I've recently gotten into a bit of a reading phase. That means I have started to read books! Real books!
When I was a kid I read early, and I read often. I read all the time! I was reading as much as possible. You know, Brick from "The Middle". Me.
Anyway, when I was a kid, I wouldn't just read a book, I would start it and finish it usually in the same day. I would read things like Babysitters Club and Sweet Valley University. I'm sure there were others but I don't remember. When I was younger than that, I think there were American Girls and Little House On The Prairie (which I stopped reading when the dog died. Couldn't help it, my dog died around the same time I was reading LHOTP).
Anyway, the frustrating thing as an adult and parent is that I can't just sit down and read a whole book. I get into the story, I get into the reading, and interruptions break my train of thought and I get lost and forget what was going on. Obviously, once I start reading again its not hard to remember really, but I still feel disconnected and interrupted.
Anyway, I still get periods once in a while where I pick up book(s) and start reading.
Currently I'm in the "middle" of "Joseph" by Terri L. Fivash (EXCELLENT, I read the whole first half of this huge 461 page "first person" narrative of Joseph (from the Bible).
More to the point, I also started reading "The Autistic Brain Thinking Across the Spectrum" by Temple Grandin and Richard Panek.
So far, it is pretty technical, talking about portions of the brain and DNA that may or may not have a part to play in the autistic brain. Interestingly, sometimes they found portions that seem different, but don't work identically in different people with autism.
It is pretty fascinating. I walked by the new book section in the local library and it was there, so I immediately picked it up. I am very interested in Temple Grandin because even though she may have been institutionalized years ago because of her differences, she has become a huge figure of knowledge and research on the very thing that makes her famous. Not long ago we watched the movie (Temple played by Clair Danes) and it was fantastic and inspiring.
I still believe there are reasons that there are people like us. We aren't mistakes, or products of drugs or error. Even when and if there are things that "turn on" our symptoms or condition, we are created this way for a reason. Without this, where would be variety in life, and I'm convinced that in order to be focused enough to invent something, you have to fail hundreds of times and still be motivated and obsessed with figuring out how to make it work. The only people who are that focused on anything are people with ASD type behaviors. That's not to say that only people with ASD can create, but its a connection that says there is something specific about the differences we have that makes us able to do what others are unable to do, to forward the world and create things that are essential to our lives today. People who were uninterested in socializing and more interested in tinkering with their obsession of choice.
Either way, this is an interesting read. I don't hold out much hope of finding much that pinpoints exactly where autism happens in the brain or in DNA. Even what they do know is varied person to person with ASD, so though some changes and differences are enough to say that its similar to other ASD people, that doesn't mean that a person is going to have ASD, or that they are going to have it the same as someone else with ASD. God has made us this way, specifically, on purpose. Jeremiah 1:5 says "Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you;....". God created us, and knew who we would be, and what that would mean, before we were born. We were born with a gift, not a curse. We were born with a "reorder" not a disorder. We were born with a different ability, not a disability.
I see no other answer. No specific thing is directly and only connected with autism. No gene, no brain formation/deformity, no drug and no living condition... the list goes on. We are who we are because God loves variety and creativity and passion and every person who is born has their own gift and interests and thats on purpose.
Anyway, I wanted to pop in and write something about what I've been up to since the blog has been sorta silent recently. I hope to get through these books soon, but I backed off because I've been busy with kids and whatnot. It was nice though to start reading again, I just wish I weren't in the middle of so many books at one time. Haha.