His head was a little bigger than my other babies. His grip on my finger wasn’t tight. As he reached the ages for certain milestone developments,(holding his head up without support, sitting, crawling, walking, speaking, etc), he wasn’t doing what baby experts said he should be doing. He had digestive issues. He would rarely make eye contact. He did not seem to feel pain to the degree that others did. Sometimes, he would get so frustrated he would bang his head. Sometimes he would drift away as if he wasn’t even aware of whatever was going on around him.
You’re reading about my J9. He is somewhere on that rather large autism spectrum. He has no middle ground. He is either joyful or mournful, hyper or asleep, loud or silent, all for something or completely against it. If he is interested in something it is obsessive, and if he is not interested in something he will pay it no attention whatsoever.
I saw this posted on a social media site today:
J9 is quite charismatic, and others, even strangers are drawn to him. He gets more hugs from his siblings, father, and me than the rest of us put together. His touch melts the heart. His laughter brightens the darkest of days.
I read an article a couple of years ago in which the author said her autistic son “thought so far outside of the box that he wasn’t even aware of a box to begin with”. That too describes my J9. For example, he sometimes cheers the sunset with the enthusiasm of a sports fan during a championship game.
J9 is smart. Really smart. His computer skills are amazing and natural. He learned phonics rules on his own and taught himself to read. His memory is outstanding. With homeschooling, he prefers to work independently. When he includes himself in a discussion he wants to know what the Bible says about it, or what my mother would think about it (she passed away before he was born). He is very interested in times and dates and is the most scheduled one in our home.
My J9 can also be funny though sometimes shocking. E17 had some girlfriends over to spend the weekend. J9 does not like to have company and was not happy about them staying with us, but we assured him that they would be spending most of their time in his sister’s room and would sleep in there. In fact he was still a little upset about that visit even after they left. A co-worker, a young man, came home one evening with A21. As he walked through the door, J9 started screaming, “You are not going to sleep with my sister!” We were laughing so hard we couldn’t even explain the situation to this young man.
As people all around the world become more aware of autism today, I hope someone will make sure they understand more than the disabilities and strangeness, I want others to be aware of the blessings of autism, too. There are many.