“Looking for Louise!”

Me and Louise

The photo is of me and my cousin Louise.

I’m the one doing the kissing. 🙂

I found this old post of mine today and decided to share it again. I believe that my longing to find another girl who might be “like me” was what kept me hopeful as a child/teen. Knowing that there was a possibility that this girl might actually understand me and be able to enter into my world had a profound mystery about it. I grew up undiagnosed with ASD/Dyslexia and mild ADHD it was very lonely and confusing so I was ALWAYS looking for my Louise. I think in a way that search never really ended, I just grew into an acceptance of the social norm.

So this is my story…

Louise is exactly three months younger than me. My Mom and her Mom were best friends and our Dad’s are identical twins, both of our Dads have High Functioning Autism.

Thoughts through old photos

When I was growing up I very often caught my Mom upstairs looking through a box of old photos. There were SO many of me and Louise together as babies, toddlers. So many of my Mom with her best friend together smiling, laughing hugging one another and dancing. It was the kind of friendship I could only dream about.

My Uncle and Louise’s Mom *JK had a very messy break-up and Louise stayed with her Mom. It was so hard on my Uncle, with his lack of understanding, that my Nan and Grandad never talked about Louise again. I have never heard my uncle mention her once, it’s like she never existed.

I know most families have things they never talk about

BUT…As a child I really needed to talk about this and I wasn’t allowed to. Only when I was with my Mom and when we were alone upstairs in her bedroom.

I suppose knowing there was a girl out there that was probably just like me always kept me wondering. Every time I met someone called Louise I wondered if she might be my cousin. I remember being sat in a History lesson once and thinking, I wonder what Louise likes? I wonder if she can read good? I wonder if she has many friends? I wonder if she can draw? I wonder if she would like me? I wonder how tall she is? I didn’t like History much, the teacher was extremely boring…hehehe

When I was about 14 my Mom found out where *JK was living.

My Mom REALLY wanted to see *JK, she told me that she only ever had one best friend and she missed her, but she couldn’t go against the wishes of the family. She said to me, “I can’t keep secrets from the people I love.”

I REALLY thought that I would finally get to meet this cousin who I was so curious about. A message was sent to my Mom from a friend of a friend. This person said that Louise was not AT ALL like her younger siblings. She had brown hair and brown eyes and apparently was a lot like my younger brother, in many ways.

My Mom spoke with the family about what she wanted to do.

There was such upset going on in my Nan’s kitchen that Saturday night. It was decided and my Mom, as always, went along with what everyone else wanted. This is where I fail to understand the behaviour of my Dad’s family.

Yes, my Dad, uncle and my Nan, whom I loved dearly, all show/showed Autistic behaviour. But I can’t understand why they couldn’t see my Mom’s loneliness. She had lost her Mom and her Dad before she was even 30 years old. She was isolated on the other side of our City away from the rest of her family. She had three very demanding children who she gave everything for. She never went out because my Dad never socialised and didn’t like her to either. The only places she ever went were shopping and to Church, even then she got moaned at if she took too long.

I guess what I’m getting at is what is Autistic and what is selfish?

I really struggle to understand this, my Mom did her best to teach us how to put others before ourselves. I’m not always great at it, but I understand it. I saw her example. I have to think quite a lot about how to do this, it doesn’t come naturally for me with my Aspie wiring. I naturally think everyone thinks like me. I have to step out of this and really think it through. Praying it through is actually a lot easier than thinking it through. I’m more relaxed and I believe God helps me understand far quicker this way.

I’m not good with shallow relationships at all

I find them WAY TOO confusing. Those I am close to know who they are because I have regular contact with them. I get to know them because I love them, I think about their needs and pray for them every day.

I am very like my Dad in his Autistic ways but I chose to follow my Mom’s loving example of giving in whatever way I can. I don’t mean to sound harsh towards my Dad’s family. My Nan was one of my very favourite people, she totally loved me and she always accepted me. She was very misunderstood and I know she only ever did what she thought best for her family. This is why I still struggle to understand all this.

I still think about Louise regularly

I wonder if we would be friends as well as cousins? I wonder about her kids and what kind of Mom she is? I wonder if she knows about me? I wonder if she has Aspie ways? I wonder if her kids have ASD too?

What I do understand about all this!

I do believe that God in His loving wisdom used this upset in our family to help me to seek true friendship. I have looked all my life for those who are like me, or would accept me. As a child I thought that maybe Louise might help fill the gap. I know and I understand now, that no matter how hard I look, no matter how many wonderful friends I find, it will only ever be Jesus that can help me to feel whole. I believe that God used this in my life to keep me seeking, and as I write this post I understand that it is His will, His heart, His loving arms that I need to always be seeking.

Love and hugs everyone.

