How do you cope?

Being a mother of three little boys with autism I find that people are always saying to me – how do you cope? Or it must be hard work or when I post a picture of my art or something it’s like – how do you find the time.
It is actually annoying sometimes.
It’s like the question how do you cope?
Well you just do! The thing is my children didn’t ask to be born and so they are autistic, so what! I do what I have to do to help them in any way that I can as any parent would. Autism is a challenge but so is parenting any child so is life one great big challenge.
I hate it when people say how do you cope. I especially hate it as 2 of my older children spent a few years in foster care when I was ill with severe depression, it was a voluntary placement as I was not able to care for them properly myself at that time in my life and once you have been through all of that you can never kind of completely close the door on the past.
Well because me and my older children have had that particular life experience which was years of gut wrenching heartache I can say in all honesty that my whole life time and energy is devoted to being a good mother. It is all I care about.
I cope very well thank you with being a mother of three little people with autism. I treasure my kids. I find autism fascinating it is a learning curve. I enjoy every day.
My boys are happy delightful little boys and all I can say is that I do believe that when somebody says to me – how do you cope – it is perhaps a reflection on how they themselves think that they would cope of they had my life!
It is hard work but you don’t see me complaining about it ever actually even though we never get a break and yes I do manage to squeeze in one or two hours every other night to spend doing my painting or to read a book or whatever. I have a supportive husband and those one or two hours every other evening that I spend on myself is my escape:

Autism role play

It’s like today when the paediatrician asked if one of my autistic boys did any role play like pretending they are a superhero or policeman or whatever little boys pretend to be, or did he pretend to do things and if he likes dressing up clothes.
The answer to those questions are not in the sense that maybe they should!
With one of my autistic boys he pretends he is a lawnmower and sits on the grass and hums like the lawnmower and pulls out all the grass and then moves onto the next bit! Another who skips and gallops, and will sometimes try to eat his food by putting his head down to the dish instead of using his hands and any cutlery! Then there is the youngest who is just like a kitten! just think maybe children with autism take role play to a whole new level pretending to be objects and animals lol! In terms of pretending to do things like pretend food play and pretend hoovering and cleaning stuff they will not be fobbed off with toys they want the real thing! There is some serious Hoovering obsession going on here!
Dressing up clothes? They will put them on but there is no characterisation in play like they are pretending to be that character.
My 5 year old non verbal autistic son has recently developed his interest on hiss Buzz Lightyear costume, I know it’s because he recognises the character and likes him, he is getting like wanting to wear it a lot of the time, so it’s a really good thing.

The Pigeon – Patrick Suskind (1987)

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A little about the author – Patrick Suskind lives in Munich and was born on 1949. The pigeon was his second novel, first published in 1987. He is best known for his 1985 internationally best selling novel Perfume.

The pigeon is a short psychological story at 77 pages long. It is set in Paris and is a tale about a day in the life of a bank security guard Jonathon Noel.
Jonathan Noel is a character who has chosen a rather solitary existence for twenty years and his security net is his small Parisian apartment, which is no more than a room and a bathroom along a hallway which is shared with the other residents of the building.
His life is predictable, routine, safe and uneventful.
It is in stark contrast to his wartime childhood when his parents disappeared and he was taken into hiding until the war was over. Following that a disastrous marriage with his wife running away with another man.
With a mistrust of people and as a defence he has constructed his life withdrawing from society and an avoidance of other people. His contentment is in the sameness and predictability of his every day life.
One morning Jonathon’s life is thrown into complete disarray by the appearance of a pigeon in the communal hallway.
The very sight of the bird puts him into a state of panic, fear and total anxiety. It totally absorbs his mind to a point where he becomes completely irrational and his whole day is thrown into chaos and uncertainty due to this one unpredicted event. He feels that his life is completely ruined.
This book is a tale which examines fear, confronting it and the anxiety of losing control. A short and rather odd but compelling novel I would recommend it.

I have really neglected my blog lately! I have just been so busy so much going on in my life and things have been really difficult. I have been thinking about writing more openly about my life and the many life experiences I have had, I sometimes think it would be quite therapeutic and maybe some of what I have been through myself some people could relate too or maybe what I have learned from it all which is a lot, could be helpful to others that may be going through the same experiences themselves and it could be a good thing. I am just a bit scared of hurting people I love by being brutally honest, I don’t want to stir up painful memories but on the other hand I do feel that some people do need to confront the past, lay the ghosts to rest and try to find some peace of mind. The trouble is that it can be hard to do that by yourself unless you ask for help but some people will not ask or accept any offer of help or any counselling. They bottle it all up and it ends up destroying them and the truth is that they will never be able to find any happiness in life because they just become a prisoner of their pasts, caged in behind their memories of how things once were. Even the happy memories can tear you apart it is sad but it is true. But you have to let go.
In all honesty being a creative person has probably the one thing that has kept me sane amidst all the complications of the dynamics of my family and the bullshit of life. I hope to post some poems soon but really I have had no physical or mental energy lately to do much creatively. I am not one of those poets who churn out half a dozen poems every day. You know what they say you can’t rush art. I have also been working on a painting of Yoko Ono and John Lennon in which little spare time I have. And that is the problem when you are creative in more than one capacity and love both equally. One art suffers for the other and it is my writing that is suffering: