I’m not sure there is a worse feeling than when you feel like you let your child down. In my case I should be used to that feeling, but I’m not. My son is autistic I cannot understand him all the time and isn’t that  just that? Here I go again walking up and down the isles at my local super store searching in absolute vain to find my wonderful son “The Perfect Gift” for his birthday. It isn’t easy finding a child who doesn’t understand how to play with a toy, a toy to play with. I realize he has never opened a single present but that isn’t the point. He probably wouldn’t notice he didn’t get a gift, but I would. So I go up and down every isle than up and down again.

One year on a whim I bought him “The Woody Doll” and after it was free of the holiday wrapping paper Christian fell in love. I cannot explain his fondness for Woody. Often he carries him about in one hand with the soft fabric legs bent and pressed tightly to his plastic head. Out of nowhere he drops the head and dangles him by one single foot. It makes Woody rattle and clank as the lone plastic foot and two plastic hands slap insistent against the head. I watch my son close his eyes for a moment. I see his eyes grow wide, he just listens to the clicking sound, and he feels the effect of the combined movement and sound. This was a serious aha moment for me!!

My son has it so tough and here I can’t even find a nice gift to celebrate his birthday or for Christmas. That simple doll has been a godsend. We now have little to no trouble at all finding our little guy “the perfect gift”. We find ways of making a toy dangle and click as he twists it within his grasp. I had to think outside the box and that simple toy spawned a wealth of incredible ideas!! Don’t force yourself to be think normal when you’re not supposed to be normal. Buying gifts for your children should be fun and I didn’t stop until it became fun for us. Autism is an everyday factor and a special occasion will not ever change that fact for us.

The idea behind this blog is I know there are other people out there struggling to find an autistic person a good gift. I found a solution that really will work for everyone. Try observing what they do with objects they do like. Is it unique in some way? It turns out my son likes things that dangle and feel weighed down as he twists the objects. We now go to the store and find objects with a good weight to them and then we simply make them dangle. A ball with objects inside it like maybe a bell, next we find very thick string or sometimes even rope. The final step is we put it together and call our creation “the perfect gift”!! Don’t give up, just find a new way of looking at things. Toss normal out the door because normal is a myth and has no place in everyday life for anyone, just my opinion.

I’m in love with my family they complete me as a woman. My hubby is a great guy in everything he does no matter if he is right or wrong. My son Devin even when he refuses to use his head is more than wonderful to me. My son Austin even with his hot temper couldn’t be any more sweeter. My son Christian even with his autism is a bright spot in a dark world. And Logan he’s six and thinks somehow he knows everything already, but still reminds me to enjoy everything I do. Life will be what it will be no matter what you think about it, so I suggest taking a new approach. When I stopped trying to buy my autistic son a normal gift I started finding good gifts. The only way I will fail as a parent is by not trying to see through their eyes and being closed-minded. Don’t let traditional thinking hold you back when you have to brake all the rules just to raise a child with special needs.