I am writing today feeling very heavy-hearted. Why you ask? Because I am facing a reality about my growing son. HE’S GROWING!! What does that mean exactly? He is as tall as his Dad and I (nearly 5’6”), he is solid in body composition, and he is growing stronger. Why does that make me heavy-hearted? Because you mix that up with Autism and you have an individual that looks typically normal but impulse control is not always consistent. In addition, my son has commented that he does not want to grow up. He does not like his new height. He does not like his pimples. He does not like that his voice is now changing to a deep baritone. He said, “I don’t want to be an adult because being an adult is going to be hard.” After he made that statement, he left the room and I fell apart with heavy sobbing. He’s absolutely right. Being an adult can be difficult. Right now, his Dad and I help to take care of the things in the background that keep him happy and safe (e.g. a safe home, electricity and water, clothes to wear, food to eat, and favorite things to play with and to occupy his time.) Becoming an adult means that he will need to do those things on his own. And that’s where the worry comes. Who will help him? The reality is – he will need help. Some of his executive functioning and decision-making is impaired. He is a gentle giant – tall and big in stature, but meek and mild in nature. It breaks my heart thinking about his future. As hard as it is to face, I know that I need to help prepare him as much as I can. Me with my Wonder Woman cape, flying around with grandiose ideas of building a self-sustaining community just for him. Still, I wish, I wish, I wish…..
I’m sure that I am not the only parent of a child with Autism who experiences anxiety when thinking about the future, especially once we have made our spiritual transition and are no longer on the physical plane. What do we do? Well, the first thing is to recognize that we do not have all the control. Even when we have planned and prepared and planned again. There will always be the unexpected. So, again, what do we do? We release the control to our higher power. For me, that is God. I rely on God for so many things, especially, the unexpected, out of control, left hooks that sometimes come out of nowhere. That basically describes Autism in my life – unexpected, out of control, left hook! How do I deal with being heavy-hearted? I cry, get it out, breath and carry on, knowing and trusting that all will be well. For me, God is the reassurance that you are taken care of, even if you don’t know how. Find your own source of strength and reassurance, whether that is God, Buddha, the Universe, or whatever you choose to believe in – whatever makes sense for you. Find it – hold onto it – and know that – ALL WILL BE WELL.