The moment in a ski lodge when your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment has rendered him so hyperactive that your brother Eddie just had to eat half his dinner holding a squirming boy on his lap, to prevent that boy from ransacking the restaurant—hits the “Floor 1” button in the elevator, then turns directly to three adult men who’ve entered and inquires, “Are you also going to the first floor?”
The moment in the airport security line when your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment has turned him so inside himself that he doesn’t always realize when you’ve started speaking to him—takes his trombone case off his shoulder and holds it proudly in front of him, hinting for the TSA officer to ask him about the instrument, and then answers her question with, “Yes, I am very good at playing the trombone. I even take lessons, every Friday.”
The moment in a Whole Foods Market café when your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment has left him so anxious that he burst into sobs when he lost sight of you, momentarily, in a trampoline center—finds his way to the napkins and silverware, selects the right quantity of each, returns without delay, and sets the table, without being asked.
The moment in a restaurant when your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment has made him so sensory-seeking that he continually puts you in tight headlocks, whenever he’s not trying to wipe his nose on your sleeve—lets you cut his roast chicken, then says, “Thanks! I was getting frustrated with that.”
The moment in the car, in Northern California, when your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment is causing him to perseverate on marching bands and musical instruments, regardless of what conversation is actually happening—calls from the backseat, “I like Southern California better. Uncle Rudy lives there, it’s warmer, and it borders Mexico,” and follows up with, “Why do you say you like Northern California better, Mommy?”
The moment when the new neuropsychologist evaluating your ASD son—whose Lyme-disease treatment has made him so drunken-silly that he interrupted the neuropsychologist’s testing with a giggle fit, and later became infuriated with a challenging exercise and shut off her computer—tells you, “I definitely see issues here. I would say primarily ADHD, and secondarily speech processing delay,” and never once mentions the A word.