Susan's Blog

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Call Me Susan (Non) Sequitur

Here is a snapshot of how I think:

I was thinking about Nat around 9 a.m., just when he was beginning his day at school. I was roaming the aisles of the Stop & Shop, feeling blue as I considered whether to buy kidney beans — his favorite lunch — or not, because, well, he was hardly ever home anymore, and, and, and… šŸ™

I thought suddenly about how my dear cousin had told me how much he missed his mom, who had died, and with whom he had had a very troubled relationship. It was his belief that — because he did not know what he had actually missed with her by not being close — his grief was all the more acute. Sometimes I think that because I almost never really have long or meaningful conversations with Nat, that when he leaves, I feel like I “miss” him all the more…oh, autism! Autism!

–Wait a minute! Is that true, or am I just being Mrs. Mel O. Drama?

Conversation with Nat is very limited in words, but what that does is it forces me to sharpen all of my other senses when I’m around him, the way they say a blind person can hear better for lack of vision. So when I’m talking to Nat, I’m looking closely at him, traveling his face with my eyes, breathing in his scent of laundry and skin, and listening, listening, listening to discern words from the quiet and the jumble of his speech. It’s never as satisfying as a conversation with Max about just what it is that Libertarians believe, or Ben, where I learn things like his strange misconceptions of sex or his perpetual debate about just what kind of animal Chowder is?

It’s not satisfying that way, but I do learn about what is important to Nat. And I have to say that I may never have laughed as hard as I did recently when I figured out that when Nat goes around saying, “Pee-is,” and, “Heee-pee-is,” laughing and laughing, he is cracking himself up over that most infamous part of the male anatomy! Body humor developmental phase, check!

Last night I was straightening the many papers and flyers that cover the coffee table –as my elegant, wise grandmother who was a Pisces used to say, “you shouldn’t know from it” — and he sat down right next to me on the couch and I asked him if he wanted to watch a video. He said, “No video.” He looked meaningfully at the flyer that was in my hand — the Social Group flyer — and I guess I read his mind. “Oh, you want me to read this?” I asked.
“Yes,” he said. So I read the flyer for all the upcoming activities as if it were a story, and he listened, mesmerized. When I was done I asked if he wanted to hear it again. He said, “Mommy will go away.” He got up and picked up a video.
“Okay, Nat. You watching a movie now?”

To quote my late Grandma, the big fat squooshy one who was a Taurus, “I just love him so much, I don’t know why!”

When of course, it is so obvious.

1 comment

I treasure every bit of connection that I have with my boys because it comes in quick moments. And sometimes when they have their more aloof spells, I feel as if I miss them even when they are home.

I love the line, “Mommy will go away now”! He gets right to the point.

— added by Mom to JBG on Tuesday, September 2, 2008 at 11:26 pm

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