1. Asalah Bird
    February 23, 2015 @ 12:10 pm

    I loved this!

    I love your writing!!

    One week I’m sobbing, the next giggling!!

    Thank you for sharing all your moments… helps me prepare for what’s to come. My son is 4 and newly diagnosed, so newly that we don’t know how far up or down or across the spectrum he is… If that’s even the term!!


  2. Janet Hannam
    February 23, 2015 @ 12:26 pm

    Thank you ! My Jack’s name is Ian. No one understands this kind of pressure more than another mom who has walked the walk.
    My Ian is now turning 24. An artist with a strong background in math, he began to be aware about 12. I actually think it was listening to me read the WHOLE Harry Potter series to him and his siblings. This of course would have to be followed by the movie ….. Those waits were long.
    He was born grown up, and the things that are important are not things that are important to me.
    But, he came in from painting a mural on a wall in his brother’s house, for a new baby to com ( soon). I asked him how it was turning out. In his flat speech he replied, ” I don’t like it but they are pleased.” Me,” you don’t like the mural you are painting?” Ian, ” it is not to my taste”. Me, ” well your brother was home today, you must have liked spending time with him?”. Ian,” yes, okay, it was good.” Me, ” Ian you have just told me , yes you spent time with your brother with as much passion as ‘ yes, okay, it was good spending time with a fence post !’ ”
    Ian face changed, he laughed, ” it Was good mom.”
    He then retired to our basement abode, our Cellar Dweller. Yet another teachable moment for both of us.

    You, my dear, are doing a great job.



    • Chris
      February 23, 2015 @ 4:28 pm

      Thank you both for making me feel not quite so alone. Sam (my Jack) was diagnosed almost 2 years ago (I kept telling dr after dr that there was something different with the way Sam handled life – “Maybe a parenting class will help you?” – to no no avail until then) he is now 13. In addition to autism, Sam suffers from depression, severe anxiety and food allergies – of both lactose and gluten. I am a single parent mostly, since my husband works away from home and is only here about 4 days a month. I spent yesterday under the table (figuratively) and crying (literally). Yesterday’s issue was a headset from GameStop. I had told Sam that he could earn money by doing extra things around the house in order to buy it. I explained that he needed to do his chores first. So came the discussion (to our frustration) why one job could make money and the other couldn’t and why he had to wait (Sam doesn’t wait well) until after he did his chores to do the job that makes money. Why, why Why WHy WHY!? It is as though that headset just appeared yesterday and if we didn’t get it RIGHT NOW it was just going to disappear again. He doesn’t drop things or let it go (what is that, anyway?) I explained the chore concept (you live here, we all pitch in) and the extra job concept (something I want done that is not part of your chores) over and over again – in as many different ways as I could think of. “But what makes a job a chore and the other job just a job?” Some concepts Sam doesn’t understand. And he doesn’t stop – even when I say I need a couple minutes – until he is exhausted.By the end, he was upset and having a melt down and I just wanted to cry. This happens a lot. I try to explain Sam to my family or friends and their response is “He’s almost 14 – can’t he do . . . or take care of . . . or control . . .” I just wished that I could explain it so that at least the non-autistic people in my life would just support me, listen and not blame Sam or the way I handle him . . .


  3. Ellisha Blackburn
    February 23, 2015 @ 12:30 pm

    I really hope Duff reads your letter! Ughhh, the backstory. What a story. While I don’t have 5 kids and a dog, I do have 2 kids and a cat, and a myriad of tantrums (not all mine!). I have felt that futile longing for a nap. Sending you love, Carrie. You are my new favourite blogger.


  4. Cheryl J Moyer
    February 23, 2015 @ 12:34 pm

    I love YOU DOLL!!!!!!! I have 4 boys, set I and set II. 10 years apart. My youngest, the caboose is non verbal and 9, Dylan is 10 and the only NT in the house, Stuart is 18, senior is highschool, autistic and my oldest is almost 21, Aspie smart and living on his own on the west coast.


