I've been working really hard lately to focus on the silver linings. Always looking ahead. Letting go of grudges.
But, sometimes, it's hard.
Here on the blog (well, blogs, since this isn't my first rodeo. See thee "about" page), I've always been really open with our lives. I've always been honest that I have two, "high-functioning" kids, and honest about how that means nothing in the midst of a rage-fueled meltdown, the lack of friends, or the myriad of other things that come along with autism.
But, our autism, heck, the two different "autisms" we deal with in this house, are just that. Our "autisms". I don't know what profoundly affected folk go through. I don't know what it's like to see autism as only a gift. I've made that clear many, many times. I speak for us, hope some people get something from my writing, but know we all walk different paths.
I also try really hared to remember other people have their own stories. Everything is relative. What's awesome or horrible to you, could be the total opposite to someone else.
But, sometimes, I feel bitter. Probably a bit jealous. I read blogs/status updates/Twitter feeds where someones worst day would be a welcome change here. I think to myself, if that is the hardest thing this person/family goes through, they should consider themselves lucky.
The thing is, I don't know the inner workings of people's lives. A lot of the time, what is shared is only part of the picture. Some people don't want to reveal the really bad days, because that might make people uncomfortable, or they deem it too private. On the flip side, there are those who don't want to share the really good days, because that might make them look like they don't belong in the "club".
Some people just want to appeal to the masses, so they mold their stories so that as many people as possible can relate. When it comes down to it, how often do we meet the person on the other side of the computer in real life? We are in complete control of how people view us, and our children, when they log on. Some might manipulate what they write to draw you in, because page likes, or followers, are the end game.
For me, well, I want to be me so much, I've gotten into heaps of trouble staying true to myself, and our story (remember that "about" page?).
So here I am...a middle-class, stay-at-home mom. We aren't rich, we aren't poor, but we are lucky to have the means (most of the time) to fight for our kids. We live in a big house, bought before any diagnosis, and before most of our disposable income went towards all things "autism". Our house is large, yet in dire need of updating, new carpets, and a good power wash. All our belongings are still a mish-mash of what my husband and I brought to our relationship, which sometimes makes me feel less like adult, and more like I'm living in a dorm. My marriage isn't perfect, I can't cook to save my life, and I am proud the one day of the week my house is actually clean. Sometimes I yell at my kids, and sometimes I can be a crappy friend/wife/insert anything else here. I'm a nervous nellie, and loathe confrontation to a fault.
But, I love my family, would do anything you ask of me, and try really hard to be worthy of the oxygen I breathe.
I am constantly pursuing happiness, and trying desperately to shed my "Yankee" negativity (a term from my college days). In my younger years, I went through some hard times, homelessness, helplessness, and the fear of that happening again drives me now. I'm probably not exactly like you, and might be the polar opposite of you, but I appreciate everyone in my life, real, and virtual. Those relationships get me through.
I guess I just wanted, no needed, you to know that I'm just a regular person, trying to connect through my little blog. I'm not trying to make money, write a book, or get free swag. My goal has always been just sharing our lives, our journey, hoping that even just one person feels better knowing someone out there "gets it". I've always wanted connect with my readers on a more personal level (which, yes, has become more difficult this past year, with all the school-blog issues, but let's me honest, most of you probably know who I am). Because of this, I've made great in-real-life friends. Heck, I've made great cyber friends! (READ THIS. That awesome gymnastics Dora...found for me by someone I know only online, and shipped across the country for me. See...that's what I'm talking about).
So, thanks for reading. It means more to me than you'll ever know.
(P.S. Let me know if I can ever find you a cool gymnastics Dora, too)