This started out as a rambling post about the challenges of setting expectations for children in general and how difficult that can sometimes be with a child on the autism spectrum.
You would have been bored. It was boring to write.
Let's just say that it is easier than normal to underestimate what your child is capable of when autism is a factor and leave it at that shall we? The other thing I will add is that in some areas we've been pretty good about setting the bar and expecting Sam to reach it and in other areas we, as a family, make things too easy for him.
So going hand in hand with our summer of truth, beauty and goodness is the season of manning Sam up.
Now in some ways Sam is all boy and pretty much registering right where he should be on the testosterone meter. Case in point:
"Hey Dad, I can burp the alphabet...wanna hear? My 'h' is the best."
But when it comes to work, hard physical labor, we've been pretty lax. And honestly, it's been that way just because it's easier and more convenient for us to do it ourselves rather that try showing him and then overseeing him while he does it until he reaches a point that he is capable of doing on his own.
An ugly little parenting confession I know, but you have them too so don't be judging :-)
We talk a lot about what Daddy does to provide for our family and what it means to be a husband and a father...as the only boy with two older sisters and two younger sisters we have to be more deliberate about these conversations. He's responsible for taking care of the trash and making sure it goes out each week along with the recycling bins. I usually have him cart around and move the flats of bottled water for me...you know just that kind of stuff.
Well, this past weekend his Daddy had him moving cinder blocks and toting them from the van to the house to the yard. And, here's the biggie....
Sam cut our
He's ten and I don't know what the normal age is for boys to do this kind of thing but it was a moment for me. (On a side note I'm experiencing a lot of these little bittersweet moments with the kids...they're all growing up so fast!)
Anyway, it was kind of a big deal and of course I took pictures. The boy in the background is my friend Lori's son, Gavin. He got to cut a few rows too...his Momma was taking pictures as well. I'm sure the neighbors thought we were crazy.
Daddy stayed close to help guide when necessary...
Everyone wanted to watch. Well, except for Abby who doesn't look to thrilled with the cards she'd been dealt.
It was hot sweaty work but you know what? When Rob was putting him to bed that night, Sam told him he wished every day could be like one.
Work is good. And my boy is going to be just fine.