Saturday, April 21, 2012

I am guilty...

It is the third week of autism awareness month.  I have not written a blog in weeks. I have taken the month to do a little personal reflection and to be completely honest...I don't like what I see. 

When we started Autism Pirate it was for all the right reasons. We wanted to share our experiences and help others who were starting out on their journey if we could.   I feel like for me (I won't speak for Scott) I am guilty of letting that goal get away from me a little bit. 

For those of you who are not autism parents there is something you need to know.   Some of us are competitive. Just like most moms, soccer moms included, we secretly judge each other and ourself by comparing our "situation" to one another. 

When we do this, "our situation" can for some, turn into (sigh) I will just say it... an "all about me party".  It is hard to admit but I'm really GUILTY.  Our blog has gotten a lot attention which is awesome but I will admit it went to my head, not a little but a lot.   I am so submerged in autism because it is my home life and my work life. I was letting it take over in all the wrong ways.   I kind of feel like I have an autism headache.   

The past few days I have finally been able to sum up how I have been feeling for the past few weeks.  It started when I watched this amazing video about a family and Mom that I have had the opportunity to get to know over the past few months. Becky (mom in the video) has left a lasting impression on me.  I have never met a mom who is so committed to doing absolutely everything imaginable when it comes to learning.  I'm amazed and inspired.

On Friday, I attended a workshop at the Thompson Center Conference by Scott Bellini that REALLY got me to thinking.  Bellini said one thing that truly resonated with me.  "Just because we put someone in a social environment, it does not teach them the skills they need in that environment to be successful.  They have to learn to STOP, WATCH, and FOLLOW".  This hit home.  Rye has access but he does not have the skills.  We have to teach these skills to him. This takes time and a commitment that I have not been giving my full effort.  

Finally, today Rye participated in his first Special Olympics swim meet.  I was taken back by the love, support, and understanding of so many people.  Today my boy was an athlete who encompassed the Special Olympic oath of:  "Let me win.  But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt."  Today my boy won and he was brave in trying something he had never done before.  He also made his family so proud and gave his mommy one gigantic gut check.  

This journey is absolutely 100% not "about me".  The party is over Tara Shade.  Our journey is about living life to the fullest.  Finding absolutely every opportunity for growth and learning.  For my boys, and for me.  I have had a moment.  I am moving in a new direction.   

I'm getting back to the basics.  I want to focus my time and energy on learning about the most effective and cutting edge treatments. I want to implement these treatments with my son and folks I work with at my job. I want to raise money for treatment and services through Ella's Hope. Hope has always stayed focused on treatment which is why I love her. 

I will grow, learn, and "check" myself all the time to ensure that my vision and focus stay on what's important. 

My boys. 
My job. 
My family. 

Nothing else really matters. 

Awareness month for me this year has been a big dose of self-awareness. I am rejuvenated.  I'm moving forward.  I was guilty but I have recognized it and I am moving on!   

1 comment:

  1. You are an amazing mom and woman, Tara! Thank you for the important reminder for ALL of us!