I absolutely love the Fourth of July, it is one of my favorite holidays…
I’ve never been one that has done a lot on it other than celebrate it with family and friends… When I was growing up my parents had a summer home in Holland, Michigan… And I remember having awesome memories with my dad on the fourth… Who would’ve been 95 on July 3… And it is July 3 today, as I am writing this blog…
I miss my dad very much, I loved my dad he had a very strong influence in my life. He died in 1982 and I miss him every day.
But on to happier topics… The Fourth of July has always symbolized America’s freedom! the freedom to be your own person, the freedom of speech… the freedom to say what and who we believe in… The freedom to worship and many more freedoms… I’m not gonna go into some of what I see eroding right now, because I don’t want to turn this into a political message.
I am writing this because I want to talk about something very important to me and my family… Autism Independence!
Right before Peyton was about to turn 18, I said to him aren’t you excited you’re going to be an adult? he never really responded and finally one day, I sat him down and said…Peyton please aren’t you excited you’re going to be an adult? he started to cry and said no… I couldn’t figure out why.
I finally got him to admit to me that he was so afraid he was going to have to move out, when he turned 18… I never made any of my kids move out at 18, but they also knew that there was a certain amount of responsibilities that came along with them being adults.. such as going to college and or getting jobs etc…… Basically being an adult.
Peyton realized that he may never have that for independence, because he is an autistic adult. This broke my heart, I talked to him and told him he can live with his dad a.k.a. Mark and I for as long as he had to.
If that’s forever than that’s fine. There are many things that Peyton is very independent with, he designs websites, he builds graphics, he does PowerPoint… he cooks.. he cleans… he does laundry.. he writes blogs, he does all kinds of things!
I don’t know that Peyton can actually ever really truly live on his own. There’s no shame in that, because as I have always said Peyton is an autistic adult.
One of the things that Peyton brought up to me was, who’s gonna be there when his dad and I are gone… I’m lucky that I have three older children, who have all promised to be there for Peyton forever… But this is some thing that really lays on the hearts of so many autism parents, as it does land mine and Marks heart as well…
For Peyton his adult Independence is having his own room.. his own Studio/man cave and other awesome things… this may not be everyone’s definition of Independence but it is Peyton’s.
So while we celebrate the Independence Day for our beautiful country, the United States of America… Let’s remember that independence isn’t the same for everyone.
Mark, Peyton and I will be hitting the road in mid September… To share our stories, as well as many other’s stories and how we are working to Turn autism into Awesomism.
Be sure to sign up for our email list, so that you can be up-to-date on our travels, as well as be involved in our upcoming zoom calls, some exciting giveaways and much much more!
Have a Safe and Blessed 4th!