My name isn't important. Call me "Dad"...three other people in the world do already. What is important is the difficult path my wife and I find ourselves on with three kids. It's already littered with rocks and roots seemingly strategically placed to trip you up: bills, family dynamics, work, etc. We're doing our best to traverse this trail. On it, we're leading two of our three children - pointing out the trip hazards along the way, clearing the brush, and holding back the sticker bushes. I'll refer to them as B - the boy - and G - the girl. Most of the time they make it through unscathed - a few bumps and bruises and scratches, but generally happy and healthy nonetheless.
But our Third child, the oldest (I'll call him T), is not as easy to lead. Sometimes he is charging ahead, falling flat on his face, and then blaming us for his bruises. Sometimes he makes himself dead weight, causing us to have to drag him along, straining our backs and legs that are already pushed to the limits by the treacherous trail. Other times (becoming less frequent by the day) he seems content to follow and let us guide as we do with the others. It's a crap shoot - and from day to day, moment to moment, we don't know which T we're going to have with us on the trail.
This is the story of being the parent of a child "on the spectrum". Specifically a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder - Level I. Otherwise known as Asperger's Syndrome. I'd love to tell you I am penning this for you, dear reader. I do hope you gain some insight, understanding, solace, and camaraderie in reading these posts. But it's really for me. There aren't many with whom I can discuss this. The busy life we lead, made even busier with the time and energy required to care for T leads me with little time to seek out formal therapy. So I'm hoping the bits and pieces of time I have to devote to this little corner of the Internet will be an adequate substitute if not stop-gap for that help.
Pack out what you pack in. Leave the trail cleaner than you left it. Most importantly, watch your step. This isn't going to be easy.