Sunday, November 13, 2011

Welcome to "Happy Trouble"!

What's it about?  

Ben, my 4 YO son, has an autism spectrum disorder (ASD), specifically pervasive developmental delay/not otherwise specified (PDD/NOS) with sensory integration dysfunction (SID).   I want to share what we've learned about parenting a kid like that.

If you're a parent, you know that having a kid is a completely different world from being childless.  When you have a kid with "special needs", it's like that...but another order of magnitude different.

Why "Happy Trouble"?  

Ben really enjoys being mischievous.  For example, on school days, he and his brother and I walk out to the car, backpacks loaded.  It's not a long trip to the car, but he meanders a bit, despoils the vegetable garden, leaps down the steps (sometimes climbing them again to repeat his leaping), and then creeps slowly towards the car.  I open the door and say, "Get in!" at which point he turns and runs down the drive towards our very busy street, giggling maniacally.  I chase him down and scoop him up, giving him a toss in the air.  He grins at me and says "Trouble!" with great satisfaction.

Over time, he's decided that trouble is his nickname for when he's in a mischievous mood.  I think it was when my wife got home from work (which is the high point of his day) that he first coined the phrase "happy trouble".  We all thought it had a ring to it.

OK...I know that "trbl" is slang for "terrible", but according to the urban dictionary it's a combination of both terrible and trouble. was taken by a passionate Slovakian artist who is a massive fan of Mr. Alan Rickman.  I kind of like her art.

Why read it?

If your situation is like mine, you don't have a lot of time to browse the web.  In fact, you may think going to the bathroom by yourself is a luxury and you would really like to take a shower.  I'm going to try to keep it concise and light and occasionally say something useful.

Feel free to comment on this stuff, and share your own insights.  Being a parent to an autistic kid can be a very isolating situation, but we all come up with ways to deal with it and if we share the good ones, we'll all benefit.

What's with the Amazon ads?

Occasionally, there will be links to stuff on Amazon here.  If you follow the link and purchase the item (in fact, if you purchase anything during that browsing session), Ben's school will get a percentage of the purchase price.  I'm not making anything off this -- the checks will go straight to the school.

I'm calling it a school, but it's more than that.  They do very intensive therapy that's proven to help kids with ASD.  They partner with universities to conduct research and also train service providers.  We feel really, really lucky to be there.

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