Sunday, August 29, 2010

Happy Birthday Planet Autism

I started this blog exactly one year ago.
Time flies, and all that.
Luckily I am only getting more fit and fabulous with the passage of time (oh go on then, laugh hysterically if you have to...I  know I  will.).
Or maybe I'm becoming progressively myopic with age.
Either way, it's a good place to be, and it's not as hard to look in the mirror as I might have feared.
The changes in my little man (and in our family) over the past year are, with no small sense of relief,  a cause for celebration.

It seems impossible that 12 months ago my almost entirely non-verbal, incontinent, fabulously handsome son was getting ready to start Big School.
Well, to be  blunt, he didn't give a rat's ass about starting school...but I was worried sick.

But the stars conveniently aligned in our favour, and Bob's Autism Unit, and indeed Bob himself, have exceeded all our hopes.

Bob is thriving at school and can now recognise simple words and make sentences.  He is learning to add, and is, mercifully, toilet trained.
It'd be nice if he could sit still for longer than 3 seconds, but that's just how he's wired up.

Mostly I have learned that I can be convulsed with fear, but still get on with the job.
I never knew I could be courageous.  As I come from a large family, and then married a great fella, there was always someone around I could hide behind.
But when your kid has autism, you can't afford to hide or you'll let your child down.

I'm still afraid of things (the dark, deep water, lack of wine etc) but I've learned not to allow fear to prevent me from trying things.
I know this all sounds like a big pile of psycho-babble poo, but there's  always a grain of truth in a cliché.

In 1933 Franklin D Roosevelt said "we have nothing to fear but fear itself".
He was talking about  tackling the Great Depression, but we could apply his words to any challenge.


  1. Go Bob:) It is amazing the difference a year can make and I am delighted to hear that it has been a good year for all of you and Bob:) Happy Birthday:) Jen

  2. Proud of you grasshopper. I'm rarely afraid, but I think that's just because I'm always drunk.

  3. Congrats, Jen, and what a brilliant year for you and your little one.
    Franklin D. had nothing to tackle compared to the heroics you perform every day,
    Have a glass of champagne! You deserve it!

  4. Happy Birthday Planet Outreach. :-) I am so delighted to hear what a difference a year can make. It gives us some hope.. A lovely post as usual Jean. Have a glass/bottle/tankard of wine and celebrate with that lovely family of yours. XXX Lainey

  5. Am with you on the lack of wine!
    Happy blogday :)

  6. Happy blogger-birthday Jean! Isn't it a great way of recording all that happens in your life?? Great to look back on. You've done a wonderful job.... congrats!

    (xx) Jazzy

  7. Ooh Happy Birthday Planetoutreach. Bob's progress has been fantastic and it must be great to be able to see each step here. Doesn't sound to me like fear has ever held you back xx

  8. Happy Birthday Planetoutreach well done Bob.

    Mossy Mu

  9. @ Jen, cheers, erm, normal-sized ears
    @ Hammie, drunkenness is the new black
    @ Brigid, a nice glass of something red is being raised
    @ Lainey, the progress of our kids kinda creeps up on you. It's when you stop to compare to a year ago that you think "Wow"
    @ Casdok, it's the worst type of fear
    @ Jazzy, we've come a long way baby
    @ BlueSky, I'm a big coward, but I'm growing a pair

  10. My god is it a year since you started blogging?? It is amazing when you read back after time and see how far you have actually come isn't it! Happy birthday to your blog missus :) xx

  11. @ petunia, I know, it's mad! Thanks XXX