Sometimes I don’t need long, flowery prose to describe how strong my boy is. This was a picture of him when he was seven. He’d had surgery on both legs, and a mere three days after, he limped along with those bulky casts. Just so he could ride on a train.
I will do my best to ensure nothing and no one ever tames his fire. This passion, this drive?
He has always been a cuddle bug. As a baby, he loved to burrow into the crook of my neck, let out a milky sigh, and nod off to dreamland. He will snuggle in bed, on the couch, and latch on like a sloth if you’re on the move.Continue reading“Hold me tight: #thisisAutism”
Nirav almost always joins us on family hikes. Up and down the windy California coastline or deep inside massive redwood forests. He enjoys the exercise, the outdoors, and our company. Putting one foot in front of the other while the wind sings in his hair, echoing the cadence of his sister’s voice. There is no pressure to participate, so he ambles long, at peace with everything. Even if he doesn’t say a word, we know he’s watching, listening, and living every part. Continue reading“30 laps- #thisisAutism”
April is a special month in the Raman household. We prank each other silly on April fools’ day, and the rest of the month, we do our bit in talking about Autism acceptance. As Nirav grows older, the uncertainty of his future as an adolescent and later an adult looms over us. I worry about societal support for autistic adults, job opportunities, and housing. And I wonder if he will still be accepted when he’s no longer this goofy kid with faint traces of baby fat. The statistics don’t paint a promising picture, so we must move past awareness and talk about acceptance.Continue reading“This is autism.”
Kids his age bike down our streets. Flipping back their faux hawks, all lean shoulders and easy smiles. They chatter about Fortnite and Roblox and things I am too uncool to know. They yell and joke, their laughter carrying faint traces of the men they will soon become. Their parents worry about grades and missed projects. After school piano classes and weekend soccer practice. Pre teen boys, caught between disappearing childhoods and middle school crushes. How complicated they seem to me!
He asks for “easy shorts”. Not the ones with the pesky button at the belly. Or dapper denim pants from this season of Couture Levis. He wants no nonsense drawstring shorts, with a forgiving waistline because they’re comfortable.