I don't know any little girl that holds a baby doll in her arms and whispers,
" I really want to be a Special Needs Mommy".
I don't know anyone who finds out they are pregnant and thinks,
"I really hope my baby has Autism."
I don't know any mom of any 12 year old girl who thinks raising a teen in 2018 is easy.
Don't tell me God only gives me what I can handle.
I can barely master my own life.
Somehow I am responsible for the heart and heads of my 2 tween girls.
Don't tell me that my daughter doesn't look like she has Autism.
I will ask you what Autism looks like.
Don't you dare use the word Retarded if I am within earshot.
That word was retired a long time ago.
I will educate you the same way I was educated.
You may be embarrassed at first, as I was and will be too but I know that I will be creating change.
I don't just have a child with Autism. We are a family with Autism.
We are not that much different than a family who has a child with a peanut allergy.
We just know our limits. We know what we can and can not do.
After reading this, you may say " Jill I had no idea"
and I will tell you it doesn't change a thing.
All I did was put a word on what you already know.
Don't tell me that her Asperger's is a disability.
It is a Super Power.
She is by far one of the most amazing thinkers I know.
She is evolved. Her brain is more on par with how future thinkers will develop.
If you spend time with her and watch her dissect, analyze and focus on a topic that she is interested in, you will need to pick your jaw up off the floor.
Her thinking is razor sharp.
Her ability to piece facts together and create a mental timeline is the reason most adults take Adderall
Don't tell me that we don't say Asperger's anymore , that it is an " old term " and that she is highly functioning on the spectrum .
Autism has become a convenient and easy catch all phrase.
I can name at least 100 children of friend's with Autism and every single one is different
and to be celebrated.
Don't call her my Autistic child.
She is my daughter, living in a world that she doesn't quite know where she fits.
Do any of us ?
She has an insane ability to pick up any musical instrument and play it.
Her humor is dark and wickedly funny.
She is a published poet.
A sought after ukulele player.
A great friend to those who " get her"
She is Molly . She does have Autism.
She also has brown hair, blue eyes.
She is going through the same awkward teen years we have all experienced.
She is amazing, she is mine.
As moms we are only as happy as our most unhappy child.
As the leader of my family, I feel like each day my heart, head and focus get thrown into a cup shaken around.
I am never quite sure what is going to tumble out.
We have removed ourselves from the norms of the world and we have created the most beautiful life.
On our terms, in our own way.
The opinions of others have no place in our world.
For a 12 year old girl, Asperger's is a Super Power.
In Molly's world there is no gray.
There is no emotional rollercoaster of puberty.
It either is, or it isn't.
She is lucky.
She avoids the drama that I see other kids struggling with.
The pettiness of " I am mad at you today because you are wearing blue." type mean teen drama.
In Molly's brain, there is no time for such low level thinking.
She dissects those thought patterns until she understands their why.
Then tells us we should feel sorry for THEM.
She is 50 % fact, 50 % empathic love.
You are either with Molly or you are not.
With that though comes the lack of social cues, the inability to read if someone is her friend or a foe.
The inability to process and place complicated emotional layers.
Her thoughts are so exciting to her, she has a hard time not interrupting conversations.
When she does connect with someone she is just so excited to be engaged in conversation she gets so animated, she is so expressive and passionate, it's fun to watch.
She is like a big dog wagging its tail.
She is so excited someone is HEARING her. Engaged and interested.
Don't we all just want to be heard ?
Some of the kids she has grown up with have moved past her.
I get it.
All of these kids are trying to find where they fit.
So is Molly , and if you love her, you love her enthusiasm and passion.
You love that she is light, you love that she just wants to understand what makes you tick.
She wants to be your friend, your supporter and wants you to respect her.
You will respect that noise bothers her.
Sometimes she needs to adapt her behaviors because otherwise
her brain is overloaded.
It's on par with knowing a fire alarm is going to be pulled but just waiting for it to happen.
Anxiety, Anticipation, Nervousness.
She gets overwhelmed. She shuts down, when it is really bad she checks out.
Middle School has been tough.
I just wish I could send her to school everyday with this sign on her shirt.
I am an includer.
A collector of people.
I believe that my life is better for every single person I meet.
Good or Bad , our mental collective creates change.
I learn the most from the people I am very different from.
Autism comes in many shapes and forms, some kids have more outward behaviors.
A grocery store can take a Child with Autism out .
Cripple them to an infant like state.
Don't judge, offer support.
A knowing smile, a little understanding, just decent human kindness goes a long way.
If you are judging, make sure your life is perfect.
I am a better person for having the Special Needs community in my life.
Daily, I am reminded to be thankful for what I have.
To be grateful.
Some days I am raw, broken, defeated.
Some days I conquer the world.
I was told I was Angry about Molly's Aspergers.
I am actually thankful.
Her Asperberger's has removed my inability to see what is Good in the World.
When all is said and done, when my time on this Earth is over, I hope we live in a world of inclusion, of everyone, all abilities, all treated with the same respect that you would want to be treated with.
Want to know more ? Ask me, talk to me and just know that you can always sit with me.
I started my first company at 13 years old. In 2005 I walked away from a 6 figure job to create a company where women can work flex time and raise a family. Our Company ShopLuLu.com is a job training site for young adults with exceptional abilities. Mom and Wife, my girls are now both tweens and we are living a life of adventure. Splitting our time between Delaware and New York City we are living a life on our terms.