The kids are doing well, I would say. Excellent, if you compare them to a few years ago.
I have been fighting for free time. I got drunk on free time over the holidays and now I am left bereft. I understand their need for it, I am glad I can give them this much. I get less, they get more, but they need it. They thrive on it.
I have been thinking a great deal about autism, trying to use it as a lens with which to puzzle out my childhood. But it seems to be instead a prism, rather than a microscope, and the blindingly painful light that was my life before diagnosis is now splitting into rainbows. I think there is only color going forward. The past is what it was. I am how I am, how I was, and there was no diagnosis commonly available for verbal ASD when I was growing up. I was tested, believe me. Tested and tested in every humiliating way.
The children ask about their father more frequently. What was once a rare question, asked with a quaver, is now a straightforward request for clarification. ¨Why did our father act all crazy?¨ Because crazy, you know. They want me to lay it out, though, and I do. I take them through the steps, the ever worsening spiral, the refusal of medical intervention-at their prompts. I don´t tell them more than I have to. I leave out some things for when they are older, like judgement.
I am doing exposure therapy for my PTSD. It is fucking grueling. I might abandon it. It is a sort of torture, to remember a people and these places and the words I am forgetting. I deny my children their own culture, you know, the less I deal with it. Not that they want to know, but they are small, their culture is old, far older than they can fathom. So I feel a sort of parental obligation to remind them how to reply, what this food is called, etc. There are surely nice people in their culture, surely just their family is this sick. It cannot all be culture, can it? I forgot how to count over ten and I didn´t even miss it. I stopped babbling to myself in the car in other languages, five out of seven days. All I speak is English. It´s true. I have no right to speak pidgeon. There is no one who understands any of it here. Foreign languages in toddler speak just don´t fly, anywhere.
I am just thinking, too much. Trying to figure out who I was and who I am and if I can reasonably reconcile any of then with now. I am examining my parenting to see if my children are getting my best, improving what I can. I am cutting sugar. I am working at it, at all of it.