Lisa. xx 🙂

Listen to the Raven

Sharp_Raven_wallpaper_by_LadyLuminalToday we saw a raven and I thought of Elijah. Then in conversation with a friend I mentioned ravens and God using them to feed His friend. I decided to read a post I wrote some time ago and it helped me today.

In 1 Kings 19. I believe there is some wonderful advice that I have in the past put into practice. It works for me. I need to start finding that special time for me again, to keep doing that which works well with my soul.

I have had many thoughts about Elijah and I have read this chapter quite a few times. This post is one I keep returning to because I keep forgetting to let God look after me.

I have an online Bible devotional come through that is a excellent place to start. There is reference to this as I share my thoughts on Elijah. However the devotional started with Mark 1:35

Jesus Prays in a Solitary Place

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.

There are two guys I know

Both of them want to please God and both of them are emotional beings. They were created this way and God understands them. They have all the same feelings and hurts as us. They also have the same fears and anxieties too. The one guy I have written a poem about in the past I also painted a picture for him. He is always there when I hit the pit. He is so real to me, so open honest and transparent. His name is Jonah.

The other friend of mine, his named is Elijah

Elijah helps me to get through my worst meltdowns. God has been allowing past hurts to surface lately and things I never believed I would have to face are being healed. In prayer and through tears I feel me growing. God is so good!

Reading 1 kings 19 is a Godsend for me.

When I first got the email I felt totally drained. I really couldn’t be bothered to read it. But that Still Small Voice inside spoke and said, “Read it Lisa!” I said, “No, reading is too hard and I feel like crap!” Again the voice inside said, “Read it!” I struggled with this for a bit, but I know when God directs it is always for our good. His plans are to prosper not harm.

This is part of what I received and decided to follow.

In the Bible we see many who experienced times of burnout. After Jonah’s miraculous delivery from the big fish and prophetic announcement to the people on Nineveh, he sank into a depression and wanted to die (Jonah 4:3). After Elijah called down fire from heaven that miraculously burned up the sacrifices of Baal, the fire in his own life went dim (1 Kings 18-19). Elijah prayed, “I have had enough, LORD. Take my life,” (1 Kings 19:4). Both of these men wanted to quit.

How do we avoid those same feelings of burnout? The first step is to realize that it can happen and does happen to the best of us.

What was God’s response to Elijah?

Let’s take a look at 1 Kings Chapter 19.

  • He allowed Elijah to sleep. (19:5) – rest
  • He sent an angel to provide food for him to eat. (19:5) –  refreshment
  • He allowed Elijah to sleep again. (19:6) – more rest
  • He sent an angel to provide food for him to eat again. (19:7) – more refreshment
  • He caused Elijah to ponder what he was doing. “What are you doing here?” (19:9) – reflection
  • He spoke to Elijah personally. (19:11) – response
  • He caused Elijah to ponder what he was doing, again. “What are you doing here?” (19:13) – reflection
  • He told Elijah what to do next. (19:15) – redirection
  • He showed Elijah who He had appointed to help him. (19:16) – reinforcement










Burnout happens when I focus on people and fitting in.

That includes me thinking too much about myself too.

“You can’t see yourself “in yourself,”

you have to learn to see yourself in Christ.”

~A Joyce Meyer’s fb status.

There was a reason why Jesus went off to solitary places to pray.

If Jesus had to do it maybe I should be more willing to do it too. My shutdowns are not such a bad thing if I give them to God at the foot of the cross. But I do believe that if I was more ready to listen, I wouldn’t overload myself in the first place.

Love and hugs.

Lisa. xx 🙂

Lessons from Geese

While gazing out of a window together my daughter *CAL and I observed geese flying in formation. It was no ordinary experience for us, let me explain why. The sun was starting to set, there was a clear deep orange glow being sent high above such a moody clouded grey sky. The tops of the wings of these geese were reflecting out silver folds as they flew. We watched them for quite some time and just as one formation faded into the distance another came into view. They were silhouetted against the fading light as they disappeared over the pine trees beyond our sight but we could still see the flashes of the sun beaming from each flap of a wing.

It was so beautiful to watch, I would have loved to paint this amazing scene but the window we were both staring out of was in McDonald’s. It would have been lovely to have a camera that would have captured this gorgeous image. I chose to store this wonder in my mind for the next time I’m mood painting to music. Awesome inspiration!

It made me ponder on the artistry of our creator God such beauty surrounding us. We were in a noisy fast food restaurant grabbing a quick meal. It was my little girl who pointed out this spectacular flying poetry, I was too busy messing on my mobile and stuffing my face. How and why do I fall into the trap of not seeing outside of my own existence?

Lessons from geese, lessons from God, they are everywhere when I stop, look and listen with my heart. “Through the eyes of a child,” is always good advice.

