We, the special needs parenting community are not saints. We are not special people picked by the Lord to have special children. We are no better than any other mom or dad that is doing their thing. Even the phrase "I don't know how you do it." doesn't really apply to us because on most days we're not sure how we are doing it either. You just do it because it's your kid and of course you would just do what needs to get done. We aren't perfect. We screw it up. A lot. We disappoint our kids and ourselves. We try again.
I guess what I am saying is we really are just like those neurotypical parents. There is really no difference between us at all. What is different are the standards to which we seem to be held. Ones that are often created by those who do not have a special needs child and THAT is when we have problems.
This different standard of parenting needs to end because personally, it's making me bat crap crazy and I'm really tired of feeling like I'm always the crazy one. To paraphrase the great Ozzy Osbourne's song "Crazy Train", "Crazy, I just cannot bear. I'm living with something that just isn't fair." Because autism is many times often unfair with what it deals a person who has it and the loved ones around them. There are many gifts but I'd be lying if I said "Oh golly gee. It's perfect. No complaints!!! All good in the Autism hood, yo!"
I'm tired of all of us getting shoved into this sainted parent box because it makes no sense. While some will be more than willing to polish our halo, often those same folks can be the ones heaping on judgment for stuff that they simply cannot begin to understand. You can't tell me I am both a amazing special needs parent who was just destined to be the Kiddo's mom while at the same time asking me "Why isn't he on a special diet? You should really try the diet I read about once in a an old People magazine while I was at the doctor's office. You know about the diet, right?" and be sighing and rolling your eyes at me because I won't put my Kiddo on a diet that didn't work for us in the first place.
Do folks realize the crazy mixed messages we get when the same folks that stopped inviting our kids to play dates and birthday parties are the same ones telling us "Oh my god! Have you watched Atypical?!?! Your blog was in it!" (Yes, I did. Yes, I knew about it. Yes, I have a screen shot of it as my laptop screen saver.) It's just like my family is some sort of holiday decoration you all only take out when you want to celebrate all things Quirkymas and then promptly put away when you are done.
I guess I'm just feeling extra sort of, mmmmm, I don't know, a walking autism info kiosk lately. I know part of that is my own doing. Hell, look what I blog and write about for a living. I get it. I made part of that box I am in. I guess it's just lately I am just so tired of the standard we seem to be held. Especially when we weren't the ones that set it.
Well, this blog is all over the place. I guess I'll go back to listening to some music with my ear buds in while Kiddo watches "The Polar Express" again. And yes, he does watch it every night and yes, it would be a BIG deal if he didn't and no, it's not hurting anyone if he does. So save it if you are about to comment on our bedtime standard around here. ;-)
Living with the Kiddo is like living with Ozzy Osbourne. They're both loud. They're both musical. They both ROCK!