Monday, May 18, 2009

Could we start again please?

Tonight I was in the Glenview hotel watching Boo swim. We go every night now while Bratty goes to Maccas and for a forest walk with her Angel.

There was another mum sitting nearby on the plastic patio chairs with a very small but alert little baby in a carry seat. This little baby was wearing the cutest little stripey jumpsuit and was sitting up looking out at the pool where his two brothers were having a swimming lesson. He seemed to be following the sound of his mothers voice as she called to the boys.

And I had a sudden little wistful thought, imagine if my babies were that small again - but I knew what I know now? And I could use that to help them through what was going to be a tough but interesting couple of years as we found out together that they were autistic and more.

Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't change them for a minute. They are who they are because they have autism and they are strong and healthy and robust and vibrant little individuals.

But I would change many of the decisions I made with regard to their intervention, and perhaps save us a lot of lost time and heartache, as I made my way towards the sort of education and daily support that we are enjoying now.

But we didn't know what we were doing as we stood at the top of that slide and there is no magic wand to take you back. There just isn't.

So I guess all we can do is try and help the others that stand there, wondering whether to jump or climb or slide. And try not to mourn whatever loss of potential that has resulted from my bad decisions along the way.

xx

19 comments:

amcooper said...

I can really relate...beautifully written!

Clive said...

that's what I lot of us think a lot of time! Oh how, I would do things differently, make totally different decisions - but as you said, there's no going back and retracing your steps ....

Anonymous said...

Your thoughts are my thoughts exactly, if we only knew what the future holds the world would be so perfect, when we make important decisions we believe at the time its the right one for us but unfortunately for us it hasn't been an easy ride we have made plently of mistakes along the way thanks for sharing your thoughts it helps to know we're all in this together

K.Line said...

Hindsight is 20/20, as they say. I often wonder if I would have been a better parent to my infant and young child if I hadn't been totally traumatized by the birth complications / completely whacked by PPD and anxiety. But I can't live in that head space because I can't change the past and, I have to imagine, it's led me to my (occasional) parenting insights today. You have helped, not only your own kids, but so many other families with your trial and error awarenesses. That's worth a lot.

Summer said...

Such a nice post Hammie,this is a very inspiring and a good thoughts to share with us.And we thanks you for that.=) Have a great day ahead Hammie.=)

A Writers Den
The Brown Mestizo

La Belette Rouge said...

I saw a MD today and he asked me if I wanted a Chinese baby. He had this couple in his practice and they didn't want the baby. I said no immediately and then all the way home I thought "Why did I say so no? Can I change my mind?" All evening long that beautiful Chinese baby has been haunting me. I am not sure how that relates to your beautiful and wistful post but it is what I thought of when I read of the little baby in the jumpsuit.

And, I'll have you know that I believe that "perfect mothers" do more harm than mothers who make mistakes and can learn from them. I think you are a perfectly imperfect mother for your kids. They are lucky to have you. You are lucky to have them( but you know that).
xoxo

Solo said...

Great post as always.Keep on post,you inspired a lot of person,specially the blogger who support you always.Have a good day.;D

Travel and Living

jazzygal said...

Gosh Hammie....great post.

Most parents must have doubts about decisions they make regarding their children. But, I reckon, none more than parents of Autistic children. Simply because a lot of decisions we make are based on what's available, our location and the country's economic condition at the time. That is a CRAP position to be put in.

It appears that we're lucky. The decisions we made turned out to be the right ones. So far , that is...not one to be complacent me! And even though my child is (extremely!) verbal I still, to this day, look wistfully at 2, 3 and 4 year olds and note how my guy wasn't age appropriate at that time. But, like all of us, I wouldn't give him back!!

So, I'm with Belette Rouge....you are the best parents your children could wish for. xx J

Nan P. said...

Not much I can add to all the comments already posted. I agree with everyone: hindsight is wonderful, we do the best we can with what we have at the time, and YES, you are a wonderful parent.

To me, it sounds like a little dose of "mourning the children you COUlD have had", and that is so healthy every now and then. And, as you say, if you can use your experience to help and support other parents, THAT makes up for any mistake along the way, because it is all part of progress for the common good.

kayla said...

Hello I was directed your way by my good friend nick and i was wanting to see if you had any advice to come my way my son just got diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and im not sure what to do. if you can help me please feel free to get a hold of me thank you so much kindest regards kayla-

Hammie said...

Hi Kayla, you are going to have to contact me via email or give me a link so I can chat to you more. Search for irishautismaction on facebook too if you like. That's me!

Your son is still your son regardless of diagnosis and while things can be tough, they usually get a lot easier when you know what they have, and how to help them.
xx

nan and everyone else: Thanks.
That's really all I can say without getting all worked up about it as I tend to. xxxxxxxxxxxxx

Nick McGivney said...

I don't even know what to say when I come over here most of the time. It starts to sound so repetitive. You inspire me. Please don't carry that as a burden. And give yourself the breaks you earned a million times over already. Not from the kids or the grind, but from the little things that you think you don't get right. Of all people, you get them right, because you fight every step. I'm the Renee Zellweger here, and I will go with you, Jerry Maguire. :)

Anonymous said...

Why do you refer to your daughter as "Bratty" on the blog. You call your son "Boo" which is affectionate, but Bratty? Horrible.

Nick McGivney said...

It's not so bad if you look on it in the affectionate way it's intended, I guess. Poor Hammie also refers to herself as a tiny, furry little squeaky mammal too, which is way off the mar- oh no, wait a minute...

Haha. I'm still upset over the time she called me a dick. And a shit. And a wan- oh, I could go on and on. She's Australian. They're terribly uncouth fuckers. What can you do?

And you call yourself Anonymous too, so there's probably a lot of casual name-calling going on that isn't really accurate or intended. We know she loves Bratty more than her own hamster self, and that's the bit that matters most of all.

Make Do Style or Film Upstart said...

I read this on facebook the other day and couldn't comment via facebook so have returned.
Hindsight is the most wonderful distorter of what options we thought we had then.

As society and time changes we all think we could have made better choice but ....

Your lovely and it is there for all to see!!

Top Bird @ Wee Birdy said...

Oh how I'd love to all over on so many points in my life.

But - you're doing beautifully and all your experience has brought you to the very point you are now. xx

enJAYneer said...

hi there.. nice post.. thanks for sharing!

-enJAYneer-
JAYtography: An Online Travelogue

Make Do Style or Film Upstart said...

PS have tagged you!!

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