  5. Teri
    February 23, 2015 @ 12:37 pm

    I REALLY hope Duff reads your letter and responds! Thank Goodness for Rainbows!!!!!!


  6. Jacquie
    February 23, 2015 @ 2:05 pm

    You’d better arrange for some vacant cupboards. I’m betting you get TONS of rainbow cake mixes. And who knows? Jack just might get an invitation to “visit the bakery.” I sure hope so.


  7. Amy Richardson
    February 23, 2015 @ 2:19 pm

    I LOVE THIS!! Love your writing and your heart! My son’s name is Jack too, he is 13 and sound very similar to your Jack!


  8. Kara
    February 23, 2015 @ 2:55 pm

    Dear Duff, can we have your rainbow cake mix in UK? Our colours not bright enough!

    Just sat ready to start what colour is Monday, belated (due to release date) birthday pressie.


  9. Cindy Belleque
    February 23, 2015 @ 3:30 pm

    Oh, yes, yes, yes!!!! No one can understand the moment of anxiety, frustration and “please, God, let this work” than another mom who has walked through it!
    Ours isn’t cake, it is time. What time, when, how much longer, now?
    Thank you!


  10. Carol Casavant
    February 23, 2015 @ 4:07 pm

    I love your writing, Carrie…!! My grandson Michael is 6 and on the spectrum…He is such a joy…!!


  11. Lisa Warndorf
    February 23, 2015 @ 6:22 pm

    I do hope Duff reads your letter and invites Jack to the bakery. Wow. What a great time Jack would have there!

    I love your blog. You’re a gifted writer and a great mom. I’m not a mom but rather the grandmother of a newly diagnosed 3 and a half year old little boy named Harrison, whom I love with all my heart and soul. I’m still having a lot of trouble accepting the diagnosis. You see, he seems so “normal” most of the time I start thinking surely they must be wrong. I pray they are wrong. But I know they aren’t wrong.

    I’ve ordered your books and hope they help me accept this. And teach me how to work with his diagnosis. I want to be the best grandma in the whole world because I have the best grandson in the whole world.


  12. candidkay
    February 23, 2015 @ 9:18 pm

    I have bought this same cake mix and avoided making it b/c the directions sounded dodgy. I was a non believer:). But will give it a try, based on your experience. So glad Jack was not disappointed!


  13. Adventures w/Riley (@dkotucker)
    February 23, 2015 @ 10:44 pm

    Oh my goodness…you should SO win some kind of prize (preferably cash) or at least a life time supply of cake mix. 😉


  14. Marie Keates
    February 25, 2015 @ 2:46 am

    If you don’t win a lifetime supply of cake there is no justic in the world


  15. twisterfish
    February 28, 2015 @ 6:49 pm

    Seriously, you are wonderful and your writing is terrific. And… our sons need to open a bakery together. Mine is obsessed with Duff and a few other cooking shows right now. It’s part of our daily life, as you can imagine. We can’t even take a bath without pretending to be on a cooking show.


  16. Brigid
    March 16, 2015 @ 1:00 pm

    I love your analogy of the obsession to a rainstorm. That’s my son, too, and the meltdowns, when they come, make me want to hide under the kitchen table. My boy is 7 and the only reason I think he’s not wanted to try Duff’s cake mixes yet is because he can’t have gluten right now — but when we get there, I’ll keep in mind that they don’t mix well, just in case.

    Good job handling those two days, for providing a wonderful glimpse into the reality of autism for those who might not understand it, and for sharing your experience so that those of us who share it can remember we’re not alone.


  17. Laura's Last Ditch Vintage Kitchenwares
    June 3, 2015 @ 12:22 pm

    “Go read the school directory for a little while.” I’m pretty sure I have said those exact same words. My son, too, has everyone’s addresses memorized, and I practically do, too, since he talks about them all the time. he likes the church directory, too. A few days ago he saw a woman at church and said, “Hi Williams Eliza, 821 Eastern Avenue” and shook her hand very appropriately.


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