It’s one thing to write the occasional blog about what it’s been like, as a parent, to raise a child with autism spectrum disorder (ASD); it’s another to write a whole frickin’ book! Yet here I am and that’s what I’m doing. As a matter of fact, much of the book has already been written. Sort of. (I know, kinda vague, huh?)
Matt is now eight years old and the someday-to-be-published book was planned to be his story through age six. At this point, I don’t know if I should extend that range to the present to include the huge strides he’s made in his development and socialization skills – or if I should save that for a sequel. Probably the latter.
From the introduction:
Matthew Miller is an incredible little boy and like all boys his age – age six at the time of this writing – he’s perpetually covered in bruises, constantly dirty, loves to play with his toys (obsessed is more like it when it comes to Thomas and his trains) and has a near endless supply of energy. He’s happy and healthy, intelligent, self-reliant and mischievous. Definitely mischievous.
Matt is also autistic. Which for him means that wearing clothes isn’t always preferable nor has it been easy to communicate basic wants and needs. When he gets overwhelmed or stressed, his escape is to lie down and hump the ground or run around the house yelling “eeeeeee” at the top of his lungs (a.k.a. “stimming” but more affectionately referred to as “The Matt 500”). He has difficulty forming relationships and his life depends on structure.
In some ways Matt is quite complex. In other ways, he’s a simple little kid. Either way, he has story and it’s one that I hope will give you a glimpse into the life of someone with autism. Perhaps more importantly, I hope this book paints an accurate picture of what it’s like raising a child with Autism Spectrum Disorder, or ASD.
Proposed chapter line-up:
- Part I – In the Beginning
- Perfection Comes Early
- Call in the SEALS
- The Label
- Part II – The Face of Autism
- High v. Low
- Part III – Actions Not Word
- Speech, Developmental, and Occupational Therapy
- Gluten/Casein Free Diet
- Speech Software
- Chiropractic Care
- Part IV – Attitude is Everything
- Expect More
- The Only Easy Day was Yesterday
- Part V – Matt Today
- Wonder Twin Power