Philippians 2:1-4 (NIV1984)

Imitating Christ’s Humility

If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.



(by Milton Olson, adapted by Angeles Arrien)


As each goose flaps its wings it creates an “uplift” for the birds that follow. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone.


People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier because they are travelling on the thrust of one another.


When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it.


If we have as much sense as a goose we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give our help to others.


When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into the formation and another goose flies to the point position.


It pays to take turns doing the hard tasks and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each other’s skills, capabilities and unique arrangements of gifts, talents or resources.


The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.


We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement, the production is much greater. The power of encouragement (to stand by one’s heart or core values and encourage the heart and core of others) is the quality of honking we seek.


When a goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to help and protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out with another formation or catch up with the flock.


If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult times as well as when we are strong.


It started with a fish.

It started with a fish.

I won a fish on the ‘hook a duck’ at the fun fair, I was 5 years old. My brother won one too, Mom put them both in one of those 1970’s over sized brandy glasses. We called our fishes, Tom and Jerry. For my 10th Birthday the present I wanted the most, I got.

My first Aquarium.

I kept cold water fishes and they gave me a place to stare, I found the movement of the water through the filtering system extremely calming, and I knew each of my fishes and how they responded. My aquarium was in my bedroom it acted as a night light and the soothing sound of filtering water helped me to drift off into sleep.

When I moved into my own flat at the age of 18, I still had this fish tank and I started my first tropical aquarium. I had been wanting to do this for years, but Mom and Dad would only let me have cold water fishes.

I started with easy to keep fish in a community tank, Guppies, Mollies, Zebra Danios, Neon tetras and some smaller variety of Gourami.


At this age I was fascinated by all the varieties

The different names and how to keep these beautiful creations alive. I learnt about water values and how to test for nitrates. I learnt how to control the temperature and which fishes would breed at higher water temperatures. I knew which fish were live bearers, egg layers, egg depositors. I became obsessed with everything that my ONE book taught me.

I can see now that if someone would have taken my passion for keeping fishes at the age of 10, and used it to help me read, to help me understand science, to look at the fishes anatomy, maybe research all the different plants that I could have grown in my aquarium. My educational experience could have been so very different and such a positive one.

Oh well…such is life!!

At the age of 26, I became homeless and I was very ill with depression. I was close to breakdown and having regular suicidal thoughts. My Mom had me back home and she gave me and my 2 year old *AJ her master bedroom. She bought me a new fish tank, a bigger one, and she told me to fill it with the most beautiful tropical fishes I could find.

Doing this helped me so much and I am so grateful for the wisdom that God gave my Mom. I would go out with my boy and we would find the most amazing Aquatic centres. They always had little cafes and we had a fabulous time looking at all the wonderful fishes.

When *AJ was 9 my Mom bought him his first aquarium

He was fascinated with testing the ph and nitrate levels he also memorised names, temperatures, origins and tank types. He would talk none stop about his aquarium and his teacher was fascinated at his knowledge. I got him so many books and he read every one of them. He loved his tank so much and then one night the thermostat over heated and boiled all the fish, we came down to an awful smell. All his beautiful tropical fish were white and floating on the top of the tank. My *AJ cried his eyes out, and refused to ever talk about it.

Here is a photo of him with his first aquarium, before the boiling obviously

In the cage next to the tank is “BOB” the Gerbil, we later changed his name to “Beelze-BOB”

That Gerbil was just plain evil.

*AJ, 9 years old, with his fishes

*AJ later went on to breeding mice,

He won shows at the national mouse association. I took advantage of his “SPECIAL INTEREST” he was obsessed with mice, so I used it to teach him in SO many ways. He had to clean them out and feed them every day and he had 57 at one point.

Over the years

Me and my kids have kept fish, mice, gerbils, hamsters, rabbits, guinea pigs, chickens, ducks, quails, budgies, love birds, cockatiels, finches, cats, dogs, kakarikis, tree frogs and a snake.

We have quite a library of animal husbandry. I know that through animals I have not felt the loneliness in my life that some Aspies feel. My animals have been my friends, I have loved them and they have loved me back. They have given me friendship, companionship, many giggles….I had a Cockerel once called DUDE who would sit on my shoulder like a pirates parrot. A rabbit that came when it was called. My Kakariki loved being stroked and would call me to tell me he loved me. I had a cat called Fusspot who would regularly steal marsh mellows lick them and flick them up the wall. My dogs, cats and rabbits have given me a shoulder to cry on, and someone to talk to who is an exceptional listener, and never judgemental. My animals have brought me through tough times by being unique creations, they helped me to look to God and see Him in who they are and how they have been created.

My little *CAL looking at fish in an aquatic centre

NOTE: This post was written two years ago. I found it today to share with a lovely new friend that I “met” on facebook through Everyday Aspergers group. I have a lot of new followers that may not know about this part of my life and those who have been following me since the start of Alienhippy won’t mind reading this again.

I enjoyed reading this today, it helped me see just how far I have come.

Love and hugs. Lisa. xx 🙂


ASD’s and PTSD…Babble with a bit of Bible

I wrote this post back in 2011

I was reminded of it when reading this link from Autism Discussion Page.

PTSD and Autism


Hello my lovely Bloggy friends

I have written before about how every day at school I was either bored stiff or scared to death. By the time I was a teen the idea of spending another week, in what I considered a hell hole, was SO NOT appealing. In my third year of secondary education (age 13-14) I had started to have suicidal thoughts. This was when I started to retreat constantly to my bedroom, also truanting whenever I could.

I have been pondering on this for the last couple of days.

Dissecting it and putting it where it belongs. In my past!


Also I was thinking on how, at around 8-10 years of age, I started to listen and believe the cruel jokes and taunts that children of this age use. As an undiagnosed Aspie with dyslexia the jokes were on me and they came thick and fast.

I became very quiet almost over night

At secondary school to survive I became the lookout for the groups of girls that “accepted” me. The friends I had once had in primary school were all in higher groups. My dyslexia held me back with everything, so the only kids I got to mix with were those in bottom group. Quite a few of them took on the hard knock approach, as they too were trying to survive.

Most of the jokes were played by my “so called” friends

I didn’t understand that they were just joking and I took it to heart. My bedroom became my sanctuary and I very rarely went out. I developed an attitude of acting like I didn’t care, I imitated those I hung around with at school. This then made me feel rejected in my own family because I became a nuisance. I was always arguing and made it very stressful for my Mom. I was behaving towards my Dad the way those at school were behaving towards me, both students and teachers.

What I have realised today…

By the time I had reached secondary school I had learned to cope with most of my sensory difficulties, they hadn’t gone but I was able to act well and avoid. I was able to do most things and had learned, to a degree, how to fit and not be noticed. I didn’t understand a lot of the social conversation between my peers, but I was able to fake it and giggle when they did.

I knew deep down that these kids were not really true friends and I was never able to be myself. On the rare occasion when I let little Lisa out a few of my friends liked who I was, but there was always someone to knock me back down, put me back in my place.

I have been reading lately about PTSD

(PTSD) Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is mostly given as a diagnoses for people who have been in accidents, disasters, abuse, violence…etc.

There are a lot of sites that describe the symptoms of PTSD and I can’t help but notice how alike the symptoms of PTSD are to many ASD traites. One site I read talked about using Cognitive Therapy to disconnect the traumatic event from the emotions and flashbacks.

I did think this could be helpful because anyone who has suffered, or suffers from PTSD can actually, in a way, relate to what it feels like going into shutdown/meltdown. However, I also thought that perhaps for those of us who are high functioning on the spectrum these things cannot be disconnected because we have, in a way, suffered trauma most days of our lives. We have been put into situations we couldn’t understand, where we were terrified sometimes even in pain. Then when showing/reacting to this we were ridiculed, shouted at, sometimes abused, bullied and made to believe we are wrong, misfits, oddbods, freaks and weirdos.

On my post called I have a question…can anyone relate?

I was left a very helpful comment by another Aspie named eaucoin.

This is part of the comment…

You know that aspergers makes reciprocity difficult (both because we have difficulty setting boundaries and because we find it difficult to apply what we learned from one situation to another). What might seem to you (or other people) like failings can be reduced to symptoms that are unavoidable on occasion. You need to apply this to your memories and then comfort yourself for having survived situations that were difficult. I once heard a neurotypical woman describe having lost a dear friend to a misunderstanding at a time when she was going through the New Orleans flooding. She said losing that friend was worse than losing her home. I thought to myself how many times this (losing a friend or a loved one’s favour) has happened to me, and how often amidst my devastation I would tell myself I was being too dramatic, but if they walked in our shoes, even a neurotypical would understand how hard it is not to isolate oneself when the stakes are so high.

I had to look up the word reciprocity

I needed a clear understanding of what this meant to me. I was brought up by a very loving Christian Mother, we were her life and she loved us unconditionally. She loved very deeply from the heart, and everyone who knew her was her friend. I learned to imitate her ways and thought that all people were like her, my Dad confused me because he wasn’t. I knew I was like him and I didn’t want to be. Also I couldn’t understand why, when I was acting like my Mom, people still treated me badly.

While I was shutdown yesterday I prayed

I felt God’s still quiet voice explain to me that the way I talk to myself is NOT His way. It is all the memories of people who didn’t understand me, didn’t accept me. They didn’t care enough to want what was best for me, and didn’t truly love me.

