As stated in an earlier post I have three kids. This post is going to be about my oldest, and probably one of the only ones about him. I wanted to write about him briefly because I may make mention of things he does on occasion in posts and this way you’ll have a frame of reference.
My oldest has Autism. The main reason I don’t want to write about him is not because he has autism, it’s because I don’t want this to turn into one of the billions and billions of Autism related blogs out there. I mean there are like three things on the internets it seems, cat videos, those stupid stick figure cartoons or scribble cartoons of people (you know, Like a Boss, Fuuuuuuuuuuuck guy, etc), and autism related blogs. He has moderate functioning autism (my wife says he is high functioning, but I think she is livin’ in the Egyptian river). He is verbal, but does an awful lot of scripting and repeating/echoing. He isn’t much of a hand flapper, but he doesn’t sleep very well. We put him to bed each night, and about 30-45 minutes later he is downstairs with us and then about 3-4 times per week he stays up on the couch with us watching TV until it is time to go to bed and then he goes to sleep on the floor in our bedroom. He is a very picky eater, will eat pizza all day if you let him or not, depending on his mood that day.
He is in a mainstream classroom just finishing up 4th grade and has been on A/B honor roll for the past two years. He has a tremendous memory. He will remember a toy or book he had when he was 2-3 (he is 10 ½ now) and will tear through his room and his brother and sister’s rooms trying to find it. But ask him what 4 + 3 is and he can’t remember, however he know every factor on a multiplication table by heart. He will go on and on about whatever he is looking for, asking for it over and over. We have actually bid on items on eBay just to stop him, then we have to hear, “is Item X coming today, tomorrow, on Saturday” or whenever we said it would arrive every waking hour until the item arrives.
He is a great kid, but my life currently revolves around my other two (kid two and kid three) normally developing children (more on them later, much more). We have swimming, baseball, scouts, soccer, basketball, camping, fishing, etc that we do that have no interest of kid number one. His favorite things to do are surf the web and watch videos or look at pictures of things he is currently interested in. Right now it is Thomas the Tank Engine. I suppose that is better than wanting to look at girls in swimsuits (a 2 week interest around the holidays when he saw a picture of a hot Mrs. Santa in some sexy lingerie).
Like I said he is great and I love him just as he is, but would give my right arm if there was a cure. Though I feel bad for people that have sick kids with cancer or whatnot, at least those people can carry on a conversation with their kid on a regular basis. I worry everyday about what his life is going to turn out to be. My wife seems to think that he will want to eventually move out and be on his own in 10-15 years, again…Egypt….river, but as long as we have a home and can take care of him he will be living with us, at least until he doesn’t want to.