Tuesday, February 28, 2006

My Cousin Jamie...

I have a cousin named Jamie. Well technically he is not my "cousin". Technically he is the first client on the spectrum that I ever worked with, but don’t ever tell him that. I worked with him form the ages of three to seven, until I moved
fifty miles West, but of course he no longer needed me anyway (sniff, the bittersweetness of early intervention). He and his mother have kept in touch and I go out to visit them about once a year.

Jamie was (and is) a clown, and a jokester and a scripter, constantly scripting lines from his favorite books and movies, initially for no apparent reason, until he began to adapt them to his own life and his “scripts” eventually became rather useful for him. His mom tells me that one of his favorite movies is Lady and the Tramp 2 and while I haven’t seen it, apparently one of the puppies is quite the little rascal always getting into trouble and when he doesn’t get his way, he says “well if that’s how it’s gonna be, I don’t know if I want to live in this house anymore!” and then proceeds to run away from home. Apparently now that Jamie is a teenager (how did that happen?) when he gets mad about not getting his way, he tells his mom, “if that’s how it’s gonna be, I don’t know if I want to live in this house anymore!” and announces that he is going to run away to aunt Nancy’s who lives down the street. Jamie’s mom tells him he better call her first to make sure there’s enough room, and when he calls aunt Nancy and she tells him that she doesn’t have room at this time, Jamie says “rats!” and that is the end of that.

The last time I visited Jamie, he threw his arms up in the air dramatically and said “Squaregirl, you’re back!”, to which my heart completely melted…my little friends can melt my heart in a way no one else can. We all hung out, Jamie told me a knock knock joke and showed me a photo of his “girlfriend” ( a girl at school he likes and inexplicably insisted on bringing flowers to school one day, which turned out to be her birthday!) Jamie’s mom told me that he talks about me and tells people that I am his “cousin”. I love this! Jamie has no siblings of his own, but he has cousins and as I am pretty familiar with JamieSpeak, I am quite certain that what a “cousin” means to him, is “someone who is a big part of the family, but doesn’t reside under the same roof”. I looked at his mom and said, “I hope you didn’t correct him”, and she responded, “I wouldn’t even think about it.”

10 Comments:

Blogger Octoberbabies said...

Oh, SG I want to be your cousin too!!!

8:59 PM  
Blogger SquareGirl said...

Sal, Didn't you know? You already are! Your IDG's are my cousins too!

9:35 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Can Willie be your and Jamie's cousin?

5:27 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

This post was the equivalent of a Hallmark commercial for me! It's too early in the morning to get so teary-eyed!

I suppose it hit a nerve because I'm never sure how C's therapists feel about him - do they have a soft spot in their hearts for him? Or do they just see him as a client? It's nice to know that maybe, just maybe, they feel that soft spot.

Great post!

6:24 AM  
Blogger Eileen said...

I get attached to the kids I have taught also. I have some special cousins of my own who are now teenagers...Yes, I wonder "how did that happen?". Now it's wonderful to witness the relationships that have developed with Andrew and the teachers/therapists who teach him. Our family just keeps growing!

9:46 AM  
Blogger SquareGirl said...

Doug, I feel comfortable speaking for Jamie, as he is a Dog lover (especially the kind of dog's that think they are people) and we would love to have Willie as our cousin! Jamie will be quite pleased to hear about this recent addition to our extended family.

Wendy, I think when there's a connection, it's wonderful, and I am sure that C will indeed, if hasn't already, make strong connections with people around him.

Eileen, es, it's lovely to see our families grow!

8:19 PM  
Blogger KCsMom said...

That story brought tears to these eyes! Squaregirl you are such a caring loving person! Can we also be your cousins? ;)

11:28 PM  
Blogger SquareGirl said...

kc's mom...you don't even have to ask...consider your family my cousins, I consider you guys mine!

11:47 PM  
Blogger Kristina Chew said...

Further testament to how we're all one big autism family---maybe not always "happy," but sticking together.

12:25 PM  
Blogger SquareGirl said...

Kristina, yes...which is why we depend on the peacemakers like you and Charlie, to keep things moving forward.

8:43 PM  

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