Monday, March 3, 2014

It Is Time To Move On {Atypical Familia}

Note: This will be my very last blog post here. I will now be blogging at Atypical Familia.

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Three years ago, I started AutismWonderland as a class assignment. Before I knew blogging was a real thing. I didn't know about SEO, HTML or Hashtags. I thought Twitter was pointless. And it was way before my first Pin or Instagram.

I started AutismWonderland on a whim. I thought it would be the thing to get me an easy A. And it did. But when the class was over, I realized I wanted to keep going. 

And my life has changed because of it.

When I started this blog in 2010. I had suffered a miscarriage. I was working full-time. I was in graduate school part-time. The Husband (Joseph) had retired from one job and starting a new career in law enforcement. And it was The Boy's (Norrin) last year of pre-school. We were in the midst of the Turning 5 process. I was touring and applying to schools and studying special education law in case I needed to file for an impartial hearing and sue the Department of Education. (Which I did. Twice. Without a lawyer.)  

I truly felt like Alice and I had fallen down this rabbit hole, desperately trying to claw my way out.

Last September I was interviewed for NY Metro Parents. And I was asked if I still felt like Alice. The question caught me off guard. It forced me to think about our life and my blog. And I've been contemplating them both ever since. 

Blogging has helped me cope with my depression and the loneliness I felt after Norrin's diagnosis. Writing about my miscarriage helped me heal. I've met people on line who have inspired me. I built an online community who guided me through the maze of special education. 

And I am extremely grateful for the love, strength and support blogging and this community  has given me.

But I don't feel like Alice anymore. I am quite comfortable in our world. And I don't consider it to be separate from anyone else's. Different, maybe. But not separate.  

It's the reason why I've had trouble writing or sharing here lately because I felt like it was forced.

As a family, we've settled into our lives. Norrin is in a good place. There's no longer a Dept of Ed threat. (Hope it stays that way.) He has made astounding progress. He's getting everything he needs. And that is the only thing that matters.

I was rereading Norrin's original evaluation report. And I saw something that bothered me when I first read it. A psychologist wrote:

Both parents are committed...The family strength is their concern and caring nature. Their weakness is that they do not, as yet, understand the nature of Norrin's developmental delays. 

At the time, I didn't understand what the psychologist meant. Nearly six years later, I do. (That's for a whole other post...look for it.)  

I won't lie. Autism is a big part of our life. But our lives go beyond autism. Does that make sense?

And so...it is time to move on.

My new blog is called Atypical Familia. I hope you follow our family journey there.