Jul 19, 2014

a personal post about our real life

Usually when I write a personal post, it's about our son Ryan, and our journey with Autism.

As you may know, I have two other boys too - two other little blonds that show up in my photos.  :)  Recently, I have noticed how very special my first son is - not that I didn't know before, but a lot of times, his successes are over-shadowed by his brothers' roller coaster life.

It's not something that is easy to admit to - and I for sure hope that one day Jack {and Luke} will not resent their brother and/or his disorder.

Yesterday, I read an old post by one of my fave fellow ASD moms, Effin' Autism, and I realized that I too needed to do right by Jack.  As I read, I found so many similarities in "N's" life and Jacks...so following her lead, I hope I can too find the right words to record my feelings, love and respect for what Jack does on a daily basis.

Times spent building a "ship" with Legos, to have your head turned and your brother ripping it apart because he NEEDS one Lego you have used.

Blissful summer morning sleep-ins interrupted because your brother wants  you to get up and play with you, NOW - at 6am. Or before.

Not having your parents full attention during school plays, parents nights, and Holiday parties, because your brother has a meltdown due to large crowds and the noise that goes with it.

Leaving playdates and cookouts {and at some points missing them all together} because your brother couldn't handle the "chaos" from being off schedule.

Too many times that I've lost track of the count: Jack giving up treats because Ryan is upset that Jack picked up the last one; or giving up a toy he just picked up because Ryan has recently become attached to that toy. So many times I've heard the words "here you go Ryan..." to sooth his brother, giving up his own wants.

And yet if you asked, he'd tell you in an instant, Ryan is his best friend.  He would do anything to make him comfortable, happy, and also, life easier for Mommy.  So many times, he has given in, looked at me - and instead of looking upset, he's simply given me a smile, letting me know it's truly ok.

Recently Jack has had his heart broken, as he has had to defend his brother against older boys making fun of Ryan for the way that he laughs.  Such a hard conversation to have with him - and he did everything right.  Sadly, I know it won't be the last time he has to defend his not-typical brother.

Jack has warned me of situations that may cause panic for Ryan - "We can't do that today Mommy, it will make Ryan really upset because we're suppose to..."

The other night, I was laying in bed with Jack and Ryan, telling them a story about when I was little.  Ryan had the giggles and called me stupid, and then continued to giggle repeating "stupid, stupid" over and over.  I threw my hands up and said, "That's it!  I'm done!  Good night boys!"  Ryan immediately started screaming, not because he understood he had upset me, but because I had cut our together time short.  As I was leaving the room, I looked at poor Jack with his pillow over his head.  I went downstairs, planning to return after a few minutes to retrieve Jack if the crying hadn't stopped.  (I could not have just taken Jack then - it would have made things much worse!)  Before I reached downstairs, Ryan's crying had stopped.  Hmmm....  Then both Jack and Ryan came downstairs a few minutes later.  Jack whispered something to Ryan, and then said, Go.  Ryan came over to me, put his hand on my shoulder, and very seriously, looking in my eyes {which took a year of therapy to achieve) and mechanically said, "I am really sorry that I called you stupid Mommy. I will never call you stupid again.  Will you please come back up and lay with me and Jack?"  I looked at Jack.  He was proud and pleased.

I think sometimes that Jack teaches Ryan better lessons than I do.

Jack is an amazing kid.  He is truly a gift from God.  I don't know what in the world we would do without him.  And I hope he knows that.

If you've reached this part of this post, I thank you.  Thank you for reading, and giving me the chance to brag and boast about a really great kid.

And can you do me a favor?  If you see Jack lose it - get upset over something little - or making a mountain out of what seems to be a molehill - try and have some patience for the poor guy.  Everyone's pressure balloon pops from time to time. <3 p="">

Jul 7, 2014

gettin' it done - summer's are for me

Guest room.  Check.

Dining room.  Check.

Jack's room - Check.

Boy's Bathroom - ehhh, almost check.  :)

What should I do next?  My pin boards are filling up!

Family room?

Ryan's room?

or the Mud room?

Check out my Pinterest for more boards and pins!