My name is Nicola and I’m a fixoholic. I don’t mean that I like to tend to leaky taps or spend my time super-gluing old toys back together (that’s what my Dad is for) but rather people, and their broken situations.
Sawyer is now six and a half years old, and dealing with his sensory issues and meltdowns only becomes more composite as time goes on. As a serial fixer, it can be difficult to understand why suddenly and without warning, techniques we’ve been using successfully for weeks and months suddenly don’t do the trick anymore. Autism – how can you be so fickle? How can the symptoms you provoke demand such routine and stability, when the treatment you require is so changeable and complex?
When I started writing this blog, I wanted to tell my story out of frustration for the common misconceptions I’d been facing for so long. But as I continued to write I realised it seemed to be helping people along the way, which, as a serial fixer continues to appeal to me and encourages me to keep on writing, even when sometimes I don’t feel I have anything worth saying. I guess I hadn’t anticipated that my words would help not only other Autism Warriors (PLEASE remind never to be that twee ever again), but also my own family. I never stopped to think about how difficult other people close to Sawyer must have found his diagnosis and all the unknowing that came along with it. It was actually the response from my own flesh and blood that was incredible to me because I realised then how fixated I had been for so long, and how I had expected people to understand Sawyer, without ever explaining what exactly had been going on.
My name is Nicola and I’m a fixoholic. I like to fix people and their broken situations, and for those reasons, I never like anyone to see the times when I feel broken myself. I have fought hard and I have done well; I am proud of the way I fight for my son, but with autism, every day doesn’t just get better. Some days get worse and some days get a LOT worse before suddenly things seem to click in to place again. And then click out of place just as quickly. The hardest part of being an autism mum is reaching a point where you think to yourself I JUST DON’T WANT TO DO THIS ANYMORE, but you know that giving up isn’t an option, and that a rest will probably never come.
I end most of my blogs with a sincere air of confidence and determination, which I hope each time will inspire others to gather their own confidence for whatever issue they are currently facing. But you know what? My blog endings don’t always reflect the endings of day-to-day life. Many of my days end with a defeated face-rub, a headache, exhaustion, and almost always wine. But feeling exhausted is okay. Being a warrior (damn it) isn’t always about gun blazing and anger-wielding. It is about sometimes feeling beaten, tired, achy and sad, yet still getting up and getting the fuck on with it.
You aren’t on your own. And neither am I.