Did you know: approximately 67 million people worldwide are affected by autism? That autism is the fast-growing serious developmental disability in the world? More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with diabetes, cancer, and AIDS combined? Boys are four times more likely than girls to have autism? There is no medical detection or cure for autism, but early diagnosis and intervention improve outcomes?
We consider Michael a hero because every day he encounters ignorant people and rude comments based on a lack of understanding and superficial judgments. He forgives the meanness and continues to make incredible progress in becoming an integrated member of the community. For him there is hope. For many others the struggle is still great and the ramifications of living with autism punishment-like. For them, and for Michael, please help increase autism awareness and respect for the person trapped inside the disease.
The White Dog Army had dinner with Michael as they do on each of Steve's late nights. We have been very excited by Nuka's progress and her most recent step up to solid, canned intensive care food; she is exceeding expectations. This morning she nibbled a bit from her bowl and finished eating from Steve's fingers. It is important that she get to the point of eating on her own.
During dinner tonight, we had a set back in that AWD refused to even sniff her bowl. Michael sat on the floor with her to guard her space from the rest of the Army who is extremely jealous of her special diet. He repeatedly moved the bowl so it was directly under her nose. Nope. It was hard for him not to take the rejection personally.
White Dog jumped up next to me and said. "The problem is clear." "Really?" "Think psychology," she said. "For past week every time Nuka has eaten you have cuddled her in your arms and dad has given her praise and individual attention as he hand fed her, first with the syringe then this morning with his fingers. Why would she want to eat out of a bowl on the floor with nobody cheering? That is going to be a tough connection to break since she needs to eat but she needs to do it on her own."
I think my wise WD may be on to something. Unfortunately, AWD will now have to wait until Steve gets home late tonight. I am the holder/cuddler and cannot do both that and hand feed. Michael is too afraid of being accidentally bitten to do the feeding. But our girl is hungry, I know that as she looks from the offered bowl to the front door willing Steve home RIGHT NOW. Sometimes I just wish the White Dog breed was not the most stubborn on earth. Thanks for your continued Power of the Paw.