Thoughts on life, disability, and the power of connection.

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Welcome to My New Home

Welcome the space formerly known as Team Aidan. I miss his big blue eyes on the page, except that I don’t have to because I get to look at them everyday, but there’s so much here I’m excited to show you. First, most susbcribers of Team Aidan should be receiving these Family Synapse posts in your email as before. We had some technical difficulty with some so if you are not here by way of...

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The Power of Connection

synapse |ˈsinˌaps| noun – a junction between two nerve cells, consisting of a minute gap across which impulses pass by diffusion of a neurotransmitter. ORIGIN late 19th cent.: from Greek sunapsis, from sun- ‘together’ + hapsis ‘joining I might be a bit of a brain nerd. The more I come to understand Aidan’s disability, the more I respect the brain and am awed by its power. Though it’s been the source of Aidan’s greatest struggles, it’s also displayed it’s complexity through his delayed development. I’ve been privileged to see it’s work in slow motion....

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Food for Thought

Food for Thought – April 6, 2015 Edition When a Little Girl at the Pool Realized My Son Had Autism “Here, get on the float, I’ll pull you,” “I’ll throw the ball, and you catch, OK?” Whoa! Was I really seeing what I was seeing? Was my son playing? Did my son finally have a friend? For about 20 minutes, until the little girl had to go, I got to watch two kids laughing and playing together, and for the first...

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My Walking Walker

Reposting today in celebration of Aidan’s Pura Gene sister Audrey, who got her first set of wheels this week. We watch with hope and excitement as she takes on the world in whatever way she chooses. Meet my son Aidan. He’s a Walking Walker who Walks. Yes, he walks with assistance and only short distances but still, he’s a kid who walks. Aidan was born thirteen years ago with an undiagnosed developmental disability and low muscle...

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The Risk of Believing

We sit in the front row at church. I’m too easily distracted to sit anywhere else. When Aidan was learning to walk, it provided him with a purposeful opportunity to work out. Walking to your seat is not a made up phycial therapy excercise, but rather a functional activity. He loves walking so much that he generally walks past our seats and onward toward the stage or out the side doors. That kid wants to...

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Potty Talk

While there may be a lot of potty humor in this house of boys, there’s not a lot of potty talk. We’re a silly and ridiculous family and all challenging topics are game for honest conversation, but mostly we keep it clean. Mostly. Now Liam, my first born, is a rule follower, of course. He never swears and he’s very quick to call me on it when my words get colorful. It’s absurd, when you...

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Seeing In

I’ve writtten and deleted this post a bazillion times in my head. I wanted to pull out all the stops and let you in, really let you in, to show you why Purple Day and this entire conversation is so important to me. Yes, there are facts and figures about Epilepsy. There are stories too. But I wanted you to see, really see, what seizures look like. I wanted you to see that they’re strange, and scary,...

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The Cost of Breathing

Did you know that you bend your back a little when you hug? It’s so imperceptible that you probably just reached out as if to hold someone and realized it’s true. Your spine curves a little bit to get closer. That’s the work and freedom of each tiny vertebrae that brings you near to another, holds your heart closer to theirs. And if each of those vertebrae are fused together in one solid, unbending line,...

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Food for Thought

Food for Thought – March 23, 2015 Edition Kerry Washington on “Othering” Monica Lewinsky on cyber bullying  Kelly McGonigal on doing life together

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The Truth About Birthdays

Birthdays are milestones, days to take stock, notice, celebrate. They gives us a concrete number to mark time. At five years old we start school; hitting double digits make a kid feel grown up; turning 13 starts the tumultuous teenage years; 16 means you can start driving. We collectively have an idea of what happens when. The truth is, birthdays get harder as the gap between Aidan and his peers becomes more noticeable. Garreth and I...