Ali Family Autism Truths #22 – The Double Standards

D, A and H, about two years ago.

April 22, 2015 - Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #22At dinnertime this evening, my seven-year-old son H laid a good one one me. His older brother D, who had been sitting with the six of us at the dinner table plowing through his dinner, got up and left the table with a few more bites to go. We called him back - D, come and take another bite! He came back and protested, pushing my husband's hand away as he tried to give him another spoonful.One more bite, D - I said to him. So he … [Read more...]

Ali Family Autism Truths #17 – Brotherly Love

D lying on top of and hugging his little brother, H.

April 17, 2015 - Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #17His brief seven years on this earth is littered with the best exchanges with his big brother, D.Driving home from school the other day:D bhai, do you know that you have a mustache? He says to his 14-year-old brother.Ya! His brother answers back. I stifle my laughter as I drive the car.Or, a few months earlier:Mamma, will you come downstairs with me? (He wants to play on the X-Box and hates going into the basement … [Read more...]

Ali Family Autism Truths #16 – Siblings Who Roll with It

D and his sister, A.

April 16, 2015 - Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #16My daughter came home after school today and told me she had changed her mind after talking to her friends. Of course. After talking to her friends.There is some after-school spring festival happening tomorrow, and I asked her twice earlier in the week if she wanted to go, because a yes answer would require some planning from me -- you know, picking the boys up, who would watch them, would I take them all with me, lots of kids, … [Read more...]

Ali Family Autism Truths #11 – Life Gets In the Way

April 11, 2015, Autism Awareness Month, Autism Truths #11There is a lot going on today, and sometimes the business of living gets in the way of documenting that living. So the truth for today is this: Sometimes we make decisions regarding D and his autism that are not ones we want to make. But he is not the only one in our family. There is 11-year-old A, seven-year-old H, their Baba and me. There are obligations and needs and wants for every family member. And, like all parents of multiple … [Read more...]

The Non-Negotiables

Image courtesy of

As the kids grow, especially with A entering in her tween-coming-into-teen-middle-school-years, our stories, struggles, challenges and joyful moments take on a different flavor. And what I’m able to share with you about those stories changes as well. Because even though A is as eager as ever to see herself in my writing and know that this story isn’t just her brother’s story (which it isn’t), I know there are things that she’d rather not have the whole world know.I’ve been thinking about non- … [Read more...]


Hamza and Mamma

It’s a Friday night, and I’m doing one of the things I love most to do – watching your little legs pump furiously up and down the field as you chase after the ball with your teammates, playing the kind of crazy, legs-a-flying soccer that only five- and six-year-olds can play. There is a cloud of legs and dust wherever the ball goes, and finally, after four seasons of playing, your “one shining moment” has come:You score!You run down the field and leap into my arms, pumping your fists and … [Read more...]

Autism Road Trippin’

Lil D lying down in the back seat, arms drawn in, hood up, spinning his beads, at the end of a very long road trip.

The whole summer was leading to this moment, this trip, this foray back into autism road trippin'. Were we up for the challenge? Would we be fools for trying? Was it too much to ask of Lil D? Was it too much to ask of our other children, of each other?When is it worth it to pursue a family vacation, to push each other's limits, to stretch against the bubbles of our comfort zones in the name of family togetherness, in the name of life lessons, in the name of growth? And when do we say, no, … [Read more...]