I also felt that the way I should be talking to myself, explaining things to myself. Also how I allow others to treat me is how a loving Mother would.

I felt that God was telling me that I need to learn to Mother myself. I wouldn’t say the things to my kids that I allow my brain to say to me. I also wouldn’t let anyone else say these things to my kids either.

I have had years of NOT KNOWING

Years of not understanding that my brain is wired differently. The one thing I have always held onto is that God loves me and one day I will understand. Now I am older, an adult, my Mom is no longer here to help me to fit, or to help make me feel better.

I have got the love of God though and Jesus as my Saviour.

I KNOW that He will teach me His ways.

Isaiah 66:13-14

Good News Translation (GNT)

13 I will comfort you in Jerusalem, as a mother comforts her child.14 When you see this happen, you will be glad; it will make you strong and healthy. Then you will know that I, the Lord, help those who obey me, and I show my anger against my enemies.

James 1:12

Romans 5:2-5

Romans 8:17


My quiet and gentle artistic rebel

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Me…”So how was your art lesson at school today? Did you enjoy it?”

*CAL…”Well, we looked at photos of paintings by other artists. We looked at their different styles. Then we had to do a self portrait based on one of those styles.”

Me…Ok, what did you think of that?”

*CAL…”I don’t understand why it’s so important to learn to draw like another artist and in another person’s style. If you are copying someone else’s style then your own unique style will never be found.”

Me…”Very true”

*CAL…”It’s good to learn from artists and use their techniques, but art is about finding your own style and personality. It’s not about being like someone else and copying them.”


This is part of a conversation I had with my daughter on the drive from her new school to fetching her brother after he finished his first day at University. What she said made my heart smile so big I had to pull over on the side of the road and write her words down.

What *CAL said reminded me of one of my favourite quotes.

“All children are born artists, the problem is to remain an artist as we grow up.”

~ Pablo Picasso

*CAL’s words also reminded me of this amazing Documentary

This TED documentary is so worth watching, it has some EXCELLENT points, is only 20 minutes long and is quite entertaining. There are also some wonderfully inspiring thoughts for ASD’s and those who are advocates for people on the spectrum.

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity? (This is the link)


ASD has a voice, just believe

I see parallels and learn best when I feel loved and accepted. I am taught best by those who get alongside of me and nurture my unique learning style. I learn from everything because my brain loves puzzles. However the word “Teacher” is not a positive word for me, it’s a trigger word that starts a loop of fear. You maybe thinking irrational fear but for those with special needs who have struggled undiagnosed through the education system with little or no support that fear is so very real.

My Parallel through this fear comes from my friend Moses

Speaking with faltering lips

Exodus 4:10-13 (GNT)

But Moses said, “No, LORD, don’t send me. I have never been a good speaker, and I haven’t become one since you began to speak to me. I am a poor speaker, slow and hesitant.” The LORD said to him, “Who gives man his mouth? Who makes him deaf or dumb? Who gives him sight or makes him blind? It is I, the LORD. Now, go! I will help you to speak, and I will tell you what to say.” But Moses answered, “No, Lord, please send someone else.”

Exodus 6:28-30 (NIV)

Now when the LORD spoke to Moses in Egypt, he said to him, “I am the LORD. Tell Pharaoh king of Egypt everything I tell you.” But Moses said to the LORD, “Since I speak with faltering lips, why would Pharaoh listen to me?”

Exodus 7:6-7 (NIV)

Moses and Aaron did just as the LORD commanded them. Moses was eighty years old and Aaron eighty-three when they spoke to Pharaoh.

My tangent thoughts and parallel images

When I read about Moses saying these things to God I don’t see fear but a relationship with healthy respect, love and understanding. Moses feared his own words and how he spoke, this is so familiar to me as an adult Aspie. But Moses spoke out before God about a real fear from his own life. This must have been important to him to bring it up before God.

Not an excuse, not irrational fear

This fear was real because he lived it and he was stuck in it. The name Pharaoh was from his past, Pharaoh had raised him, he had been a figure of authority, a teacher, a step father, master, king and god. Pharaoh had a job to do and had to keep those under him in line. Moses grew up as an Egyptian but he was really a Hebrew. How could he ever really belong? He learned to fit, he learned to conform. The fear he had was very real to him, going back to Egypt would have many memories he would not want to relive. He had spent his adult life as a shepherd, married and lived happily with family. He had escaped from the memories.

Going back meant facing his fears

Going back meant facing the truth, standing up for new beliefs. It meant explaining to Pharaoh things that need to be addressed. What has to be different, what must change.

