Sunday, August 29, 2010


Our little girl spent a week with her grandparents, her first time away from home without us, giving us a week alone with our boy for the first time since adding Peaches to our family. She came home Friday after reportedly being on excellent behavior all week, and we were thrilled to get her back.

What a strange week it was while she was away, and how revealing.

When our boy has our undivided attention, he charms us silly. Without a peer around, he has no conflicts. When he doesn't have to share, he has amazing manners, all pleases and thankfulness. When he's getting the things he wants, the word "no" disappears from his vocabulary. When his sister goes away, he speaks of her with tenderness and longing. Wow.

When his sister returns, of course, some things go back as they always were, but even that brings surprises. How is it that I am still shocked that my son has autism? How does it still catch me off guard? Because once his NT sister, two years younger, shows up at is side, a contrast is inescapable, especially as we hear how Peaches spent the week doting lovingly on her baby cousin (two years her junior). And with a peer around, our boy has conflicts - oh boy does he. He finds sharing a huge challenge. He screams "NO!" Compliance evaporates. He says "mean words."

More than anything, I am happy to have everyone together under one roof again, and I'm so grateful to my inlaws for hosting our littlest for a week, but I am also processing all this transition.

First grade starts in two weeks and I'm scared.

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