Sorry it has taken me so long to open & read of your son's journey....
thank you Anon P for your thoughts. I think more of my pain and worry has so much to do about my son's future. As long as he is a minor and or living with us, I can do as much as I can to buffer him from the world. This may not even be the healthiest approach for us or him, to coddle him, we resist doing this but not always easy.
One thing I have even considered doing (taking it more seriously as my son gets older) is to retire early and start up a non-profit organization (locally only) that would target individuals like my son. The organization would partner with local business to find some form of employment for these individuals (jobs that would otherwise not pay very much but could be of service to any company).
If you have the where with all, the ability to put together something like this in your area...it would be a blessing to so many......you are such an intelligent man ...you could do this! .... May that seed planted ....continue to grow if this is meant to be a part of your future... and his.. and so many others...
What a difference it could make ... We have a facility in our area similar to what you describe here for others to be brought together and work on small projects -that are used in the community....they earn $$ for their labor...so many days a week..I don't know too much about it but it sounds like a great program ..for all involved.
thank you, however I feel more like a failure (I know it is unfounded but I often just feel like I failed him somewhere), but I will not let that keep from moving forward.
It pains me to even hear you talk like this... You are so humble.. the majority of marriages do not even survive, the Father can't handle it and walks away... you are purely an example of what should BE.... just being there.... is more the the average Joe could handle..... Avon Pink said "Parents of special needs kids are super heroes!"... I couldn't agree more with this..... it robs your spirit and happiness at times.. yet you have been steadfast and true...and who would blame you if you Loose it sometimes...want to lock yourself in the basement for a night, take a long drive ... we all need a little escape too. (and I bet you don't even do these things!)
My son will at times skip throughout the house repeating word for word some video game review he heard on Youtube. And, even if the review was 30 minutes long he could repeat it word for word after hearing it only once. It would not make any difference if only family were home or someone came over to visit. He would conduct this activity without any sense of understanding social norms. This would happen in place of stopping for the normal greeting.
Their capacity for memory -every fine detail... it's crazy...Good friends of ours have a son with aspergers (he is like 14 now) they moved a few yrs back but we visit now & then.....this is the closest to seeing 1st hand what parents go through on a daily basis ...
They've had "wrap arounds" much of his growing up yrs, times they had to pick him up at school for having a meltdown, he lost his ability to ride the bus at one point...... he would go through phases of being obsessed with vacuum cleaners (he was eager to share every detail)... or Golfing...he lost so many golf balls on our property....He loved to read
The last time we visited, he started talking to my husband about the Civil War... it blew us away.. I mean...he knew EVERYTHING... times, exact dates, Every General.... I had to tear my husband away from him.. he was so enthusiastic - and that memory.... I was thinking of
...like he really should be involved in some way with a "Reenactment group or a tour guide.... he would be in his glory somehow.....if there was some place for him...
The last 2 times we left their house, when saying his Goodbye's he'd squeeze so tight his dad would have to tell him to "Let go now" & raise his voice a little louder almost demanding - he can get a little carried away... I know this son, even with his difficulties...ya know , has still brought them much laughter throughout the years.. But it hasn't been an easy road by any means ...he is "highly functional" I guess.
Kenji started to get very agitated. He reflexively struck out at me once right after the cannon went off. Hit me hard in the back. I will tell you it was sore and I could tell it was a reflex, it was not some intended response. He even recognized right away what he did and try to undo it. He yelled at one time for it all to stop (later in the game). We were able to calm him down, but we could see from this situation that we put him into a nearly impossible scenario.
One lesson learned is that poor Kenji really cannot be exposed to the normal activities others take for granted. It makes it even more the case for me to look at how we find ways for him to be in safe environments for his future employment and living situations. On yet another note, I have said this before to others and have even written it down but as further public record: I just want to say that if anything every tragic happens to me at the hands of Kenji, I just want to say I forgive him and hope that he can be cared for and not punished unjustly. I love him.
Bringing me to tears Drerio... and you question if you are a Good Father .....
...You are the BEST Kenji could ask for....this speaks it ALL.... How blessed is HE...... a Father who only wants the very best life can bring...accepts him for where he IS, understands his outbursts, even rage at times...you work out with him, take him to ball games, you have remained by his side -run to the school at every inconvenience...so proud of his artwork (AMAZING by the way -that face! )...
My heart breaks when I think how much hope I had for this precious life. I still remember on occasions when I would rock him back to sleep at 2 am and sing to him. Talking and whispering to him, telling him how much I loved him. How much I wanted the best for him. My heart breaks.
and here you are ...still there by his side.. rocking him in his daily life...ya know what amazes ME....
I've never heard you complain about your lot in life, or show any utterance of resentment... WHY ME?? ..in anything you have written... a Rant.... only that you wish you could DO, GIVE, BE more to your son....and feeling you don't measure up, always missing the mark somehow... .. Honestly I am freaking blown away by that..... Could many of us do this.. .HELL NO ! We'd shrink miserably under these circumstances..I see you as nothing but ..yeah that "super hero" strong....
You remain steadfast, it's always about HIM
at the forefront...so unselfish...you do your everything to "protect" and Prepare...and BE THERE...you give him as stable of a life as you possibly can, no matter what comes...He can count on DAD to be right there beside him...just look at yourself like this >
I have made the commitment to find ways to teach both of them in their new roles without belittling Kenji and without making Ryo feel cheated in his birth-place. We have started with differences in chores around the house and next it will be opening a bank account for Ryo. Teaching Ryo how to be responsible for his own finances. A skill that will be necessary as he may have to, at some point, oversee his brother’s financial well-being
Just another example or not shirking your every duty to prepare him..and Ryo for what lies ahead...always looking out for your family.