I also speak with faltering lips

With those who set themselves in a place of authority I too am a poor speaker, slow and hesitant. As an adult with a Autism Spectrum Disorder also Dyslexia I think mainly in pictures, I learn mostly from doing, from making mistakes and trying new ways. I learn best when helped to learn in my own way or left to learn alone.

The word “Teacher” for me is a trigger word but what does it really mean?

I am learning now to see all things, all people, all environments as my teacher. Not the person stood at the front of a classroom telling me how I should be different, how I should be learning in a way that is alien to me.

One of my closest friends is a retired teacher who has the kindest heart and the most loving of ways. Seeing who she is has helped me to let go of fears from my past. Knowing she loves me for me helps me to move forward and see that teachers are also people who get things both right and wrong. They are learning and growing too, we are all on our own journey through life making our own choices and learning from our mistakes.

Jesus is a teacher too

When I think of Him, I see him sat under a tree with little children giggling and telling them stories. I see him sat with His brothers, sisters, those who loved Him and those who despised Him. I see Him teaching in parables and letting people think for themselves.

As parents to those on the Spectrum

Those of us who struggled our way through the education system. For our children we have to go back, we have to face our fears. We have to relive those memories. It means explaining to our own personal Pharaoh things that need to be addressed. What has to be different, what must change. If we as adults on the Spectrum don’t explain, the best way we can, we leave it to the guesswork of others who learn from reading books but have never lived in our land.

These irrational fears to others are real fears to us

They are haunting memories relived a thousand times that we escaped from. But I have a theory, a thought, an image, and a hope.

Keep learning, keep evolving, understand our own brand of Autism we are all unique. We are all so different, the Spectrum is HUGE. But there are always parallels that can bring on that “Light bulb moment” for a Neruotypical parent/teacher who is searching for answers. Life goes on, people change, environments grow in knowledge and understanding.

In my mind and in my prayers

I believe that as Moses walked back into Egypt his faltering lips became less of a worry. I believe he started to see in his mind and heart that he wouldn’t be facing the fear of Pharaoh past. His challenge would be completely new and he just needed to believe.

Moses had grown in his knowledge of who is was as a Hebrew and a child of God. He knew God as his friend and he knew God would lead the way. I believe that in his many years as a shepherd he had time to process all he had lived and all that it stood for. Now he was able to put it into perspective and see that his past had a purpose.

My thoughts on my purpose

I’m Dyslexic and on the Spectrum. I’m the daughter of a Dad diagnosed at 64 years of age with Autism and a low IQ. I’m the Mother of a child diagnosed with Autism/Dyspraxia and SPD. I’m a friend to many who are Aspie/Autie and those who love someone with an ASD. I believe what I have to share matters. That every voice matters and every story counts.

With faltering lips and in Lisa Lingo

I believe that what I hold within me is a story with a purpose. No I’m not a Moses and I won’t be parting the Red Sea. But I do believe that one day there will be no need for Autism Awareness. That those of us on the Spectrum who CANNOT express will no-longer suffer because enough of us with faltering lips have already shared, we found our voice and we made a difference.


My kids get Super Focused

Our three year old Rottweiler was so very excited to go out to play on the dog yard this morning. Not his usual slow to get up and be dragged out to do his business kind of attitude at all. When I opened the utility room door to let him and Zazzy girl out I could see why. “OH.MY.GOODNESS!” I thought to myself. He’s a dog and a dope he knows no better. BUT…I have told my kids so many times NOT to leave ANYTHING on the dog yard.

He had found himself some new toys to play with while out there having his poo last night. Let’s Say *AJ is NOT going to be happy AT ALL, and I see my purse having to open within the next few hours. Two Badminton rackets and four shuttlecocks all chewed to pieces. 😦

*AJ is out at the moment but he is going to want to play badminton when he gets back. It’s the in thing, the focus, the special interest and fun, fun, fun for all the kids right now. Even in the pouring rain. (I smile because I understand) I once erected a 6ft fence in the pouring rain because I just had to get it finished…LOL

His guitar, Badminton and driving my car is what he is about this school holiday. His driving is coming on really well. I’m so very proud of my boy.

About the Badminton court.

It is finished, we just need to cement the posts and wait for the new grass to grow in. He worked so very hard building the badminton court and was so super focused on what he wanted to achieve, and he has achieved it. We have all the lines marked and painted in, a professional net and he has laid new turf where there was once a 10ft trampoline and a large sandpit. It looks so cool.

When my kids decide to do something they do it with vigour.

I was chatting with *CAL this morning

She has been very focused on drawing lately. Drawing and playing badminton, she has no choice with the badminton when her brother jumps up and down singing his badminton chants. Anyway, I was talking to her about getting her some better pencils as she has only been using a HB. I do a lot of painting and Batik but I don’t really sketch anymore so haven’t got proper drawing pencils only HB’s and 2B’s. Our conservatory is also an art room so *CAL has free run at anything she would like to use. This week it is drawing and she has been totally absorbed in what she has been learning for herself from YouTube tutorials. I think it is wonderful how our Aspie minds learn with special interests. She has taught herself so much from what she has been interested in. She is so very talented, I love watcing her learn. I love school holidays my kids are so alive in the school holidays.

