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Happy New Year from Age of Autism!

Live Through This

Champion fall out boyBy Cathy Jameson

“…if I can live through this…I can do anything…”

I heard a song a few months ago while driving around town running some errands.  It was still playing on the radio when I got to my destination.  Rocking out to it while sitting in my car in the Costco parking lot, I waited until the song ended before resuming my busy day.  Once it was over, I turned off the car and grabbed my shopping list.  Repeated the refrain as I walked into the store, I told myself, Don’t forget to look up the lyrics when you get home.  It would be a few hours before I’d make my way back home though.  When I finally got there, I completely forgot to look it up.  Last week in the midst of some other errands that had me running all over town, the song came on again.  I had just turned on the car.  Staying in the parking spot so I could listen to the lyrics, I rocked out to the song once again.  

…I’m calling you from the future

To let you know we made a mistake

And there’s a fog from the past

That’s giving me, giving me such a headache…

Golly, is that my life or what?  It isn’t every day, mind you, but I do feel like mistakes have been made.  Some people can look past mistakes, theirs and ones made by others.  They can let the past go, and I applaud them, but I will still sometimes struggle with the “I would have if I could have” thoughts that pop into my head.  They pop into my head when Ronan has another seizures, when he lashes out at his loving therapists, and when he pulls his sisters’ hair.  Those frustrating moments bring out the worst in Ronan.  They can bring out the worst in me and make me want to throw every positive thought I have out the window.    

…I got nothing but dreams inside

I got nothing but dreams…


Ahh, yes, those dreams.  Those dreams!  I believe in them, and I hope in them fully.  Dreams help me put one foot in front of the other.  They help me get out of whatever funk I have gotten myself into, too.  Falling into a funk - that happens, and it’s hard to get out of sometimes.  Most of the time the funk happens when I get a peek back at the past.  People have told me to stop thinking about the past and to move on.  They are usually people with much higher functioning children or people who have no children at all.  I don’t begrudge them for not understanding, but I also don’t give them too much of my time.  It is sometimes pointless to talk to them because they don’t have the same deep, emotional scars I have.  But I’d love to ask them how does one move on fully when the past lingers as much as it does in the present? 

Ronan never made it through certain stages. 

He never hit some major milestones. 

He hasn’t grown up like other typically developing kids have. 

His past included enjoying baby books, watching baby movies, and wearing diapers.  Presently, he still likes his old baby books, still likes baby movies, and still wears diapers.  The past never left.  It parked itself in our home, and on some days, it rules our house morning, noon, and night!  Believe me I’ve tried to not think about the past, but it’s right there in my face all day long.  I handle it by dreaming about the future and living as hopefully ever after as I can.  That’s because …I can do anything…

People ask me all of the time, Cat, how do you do it all?  Some days, I seriously don’t know, so I sheepishly reply, I just do what I have to do.  Ronan needs me.  He needs endless support.  I do what I can when I can.  That’s because I believe that Ronan can do anything.  If I think otherwise, I’ve set him up for failure.  This kid hasn’t failed anything!  Other people may have failed him, but he has soared.    

…If I can live through this…

Change that to line to …If he can live through this…  Oh, the things Ronan’s accomplished!  I’ve seen Ronan do the impossible.  I’ve seen him go from not being able to walk to walking, to not being able to follow directions to completing multi-step tasks, to not being able to communicate to typing a full sentence.  Despite his glaring limitations, he continuously wows me.  He proves over and over again how resilient he is.  Sure, he still struggles and gets slowed down by the simplest of things, but he tries.  He tries his hardest.  He does his best.  Because of that, I do my best for him as well. 

Ronan lives in each moment—through moments fueled by the past and through moments that bring him closer to our present.  It’s inspiring.  He’s inspiring.  He always will be.

Awesome t shirt

Dreams and hope are my remedy, and I’m very glad for them.  I pray that you believe in them, too. 

Cathy Jameson is a Contributing Editor for Age of Autism.


Maria Russo

This is so beautiful and inspiring Cate! I know how it feels. My son was very affected by autism, but he accomplished many things, too. Things that always surprised us. He loved baby movies and baby toys like Elmo; he also had seizures. He left us last year after a sad ordeal he had to endure because of a pancreatitis that no one suspected of. He couldn't speak and could not say how much pain he was feeling, until it got really serious. Thank you for sharing these beautiful thoughts with us, and the rock, for my Dani was a rocker :-) I always look forward to read about Ronan and you. God bless you!


Vaccine injured children deserve a lot of credit for everything they manage to accomplish. It takes so much effort for them.
My son has come a long way with the help of a wonderful MAPS doctor. The other day I thought of this song "Let's Hear it For the Boy" because he works hard to do his best.

I'd like to dedicate it to all the boys who struggle with vaccine injuries and who managed to "do the impossible".

Cathy Jameson

Lovely, upbeat, great way to end a year and look forward to a new one. Love to all!


That is a song of hope Bob! Good choice, and describes Sweet Jameson, Mom Stag, and the rest of the writers or AofA


Happy New Year Cathy! Thank you for another inspiring article that I identify with completely and my son has seizures too. We can only hope for a medical miracle that will cure our children in 2018!

Aimee Doyle

Yay Bob!

Great song!

Cathy Jameson

Beautiful song, Bob. Thank you for sharing it! xo, Cat

bob moffit

Happy New Year Kathy .. and .. all the AoA community. Let's hope THIS YEAR will be OUR YEAR.

As for myself .. I think of all the warrior mom's and dads whenever I hear the lyrics to this song .. "Strong" by Will Hoge ..

The warrior mom's just have to change the gender every time Will sings "he" to "she".

"She'll pick you up and won't let you down
rock solid inside out
Somebody you can trust, steady as the sun
Ain't nothing gonna knock her off the road she's rolling on


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