The Fragility of My Role as My Son With Autism's Mother
Our son. He has a sister, brothers, a wonderful and loving father, a caring and supportive extended family, great friends, and now a hockey team family who grows in importance and significance each day. But as for me? You see, I’m his person.
Our son struggles to make and maintain eye contact with almost everyone he meets. But me? He not only makes and sustains eye contact with me, but his eyes soften and sparkle. You see, I’m his person.
When routines change in our house, or the weight of the day behind him or ahead of him is too much, he finds me. He lays where I am and follows me. He finds comfort in laying by my feet as I apply my makeup, he finds peace resting on my side of the bed with the blankets around his face, it is solace he finds as he stands next to me as I put away laundry. You see, I’m his person.
When things upset and frustrate our son, and the only thing he can do is lash out, and his body and mind finally come crashing down into a ball, tears streaming down his face, he finds a home in my arms and my arms alone. He buries his head in my neck and his body finds the calming it craves. You see, I’m his person.
You can appreciate the fragility of such a role, that of our son’s mother. I am the one thing he understands unequivocally, the one thing that transcends all language barriers, social cues or sensory challenges. Being someone’s person? It takes passion, fire and intensity to fill that role properly. I am his person. I tell him each night before I tuck him in that I will “take best care” of him. And I mean it. After all, being someone’s person is the most important role of all.