Tuesday, January 23, 2007


My youngest son, Jacob, loves green shirts. Which wouldn't be such a big thing, but what with his autistic features, this isn't always just a "I'd really prefer a green shirt" kind of thing. No, this is a "I want THAT green shirt and if you don't find the one that I want and put it on me I'm going to scream and fight you every square inch on the way to preschool."

Today was just such a day. Fighting to get him into his jacket because we just didn't happen to have that particular green shirt clean today. Fighting to get him into his carseat. Fighting to get the safety belt on him. Fighting to KEEP the safety belt on him. Putting up with his screams and wails every second of the trip to preschool.

Then I pick him up a few hours later and he has forgotten all of this, certainly holds no anger towards me for the events earlier in the day. Instead, he looks up to find me and has a look of pure joy as he yells out "Dad! You picked me up!"

And I pick him up into my arms, and he whispers in my ear "I love you, Dad."

"He called a little child and had him stand among them. And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 18:2-4


Alex said...

Ditto on a beautiful post about a son and his wonderful parent.

We've had those clothing struggles around our house lately. No, you can't wear shorts when it is 40 degrees out. No, you can't wear the same shirt every day of the week. Sigh.

Earthbound Spirit said...

Have you tried buying seven of the exact same green shirt? A similar approach works, sometimes, with my nephew who has Asperger's.

steve said...


Many thanks for your kind words. It's nice to be reminded how other parents have similar struggles.

earthbound spirit,

Thanks for your comment and thoughtful suggestion. To be honest, I think something like that would work in the sense of pacifying him momentarily, but then he would never learn to be more flexible about his choice of clothing. So even though it's hard, it's a fight we choose to have in order to improve his flexibility in thinking.

Earthbound Spirit said...

It was just a thought. G. is in his early 20s now, and still is very set in his ways about what he will and won't wear. It was a major event when he actually put on the hoodie we gave him for Christmas this year - right out of the package! It was similar enough to his favorite shirt!

Of course, I'm still trying to convince my 16yo daughter that she has to wear a jacket in the below freezing weather...