Monday, January 28, 2013

Conor's Quiet Joy

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. 


Emma said...

I gazed at Conor's pictures for a while. There is definitely a quiet joy and peace there. It is good that you are stopping to cherish such beautiful moments.


Anonymous said...

I know those moments - they are hard to catch with a camera, but when you do... sometimes when things are really, really bad when I can get away I'll grab one of those pictures, wrap my arms around it, and cry.

Anonymous said...

Yes, you have to be a member of the club to truly understand those moments of serenity. I remember sitting fully relaxed in a chair in Starbucks sipping coffee while Gabriel snacked on a banana. Eat bite of the banana was like a fuse to a bomb. I knew that while the fuse was still lit I had serenity!