Wednesday, September 30, 2009


I just saw these videos for the first time, I think they are hilarious and smart. I have been thinking a lot about diet and autism, especially, because I'm reading this book about a woman who 'saved her son from the abyss of autism' or something like that. I like it because she created an ABA program for her son, but I don't like it because she is big into the Gluten Free/Casein Free diet and also because that ridiculous Jenny McCarthy wrote a review of the book. I am using it for my needs, which are to understand autism better and especially to understand ABA better. I'm also reading a book by Temple Grandin, who has written several books about being a person with Asperger's Syndrome.

In the book I'm reading, the boy has terrible illnesses through his first year. He sounds a lot like Anthony, from a colicky standpoint, but that's it. He had many, many doses of antibiotics because of ear infections, etc. He also had high fevers, that caused super red ears. This struck me because Anthony has red ears too, a lot of the time, but no fever. Do all autistic children have red ears? What the hell is that about? He also has bad stomach troubles, from really bad d-ha, as my friend Emily calls it, to terrible constipation.

Anthony has never had stomach troubles. He never had any antibiotics until early this year, when he had his first ear infection. He has never really had a fever, until this year when he was so sick. But by that point, I think we can all agree that the autism ship had sailed.

So I read these books and I think, should I try it? Should I start making GF/CF pancakes and chicken nuggets and whatever the hell? In the book, her son starts to come around a bit once she starts the diet but she also starts the ABA therapy at the same time. He is also younger than Anthony, two, when he starts. So who knows.

His therapy is going very well. We had to quit his OT this week, which sucks, because we and Anthony love her. It just doesn't make sense for us to have Anthony get OT on the other side of town and late in the day after having therapy all day. We already see differences in Anthony, but it is occurring to me lately that we are not going to have a moment where he shakes off the autism and starts rapping with us, like a typical four year old. But I don't care. I am not a person who thinks that my child with autism is a unicorn or something, a special, magical being. He is special and magical, but not because he's autistic. Just because he's ... Anthony. I know that sounds lame but it's true. We will take Anthony, however we get him. We are supporting him in his latest quest and I hope that it makes a big difference in his life but all we can do is try. I find it exhausting to worry about stupid vaccines or diet or whatever the hell people want to make up, so I'm not going to worry about it anymore. This does not mean that I don't believe other people's stories (well, excepting the Playboy bunny opportunist that is Jenny McCarthy), because I do. They just don't have anything to do with me, and more specifically, with Anthony.

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