Br. Omar Suleiman Speaks About People with Special Needs and their Families

First I was tagged in the video. Then it was posted to my wall and sent to me via a private message from a friend. Then, every faith-based, especially Muslim-based special needs group I am a part of on Facebook posted this video posted to their respective walls. And though I'm not on Twitter hardly, I'm sure the link is being shared generously there. I'm talking about this video by Imam Omar Suleiman, director of the Islamic Learning Foundation and an instructor at Mishkah Univesity, Al Maghrib … [Read more...]

It was Everything

Lil D and his therapist in the pool.

On our sixth (fifth, or was it the seventh? Who knows? I’ve given up counting) snow day, when it was deemed too unsafe for busses to drive kids to school but I could drive and other desperate parents who needed to get to work or just get their kids out of the house could drive – I pulled my car out onto our unshoveled driveway and uttered a prayer out loud:Please God. Please. Please. Please. Please. Throw me a bone. Let him enjoy this. Let him have a good time. Let things go smoothly. Let it … [Read more...]

Deserving Respect

holding-on

So many things are different now.So many.And though I know that parenting is a journey, and we learn from our early selves and fine-tune our methods as the years progress, that we make many mistakes, and that sometimes mistakes need to be made for us to learn and grow – but that doesn’t lessen the guilt or heartache that I wish I had known then what I know better now.That as important as it is to teach Lil D how to do things he doesn’t very well want to do, or navigate situations he d … [Read more...]

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Lil D and his sister walking together.

Last night, after dinner, with my in-laws out visiting my sister-in-law and my husband upstairs putting our youngest to bed, I drew the curtains on the world and called Lil D to join me on the family room sofa. Amal was already there, nose buried in a Nancy Drew mystery. And Lil D came bounding up the stairs. Seeing me on the sofa, no phone in hand, no laptop open nearby – his face lit up.I could almost hear the thoughts in his head: Ahhhh Mamma. We’re going to chill now. No dis … [Read more...]

Rolling the Dice on Race Day

Daanish and his amazing team on Race Day.

We loaded the adaptive jogging stroller into my car as the rain started. I gathered a blanket and a bag with Lil D’s favorite snacks, water, a change of clothes and his go-to manipulatives (beads, natch!) and put everything on the kitchen counter, so we would be ready in the morning. As it was past 11 p.m. and we knew we had to be up at the crack of dawn, my husband headed up to bed. I stayed up and made a batch of mini-muffins, which I figured would be great for an early-morning on-the-go b … [Read more...]

The Compassion that Awaits You in Autism Land

open gym_edited (2)

With the sun shining brightly through the falling leaves and the excitement of trophies at the end of the afternoon, it was the perfect day for the last session of the 2013 Fall Open Gym season. Some of the kids were on fire, running laps, swinging on the swings and engaging in conversation with their high school partners.Others, like Lil D, were not feeling it so much, having minor meltdowns, crying spells and literal dragging of the feet. But it didn’t matter. Because they were out there i … [Read more...]

Milestones in Autism Land

Daanish on the RV

It’s the milestones that have tripped me up over the years, causing me to focus on what wasn’t happening in the time it should happen, instead of the little, incremental steps forward (and backward, and then forward again) that were unfolding in front of my eyes. Milestones are a tricky thing.Pediatricians tell you when a child should roll over, sit up, crawl, walk, start to babble, say Mama and Dada, imitate your sounds and point to something. When they should start to say little sentences a … [Read more...]


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