Tuesday, December 7, 2010

An Early Christmas Surprise

We've been trying for a week to get our Christmas tree put up. Last evening, we started to get it done, but by 8 o'clock we were still untangling strings of lights. We decided to put the kids to bed, and finish the next day.

When Kristy and I went to bed, we heard Joseph sobbing. We went to check on him and found him whimpering in his sleep, laying on his front, with his knees pulled up to his stomach. We took him back to our room to comfort him and let him sleep in our bed. Kristy gave him some Ibuprofen.

Around 3AM I was awakened by the cheerful sounds of my son at play. I woke Kristy and I said, 'You know Joseph's awake, don't you?' Forgetting that he was not in his room when I went to sleep. She got up and went downstairs where she found him singing Jingle Bells (the whole chorus, and quite clearly too!), shouting "Merry Christmas" and dancing around the tree that he had finished decorating to the best of his abilities (taking into account his vertical limitations). Including the candy canes that he had climbed on the counter to retrieve from the top of the refrigerator. Then he got a chocolate cake out of the pantry, sat down on the couch in front of the tree and ate it, getting crumbs all over the floor, couch and my netbook (I was very relieved to find out the brown stuff stuck to my computer was cake and not something else that Joseph has been known to play with inappropriately in the past).

We put him back in his room, but as far as I can tell he stayed awake for the rest of the morning until it was time for school.

First, I thought this was just cute. Thinking it over repeatedly in preparation for writing about it has made me realize something more profound though;  Almost all of the rotten stuff Joseph does, he does for good reasons. Out of curiosity, enthusiasm or just plain joy. Not for laziness, greed, or selfishness. He's so excited about everything in his world that he can't deal with it in a disciplined way. I think this is a very important realization for me.


  1. Love this! The whole of it!

  2. Sweet! And Joseph, too. :)

  3. Dear another autism dad, I am another autism mom :-)
    If your child has just been diagnosed put him ASAP in the Gluten free, casein free even SCD diet, and all the therapies you can do.

    My son was Celiac on top of autistic. He is 7

    God bless