I’ve also been thinking

I can see that the best teachers for ASD’s are the ones who give a sense of wonder to a subject, those who love their subject and speak with enthusiasm for it, making a child want to learn more for themselves. Those who make it interesting and exciting and allow a child to express and search in their own ways. The school holidays give my kids the freedom to explore and they learn so much by finding their own way with gentle direction.

I was talking with my *CAL about an experience I had at school when a substitute teacher took our art class. She accused me of tracing a photo of a Toucan. I hadn’t, I was just super focused and made my drawing perfect, but her words and attitude put so much fear into me. That can be a post for another day, maybe a story post obviously something I still haven’t worked through. UGH

Talking with my daughter about this helped me understand how differently I learn and how focused I can be on creating exactly what I see, and I see in GREAT detail. I love chatting with my girl she is so bright, so wise for her age and such a great listener. My kids teach me so much, I totally adore my kids. I wish they didn’t have to go back to school.

My daughter is 11 years old she is diagnosed with ASD and dyspraxia.

I LOVE the words she used herself, so I will just share them with her drawings.

This is Roxas, from Kingdom Hearts. No videos were needed, just some awesome music and the power to stare at a picture for a couple of hours. 🙂

Click on image to make larger

Well… This is one of my neatest drawings! With the help of this video, http://youtu.be/hk9L7AcvdXg  I was able to draw the main character of Kingdom Hearts, Sora. Go and check out that youtuber’s other videos as well, I’m sure you’ll find at least one thing to draw!

Click on image to make larger

Busy having fun

We have had a very busy week with lots of day trips and lots of fun. Have I mentioned that I LOVE the school holidays. I feel happy, my kids are happy, yes we just LOVE the school holidays. 🙂

So what have we been up to?

This week we have been to the golfing range. The aquatic centre. Sat at the canal and had snacks. We went on one of *AJ’s adventures at some local hills. We took a picnic and ate it at the top. We walked all the hardest trails and climbed all the steepest hills. That was so much fun but I have bug bites that are itching like crazy, after fighting my way through ferns that were as tall as me and seemed to go on forever.

I have been taking *AJ out every day to practise his driving. He passed his theory test and is driving the car really well. It won’t be long before he is driving without me as his qualified driver.

Today *AJ decided to build a badminton court in the back garden, so *CAL, *AJ’s lovely girlfriend *A, and me have been helping with that. It has been a really hot day and so wonderful being outdoors instead of indoors. He worked very hard on it and all the chalk lines are down now he just needs to add a net. *AJ and *CAL have already had a game, *AJ made a strange sort of net using a piece of washing line and some of my clean washing. He’s such a funny boy…hehe

To find the room to make a badminton court *AJ first had to move the trampoline and reset it at the bottom end of the garden. Dig out a Pampas grass that had seen better days. Mow the lawn, also turn over and reseed some patchy areas. We also had to move a huge tractor tyre that was once their sand pit.

Our garden is changing and becoming more grown up

The kids swing and slide have gone, the trampoline is no longer the first thing you see. The sand pit is no longer a sand pit. I have plans of making it into a water feature. We also need to buy a new barbeque, patio table and chairs. The outdoors seem to be calling to us lately and I am not the sort of person to ignore a call that is good for my kids.

Here are a few photos of our week so far

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A look back at my way forward

Zazzy, *CAL and me at my Mom’s caravan.

I’m such a creature of habit and routine, it’s Saturday morning and I am so excited that there is NO school for the next 6 weeks.

I am also aware because I have this little voice in my head saying, “You need to plan and be disciplined with your time Lisa.”

I know that the days can go so quickly and before we know it, it will be September again and all the amazing ideas I had for day trips will have slipped away for another year.

This year seems different

*AJ has been with his lovely girlfriend *A for two and half years now and they are very much a couple. *CAL has three good friendships (answer to so many prayers) So I feel more like a Taxi service, but that is good because my kids are growing and becoming independent. It’s time for me to connect with me again and it’s quite a scary thought. I have quite a few ideas about how I will do this but that will be in future posts.

There is a seven year gap between my kids

It has been tricky trying to balance family activities over the years. Especially as both of them have that ASD quirkiness going for them. Also I lost my lovely Mom when *CAL was 4 and Mr Locoman has always worked long hours.

