April 10, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #10 We trust. We trust the bus driver to transport him safely. The bus aides to make sure he is comfortable, not upset and not injuring himself. And after nine years of trying and trusting, we say enough. And we drive him ourselves. We trust. We trust the teachers and therapists in his school to teach him, make sure he is safe, look out for his wellbeing, see that his clothes… Read more

April 9, 2015, Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #9 I’ve noticed a trend during the past few years of families performing Umrah during their kids’ spring breaks. I think it’s great – a wonderful way for families to come together for a moving, spiritual pilgrimage and introduce their children to some of what is most special, most beauteous, most humbling and true about Islam. Year after year, right before spring break rolls around, I get at least five or six messages/emails,… Read more

April 8, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Ali Family Autism Truths #8 As I write this, you lie next to me, the sleepiness finally hitting you with gentle waves, silencing the sounds you make and bringing stillness to your ever-moving limbs. You watch me type, seeing the words flow on this screen, and I wonder if you’re reading what I’m writing. Maybe you can read. Maybe. There is so much I still don’t know about you, about all you may… Read more

April 7, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Ali Family Autism Truths #7 We’re in that stage now where D doesn’t want to go much of anywhere. If he can stay home, then that’s just fine by him. There was a long period of time, until maybe about four of five years ago, that we went nearly everywhere as a family. If for whatever reason where we were going just wasn’t going to work for D, his Baba or I would… Read more

April 6, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Ali Family Autism Truths #6 Our milestones and firsts have never been other family’s milestones or firsts. When it comes to D, we follow his timeline on progress and no other. We face our firsts, sometimes with sadness and fear, sometimes with great joy — always truthfully. I wrote this today on Facebook: More milestones in Autism land for the Ali Family. Every time things feel complacent and just our “norm,” I’m reminded… Read more

April 5, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Ali Family Autism Truths #5 In private conversations with friends today, friends celebrating Easter or having celebrated Passover, we shared some of our frustrations in trying to participate in religious ceremonies and attend services at Houses of Worship with our autistic children. While many churches, synagogues (and even some mosques) and other Houses of Worship have made great strides in tailoring services for all in their congregation, or at the very least creating… Read more

April 4, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Ali Family Autism Truths #4 There are days when it feels like two completely different world exist under my roof. There is D, spending the majority of this first day of his spring break spinning his beads in our bedroom, or in the basement bedroom where his grandparents sleep. The connection is distant today between him and the rest of us, as we enter in that final furious stage of shopping/packing/cooking/readying for a… Read more

April 3, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month, Day Three of Ali Family Autism Truths “A” came with me today when I went to pick up D from school. She and her little brother, H, had half-days, as Spring Break has now begun. With H off to Jummah prayers with his grandparents, A kept me company on my afternoon drive. The other kids rarely come with me when I get D. They’re both coming home on busses at that time themselves…. Read more

April 2, 2015, Autism Awareness Month (World Autism Day) – Day Two of Ali Family Autism Truths On the drive to school, D’s not feeling it. Arms drawn into shirt, the cries are starting and soon enough, he is banging his head intermittently on the back of my seat. He’s not really hurting himself because the seats are soft, but it’s distressing. He’s obviously off — something is amiss. He isn’t feeling well; he is upset about something, The cogs… Read more

April 1, 2015 – Autism Awareness Month – Day One of Ali Family Autism Truths D is sitting downstairs right now picking through his dinner, while one of his therapists, who is playing the care giver role, sits with him. I’ve kicked the rest of the family out for dinner, and I’m sitting upstairs keeping an ear out for any issues that may come up. Call this a dry run. Call this part of my hypervigilance in making sure he… Read more

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