When R was a little, he had a onesie with a sign “If only they would stay little”.
This is something that most mothers say.
Little was I to know how much he would like staying little and, if I am to be honest, how much we would enjoy this childhood unfolding in slow motion
At 9, he has still retain such sweet innocent charm – that people often mistake him for a much younger child
My sister will ask him to “fulfill all his baby jobs and give her flying kisses”, a nurse will giggle indulgently when she sees that R cannot blow his nose, someone will bump into him at the gym and instead of saying “Excuse me” they will give him a hug instead.
People coo at him, instead of talk to him. He gets more spontaneous hugs and kisses than any 9 year old I know.
In fact , DH is probably the only one, in all of R's world that pushes him to act his age.
Many articles that adult auties write about things they wish we knew about them says how much they hated being “infantilized”.
But R LOVES being baby - in his self-concept- he sees himself as a small child. And he likes it that way
The other day he told me that he was a toddler.
Most neurotypicals have the peer pressure/natural incentive to start become more independent.
I remember my niece was barely talking and all she wanted to do was do things by herself, when she stopped wanting to be in our laps.
But it’s time to gently nudge him along on this journey.
To nudge myself along as well.
For its not just that I enjoy my sweet child so very much, it’s also that he was so ill for so long.
It’s made me want to be an armor around him – so defenseless and fragile he seems to me.
But that crisis has become part of our normal and we are no longer in that day-to -day mindset of urgency
Its time for this baby, this baby-mama to grow up
This post was written for Hopeful Parents.