Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A spring thought

We've had a beautiful day today in Salt Lake City, and I spent an hour of it in my front yard trimming away old growth to make way for new leaves, raking up leaves and deadfall to reveal the sprouting plants, and pulling out the unwelcome interlopers that are taking root. As I clipped and pulled, I thought about the word "renewal" and the idea of things becoming new again.

When it comes to spring, for me, renewal is a bit of a misnomer, because it's more like getting back in touch with something that I've long treasured but I've forgotten, neglected, or taken for granted. It's auld lang syne rather than making new. I don't think it's a coincidence that in the past few months, I've put aside my "oh, I'm too busy" excuse and actually called and emailed neglected friends. This blog is no exception--instead of thinking, "Oh, I've got to come up with something to post," I'm now thinking, "Oh, I've got to write a post about that!"

So here's to spring, renewal, and rediscovery.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

"There's a special place in heaven for mothers of children with autism."

Ok, last night I read Jenny McCarthy's book, Louder than Words, in one sitting. And despite my misgivings about McCarthy's public statements, I recommend this book with enthusiasm. (The title of this post is a quote from the book.) Lots of books about autism tell the stories of how parents learned about their children's autism, but few writers bring the experience to life the way McCarthy does. It's often painful to read, but I can identify with lots of these experiences. If you want to know what it's like to have a little child with autism, read this book. I still differ with McCarthy on a few things, but I really appreciate what she's written.

The biggest difference between my experience and McCarthy's is not that she's a celebrity and I'm not, but that her marriage fell apart during this experience, and mine, I am glad to say, became stronger. I cannot express my gratitude at having a partner as loving, committed, and involved as Mike, and I know how lucky we are to have each other in this journey.