Friday, 21 June 2019

25 Years in the Making...

If you are new to Riley World and would like to take a stroll down memory lane with me...Click here or on the photo to have a look at the first 19 Chapters in Riley World

Twenty-five years ago, you came into this world. Two and a half decades. One quarter of a century. When the heck did I get so old?!?!? 

Little did we know that life, as we knew it, would never be the same.

When you were born, you were the same weight/length as J2 was...only you were bald.
When you were born, 1 in 150 were diagnosed with autism. Today, it is more like 1 in 59.
When you were born, the movie Rain Man was the closest thing to autism that people could relate to.

Growing up, I was never a very patient person. Becoming a parent, well…never changed that.  

After J2, I thought nothing or no one would ever be able to test my patience like he did. I was wrong.

You changed me.

Who knew there would be so many doctors with such long, LONG waiting lists. 
Who knew there would be so many forms to be filled out. So, SO many forms. 
Who knew there would be so many tears. Tears of joy, sadness, laughter and often times, hysteria.

You have brought autism awareness to so many.

In the early years, it was in the form of a high-pitched scream that would silence a food court. Pretty sure it caused hearing loss to anyone within a 5-block radius.  

As you grew and matured, the awareness you spread was not so ummmm…loud and overwhelming for others (or us). I imagine it had to do with the popularity of earbuds/noise-cancelling headphones.

Nowadays it is your charm and endearing qualities that attract people to you.

You changed our world.

You have changed the lives of many.

You continue to change the world.

Happy 25th Riley-man!  
We are so proud of you!  ❤

Monday, 20 May 2019

The Journey to the Jam Sandwich

For the first decade or so of Riley World, when we were learning how to navigate this thing called autism, we pretty much walked on egg shells. It was hard for us to understand why or how so many things could cause such chaos in Riley World.

So, SO many things.

Things like a change in food packaging or when McDonald’s white bags were suddenly brown bags or it’s summer now so wearing a parka is perhaps not the best choice or when the power goes out and the clocks aren’t synced anymore so you need to remind everybody that THE CLOCKS ARE WRONG!!!

I need to stop. I’m starting to twitch.

We first started Operation IFO (Increase Food Options) in September 2013. Yes we’ve been at it for almost 6 years. Ok so not consistently but still...Six. LONG. YEARS. 

I made this video montage in the early days of Operation IFO. When there was a lot of table banging, whining and complaining. 

As I watched this the other day, I realized how far Riley has come and that maybe it is me who is still the traumatized one. Maybe he's ready to try new foods. Maybe he's even excited to try new foods. Ok...maybe not. 

But look what happened when I decided to try a jam sandwich this weekend. Doesn't it look tasty...I cut off the crusts and everything.

And yes...I recorded it for you.

I was all prepared to have to negotiate for him to eat 1 piece. Do wonders ever cease?!?!? 

It has been a journey.