There’s no day like a church day to Owen. “Let’s go to church I’m ready for church”, he proclaims. If it was even five o’clock in the morning I would be surprised. I couldn’t focus on the clock to even see what time it was. I wanted him to go back to sleep. I desperately needed more sleep. I should have known this wasn’t happening from the hours he had already been in bed with me, but I still tried. I told him he needed to go back to sleep. His immediate response was, “need to go potty”. It’s amazing how fast the potty train derails when you say, “you can go potty but then you have to come right back to bed”. It’s not like he can go to the bathroom alone, but at least I set the ground rules for him having to come back to bed. He moved on to the next excuse to get out of bed. “Milk wanna milk pwease”, he chimes in. I told him that I would get him milk, but it was right back to bed we would go. Again, what was I thinking. There was truly no hope for more sleep. I’ve had so many people suggesting melatonin lately I thought I’d try it again with him. It had been several years and I thought maybe his reaction will have changed, but after having him on it for a week the only thing it’s doing is getting him to sleep easier. From there I see more anxiety and sleeplessness. There is, unfortunately, no one size fits all pill for sleep. I was hoping that it might help this go-round, but no such luck. I forget sometimes exactly how literal Owen is. Words mean exactly what they mean. A few weeks ago at bedtime, I told him to close his eyes. He immediately took his hands up to his eyes and forced them shut. I took his hands off his eyes and I then said, momma, means for you to go to sleep. I said it to him again last night, not thinking about the first time I said it to him. He did the exact same thing. I really wasn’t expecting anything different, but I try to think through the way I explain things to him, hoping that it makes sense to him. I remind myself that I’m learning and growing too. Autism is as much about how I handle it as it is about Owen having it. Today and always we are a team and we push forward. He was excited to go to church and I was happy to be there too. Find what inspires you, know that today is one moment in time, and tomorrow will be a brand new day. Smiles to all and donut daze!
I'm Lynn Browder. Owen's Mommy. The best moments in time are when I get to see the smile on his face and that giggle come from his heart.