Autism and finding your connection

It's funny. When you are in the “trenches” of life you don't realize how hard you are fighting your battle until you are able to put down the fight for a moment. When you have a moment of peace. It's in that moment you realize just how tight your grip actually was. Like when your knuckles are white from gripping something so tightly and feeling your fingers tingle once you let go.... You realize just how worn out you had become, and that "worn out" feeling had been your normal at one time. That is where I am. For today at least.

 

It doesn't get sweeter than this!

When Dawson was diagnosed with autism 3 years ago, almost to the day, I was ready to start the fight. I was ready to fight WITH Dawson to help him through the tough stuff, and FOR Dawson when he wasn't able to fight. Maybe that's where you are today. If so, I want you to know that you are an awesome parent to an awesome kid!! What you do everyday is tough, it doesn't go unnoticed, and you are stronger than you think. Keep doing the hard work!! This hard work will lead to small victories that will add up to big victories!! Celebrate each victory. You've earned it!!

I have a lot of friends, family, and acquaintances that ask me for advice for a parent they know that just found out their child has a diagnosis of autism, ASD, high functioning autism, or "on the spectrum". Although I don't have a degree specializing in Autism Spectrum Disorder, I am an expert at navigating life as an Autism Momma. I know what it feels like to want your child to worry less about the silly little things, like the "Joker" car you haven't seen for 3 days but your son can't sleep until it's found and put on the shelf. I know what it's like to hope that your son with autism can make it through at least half of the football game his sister is cheering at without feeling so overwhelmed by the crowd & noise that he covers his ears and starts to melt down. I know what it's like when your son with sensory issues regarding his hands and feet gets a large splinter in his foot and would rather feel the pain of the piece of wood in his foot than possibly allow you to try to get it out for fear you will be touching his feet. I know what the grief process looks like. Although you didn't lose someone, you lost the dream or the idea of what you thought life might be like. So, as an Autism Momma expert my best advise is to find your connection. Find what connects you with your son or daughter.

For Dawson and I, we connect through our trips to target & Starbucks as well as through reading books. While at Target we had to work hard to be patient, but we always turn it into an adventure. This is still one of his favorite things to do. It’s a great motivator for him AND it’s our time together. Plus, we get a new Pixar Cars car while we are at Target.

Dawson didn’t always enjoy reading books. It wasn’t until I wrote & illustrated a book about the sweet connection Shae & Dawson had that Dawson began to enjoy books. It gave Dawson such a sense of self to see his illustrated cartoon self and read through the book. I have probable read that book 4,000 times and the cover has ripped. But, it is so worth it because I get to spend time with Dawson... Connecting. And sometimes connecting can feel like the biggest hurdle.

My Mom, known by her grandkids as GG, connects with Dawson by building epic race tracks that are multiple stories or spending one on one time organizing and cataloging his entire collection of cars.

Each one of us has a special way of connecting with Dawson. We do what he loves, even if it isn’t our favorite thing to do. It’s our way of investing time and showing Dawson how very much we love him... through our time connecting.

These pictures are from a recent football game where Shae was cheering and Dawson was playing with cars. You can tell by his face that Dawson was having a blast, AND he stayed for the entire football game!! He even made a few friends and shared his cars. You see, he just wants to connect too. It took seeing these pictures to make me realize this.

Are you a builder or breaker with your words?

Are you a builder or a breaker? Ephesians 4:29 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up.” The coach that inspires his team to make a come-back in the last half of the game is a builder. The teacher who encourages their students that they can achieve their dreams is a builder. The parent who reminds their child how proud they are of them for trying their best is a builder. These are people who are using their words and the weight they carry to build others up. To inspire others. Are you a builder? Not sure just how much words can affect another person? Lets take a look at an experiment of cooked rice & water by Dr. Emoto. One jar was spoken nicely to (thanked), one jar was spoken meanly to (told it was an idiot), and the last jar was ignored. I will link the video here for you to check out. Basically after a month of this the rice that was spoken nicely to (thanked) it looked nearly the same and had begun to ferment leaving a pleasant aroma. The jar of rice that was told it was an idiot became black. The last jar that was ignored began to rot. Its clear that being told mean things did something bad to the rice. It turned black. This is what the words of a breaker do. They break down & mess up what has been built. Are you a breaker? Lets look at another verse on this topic. Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” That verse literally says your words can change a situation. Your words really DO make a difference. God has really been sanding down the rough edges of my heart in this area and reminding me to guard my tongue. As a believer I am called to build others up. As a parent that job is all the more important. I have been a breaker. I have also been indifferent. Not anymore. Let's build something instead!! I want to be a builder. I want the weight of my words to be used to do something good. Proverbs 16:24 “Gracious words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the body.” I want my words to help Dawson heal the areas that he is struggling in. I want my words to encourage Shae, especially when she doubts herself. “Can't” is no longer in my vocabulary. I choose to say, “We are working hard on waiting patiently in line” rather than, “Dawson can't wait patiently in line”. Using the word “can't” is telling others and Dawson that he is absolutely unable to do something. How dare I put permanence on something that is temporary. Dawson is absolutely able to wait patiently in line. It may take practice, but he IS ABLE. When Shae informs me that she can't do a gymnastics move I quickly remind her that she CAN do it with practice. Again, she is putting permanence on a temporary situation. Maybe today isn't the day that she will do that gymnastics move, but with practice, she may be able to do it tomorrow. Let's choose building. Let's choose kindness. Let's get rid of can't. Because you CAN!! You CAN use your words to change a situation. You CAN use your words to build someone up. You CAN use your words to build and encourage yourself. Proverbs 12:18b says, “The tongue of the wise brings healing.” . Before you go, I need you to know that... You are amazing. You are loved. You are doing great things. Kind words build each other up best smile I've ever seenconcentrating childSpeaking truth in wordsThomas the Train

Newborn Baby Photography | Braselton, GA

I'm a little partial to Ryder James, but when you're his aunt I think it's ok. ;o) Of course I had to snag a photo with new big sissy Ryleigh too!! These were a few of my favorites from his session. Congratulations to Ry, Ansleigh & Ryleigh Hanson!! So glad Baby Ryder James is finally here!! Love you all!! Thank you for asking me to take pictures for your family!! I loved every minute of it!! Contact me today to schedule your newborn photography session!! Reneé Britt - TrulySweetPhotography@gmail.com Braselton GA Newborn Baby Photographernewborn-photography-truly-sweet-renee-britt-1775-copyArmy Cavalry Hat Newborn Photonewborn-photography-truly-sweet-renee-britt-1804-copynewborn-photography-truly-sweet-renee-britt-1791-copynewborn-photography-truly-sweet-renee-britt-1778-copy                                                                                                                                                                        

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