearing more and more about it are curious. People ask me how I feel about having a kid with autism (AU) - and I think that the real question is, "how do you feel?"
I live with the kid. I birthed him. I know him in and out.
But you...you only see him from time to time...maybe only one time. You may catch him on a good day and wonder, "Is there anything really wrong with that kid?" Or, you may catch him on a day when you ask yourself, "OMG, what is wrong with that kid; and why doesn't his mom have him under control?"
I very rarely "feel" when it comes to AU - I adventure it. I try to learn how to outwit, out-think, rethink, circumvent it. There don't seem to be many positive emotions when it comes to AU as a topic or AU as a reality; and so, I try to focus my "feelings" on my kid, who happens to be the smartest and cutest kid I've ever had (i.e. I have only one child - that's meant to be a bit of a joke). We live AU together each day - our battle, our adventure.
I think that any parent has the same general goal: raise the kid well enough that it can be a successful, self-sustainable adult.
That's my main goal. Everyone, AU or not, should have the opportunity to live life...really live life to their fullest potential.
So, I guess, that's how I "feel" about it.
1. I am thankful for organizations that provide opportunities for all individuals on the AU spectrum.
2. I am proud of other parents who work their darndest to face head-on the challenge.
3. I am appreciative of friends who offer the little extra patience is takes to be around an "atypical" child.
4. I love my kid more than I can say.
5. I respect each worker in the early-intervention-based field who dedicate their lives to improving the lives of the small people around them.
Whew...that's enough emotional output for now ; )