Our Moments in our autistic world.

I feel like I have been riding on a roller coaster, I’m sure most of you can relate. Recently, we had family come in from Pennsylvania and Virginia for my husband’s ceremony. Everything went beautifully, I felt more at peace placing my husband’s remains at this gorgeous national cemetery. Having friends and family around always makes things run a little smoother. And, I do feel it gave everyone some closure, including myself.

Now the one thing I was truly hoping for was for my youngest son, Nick, to truly enjoy meeting his family from out-of-town. I realize it was a lot for him to take in… new people, new sights, new scents. The experience was new for him. And then you add the dreary, rainy weather in the mix and you get a very unhappy camper. I know some may say, “Oh, the weather can’t possibly have anything to do with headaches or behavior changes…” But I am here to tell you, yes, it can and does with my son. He can literally feel a storm brewing hours before it actually hits our area, he paces feverishly around the house. Peering out of each and every window like he’s waiting for the storm of all storms to come, and then afterwards, the pounding headaches occur. He struggles so much in just dealing with the pain, it’s difficult for him to focus on anything else.

Each time I can see the mountain of frustration riddling his face. And as an autistic parent it can be extremely tough, because for him it’s hard to verbalize what’s going on. We’ve come a long way and I have discovered so, so much in these past few years since my husband passed away. It’s not a path I would pick even for my worst enemy; raising a child with a disability on one’s own. It’s not easy by any means.

But there is a gift … For me, there are days I see him, my son, I can actually see this beautiful young man staring back at me. There are days where he just comes up and kisses me on the cheek and hugs me, cooks with me, paints with me and those are the days I cherish more than anything else. Those are the days that offer hope to me, that tell me not to give up.

One thing I found truly encouraging when our family came down was how accepting everyone was, how each family member boldly offered their love to him. There was never a moment of insulting questions or offhanded remarks. Everyone seemed to understand that Nick has autism, that a sudden sound or common noise to us could trigger a meltdown for him.

Even though a union of acceptance surrounded us, my stress level was off the charts, only because I desperately wanted Nick to allow his grandmother one glance, one hug, maybe a few words like, I love you, but he was confined in the world of autism. Perhaps, in time and with the many changes I am including in our daily life, more progress will show.

So, in this blog, I want to address two things. One – Don’t ever give up on the ones you love and Two – don’t give up on the things you love. And in saying this, I have finally, after three long years, completed a novel, titled Memoirs of a Superhero. Yes, it is available on Amazon, and yes, I do plan on writing more, a lot more! 😉

I truly believe there is a unique journey for all of us and I know some days can be somewhat challenging, believe me I know! But even in the darkest of nights there are always stars shining above us.

So please help spread the awareness. Help educate, support, encourage, and love families living and dealing with autism. One kind word or act of kindness toward them can go a long, long way!

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Learning to let go.

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I believe people come into our lives for a reason, and I have also heard with each relationship there are lessons one can learn.

 

Recently, my beautiful sister-in-law came down for a visit. Memories were shared, tears were shed and laughter mended our souls. A particular topic was brought up and it nearly knocked me off my feet.  The topic was about having a ceremony at a national cemetery for my husband. He had served in the Navy and was honorably discharged. She’d mentioned about letting go of his ashes and letting him rest in peace where a healing could be provided for all of us.

A realization hit me…

Have we truly healed after his passing?

After talking with my middle son I soon understood what she meant. I have clung to so many things of his, almost like he went on a far away trip and I awaited for his return. Now, it’s not easy letting go of someone, let alone a soul mate. But, as I sat and stared at my computer screen, viewing the national cemeteries, I understood what I must do. I knew selfishness was not an answer, and I also knew I wanted everyone to heal the best way possible, and in a sense it felt like a band-aid was ripping off a huge, gigantic wound all over again. I cried as the gracious military burial assistant went over each detail,  I apologized through each sob and tried my best to do what was right.

I cried while I made dinner for the night, fully comprehending what was to come, another memorial. Scheduled in the Spring, his birth month, he will have full honors and a place to be remembered for his virtuous service.  I know in my heart this is the right thing to do. My lesson I have grasped through all this is that you can place a band-aid on anything, but to fully heal one must expose the wound, and treat the heartache, treat the pain openly.

Slowly, I’m learning my own soul is repairable, when I read quotes about how losing someone dear felt as if part of them had died as well. I know that feeling. When he passed part of myself died too. But, with time I know I will become whole again, perhaps this is why my own writing has become such a tender spot for me. I miss him reading each line I wrote, miss him commenting about a scene that was amusing or even crying when a character of mine would experience turmoil.

He was definitely one of a kind and someone I will never forget.

There’s a story within a story I remember writing in the Crescent Bound series, about the Mabon celebration, how the seasons change, how Autumn brings about a new perspective on life.

I’m going to add it here,  and pray there is some type of peace and harmony for us all.

“This story I’m about to tell you may seem sad, but we must not forget the message woven within. This is the time when the warmth of summer days leaves us, and the chill of winter nights welcome us. The seasons change as each takes their time for rest. It is also a time when our goddess leaves to go on her journey to the underworld in search of her lost love. Deep in the sacred woods, she travels many nights before coming to a shore where she makes a bonfire, much like this one.

She dances with the gracefulness of the goddess she is. Her chant fills the lonely evening air and carried away in wisps of the wind. Fast and long she dances. Spinning around her spirit lifts up and soars downward, beginning her journey to the underworld. I will not speak of the horror she came upon, from hideous giants, flesh-eating beasts, to fire-breathing dragons, none were able to block her determined path.

The love she held inside fed her desire and strength to forage onward. Being here time and time again she remembers well what lay in wait. She avoids most of the dangers. After passing safely through a swamp that was infested with blood leeches, she arrives at a cavern. Once inside, she finds a stream flowing within. Her bare feet pad slowly as she walks through the shimmering stream. The goddess follows the waters which appear as liquid gold to her eyes. She arrives at a pool filled with pure golden light, the air around her smells of honeysuckle and she knows in that moment she has found her lost love.

Her love lies in the deepest of sleep, the sleep of death is upon him. She begins to raise her voice in song and wash his body with the waters from the golden pool. Her song echoes all throughout the cavern, ringing true with the power of love, of dancing in a meadow in the spring, of the warmth of the sun, of the smell of sunflowers, and of the feel of cool waters on a hot summer day.  All the things the sun king is able to bring to the earth, if only he lives.

After what seems an eternity, he awakens and looks at her. “My goddess, I have no strength to return in this body. I am not able to survive the journey back to the living. But I can dissolve my body and go back into you as a spark of life. A spark that you can nurture and grow until the time is right to be ordained. With his final breath a burst of white light leaves his body and turns into pure energy and joins with our goddess. The infusion ages her but she carries a new sun within her.

 

Copyright © 2018 by Karli Rush