Autism: “self + -ism” (from the Greek prefix, auto = self)
1. a mental condition, present from early childhood, characterized by social-interaction difficulties, communication challenges and a tendency to engage in repetitive behaviors (oxforddictionaries.com, autismspeaks.org)
2. a tendency to view life in terms of one’s own needs and desires. (dictionary.com) Isn’t this everyone?
My definition: exhaustion (sprinkled with anxiety and a dash of humor)
WTF? Did she just say turkey pacifier?
Yup. Not being metaphorical at all. I mean a legit chunk of meat being sucked on as a way of pacifying.
Vomit in your mouth just a little bit? Me too.
A little back story: Big C (my three year-old recently diagnosed with ASD) has never used a pacifier. I never had to deal with the weaning of the Binky. Hey, I had to luck out somewhere.
However, Big C has always been a big fan of lunch meat. Not the worse thing, right? I mean, yeah, it’s loaded with sodium and preservatives and blah, blah, blah. I figure it’s a hell of a lot better than pigging out on fruit snacks and Doritos all day (no judgment if your kid does that).
I never really thought much of his desire for it. I can’t even remember the exact moment it started. One day, I just started noticing he was eating it all throughout the day. He started requesting a “little piece” with breakfast, on his sandwiches for school, when he got home from school, right before dinner, right before bed…
Then one time when I had to wake him up from nap, I noticed an unpleasant meaty odor coming from his mouth.
He was sucking on turkey in his sleep!
When you’re done gagging, continue reading.
That’s when I knew we might have a little problem on our hands. It was time for an intervention. An Oscar Meyer Oven Roasted Turkey Breast intervention.
Turns out sucking on lunch meat soothes Big C. It’s a sensory thing. The second he pops a chunk into his mouth, he goes into this zen-like zone. He stares into space, his mouth twitching like a rabbit’s as he sucks on it. It completely calms him down whens he’s having a manic moment.
It is so freakin’ bizarre, and so freakin’ hilarious.
Bu no harm, no foul, as far as I’m concerned. I do recognize the dangers of choking on it and have been weaning him from it before nap and bedtime, but aside from that though, I say…
…let the boy enjoy his turkey crack.
A version of this post also appears on Sammiches and Psych Meds.
~Chaos Contemplated (for now)