We lie to Kate constantly, you know. We do it save her feelings of confusion and fear. We do it so she doesn't feel left out and we do it for our own sanity.
"Mama, why does I always mix up?"
When she said this to me I was at the same time destroyed for her sadness and impressed by her articulation. Tell me, do you know that feeling? It's a tough one.
I thought I would share some example of our lies and why we do it. Our reasons don't make it feel any less terrible but here they are:
Whenever her sister is off to play outside with her friends (and Kate certainly cannot go unchaperoned, nor does she often share their interests), we tell her Grace is going to school. What kid goes to school at 6pm on a Saturday? But we tell Kate that because time means little to her and she accepts it and we don't have to deal with her tears and questions about why she can't go out to play whenever her sister does.
Whenever she asks about her birthday (which is every single day because autism is like that) we tell her: "Soon Katie" because she can't remember what we said yesterday and she can only remember how amazing that day was for her. Her Birthday is nine months away. It's going to be a long go of it for her, and us. Maybe we should start celebrating half birthdays?
Whenever she says she's going to be a Pirate or a Ninja or a Spaceman, we tell her "Yes, you sure will, baby", because maybe she will, and at the very least we want to encourage her confidence.
As proud as we are that Kate is beginning to articulate more, it terrifies us that she is beginning to understand her differences, her deficits.
Like any parent, our goal is to protect her. And Everyday we wonder if we are doing it right.
Grace and Kate's mom. (Shanell)