Thursday, July 12, 2007

Everyone is different

No two people are exactly the same, and that goes for those of us that are autistic. It's something that sometimes I have to remember.

You see my son and I are not matching up on milestones as he's growing up. This is something that is hard to realize sometimes. He just finished the second grade and is 8 years old. When I was in the second grade and 8 years old I was reading anything I could get my hands on. I'd discovered a wonderful place called the Seattle Public Library and I'd found the fiction section.

Yet now I'm struggling to get my son to even try to read, and it's not easy he doesn't often want to sit still long enough to read even a couple of pages. I was reading the likes of C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkein at his age and all he'll read if at all is Dr. Seuss (Green Eggs and Ham is his favorite, so at least there's something we have in common.)

He has been lucky though in one respect. Technology. When I was his age home computers where rare (I didn't know anyone with one when I was 8) and the only home video games were Atari 2400's. Just like me he is drawn to both, and was excelling at video games when he was 4 years old, even though he could not read the text telling him what to do. He's also learned how to work a computer very quickly, and has had an old Mac in his room for years.

Of course this is not the only differences between us, but they are amoung the biggest ones. I just hope that he discovers the true joy of reading, and he's been getting much better since I shared with him one of the tricks I used long ago, so maybe he'll catch up and if he catches up just half as fast as I dashed ahead in reading, he'll be ahead of his peers before too long.