Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on Parenting a Child on the Autism Spectrum

Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on Parenting a Child on the Autism Spectrum



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Gravity Pulls You In: Perspectives on Parenting a Child on the Autism Spectrum by Kyra Anderson

View the universe of autism-its marvels, chaos, and life-changing impacts-through the eyes of the contributors to Gravity Pulls You In. In 33 essays and poems, mothers and fathers raising children on the autism spectrum explore their lives in the context of autism's own special gravity, discovering what's important and what they find centering. Their slice-of-life depictions are a refreshing departure from the usual diagnosis/grief/acceptance arc of many autism accounts. Readers are invited into contributors' lives, where they're sure to find an attitude, a circumstance, an epiphany they can relate to.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781606130025
Publisher: Woodbine House
Publication date: 03/01/2010
Pages: 201
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.50(d)

About the Author

Kyra Anderson chronicles life as a homeschooling mom and writer on her blog, Her work has appeared in Tiny Lights, Bust Out, and 100 Hats, among other small presses. Her memoir, How My Son's Asperger's Saved My Ass, is not yet published. She lives in New England with her son and children's book writer/illustrator husband, David Milgrim.

Vicki Forman is the author of This Lovely Life: A Memoir of Premature Motherhood (Houghton Mifflin/Mariner, 2009), winner of the Bread Loaf Writers Conference Bakeless Prize. Her work has appeared in the Seneca Review, the Santa Monica Review, and the anthologies Love You to Pieces: Creative Writers on Raising a Child with Special Needs and Literary Mama: Reading for the Maternally Inclined. She lives outside of Los Angeles with her husband and daughter.

Table of Contents

Foreword John Elder Robison v

Preface Kyra Anderson xi

Part I Notes from Autism's Edges

Label Everything Anonymous 3

Notes from Autism's Edges MothersVox 5

Guilt, Denial, and Videotape Mama Mara 11

Birthdays Kristen Spina 23

Finally at Three: Two Words Put Together Grey Brown 27

Middle Earth Drama Mama 29

How to Talk to an Autistic Child Kimberly K. Farrar 35

A Child Blinks Janet Kay 37

The Real World of Autism: The Refrigerator Mother Club Chantal Sicile-Kira 43

Watching My Son Watch Sleeping Beauty Anjie Kokan 47

Sometimes, Never Susan Segal 49

Part II String Theory

String Theory Emily Willingham 61

Evolution of a Fairy Carolyn Walker 69

Live via Satellite: A Parenting Journey Mary McLaughlin 79

Flood Plain Bruce Mills 85

The Wages of Autism Kristina Chew 93

Proverbs 13:24 Aileen Murphy 97

No Pity Maggie Kast 99

The Stone Barbara Crooker 115

Part III And the Shoes Will Take Us There

As Great as Trees Ann Douglas 119

Other Child, Other Mother Cheri Brackett 125

100 Percent Lesley Quinn 135

Navigating Autism Christine Stephan 141

Driving Down the Road...and Growing Up with My Asperger's Child Susan T. Layug 147

Heart-Shaped Rock Kyra Anderson 151

You're Adopting Whom? Ralph James Savarese 157

Oh, the Community Veronika Hill 161

The Mother at the Swings Vicki Forman 163

And the Shoes Will Take Us There in Spite of the Circumference Bobbi Lurie 167

To Persevere Ralph Savarese 169

The Visit Laura Shumaker 173

Is There Anything Else We Should Know? B. E. Pinkham 181

The Family Gangsta James Wilson 189

Contributors 195

Editors 202

What People are Saying About This

Monica Holloway

John Elder Robison says it best in the introduction to this powerful book, '...the autistic condition is really the human condition.' With approximately 1 in 100 children on the autistic spectrum, isn't it time that we, as a community, educate ourselves on the entire range of what having Autism Spectrum Disorder really looks like? Gravity Pulls You In takes all of us, not just those of us with autistic children of our own, through the challenging experience of living and fiercely loving these children. It is chock-full of extremely moving and personal stories dealing with everything from adopting a special needs child to a mother caring for her dying thirty-four-year-old son. Uplifting and heart wrenching—just like life. (Monica Holloway, author of Cowboy & Wills: A Love Story)

Paul Collins

So often parenting with autism begins stunned and alone: we don't know anyone who has been down these paths before, and when we do meet others there's a shock of recognition and relief. Gravity Pulls You In is like a roomful of those vital first encounters: they are the voices of the experiences that we've been through, that we may have yet to come to, and that bind us together. (Paul Collins, author of Not Even Wrong: A Father's Journey Into the Lost History of Autism)

Valerie Paradiz

There is a famous saying in the autism community: 'If you've met one autistic person, you've met ONE autistic person.' Gravity Pulls You In shows us that the same can be said for moms and dads of autistic children. This is an amazing assemblage of original voices and unique experiences! As you turn each page, as you read each beautifully wrought essay, you'll feel the cumulative power of the lives we have created, for ourselves and for our children with autism. (Valerie Paradiz, Ph.D., author of Elijah's Cup and the Integrated Self-Advocacy Curriculum)

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MomsChoiceAwards More than 1 year ago
Gravity Pulls You In is a recipient of the prestigious Mom's Choice Award. The Mom's Choice Awards honors excellence in family-friendly media, products and services. An esteemed panel of judges includes education, media and other experts as well as parents, children, librarians, performing artists, producers, medical and business professionals, authors, scientists and others. A sampling of the panel members includes: Dr. Twila C. Liggett, ten-time Emmy-winner, professor and founder of PBS's Reading Rainbow; Julie Aigner-Clark, Creator of Baby Einstein and The Safe Side Project; Jodee Blanco, and New York Times best-selling Author; LeAnn Thieman, motivational speaker and coauthor of seven Chicken Soup For The Soul books. . Parents and educators look for the Mom's Choice Awards seal in selecting quality materials and products for children and families.