Autism is a spectrum in many ways including the ways in which it is presented through various media. Everybody, particularly the main stream media, loves the feel good stories of accomplishment. We all suffer when we see images of self injurious behavior: common occurrences in severe autism although rarely reflected in the mainstream media or in autism research accounts. The photos of my son Conor in the composite above show him during the recent holidays in a calm, happy mood that is seldom depicted in portrayals of autism.
Despite the hustle and bustle that comes with the season Conor, who can become quite agitated by loud, strange noises and disrupted routines, was able to stay calm, enjoy the company of visitors and ... be happy. I had not viewed these images when they were taken and found them while saving some recent outdoor pictures.
I can't explain to someone who does not have a severely autistic child with profound developmental delays how much moments like these mean to me. Conor's quiet joy is not the stuff of a CNN feature but capturing and revisiting it makes this Dad very happy.