From Illusion to Perception: My Extraordinary Journey Embracing Life Goals with My Son.
Rest if you must but don’t you quit, a popular lesson learned the hard way in my journey with my autistic son. Viraaj, my son was diagnosed with mild to moderate autism when he was two years old. After the initial grieving and dealing with disappointments, I mustered all my strength to deal with the situation at hand. Keeping a bold face, socks pulled up and adrenaline gushing through every cell in my body, I was ready to take on any challenge my way. I trapped myself in the “he will be okay in a year” illusion and kept moving. I was determined to make everything okay for me, my family, and my child, and that too very soon. I kept on working hard without taking breaks. Taking breaks, which were limited to a quick shower, made me feel guilty. I was totally unaware of where I was heading. Gradually my energy and enthusiasm started loosening and I felt like a punctured balloon. Exhausted, tired, and left with no sense of direction. “Something had to change, “I thought to myself” I need to change the way I am looking at the situation. I was losing the sense of joy I had for life. I assumed my progress would always be linear, moving upwards with Vraaj. But in reality, it felt like moving in circles. Viraaj forgetting learnt skills and not behaving the way I wanted him to, seemed like a failure. It took a long time for me to realize that this “hurried attitude” was taking me nowhere but to a place of exhaustion and disappointment. And a bonus was spoiled relationships with myself and my family. I just needed more time to unwind, to pause, and reflect on my goals and my attitude to achieve those goals. That would be my new progress. Going out with my friends, dressing up well, and setting a clear intention to feel good were things I started doing. It helped me immensely not only while dealing with Viraaj but in every area of my life. I felt more alive and creative. I have finally transformed into the tortoise who enjoys the journey not forgetting the goal though and left the hare behind who was in a hurry to reach his goal.