Where Do We Go From Here? (#501)

This is a question I ask myself at least once a day.
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Jim and I are making plans to observe Charlie in his classroom in the upcoming weeks. We have been more than pleased with his school program, his thoughtful teacher and her well-trained instructors. Charlie continues to move s-l-o-w-l-y in his reading and mathematics programs, in learning to write his letters, and in learning to cope with his anxieties (especially about transitions, such as my parents coming and going from California where they live). I read about another autism mother’s efforts to find a job for her 18 year old son and wonder, what is the most important thing for Charlie to be learning?

Where do we go from here?

At 10pm just as he seemed to be ready to curl up under the load of blankets he had piled on the bed, Charlie erupted into full-speed-ahead energy. He did a puzzle, sifting his hands through the pieces and working and reworking some of the sections. He ran up the stairs and raced, chortle-humming, through the house. He opened the front door and dashed down the path and to the driveway and back in and out before I could throw a coat on him. Was it better to let him run out all that energy or to try to settle him in his bedroom, where he was (based on past experience) likely to kick off all the covers and knock over a few chairs?

Where do we go from here?

One week after the October 27th Autism and Advocacy conference at Fordham University in NYC: We’re not feeling let down—so many emails and phone calls and kindly mentions ’round the web—and not forgetting of the buzz among the attendees and the silence of flapping instead of clapping (of some 250 pairs of hands) and the recurring question of who is Qualified By Experience to speak about autism…..

Where do we go from here?

More patient efforts, more enthusiasm even and especially when Charlie gets stuck on a word.

Letting Charlie run his circuit of stairs and porch and walkway, of driveway and stairs again, a few times before settling him in his bed with his old Daddy’s blue blanket.

Small group discussions? A blog or some other way to keep the discussion about self-advocacy and advocacy, hope and witness and autism, going? Another conference….. Some kind of writing. A website? Some way to keep the conversation going that autism advocacy needs to be expanded, redefined, reconfigured as not only and not simply “cure autism” but “how can we non-autistics change ourselves to make the world better for autism”?

Where do we go from here?

I try to think of how best to respond to this question in the course of yet another day in Autismland.

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Comments
2 Responses to “Where Do We Go From Here? (#501)”
  1. Ennis says:

    “before settling him in his bed with his old Daddy’s blue blanket.”

    His Daddy isn’t old! 😉

  2. KC'sMommy says:

    “how can we non-autistics change ourselves to make the world better for autism”?

    I wonder about this all the time Kristina.

    Charlie is such a beautiful little boy, just look at those beautiful eyes!

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