Our two oldest children have autism and our experience with them has shaped our entire family. Although there have been some hard days, we have also had some great times as well. I may share the difficult moments in another post but today I will share the six best autism moments. For some context, both Logan and Abby are on the severe end of the spectrum, are nonverbal and currently live in a group home.
- We were having a very serious meeting with a room full of professionals discussing Abby’s future treatment. In the middle of the meeting Abby let a big fart go and when everyone looked at her, she said, “No poop.” The entire room, including Abby, had a big laugh.
- I had told my wife that I can handle our children being nonverbal but the one thought that was really hard was that I would never hear them tell me that they loved me. That year we went to a Christmas Eve service and when we got home, I was getting Logan ready for bed. I told him I loved him and he responded by telling me he loved me. Best Christmas present ever.
- Abby seems to function at a fairly low intellectual level, although with her communication issues it is very difficult to test. Last year I was sitting on the couch with Abby and she grabbed my hands. She started putting my fingers in different positions and was making sounds. What she was doing was teaching me sign language. We didn’t even know she knew sign language! Amanda searched on her phone during my lesson and Abby was teaching sign language quite accurately.
- One night Logan was still awake by around 9:30 pm (he hums when he is awake). His light was on and he was going through his books. I unscrewed the light bulb from the ceiling and then heard, “Dad, turn the light back on.” I screwed it back in, thinking it was my younger son, who doesn’t have autism and who shared a bedroom with Logan. But he was fast asleep. I unscrewed the bulb again and once more heard, “Dad, turn the light back on.” I went back to our bedroom with my mouth wide open to tell Amanda that our son was talking. Logan is still considered nonverbal but we know he is able to talk if he feels motivated.
- A number of years ago, I was joining the army reserves and was just about to start basic training. I was pretty stressed out about the whole thing. On my way from home to the base, I stopped by the group home where Abby was living. I took her out for lunch for some daddy-daughter time. Abby is very much a daddy’s girl (Logan is a momma’s boy) and we had a wonderful time. We walked for a bit with her arms wrapped around mine. That quality time helped me to be less anxious about my training.
- During our time attending Queensway Baptist Church, we were bringing Logan with us to church. He is known to make noise, mostly humming. But one morning, in the middle of the service, Logan said in a loud voice (to us anyway), “Just kill me now!” He wasn’t upset with the service but was scripting a line from a movie. We still laugh at the time. How many people have wan’t to say the same thing in church?