1. Jodi
    July 24, 2017 @ 5:00 am

    Oh, Carrie … yes. This part exactly: “… there is one single moment separating rage and acceptance, distress and cooperation. It is exactly the space of a heartbeat. I believe this moment is called courage, and it is so beautiful, it takes my breath away.” You are such a talented writer and a great mom. Sending love from New Jersey.


  2. Julie P
    July 24, 2017 @ 6:02 am

    I’m crying. I understand this so much. I have lived it so I can feel it—all of it…all of it.

    You, my friend, have so much courage as well.


  3. Mag breen
    July 24, 2017 @ 8:57 am

    I cry every time I read your blog. I literally ache. My son has autism also but like all kids with autism he is different to Jack. He is also only ten and I fear the day he asks to just be “normal”. What will I say?
    You are an amazing writer and an even more amazing Mom. I can feel your pain and your deep love for Jack from your writing. It’s some of the most intense feelings I have ever had from reading. Keep fighting the fight and just keep swimming ..


  4. Sarah
    July 24, 2017 @ 9:01 am

    I get this so hard. And sometimes it’s really, incredibly hard to take the time and explain. And sometimes I feel like I shouldn’t have to explain everything all the time. But it benefits my girl and it benefits the stranger. So I usually do it. But yeah…judgement really freaking sucks.


  5. Mary Haug
    July 24, 2017 @ 2:09 pm

    This is such a compelling story, and although it wearies you to retell it and retell it, thank God you do.


  6. Janet A. (Grandmother)
    July 26, 2017 @ 6:23 am

    This is so difficult to reply to. God is by your side every step of this journey and he does not judge. It must be more difficult to write the story then for all of us to read. You are God’s messenger to all of us and we love you for sharing. Please tell Jack he is loved by so many as he holds a special place in our hearts. Thank-you.


  7. GP
    July 26, 2017 @ 7:55 pm

    Thank you for writing this blog! I just read the addendum to this post (regarding the extended school year) on your facebook page. My child is also 13 and on the autism spectrum. I used to have practically the same dilemma as you described. Because of my worry about my child’s future, I would insist on structured summers, social skills groups, equine therapy, and whatever the school and I thought might help maximize my child’s chances for a better future.

    However, my child also has an anxiety disorder and depression. We learned the hard way that pushing her to attend all these activities, when her peers had the time off to relax and to recharge, made her anxiety and depression so much worse. I had to remind myself that everybody needs a break. Everybody needs lots of fond childhood memories. I realized that a summer of not working on social skills or academics, considering the big picture, is not likely to significantly affect long-term outcome. On the other hand, loss of self-esteem and chronic exacerbations of anxiety and depression could affect long-term outcome.

    I just wish I had learned sooner to see things from my child’s perspective, to follow my gut instinct, and to truly advocate in a way that makes a happy, peaceful childhood for my child and my child’s emotional well-being the top priorities. I guess I was somewhat blinded by my own fears. Our children are so very capable of learning, but some of the things that could hinder anybody from achieving their full potential seem to be self-loathing and depression. I feel that I have to make sure that my child knows that her voice counts, that she can make a difference in her own life, and above all, I don’t want her to hate herself.

    This year, my child chose to attend the summer camp at her therapeutic school. During the last couple of years, we did “mommy summer camp.” We did lots of activities together, and she learned while having fun.

    I hope things will get better for you all soon. Your writing reflects how much you care and how you examine things from different angles. From one mom to another: Please trust your gut instinct. You know your child best.


  8. Emily
    July 31, 2017 @ 5:45 am

    “With Jack and his autism, there is one single moment separating rage and acceptance, distress and cooperation. It is exactly the space of a heartbeat. I believe this moment is called courage, and it is so beautiful, it takes my breath away.”

    Yes!! So much yes! My son’s courage took my breath away Sunday!


  9. babybudgeting
    August 2, 2017 @ 1:16 am

    yes we live this too,,beautifully expressed


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