Hello! I created this blog in August 2013 while supporting my autistic son in his move from school to adult services. Despite years of planning for this transition the process was stressful and frustrating, culminating in me taking legal action on Dylan’s behalf. Setting the blog up seemed a good way of sharing what I’d learned with other families. Little did I realise that it would be two years before Dylan was allocated an appropriate setting nor could I have known how challenging the journey would turn out to be.
The story of my battle to secure a specialist placement for Dylan is told in some of the posts on this blog (in the Policy and Provision category). There are also some more general pieces on the challenges and celebrations of caring for someone who is autistic. A contents page on the blog provides links to individual posts and a theme cloud and categories button in the right sidebar identifies posts by subject.
When Dylan moved into residential care, the challenge became learning to live without him. In September 2015, therefore, the focus of the blog shifted as I documented the first 100 days of transition in an attempt to record the impact on me of ‘Living With/Out Autism’. Since the 100 days ended I have posted occasional pieces and updates on Dylan’s progress.
Autism affects individuals and families differently and my posts can only offer accounts based on the particular experience of myself and my son. My work as an educator affects my views on autism and the choices I make in relation to my son and these perspectives will sometimes be evident from my posts. Perhaps more importantly, however, I am a poet. My orientation to Dylan and to autism is, I believe, as much a consequence of my poetic practice as any perspective I might have developed as an academic or mother. This creative and writerly approach to understanding and responding to autism influences many of my posts. I hope that you find them interesting.
Thank you for reading!
22 thoughts on “About This Blog”
Ah, now see, like I said, I needed more input before I reacted to what you said. I thank you for sharing. I know it can be very hard and at other times very easy. The karmic god of ha ha on me just struck…my son just forgot how to heat soup and know the size of the pan and well at least now the counters are clean 🙂
Ah! Hello again Elisa – glad to see that you’ve been looking around the site. Your soup pan is making me think…
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I just read your passages and saw your pictures over on Christy and Jennie’s Words site. Your words and photos filled my heart with joy-especially the story about Dylan and his perception of the leaves being hair. It made me cry!
I have no first-hand experience with autism, so I look forward to reading more of your talent and learning as I go. I hope you don’t mind if I tag along.
Hello Michelle – thank you for taking a look at my blog and for your lovely comments. It would be great to have you go on reading my posts – welcome! I’ve no way of knowing, of course, but I suspect that as many (maybe more) of the people who follow this blog don’t have direct experience of autism themselves. I like that 🙂 There are so many things which Dylan has done and shown me over the years which have moved me, but like you I find his description of the trees growing hair so beautiful. Every Spring that’s what I think when I look at the new leaves – not long now! Very glad to meet you through Christy and Jennie – any friend of Christy’s is friend of mine (I haven’t kept this blog for very long but I have been so touched by her courage, generosity and friendship). Look forward to finding out a little more about you too, as we go… Liz
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Hello again, just poking around a little. The time stamp on your comment suggests you’re on the other side of the pond but the words you use, not so much. Either way, it’s always interesting to see how others live their lives and what some may not recognize as an adventure but is laid out before you so obviously to travel with a companion. I bet he sees many twists and turns in the road most including yourself would be completely oblivious of.
Hi there – thank you for looking around 🙂 You’re so right about the twists and turns – although I try hard to understand Dylan’s world and see through his eyes I think I am definitely in iceberg territory – I am simply scratching at the surface. At the moment things are pretty tough for Dylan and I’m struggling to make sense of what’s going on enough to help him – so, yes, plenty of stuff I’m oblivious off. Very interesting that you pick that up about my language – yes I’m in England but years ago I lived briefly in the USA (Boston area) and a finely-tuned ear can hear the legacy 🙂
😉 I’m from the north too but they call me mid-western, although I don’t live there now.
I loved my time there – met some great people, still friends. Oddly though, my escape narrative of return is a dream of the mid-west rather than Boston/NYC. I drove east coast to west before I left to come back to England and fell totally in love with those big skies 🙂
I haven’t been that far out west myself actually, but from the beginning of america Michigan was considered west, then mid west so the vernacular is somewhat similar, although a bit distinct kinda like Canadian. But shhh, no one knows where I’m from.
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ha ha love it 🙂
You can edit that to say bahamas or somewhere to keep the intrigue if you like.
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I love this blog! I have 2 siblings on the spectrum and have written about growing up on the spectrum. i am now a devoted follower!
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Thank you! I am very interested in the sibling dimension – some of the most illuminating perspectives come from brothers and sisters I think 🙂 Liz
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