I am not exactly sure what time Owen woke up. All I know was the clock was telling me it was way too early and his tablet was way too loud. I told him he needed to go back to bed and he asked me to find something on his tablet. We compromised, I stayed in bed and he kept his tablet loud, running to tell me something every few minutes. He asked for cereal, chocolate milk, and waffles that he ate about an hour after I put them on the table. It all works out in the wash I tell myself. He was ready for church, asking me every few minutes what he was doing for the rest of the week. He said, “be with mommy” every time I would say one of the days. It was like he was confirming we weren’t going on a trip again. I told him it was time to get ready for church and he said, “two minutes.” He doesn’t exactly understand time but completely understands that two minutes means not now. So my reply was if we don’t get ready then we can’t go to church. He said exactly what I knew he would, “church church.” It’s almost as predictable as what I’m going to say. I find myself repeating everything he needs me to repeat without even realizing I’m repeating myself until I’m repeating myself. We got to church and he was focused on getting to his class. When I sat down in church I crossed my legs. I immediately uncrossed them and quickly realized Owen wasn’t there. I’ve heard his screams so many times, followed by “potty let’s go potty” knowing he doesn’t have to go potty, and then him rushing to untangle my legs so I’ll put them back on the floor. The rules, so many rules he has on the world around him to help him cope. I talk to him about how I don’t even think about how I cross my legs or stand, I also try to explain to him that not everyone wants to or will wear blue pants. I want him to work through seeing people in other pants. I try to explain that if he gets upset about what someone is wearing he won’t be able to see people that he loves and wants to be with. I don’t know how to distract such an intense focus. When he was very young I would try to distract him from an action or reaction he was doing. One day he was doing the exact same thing over and over, screaming as he went through the motions when he was watching a video, starting it right back at the same exact spot numerous times. I took his tablet and I sat with him doing other activities. As soon as I stopped playing with him he grabbed his tablet and went right back to the same video and did the same actions for another thirty minutes and then he was done. It taught me that he was working through something and until he was done he was not going to stop. And for the rest of today I tried to give him space and let him know that we weren’t going anywhere. Tomorrow we are going to one of his therapies but I didn’t tell him because he wouldn’t be able to sleep. He loves going and he would be up asking about when he was going. He fell asleep in my arms and I prayed for the strength and knowledge to give him the skills he needs in life. Do you ever think about the life you have versus the life you want? There’s a moment in time that you lean into the life you want. You finally give yourself the freedom to be the person you always wanted to be. I’m still leaning, I’m still learning, and I’m still trying to be the best me I can be. Never give up on the dream you want. Today’s the day. Smiles to all and donut daze!
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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.