puzzle pieces

Sometimes the level of my obtuseness makes me crazy. I used to be able to piece things together quickly. I used to be able see the pieces of the puzzle and align them in my mind even before I started to place them together. I failed at doing that for the last 2 weeks. I was writing a reply to Hemmingplay, who had written positive comments on another post of mine and all of a sudden it hit me. Sudden clarity that was obvious once I saw it. Obviously.

My son with Aspergers has been horrible the last 2 weeks. Brutal. I can not even begin to explain how you how things have been. Unless you can imagine dealing with an uncontrollable, tantrum’ing, over tired 4 year old in the middle of a sugar melt down. Except that he is 20 years old, 6ft 3 and weighs 280lbs.

I have been at my new job…2 weeks…voila! Anyone else see the connection? This job is being used to yo yo me in and out of the house, giving him opportunity to complete small jobs I give him, without my being underfoot to re-direct him. It’s been horrible. He does not adjust well. AT.ALL. So it takes 4-6 weeks to get  a new routine down to where he can not be viscious and unreasonable. Once he is stable, I can tweak and change things to make them work. But the initial groundwork is beyond rough.

Somehow, I forgot that my new job meant an adjustment for him. He is in fact not actually the worst person you have ever encountered, he is simply on the autism spectrum. But just far enough along it that he just comes across as a fucking asshole as opposed to autistic. Seriously, it is so hard for me to deal with him at times like this. He becomes close to violent and that triggers me to near panic. I can’t remember to stay focused and stable when i am fighting myself as well as him.

I have to fight so hard to reign myself in to not lose it, that it makes me nauseous. Physically sick and gastrointestinal upset. I dread it. I dread going to sleep because I can’t stand the thought of waking up and having to deal with him again. The last week I have implemented a morning routine where he HAS to get up and go on an hour long dog walk before I see him.  His father HAS to get him up. If I try he loses his mind and the entire day is a write off. Once he returns from the walk, he is  closer to neutral and I am on my way out the door.

I know dealing with him through near avoidance is not ideal, but it works when going through transitions with him as I can not deal with the fear he makes me feel when he gets that crazy look in his eyes. When he is out of control he can hurt me and I am not willing to risk my safety. I know this sounds extreme…but unless you have seen someone his size lose it, you don’t get it. Unless you have been attacked, you don’t know how hard  the panic hits you between the shoulder blades.

His siblings are working with me on how to handle him over the next few weeks to get him back on track. I have concerns how this person is ever going to manage on his own or how I am going to limit my interaction with him as an adult. We will never have the traditional type of relationship that many people have with adult kids. That makes me sad. I am grateful for his abilities but there are days when his challenges are too much for me to handle.

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14 Responses to puzzle pieces

  1. Jayne says:

    I can completely understand how you could not see some things. You have a lot of factors to keep in line. I think you are amazing for not losing your mind already, but I get it. You do what you have to do as a parent. I was actually happy to hear how others in the family are taking care of your son so you can leave the house in the morning. By the way, you don’t sound one bit crazy to be talking about protecting yourself from a large, frenzied, uncontrollable and angry man. Take care of yourself. xo, Jayne

  2. dragonfly918 says:

    Honestly don’t know how you get thru the day. I would have been long gone.

  3. kali4ever says:

    I feel you, and I salute you; so hard to give your all consistently over a long period of time under these circumstances.

  4. dievca says:

    I am glad that you have see the connection with these two weeks — better late than never. Give yourself a break, you have a great deal going on. Hopefully the link can help give you a game plan.

    • rougedmount says:

      that’s exactly what it has done..rather than fight the current, you have to swim to shore at an angle – it takes longer but you still get there eventually.

  5. Ned's Blog says:

    The easiest pieces of the puzzle are sometimes the hardest to recognize. And I’m not just saying that because I stink at puzzles. The important thing is that you found it. Like you said, routine — and a change in routine — are huge factors in the life of a child with autism. After one of my son’s tantrums, I used to call it his “re-boot” time, when he would essentially shut down for 30 to 60 minutes until he was able to process and re-start. Having that hour-long morning re-boot sounds like a good plan that takes you out of target range until he is ready. Kids with autism (particularly with Aspergers) always have a reason they are upset. The frustration and anger come from not recognizing or being able to communicate how they feel about it. Now that you have, the insight you can give him should make a big difference.

    Kudos to you for always trying to understand.

    • rougedmount says:

      that’s so funny; i used the terms “re-set” all the time. i used to explain it to people, that he was like a satellite dish that had been moved and the transponder is searching for the new signal – there is nothing but static until he can re-set to the new frequency,so I very much like your re-boot analogy. I live with this knowledge daily, which is why I can’t believe I missed this for so long. And 2 weeks with a kid who loses his mind every day is endless.

  6. Though not having a child with the level of challenges you do, I found this book, and Gene Stallings journey with his Down Syndrome son an inspiration for me when I was in my own dark places.

    Gene had a great interview with Focus on the Family (which I couldn’t find – sorry). If you feel like you might need something to help encourage you, that book and Gene’s interview could be worth finding.

    Though I don’t physical fear any of my children, I carry a lot of fear for them and that anxiety can cause real physical symptoms. I know the difficultly you go through and I pray the steps you have taken, and will take, lead to a better place for you all.

    Anyway – I hope that words of support from your fans can somehow help you in some way.


  7. iceman18 says:

    I feel for your challenge and admire your strength and courage. Amazing!

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