April is Autism Awareness Month – so thought I would sprinkle a few slices of life throughout the month to give a little lens into a family with a child on the autism spectrum. There are so many different experiences – ours is just one, and much milder than many.
Our journey with autism has had plenty of Sensory Integration issues – basically challenges with sensory processing that can take many forms. One of the big ones for Justin when he was younger was the sense of touch.
THEN: for years, our little guy could not stand the feeling of fabric on his limbs. He walked around with his pant legs rolled up and his sleeves push up above his elbows. May sound like a minor issue, but when your child is always uncomfortable its a problem. And while thats easier to work around in the summer with shorts and t-shirts, what about those cold weather months where no sleeves and pant legs are just not an option?
NOW: Over time, we found fabrics that were less irritating (lots and lots of fleece), never had any clothes with tags, and gradually over a couple of years he could tolerate the pant legs and sleeves. Now its a distant memory … though he still has a wardrobe that is about as close to pajamas as you can get (still lots of fleece, PJs when he gets home, etc.)
But between THEN and NOW was a couple years of occupational therapy and lots of patience, support and flexibility as we worked to keep him comfortable.
Here’s a link below if you want to know a little more about Sensory Processing issues.