There has been a gradual maturity process that has been happening with Michael. Our conversations have gotten more intense with lots of questions and Michael asking thought provoking questions about growing up, my youth and about the world in general. He has also been using his strategies to calm down and when he doesn’t, realizing what he could do the next time. The thing that is really exciting me is that he is connecting the dots of stress with pain or discomfort in his body, and he is also able to show pride in what he is doing, ask for and be happy when he gets praise, and praise or compliment his father and I. He will say that he likes things we have done, we look nice (if he likes the clothes we are wearing), and openly expresses affection and sadness when we are leaving.
Lately most of my encounters with Michael, even when he has been misbehaving, have been much like a typically developing child’s, albeit with his own little twist, but it is very small. And the thing is as he is beginning to understand his autism, his uniqueness to other typically developing children, he is able to find ways that work for him to understand difficult concepts or ask for what he needs. The bargaining is the best. Here I feel that his sophistication has grown. He will routinely try to pull the wool over our eyes to get his way and when we call him on it, I see the little gleam of annoyance. Dang, they caught me! This impresses me as it shows me how fine tuned his brain is, and it keeps me on my toes as his Mom. Every parent knows you have to stay one step ahead of your child in order for them to feel the boundaries of security, to know right from wrong, and know just how far they have to go.
Exceptional Parents, how often do your Exceptional Kids test you, their limits and question their world? I hope it is often in their own way. This is an important skill they need in order to grow strong in mind and spirit. Good news for you as a family. It is also good for you as an individual that it makes your stretch your parenting, your skills and helping you to be your best. Yes, sometimes we want our kids to ask one word questions and we want to give one word answers, but trust me. The more their brains work, the harder you work, and that helps growth and development for both of you in the long run. Until next time.