Today I had a quick glance over my shoulder at the strides Bob has taken over the last 12 months.
As a rule I try not to look too far forwards, or too far back, as it only tends to result in fear and sorrow
But this was a happy exception to my rule.
This occasion was prompted by Bob's recent, ridiculously gorgeous, school photo (I won't even pretend to be modest here), which I put beside a family picture taken at his big sister's communion last year.
The chubby faced baby being strong-armed into sitting still for half a second 12 short months ago, is now a proper slugs and snails and puppy dogs' tails little boy.
His face is narrower, he is a good deal taller and no-one had to manacle him in a headlock to snap his portrait.
Now that Bob has acquired the sage wisdom of a 6 year old, he can boast several new strings to his uniquely autie bow;
He is toilet trained.
Those four small words belie the two years of sheer torture it took us to get there.
And now that we're finally here, I really, really don't want to look back.
So lets move on.
He is having make-believe conversations on the phone.
It's mostly 'Bob The Builder' related echolalia, but he's very happy to include us in his games.
This is huge for an autie kid.
He learned to google his favourite cartoons on YouTube, often in French and Spanish (which we find wryly comical, given that he still hasn't mastered English), and can navigate his way around a laptop with professional ease.
Just like his mother...
(who thinks there's nothing wrong with parchment and carrier pigeons).
He is copying dances from cBeebies , and is learning to say "hello" and shake peoples' hands when he meets them.
He is definite in his likes and dislikes, and has no trouble saying a loud and clear "NO" when the item on offer fails to meet his precise specifications, kinda like a mini Man From Delmonte.
He can usually go to sleep without an adult lying beside him.
He understands that sometimes he has to complete something he perceives as unpleasant (like homework, or hand-washing) to earn a reward.
When he's playing with his toy Iggle Piggle and Upsey Daisy (from 'In The Night Garden' for those of you under 30 or over 50), he makes them give each other "star hugs".
He can read simple sentences and add numbers up to five.
He wasn't doing any of these things one year ago.
Living in anything but the present can be a dangerous occupation for an autie parent but, now and again, it is surprisingly sweet to indulge in a little retrospection.
I'm not trying to give the impression that Bob is anything other than a fabulously nutty, clever little dynamo who considers clothes little more than a nuisance, and sitting still as an utter waste of time.
He was, is and always will be a sailor on the good ship Autism, but how he is learning to adapt to survive in a world he is overwhelmed by, is as close we can get to the miraculous.