*AJ is a sensory seeker and *CAL is very much a sensory avoider

*AJ needs to run it out, he needs excitement and stimulation. He needs his body to have the kind of environment where he can be his happy, flappy, jumping, spinning, adventurous self. He is a pacer and is constantly on the move. Even when his body is still his mind and fingers are active. Now he is older one of the ways he has found of getting this release is in exercise. He has a gym membership and we have provided gym equipment for him out on the patio.

*CAL is a deep thinker she absorbs, she internalises, she studies, ponders and creates. She needs quiet and routine and doesn’t handle noise and movement too well at times. When overwhelmed she will cling to a wall, freeze and lose her words. Her release comes through music, art, reading, her imagination, writing and video games.

When *AJ was younger and *CAL was a toddler

*AJ loved going to indoor play areas, ball pools and slides were wonderful for him. The colours and movement stimulated him and he would be so happy just to be there. It would also help him sleep for longer than 3 hours if I could wear him out. But *CAL was terrified in those places. She would go into that baby shock look and shake from head to toe clinging to me like a little baby monkey. She never cried like *AJ did, she never cried much at all. I could just see that something was not quite right. The discomfort and complete fear she would show I could see instinctively. I knew with *AJ when he was unhappy or in pain because he’d scream the place down. With *CAL I have always had to watch her and try to understand what she is feeling by her movements and inability to answer.

I remember feeling so split in two

I didn’t know what to do for the best. I could see my boy had needs and I wanted to provide the environment and safety for him to have his hyper time. But my little *CAL just couldn’t handle it at all. She has always had fears with noise even vacuuming became a 2 man job. Mr Locoman always being at work was so annoying. I really needed his help but I also needed him to pay the bills so I tried to keep a lid on it, most of the time. 😉 😉 wink wink

This is just one example from thoughts I had when opening my bedroom curtains this morning. I looked out onto my garden and remembered both my kids chasing the chickens. It’s a dry day here today in England and the school holidays have just begun. I don’t want to waste these precious days, I want to go out with my kids and make memories before they have grown even more and left the nest.

There are so many more moments that I can think on where I thought I would never find a way forward. Swimming, cinema, parties, bowling, indoor rock climbing, arcades, shopping centres even the local supermarket have all had their difficult moments. It doesn’t help that I have similar ASD traits and these places have sometimes been difficult for me too. But I think in a way my ASD did also help me to read my kids and to a certain extent predict what may or may not happen.

Asking the right people the right questions

I have found the hardest thing to cope with has been unkind advice from friends and relatives who just didn’t get it. Those who made it perfectly clear to me that they would treat this whole thing very differently if they just had them for a couple of weeks. I was a young Mom and my Mom was ill and then she died. I went to them for help and they pushed me to my knees but I am now grateful they did because God gave me my answers.

I’ll share a few comments that have played in my head and hurt my heart over the last 18 years because I know there are other ASD parents who can totally relate. These were all spoken to me by those I felt would give me support. Let’s just say, I was strong enough to cope without these people but it hurt so deeply at the time.

  • *CAL will have to use a public toilet someday just drag her in there and stop being so ridiculous.
  • *AJ just needs to sit still and be quiet, he needs to only speak when spoken to.
  • Can’t you stop that child from talking about the same thing all the time.
  • You make your kids worse by playing to their behaviour, they need to know their place.
  • This is a party, why do you need to leave she’s not screaming, it’s all in your head.
  • Children will eat what they are given once they are hungry.
  • I have never heard of a baby crying itself to death.
  • Do you actually think these star charts will work he is out of control.
  • If you can’t control him now you have no hope of controlling him when he is a teen.
  • Autism is an excuse that lazy parents use you’re making it more than it is.
  • If you insist on being Autistic then I don’t want you in my house. I don’t want your kids behaviours rubbing off on my kids.

I stopped expecting anyone to understand, I stepped back and waited to see who stepped forward. Very few did, but those who did step forward and not let me totally withdraw I appreciate so very much.

I also found that being outdoors helped.

I used what I had in me to find ways forward. My own special interests (my love of animals, art, nature, photography and poetry) all brought some balance into our lives. Taking my kids and my dog to the hills and parks was perfectly perfect for all of us.

*CAL was happy with the quiet and gentle views, she’d sing and skip and take photos. *AJ could run and climb and be all that *AJ is, we’d sometimes take Zazzy and *AJ stayed with her making his adventures even more fun. At the hills and in the woods I could ponder, pray and be happy with just being me and being their Mommy in the way I understood. No pressure to conform but to just be.

The answers I have always found through prayer

Because once I am being still and listening or I am down on my knees feeling I don’t have a clue, God drops ideas into my head and places His unconditional love on my heart. I believe now that my kids were given to me because I am the best Mom for them. I know how much I love them and will always love them. Way down deep inside me is the answers I just need to always remember to be still and listen.

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