I was really moved by my friend Thomas’ beautiful post, 10Things About Helena, on his site, The Gluten-Free Casein-Free Diet Experience. Our children are so unique and so loved, that it gave me the idea for a new blog game intended to send the message that our children, as Thomas so eloquently stated, don’t just have special needs, they ARE special. Period. I also thought this would send a positive message about Autism to the blogosphere and generate some good karma.
I talked it over with Thomas and we decided to start this game. Here are the rules: List ten great things about your child. If you think your child would like to participate, let them express themselves. Maybe ask him or her to list a few things about themselves they would like to share. They do not have to answer in words, feel free to share photos, artwork, or upload video or audio. Anything goes, in the name of self-expression!
If you feel comfortable, add your child’s photo. Then invite a few blog friends who you think might like to participate (I’ll leave the number up to you). Then link this post or leave a comment so we know where to find you.
10 Great Things about the Prince
10. MapQuest is his current passion. He can tell you the location of almost any train line in the United States and Europe. Wherever we are, he seems to know the direction we are headed. I have no need for a GPS system in my car!
9. Planes, Trains, and Automobiles are endlessly inspiring. Consequently, our interior décor consists largely of collections of Hotwheels, Thomas the Tank Engine trains, and numerous drawings of trains and racecars.
8. He is a terrific helper in the laundry room. The reward for this help? He gets to watch what he calls, “the greatest show ever” which is the wash spin cycle. We have a front-loading washer with a window. After helping me load it, he will pull up a stool so he stands level with the window, shine a flashlight inside, and peer at the cycle through his binoculars. He finds great pleasure in doing this.
7. He can be very polite and his favorite catch phrase is “Excuse me?” We taught him this to try and help with his habit of rushing into conversations, but now he uses it mostly in the sense now of, “I have something to say.”
6. His favorite song is “The Wheels on the Bus” (do we see a theme here?!) But he has quite eclectic musical taste and also grooves to instrumental techno-pop music. You should see him dance! He hates jazz, which he calls “bad music” and he loves classical music, unless he thinks is it “sad” then he will tell me to turn it off.
5. He loves the County Fair, especially the Ferris Wheel.
4. Although ambient noise is upsetting for the Prince, he does not mind individual loud noises and is very visual; consequently, he delights in fireworks. At Disney, he told the Professor, “When I was a baby, I used to be afraid of fireworks. Now I find them a joyful experience.” I didn’t make this up. He said that. That “little professor” speech thing you know, is actually quite charming, to us at least.
3. The Prince is trying to figure out how to tell jokes. He’s not ready for Leno, but he’s getting there. Here is his first original joke: “Excuse me? How did the train cross the grass? It was carried by a duck! Get it?” (drum roll, cha ching!)
2. He eats my GFCF cooking, and likes it!
1. The Prince has never liked hugs, although he has learned to endure them in certain social situations and he understands that it makes other people happy to hug him. But I don’t push it at home. So we have developed a little ritual in the morning. When the Prince leaves for school, I kiss him lightly on the top of his head on his hair, which he has told me is acceptable as long as my kiss is “dry and not wet.” I have always felt he just humored me in this. One day I forgot to kiss him. He came back and said, “Mommy, you forgot to kiss me.” So I did. Then he flashed me a beautiful smile and went on his way. It warmed my heart and is one of those moments I will treasure forever.
8 Things the Prince Wants You to Know About Himself
I asked the Prince for 5 things I should tell my friends about him. He told me he had 8 things to say. I am quoting:
1. I like cars. 2. Disney World is my favorite place. 3. I like to play. 4. Excuse me? Number lines, shapes, and computers are interesting. 5. I like Isabella because she is my friend (classmate). 6. I like Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. 7. I like monorails. 8. I like the Indy Speedway.
I want anyone and everyone to play. The more the merrier! But to get the game started, let me invite a few folks to join in the fun:
Momologue, since she was kind enough to coordinate all our awareness efforts this month.
Casdok, because she and C also kind of inspired this idea.
Queen Bee because she was one of my first Autism Mom friends in real life. Our children were diagnosed around the same time and got kicked out of daycare together since they were not potty-trained by age 3. It was a bonding experience!
Managing Autism because Elissa has a gentle and wonderful way of looking at the world and her children are so darn cute!