Friday, October 14, 2011

Life On the Spectrum: Life with Mom

Brian Lafferty is a young adult with High-Functioning Autism currently living in Escondido. He graduated cum laude from California State University, Fullerton with a degree in Radio/TV/Film and is also the film critic for East County Magazine. He can be reached at You can also follow him on Twitter: @BrianLaff.

SAN DIEGO -- When I was little I would have an occasional paralyzing fear that my mom and dad were going to die too soon. I don’t know why I had this fear. All I know is it would keep me up at night and it made me cry.
Every time this fear would envelop me – usually at bedtime – I’d come downstairs in tears. Mom always had a way of saying things in a way that made me feel better. She assured me that by the time she would die I wouldn’t be dependent on her. She’d hug me, kiss me, then send me up to bed and things would be much better.
The years passed and by the time I was in high school the fears stopped. But in the end, these fears would prove to not be unfounded. On November 26 of last year she succumbed to an aggressive and invasive form of breast cancer. I was devastated. I’m still grieving and I likely always will. She won’t be around for my wedding, she won’t be able to hold my grandchildren, and despite having 160 friends on Facebook, I miss her commenting on and liking my status updates.
The purpose of this column is to tell you about life from an Autistic person’s point of view. In addition, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Starting today and through November I want to share with you my personal experience of losing my mother from my Autistic perspective.

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