I stare at crumbs on the kitchen table’s chair. I didn’t wipe them down as much as I thought I did. I still had coffee in my mug from drinking it last night until midnight when I finally made myself go to bed. I’ve been up since three because Owen, in his sleep, started pulling my hair. I’ve yet to figure out how he can pull the tiniest bits of my hair at the nape of my neck, in his sleep. He has been doing it for years. He has the hardest time picking up small items when he is awake but in his sleep, he can do this to my hair. I laid there praying I’d go back to sleep, but instead finally give up and got out of bed. I, of course, woke up Owen when I went to the bathroom. Wood floors and a bathroom trip never prove to let Owen sleep. He got out of bed. I told him to go back to bed, I would be there in a few minutes. Instead, I came to get a drink. I opened the refrigerator to get some water and I knew the scream would come. “Turn off de light”, he yells. I told him I was getting a drink, to go back to bed, that I was coming. I don’t even know what to do sometimes. It’s not like I can stop my body from wanting a drink or going to the bathroom, but he doesn’t understand. All he knows is the light was on and he wanted it off. And the light was on only for a moment to get my water bottle out of the refrigerator. At this point, there really was no going back to sleep for either one of us. I sat down in my kitchen as I heard him coming towards me. He crawled into my lap and started biting my hair, asking for milk. School, the bus, grandma, church, bowling, gymnastics all followed. I pray for easier days for my baby. I pray that I can explain things to him to help him. And I pray for patience on days that all he does is scream, happy screams, sad screams, mad screams, hysterically laughters of screams. I told him it was my birthday today and he said, “wanna talk to grandma”. He makes no connection to the birthday song and what a birthday means. I would trade a million celebrations in a million ways in a million days if it would be easier for my sweet baby O. I share our story so others know they are not alone. Our story is about autism, your story might be different, but together we can support each other and know that we are in this together. Owen inspires me every day to be stronger and today is no different. Seek to be stronger, know that you are not alone, and be the change you want to see in the world. 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.