Axl Is In The House

  Thanks to a friend of mine who shares my passion for the tv show “Everybody Loves Raymond”, we are now completely hooked on Patricia Heaton’s new show called “The Middle”.  “How can I possibly love anything as much as much as “Raymond”?” I protested, but she promised me I would love it, and love it we do.  At first I thought it hooked us because in the show the youngest child is “quirky”… how some kids with Asperger’s are “quirky” and the parallels between that character and our daughter are too numerous and hysterically funny to name.  But about mid-way through watching the first season shows via Netflix, we realized that we also love the show because Hayden acts EXACTLY like the oldest kid in the show, Axl.  In the show, Axl is about 14 or 15 and he’s constantly slouching around the house (in boxers only) and complaining how everything is “lame”.  “This dinner is lame”, he’ll whine, or “homework is lame”, “having to clean my room is lame”, etc…. 

  Now you may be wondering what does THAT have to do with National Down Syndrome Awareness Month?  Nothing actually, I suppose.  I just really like “The Middle”.  I laugh my head off just about every episode and I think it captures the average American family pretty well and can see us as the parents and our kids in many of the scenese.  For instance, we’ve realized that Hayden acts JUST LIKE Axl.  Only without the words, because Hayden doesn’t really talk in full blown conversations……..yet.  But if he could, the thought bubble over his head would often read, “This___________is lame”… when he sits down to the dinner table to eat……well, anything other than a peanut butter and jellly sandwiches (Hayden is a lousy eater and we don’t exactly celebrate that aspect of his Down syndrome, but he IS an individual and he has a VERY strong personality, so we do celebrate that).  You can also see the bubble when I try to get him to help me make his bed in the mornings.  He usually grunts and yells as I’m forcing his hands to push the covers under his mattress as if to say, “making my bed is lame, Mom.  I’m just gonna sleep in it tonight anyway!”  Or when we then go to the bathroom to brush his hair the bubble reads, “Brushing my hair is SO lame! I’m not going anywhere today, why do I have to look good?  This is so lame!”  Or when he parades through the house with the remote control thrusting it into my hand and signing “Signting Time”, as if to say, “I need tv now Mom”, and when I say “No, you’ve had enough Signing Time for the day”, he’ll say “Noooo!’, and stomp off with the bubble over his head, “It’s so lame that I can’t watch Signing Time all day everyday”.  Then there was the time a couple of weeks ago, I think it was our daughter’s second Saturday morning soccer game, where Hayden kicked the ball around a little before the game started, but quickly sat down and proceeded to put his head in his lap for the rest of the game as if to say, “Getting up before Noon on a Saturday to come watch your sister’s soccer game is SO LAME”.

  Be patient with us Hayden, maybe some day your coolness will cancel out some of our lameness.

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