Celebrating difference.

On Christmas day as I stood on top of a mountain with Evan and Scruffy I felt pretty triumphant.

It has taken several years to get it right,trying different approaches that work for us.

 Finding the confidence to do what I feel is right for Evan and choosing to ignore many aspects of Christmas is not easy.

  I fight an internal battle of what I feel Christmas “should” be like based on my own wonderful memories vs what works for him.

 I have moments of self doubt that he will miss out in some way  if we don’t have a typical Christmas and of course moments where my need  to see a pile of presents under a tree cloud my judgement.

 The reality is Christmas Evan style works for him.

He loves a tree..but not in his space

So we have a huge tree at Grandmas.

Evan chooses the tree and decorates it. 

 At home he has asked we have no decorations, this has reduced his stress levels.

Over the years I have learnt that presents for Evan are a very difficult concept for him.

A pile of presents are simply a pile of presents.

They will remain as such untouched even if opened they don’t easily become part of his world.

I have learnt to spread gifts throughout December, slowly introducing new things to the house so that he enjoys and accepts each one.

Anything that is given by friends or family goes under Grandmas tree but he often never touches or uses any of it once opened…

So Christmas for us this year….

I  made him a stocking of course…. because it would be a crime not to!

Evan did eventually look inside when prompted but has yet to look at any of its contents again.

We went for a walk on the fells for 4 hours,the weather was brilliant and we had a wonderful morning. 

When we got back went to Grandmas house.

Lots of presents were under the tree.

 Evan knew everything that he was receiving from Grandma

“Is that parcel my surprise Christmas shoes that I picked?”

“Yes Evan”

“Great I should like to open that surprise next”

We don’t have a Turkey dinner as Evan won’t eat any of it so instead we had a casserole, that just consisted of meat..no onions,no veg, no potatos just meat.

but it meant we sat and ate as a family on Christmas day and that is important to me.

He watched an episode of “you’ve been framed” that had been recorded over and over throughout the day, laughing with the same excitement each time.

In the evening we played charades

Every time it was Evans turn, no matter how much coaching he did “The Royle Family”

We laughed and laughed


This year we got Christmas off to a fine art and the day was perfect

different but perfect.


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4 Responses to Celebrating difference.

  1. Heather Young says:

    You are the most fantastic mother. Even those of us who do celebrate Christmas in the way you used to as a child, can never get it right. There is always a ‘hiccup’ in the days proceedings. Evan is lucky to have you all. I wish I could take a leaf out of your book. May 2013 be a fantastic year for Evan and you, with more people understanding how much effort you put in to everyday stuff. Good luck, health and happiness to you and your family x

  2. janet bury says:

    Really pleased it worked out Lin, we too had a “different” xmas, including delivering my sons dinner to his flat but we all got through the day intact and that is the main thing…even better a full year before the next one!

    • Lin says:

      So glad Christmas was okay for you Janet! I think this is the side of Autism people rarely see or hear about unless they live it. x Happy new Year to ypo and may 2013 be great!

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