|Declyn, my youngest son.|
My youngest son is no longer autistic. Sure, he still has some of the symptoms that he struggled with when he was young, just no longer to an overwhelming or disabling degree.
The intense empathy and sensory issues that once ruled his moments and made the work of "passing" a consistent struggle are now simply almost comfortable quirks. Where he once avoided any situation with too many people and their emotions, he now chooses wisely. Where he once vomited all the time and without warning, he now listens to his gut (tee hee!) and rarely looses his lunch. At first he needed our help to find ways that he could "handle" these things, now they are just part of his human condition. Not disabling; alive and aware. He's wonderfully lucky to have an international autism expert, autism mom, and once upon a time autistic individual for a Dramma (aka Grandma)!
Boy, am I happy for him!!! Whether he gets accepted into the theater group or not, this is a beautiful big deal! Only a few years ago I watched him want to audition but spend all of his energy and ideas on instead coming up with reasons why he couldn't. I saw him backslide a bit into his sensory issues. I saw him struggle with regular teenager fears sprinkled with autistic flavoring.
This year, though, he used the energy and ideas to prepare for the audition. I must admit, he's doing better than I was at his age. When I was sixteen I still used my story mind to avoid such situations. But then, it was easy for me.
One of the things I've noticed with my autistic loved ones - brothers, sons, mom - is that they have had to figure out social cues and sensory tricks in more specific ways than me, and so they seem to be much smarter in these areas. They question what I don't question, and they take time to understand what I shrug and go along with. And so, when it comes time to go after what they want, they have a skill I avoided having for a long time. They ask the right questions of the world and themselves and decide to understand how to solve them.
I truly hope my son is accepted into the theater group today. But regardless, he's certainly won the role of AMAZING YOUNG MAN in the movie of LIFE!!
Good luck and congratulations, Declyn!!
Hugs, smiles, and love!!
Autism Answers with Tsara Shelton (Facebook)
UPDATE: He got into the theater group!! He sang Beth by Kiss, and here's a peek at him working on his monologue. A scene from FAST TIMES AT RIDGEMONT HIGH. Enjoy!