Diary of an Autistic Father: Week 17

And so I find myself here.

I’ve been in therapy for around 10 months, attended about as many sessions. They’ve been intensive monthly sessions during which I laid out my situation and received training to deal with it. During this period, I’ve had very logical discussions of how anxiety works. I haven’t scoured my childhood or anything cliched. I went in to learn how to handle things better not fix everything about me.

The last session was instructive for me. Everything has been going really well for me. But in these moments I’m aware that it won’t. Instead of the defeatism I’m prone to, I’m feeling strong enough to stare down these things. During the discussion, I realized I’d learned all I could learn from my therapist. I left it feeling strong.

Those feelings haven’t abated in the last few weeks and as the next appointment neared, I had an epiphany: I had no business going to therapy any time soon. I was ready to test the waters on my own. Thus I made the call and decided to move on from monthly sessions.

When you leave therapy, it’s often treated as either that it failed or you’re healed. Neither is true. The work Dr. Alan Pogue did was fantastic and I’ll recommend him without hesitation. On the other hand, I’m still battling anxiety and I know I’m going to face meltdowns even with all the training. I’m autistic. It happens.

But I feel like I want to get better and in no small part that is due to Lola. Lola cuts through so much of the silliness that is anxiety. I look at her and I know that my entire life must have the single minded purpose of keeping her happy and alive. If I can do that, I’m ok.

This week I spent a lot of time just playing with her. She’s getting strong and kicking her little baby legs. She’s rolling over too. It’s amazing to see sentience appear on her face. She’s so very happy and healthy.

Lola centers me. I’m grateful for that.

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