Happy New Year.
As I look back over 2012 and toward 2013, I am amazed at how much our children have changed. I think most parents look at their children’s development from school year to school year or birthday to birthday. Both of our children have early calendar year birthdays, so I tend to look at them over a calendar year.
Our older son is growing into a young man. Each day he shows us how he is learning to plan, organize and follow through with school assignments and projects. He is becoming more accountable and responsible. I know somewhere in the journey with our younger son our older son was forced to grow up a little sooner than he should have. He learned many lessons earlier than peers and it has not been easy for him, but he is now a kind, compassionate, fair, strong and independent young man. I could not be more proud.
Our little guy has really come a long way too. At some point during the summer, years of talking to him, with him and at him finally clicked. I do not know if it was the constant repetition of social concepts and skills, age, maturation, the social skills summer camp or a combination but somewhere along the way it clicked. He is now aware that his actions impact the feelings of others, he apologizes spontaneously (although not all the time) for being rude or mean, tries to play cooperatively rather than trying to run the show and is showing more patience and tolerance for frustration, with himself and others.
While I do have one child with Asperger and NT child, they are both individuals who are growing and changing in their own ways at their own rate. We quit comparing them to each other, or anyone, years ago. I also gave up the notion (many, many years ago) that there is any such thing as a normal child. They are all different and individual.
So, for 2013, my wish for my children is to continue to grow and show improvement in areas of need. Whether it is academic, social, emotional, planning, organizing or whatever, I know they will never be perfect and there is no such thing as normal, so I simply want them to continue to grow and improve upon themselves so they can become the amazing men I know they will grow up to be.