We went to church today. What can I say besides it was amazing. Oh and stressful. But amazing. Owen I think was so overwhelmed that we were there. I didn’t tell him we were going anywhere until a few minutes before we needed to get ready. He repeats steps a lot, and by a lot I mean a lot a lot, with a side of a lot and then some more. I totally and completely get it. He says the words he can to explain his feelings, he’s excited about whatever the situation is, and he wants to show it, but it’s still hard for me to some times even process. He screams about it, happily generally, but if I don’t reply to all his words those happy screams can rapidly turn into meltdown screams in an instant. I have been trying to prepare him for me wearing a mask. It has not gone well. The few times we’ve seen people with masks he wanted to get to their face and pull it off of them. I told him that if he wanted to go today that he had to let mommy wear a mask. We practiced and he started trying to take it off me. I repeated it several times that I had to wear it. There is nothing comfortable at all about wearing a mask for me. A thousand reasons flood through my mind as I think about it. When we got halfway to church I finally told him where we were going. At that moment he screamed, “no”. I started to turn at the light and he screamed louder. But as soon as I turned he started talking about all things “church”. A peace came over him, a peace washed over me too, and I kept driving. Today was the first day that he handled the masks as well as he did. That was the blessing. He did great at church in his classroom. He got to see some of his favorite people and sadly there weren’t many people there, but in the long run for us, it was probably a good thing. It was very emotional for me. We truly have been very few places over the last six months, mostly because he couldn’t handle the masks and at first the world had stopped turning. School is possibly starting next week for him so I needed to get him out and about in the world. The church is a comfort to us both and I knew they would do everything to help us through the process. It took him hours to fall asleep tonight, repeating the day's events and who he wanted to see, not letting go of the hope that he would see them all tomorrow. Each step is a process. Autism is as much about how I handle it as it is about Owen having it. Add in my own emotions of getting back into the world and all I can do is think how blessed I am for the way today went. The journey through life is not always easy, but focus on the hope for tomorrow. 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.