I received many gifts that year: a train set, a bowling set, and some other cool gifts. I was overloaded, but not in a bad way. It was just a lot to take in during that time. I was more interested in the wrapping paper than the gifts, although my parents tried to get me interested. The train set was left behind us to run in a tight circle. Our German Schnauzer was very interested in the train. She chased the train in a circle, not once, but more than ten times around the circle, coming in and out of the camera. We were all laughing while watching that video. The really funny aspect was, neither of my parents noticed the dog running in a circle trying to catch the train.
I know there are a lot of concerns about how children with autism might handle the holiday season. I am sharing this memory to show that at age two, I was nonverbal and overloaded from the idea of Christmas. Now, at age 23, I am writing my blog to share this memory as a sign of hope to others struggling with autism. I am about as far from nonverbal as can be at this point. I have received two offers to speak about autism next year. Parents, never give up hope because you never know what is waiting around the next corner in the future.