Lately I’ve been up too late

I wrote this post on Monday morning but wanted to wait to get permission to include someone else’s blog post within my own.  So even though it’s Wednesday afternoon, here’s what I was thinking on Monday morning:

I’ve been staying up way too late the past few nights and my thoughts are crowded with other people’s words as well as my own.  While some people I know are addicted to Facebook and reconnecting with old high school friends, I’ve become addicted to reading other Autism Mommy blogs.  And I’ve found some really good ones.  I read about their hopes and their heartbreak.  The small victories and the terrible ache they feel as they watch their children on the playground surrounded by other children…yet so alone.  I see myself in these women and their words and I see my son in their sons (it’s usually boys) and I feel like we could be the best of friends.  I never thought I would be here and sometimes I feel so alone in all of this and my head and heart hurt more than I can describe.  I feel like no one really knows what this is like day in and day out and that many people are “over it.”  I started this blog to record the Roc’s accomplishments for myself and so our far away family, which is everyone, will see him grow up through the gazillion pictures I take.  Reading other Autism Mommy blogs makes me feel not so alone and made me realize that this blog is more than just recording what the Roc is doing.  It’s an outlet for me as well and a chance to create some awareness (and in a way it feels like therapy to get all the thoughts in my head out on “paper”).

I mentioned that my head is full of other people’s words so I have to share this beautifully written post by asdmommy.  I have a link to her blog (What We Need) on the sidebar, check her out.  I read it for the first time the other night and it definitely sums up the way this Mommy feels.  Thank you Darcy for letting me share it on my blog.  Here ya go:

The Other Mother

She watches mothers, constantly, and is fascinated by their sheer volume.  She wonders if she will ever take up that much space again?  She feels smaller than she used to, less a presence in the outside world, but more a presence in her own home.  She feels dependent; on schedules, routines, the refrigerator, her child’s mood.  She feels depended on for sheer life.  She wonders what would happen if she were no longer here, and she worries about it.  She knows kids can survive without mothers, but what about these kids?  What about her kid?  She wants to download all the information about her child from her brain to something else – just in case.

She watches mothers, on the playground, at the grocery store, and at school, wondering if they are even aware of mothers like her.  What must their lives be like?  She pictures their households, and pictures an easy life.  Not easy as in simple, but easy as in normal.  Are those mothers blissfully unaware of mothers like her?  She reminds herself not to judge her insides by someone else’s outsides (she read that somewhere), but she can’t help but wonder what that normalcy must be like.  Not normal in terms of her child being not normal, but normal in terms of just being a typical, average family.  She gets lost sometimes in the added layers of complication of their lives; the trying to find the afterschool activity that promises the largest chance of success for her child, the hope of her child finding a playmate that might become a real friend.

She watches mothers, and she reminds herself she wouldn’t change one thing about her child (he is perfect) save the chance to make things easier for him.  It’s not that she doesn’t want him to learn the tough lessons, but rather that she wishes he didn’t have to learn so many of them.  Where’s the equity?  Why do these kids, already challenged, have to be challenged so much more?  That’s what makes her cry.

She watches mothers, with a feeling she can’t quite describe building in her heart.  It’s not envy, judgment, anger, self-pity or sadness.  It’s distance.  She feels on the fringe.  She feels like her son.

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3 thoughts on “Lately I’ve been up too late

  1. Beautifully written by ‘the other mother’. This blog is most definitely an outlet for you as well as updates on Rocco. You need to talk about how you are feeling and it makes all of us ‘normal’ moms sit back and really think about what you go through day in and day out. And makes us feel silly about the things we complain about. You are a WONDERFUL mom and I think you writting about how you feel will only make you a better mom.
    Rocco wrote his name….so awesome!!!!!
    Love ya & miss you!
    Hilary
    p.s. I wish we could drive out and see you guys every summer!!!

  2. Wow…thank you SO much for the kind words. But yours hit me hard – the part about your head being crowded with other people’s words….SO very true with me as well. I read things and say “YES – THAT IS EXACTLY HOW I FEEL,” yet somehow I couldn’t say it. I’m so thankful other people are able to say it instead.

    Just reading your post – before I got to mine – made me tear up. Our kids being surrounded by other kids yet being so alone…oh, my heart just breaks at that. And no one else gets it – they see my kid, wandering around with a smile on his face, and think he’s fine.

    Anyway, thank you, thank you, thank you. I can’t wait to read more of you! And I will blogroll you as well.

    🙂 Darcy

  3. Beautiful blog entry, both your words and Darcy’s. (And her blog is awesome, btw. Anyone who hasn’t checked it out needs to!) What’s “normal” anymore? “Normal” for us is so different than what it could (should?) be. I put my son in swim class a few years back — every other parent was so excited that their child was swimming, kicking, floating. Dh and I? Thrilled that he was just in the pool. (And not licking others, his tic/stim of the time.) “Normal” changes for us, it’s so nice to see it well-written.

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