Raising a Teenager With Autism

I have noticed a time or two lately that a certain teenager has been looking at my blog.  I would say reading but she has already explained to me that there are too many words in my posts so she just looks for funny pictures and makes sure she is not in them.

Knowing that one of my children may be reading a sentence I am writing here and there got me thinking about what I would write if I knew she was reading.

So here it goes Ms. Ashlyn…

Do you remember the day you decided that you should not use a Cars lunchbox anymore?

You were devastated and so was I.

You were starting middle school and you noticed that no one else, especially the girls, were carrying one.  My heart broke a little, because I knew you loved that lunch box and up until then you did what you did and didn’t care about everyone else and their brown paper lunch bags.

Ever since then I have been trying to help you find a place where you can carry whatever lunchbox you want and I’m not having much luck.

It is tough for you to be a teenager, I know it is, but not in the dating, gossiping, stereotypical sort of way.

I know that the flash of a camera drives you nuts.  I know that a squeaky grocery cart makes you want to beeline for the door and that your dream outfit is one with no seams and no tags and no stupid buttons and zippers to wrestle with.

And the truth is I wish I could just follow you around with an embarrassing mom bag of sunglasses and earplugs and sensory toys but you don’t want those things anymore.  You want to brave it on your own and I am so proud of you for that.

I don’t think I, or anyone else in your life, will ever truly get what that amazing brain of yours has to do to manage a high school hallway or a family get together or a trip to the mall in December.

You are a tough cookie but I wish you didn’t have to be.

I know there are days when you want autism to leave you alone and it doesn’t and I wish there was something I could do about that.  

I just want you to be happy.

That is all I have ever wanted for you.  

That and a place where you can carry your Cars lunchbox until you are 80 and no one will bat an eye.

Love you even though I know you stopped reading this ages ago,

Your mom

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