I’ll be your clown.

Autism / General

A few weeks ago I wrote about how Megan was about to take part in her first school play. Of course it went amazingly and she was a wee superstar, in fact all the kids where outstanding really. It was lovely to see so many personailities be given the chance to shine in such different ways. I think what made it so special was that the teachers know them so well. Its not a big school and rehearsal time was limited but intense so they all got to know each other very well. This enabled the teacher to pull out the individual gifts and talents each child had. you could see them being pushed to the limits of their comfort zone and then just totally shining through because they knew people believed in them and so they reached their full potential.

Its a funny thing with people, don’t we just make such snap judgements on each other. You take a look at a person and instantly you’ve made some sort of assumption. We all do it, its instinct or nature, even when I try very hard not to do it I make that snap thought of, oh he looks scary, she’s confident, they’re so in love etc. The thing is society, culture etc builds up these ideas in our heads so really a lot of these things cant be helped. What can be helped is how we act on these assumptions.


As a reward for Megan’s hard work for her play, we went ice skating as a family. Megan loves ice skating, and because we’ve been a few times recently her confidence has grown and she’s able to skate more and more without needing any help from Ben or I and her Penguin has been long left behind. What actually ended up happening this time was that Eli asked for Megan to help him round instead of ben and I and suddenly we found ourselves at the edge of the ice made a bit redundant. Instantly I felt sad as I watched them skate off alone, and then I realised actually this was a huge step, it was Eli taking a big social step, in a busy ice rink he was stepping out of his comfort zone and Megan was stepping up as his sister, she was taking that role as an additional needs sibling and she was shining bright within that. She knows him so well she knows his fears, she knows his struggles and she knows because she is confident in herself how she can help him overcome them, she was helping him shine!!

ice3 ice5

I am not sure what people see when they look at our family. I’m not sure if we look like we have it all together. We certainly do not.

I’m not sure if they look at our autism journey and laugh, or mock.

Can you not just parent your child better? Can you not just set better boundaries? change diet? can you pray that away, Sure your struggle isn’t life threatening or physical so why are you complaining? I’m sure to some it looks funny, it looks like another bunch of people milking a system, sure why would you label your child if its not to get benefits, (to those people I say check out the price of sensory toys).

I would say that maybe I would have made those judgement before I walked this journey but I remember researching autism at the age of 16 and working with kids with add and autism when I did my work experience. Its been somewhere my heart has always been. But I can understand why some of you don’t get it. I understand that my life is something you don’t want to hear about. I get that when you see another autism awareness post you roll your eyes and scroll on.

The thing is, like the teachers in that play, they needed to understand those children so well, they needed to know their likes and dislikes they needed to know where their talents lie and yes where their weakness was in order to draw out the absolute best from them. We need to get to know people, we need to look beyond those backwards opinions we have stored up over the years.

They guy covered in tattoos? talk to him I bet he hasn’t ever killed anyone!!! The girl who must have taken hours putting on her make up, I bet she is as in need of a friend as you are. The kid who is rocking back and forth? He’s frightened or overwhelmed, but he is not to be feared, he is not to be ignored or avoided, ask his parent why he’s doing that, how does it help him? what can you do to be of practical help?

DO NOT go home and write a joke on your social media about it, do not put your uneducated comments out there for all to read.

One thing you need to know is that Additional needs parents are not Clowns, nor are our children. You might laugh but the jokes on you. These kids will very often grow up to be your surgeons, your dentists, your anaesthetist, the M15 agent protecting your whole country!!

While you feel the need to protest about labels, we are fighting battles to get the tiniest bit of support for our amazing kids who are so full of potential and are being shoved into boxes that your kids fit. Be thankful your child has an educational package that meets their need while ours struggle from the very basic essentials. So while its frustrating, we will not stop talking, we will not stop chipping at those wrong ideas of autism that have been built up over the years. this might make you feel uncomfortable but its not half as uncomfortable as living your life every single day in a world that doesn’t understand you and while that’s what my child has to face then I will not stop being his voice. ever.


I guess it’s funnier from where you’re standing
‘Cause from over here I miss the joke
Clear the way for my crash landing
I’ve done it again
Another number for your notes
I’d be smiling if I wasn’t so desperate
I’d be patient if I had the time
I could stop and answer all of your questions
As soon as I find out
How I can move from the back of the line
I’ll be your clown
Behind the glass
Go ‘head and laugh
‘Cause it’s funny
I would too if I saw me
I’ll be your clown
On your favorite channel
My life’s a circus, circus
Round in circle
I’m selling out tonight’
(Emeli Sande)

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  • Laura Wood

    Not a truer word spoken ❤ beautifully written xx

    02/13/17 – 18:22