Our Autism Story ~ and a Designer Brand that cares
Many of you probably know, that I have a 13 year old son who suffers from Autism. I use the word suffer because this condition makes him unable to cope with the world around him at times. Admittedly I push him a bit too far on certain occasions in a bid to give him as normal a life as possible.
This doesn't always work out, as you will soon discover as unveil the journey we have been through I am mainly focusing on the weekend just gone.
Let me give you a brief explanation as to why I have never really opened up about our struggle with autism, except maybe once in a while on my Instagram feed. As a parent of any child your instinct, is to protect mama bear type stuff. When you have a disabled child that instinct is extremely exaggerated letting go is the hardest thing you ever have to do, anxiety rules your life, you have constant fear over how your child is going to live as they grow older and need some independence, yet they are still extremely vulnerable. The list is endless I could write a book about the feels that the parents of an autistic child go through at least in my experience.
So you see I have a genuine fear of opening up about this what will people think of my parenting skills, have I done enough to help this child, is it my fault he has this condition, or could I have done anything different during the pregnancy to change my sons prognosis. All these are questions that frequent my mind more often than I care to admit.
I don't think I have even mentioned, the judgement you get constantly from family, friends and strangers alike.But hey! These are the cards I have been dealt and I can only live the best life I know how.
Enough rumbling let me tell you what happened this past weekend.
Everyone was so hyped we where off to London my children happy place, They have already told me as soon as they are ready to live home this is where they are headed. Mo is a southern softie as we call them here in the north, he was born and raised there for a while so this is a going home experience, London has always been our play ground and our safe place my heart belongs, I know my way round every corner and every little boutique even the particular house I would purchase if I hit the jackpot.
On the image on top are words to live by, YOLO
On our way to London, Mo always has his hands in his ears these days. A behaviour we are trying to tackle one day at a time.
The place that offered us refuge ❤️, a beautiful store with such kind people behind the brand Annoushka.
Trust me to still have time to take a selfie after all the shinanigans.
This particular journey Mo was not having it, he didn't want to do anything else other than being driven around stopping for food and watching TV. In my all knowing motherly knowledge I thought what kind of a parent would I be if I let him win and be a couch potato for the whole three days.
Quite restaurant with Mo's favourite food
He loves a good smoothie and water if Coke is not available
So I persuaded him to go out which he did, but he soon let me know that he wasn't happy. He threw a tantrum that took days to get over. I spoiled everyone's get away because I failed to respect MO's wishes. While we where at Bicester Village he throw himself to the floor and decided he wasn't going to move. As usual you get the judging eyes from passers by, I am ashamed to say this doesn't bother me anymore I was very close to telling them jog on nothing to watch over here. Until a very well dressed gentle men came over from Annoushka Jewellery, his words where "we have a quite space in our shop would you like to take him there, give him time to calm down". There was no judgement in his voice no questions asked just a pure act of kindness. It made me tear up after, to think such kindness still exists and that we are never truly alone angels are dotted all around us in different shapes and sizes, what a great feeling humanity almost always prevails. To the gentlemen, your kindness meant a lot more than you could ever realise, I hope from this act of kindness you receive similar acts of generosity ten times over returned back to you with all my love and gratitude.
What I learnt
Mo taught me a great deal of valuable lessons this bank holiday 1- he is his own person and makes his own decisions.
2- just because we love the city i.e. London and he was born there that doesn't mean he enjoys being there anymore nor the crowds and the havoc that London can be.
3- Autism does not define Mo he will make his own mark in the world and if people don't listen to his needs he will make them pay attention.
4- I am his cheerleader his advocate and mentor, and the greatest love of all is to let go and let God, he will guide us throughout this journey.
The truth is if I could take away this condition in exchange for my life I would, but as you all know there has been no treatment for Autism so far or at least nothing conventional.
I aim to give my son the best quality of life possible and make the best decisions for his future, so he can lead a fulfilling life with out barriers imposed by this devastating condition.
If they are any parents with tips and ideas on how to make travel less stressful for a child with autism or young children in general please let me know below.
For those of you who might not know about this condition this is a small definition of what autism is a developmental disorder characterized by difficulties in social interaction and communication and by restricted or repetitive patterns of thought and behaviour. You can read more about it here