Friday, September 3, 2010

How I'm Feeling

I'm over the shock and upset that set in after Joseph's diagnosis last week. We've been reassured by his teacher that he is very intelligent, and in no way mentally retarded. For the last 7 days, I've ate, drank and slept autism. Reading web pages, subscribing to blogs, building networks and engaging other autism advocates on Twitter, downloading and watching hour after hour of videos. Autism and how it changes what I need to do for my son is probably the first and last thing I think of every day. I'm still afraid that I am not strong enough, but I'm going to do my best, and I know that if I need help that I will get it somehow.

But right now, I need two things:

First, I need to spend some daddy-daughter time with Maria (5). Normally, I would take her to see a movie at Cinemark or something. It used to be a reward she got on Saturday if she had a good week, but she's been really rotten this week, refusing to follow instructions, blatantly disobeying us, doing silly things like getting into the pantry and eating peanut butter out of the jar and leaving it open. Maybe she senses how much we're worrying about Joseph right now and she's trying to get our attention by being bad. My initial inclination is to not reward her with a movie because of her behavior this week, but now I'm reconsidering that. Maybe some quality time is exactly what she needs to behave better. Kristy's been sick with kidney stones, migraines and assorted feminine problems and Joseph is getting all of my attention and that's not fair to Maria. Yeah, I think I'll take her to a movie even though she's been a brat this week. :)

Second, I need a break from autism. I need to spend a day, or even a few hours, not thinking about autism. I don't even feel like taking photographs right now. If I got a call to do a job, I would probably turn it down. Maybe that's the exact opposite of what I should be doing, maybe I should be trying to work more, but I'm concerned about my stress level, and my ability to concentrate. I'm very intense when I'm shooting. Anyway, yeah, I need a vacation. Even for one day. But financially, for the moment, that's just not happening.

I'm doing better, we all are, but if you're the praying sort, please pray for us.

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