Sunday, July 27, 2014

Autism Awareness

I must have accidentally erased this post,so I'll have to write it again.
As the mother of two sons on the autistic spectrum ,autism is never far from my mind. When my oldest son was diagnosed with autism I fell into a despond I don't think I've ever climbed back out of. My sons are beautiful,funny,sweet and I love and accept them as they are. I know,I know they are special with different unusual abilities etc.etc.,but I can't help the fact that their experiences with life are limited by their disabilities; I know I'm in Holland not Italy, and that they give me a love and joy that differently abled people don't possess. I also can't help feeling sad and a bit jealous as the kids of friends and family members grow up without the difficulties my sons encounter .Difficulties we did everything in our power to overcome for the past 25 years,with limited results.At 25 my younger son cannot speak to communicate his desires, and my older son at nearly 27 wants nothing more than to be "normal", like the people he sees around him. I know they are not junkies or convicts,and that they live their lives without self pity,but with enormous frustration. Imagine having to hold somebody's hand to walk out the door,or seeing other people do things effortlessly, that are so hard for you to articulate, never mind do, of never being able  to express properly anything you want to say, of constantly needing reassurance that you're okay,  everything will be all right.(Okay we all feel that last one, but I don't think as desperately). My sons are heroes, who live in a world that was not built for them,and they do so with an unconscious courage.
I have to say at this point that I have had the pleasure of watching my daughter grow into the gracious,beautiful, intelligent young woman that she is, with all the usual milestones,complicated by growing up with her brothers, who she loves, respects and is generally patient with.( They are her annoying older brothers.)Still I can't help but wish sometimes that they too had the opportunities she and so many more of us enjoy.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Calving or drawing proper calves

I am steaming because I was told by my drawing instructor that I NEVER draw calves right and that maybe I ought to study anatomy. Meanwhile half the class draws figures that look like malformed peanuts with arms and legs, and while I am not admittedly the best draughtsman in the world I never do anything wrong all the time. No one should teach a class who doesn't have supportive constructive advice for their students,not someone who tells them they ALWAYS do something wrong,especially in a drawing class. I will of course now take to my anatomy books and draw legs(especially calves) incessantly. My drawings henceforth will consist of nothing but legs with the odd breast thrown in now and again. I mean what's so bad about these calves( the only ones I could find a quick picture of) ? Admittedly not the best drawing in the world, but not completely terrible. And I must say I've drawn better examples in the past. I feel better now that I've got that off my chest. Just remember no one ever does something wrong all the time and be kind to your  trying very hard students.