The Anti-Romantic Child

The first thing I want to do today is post a review of a book I finished last week. The book is The Anti-Romantic Child: A Story of Unexpected Joy, by Priscilla Gilman. I’m just pasting the review I wrote at Goodreads. So here goes:

If I could have given this book more than five stars, I would have! It was amazing. Priscilla Gilman is very much a “romantic.” She was a professor of English lit at Yale and Vassar before choosing to abandon the world of academia. Can’t say as I blame her much. I always liked reading literature just to read it; to devour it; to enjoy it, not to dissect it into its smallest parts, to the point that it is unrecognizable. Her favorite author is William Wordsworth. She quotes his poems extensively in this book.

The book chronicles her journey so far with her oldest son, Benjamin. She noticed early on that he was “different,” but celebrated his differences and enjoyed them. Then she found out that these “differences” were not so good, at leas not in the eyes of traditional educators and the like. While he never tested to be on the Autism Spectrum (unless I missed something), he was close, and was diagnosed with a disorder known as “hyperlexia.” She struggled over the years with the need to try to “mainstream” Benjamin, but at the same time, always wanting to love him and celebrate his strengths, of which there were many. The story is beautiful. It is beautifully written (the influences of her favorite literature shine through in her writing), and I found myself in tears many times during this book. Of course, the reason for the title is that children on (or close to) the Autism spectrum rarely show any affection. The hope for a child that will hug you warmly and say “I love you” is shattered, because they just don’t do that, at least not early on. Even our own 17 year old “high-functioning autistic” still doesn’t really give good hugs very often. She loves us and does say that, but the understanding of “love” is not full.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves good literature, as well as anyone who has or knows anyone with a “special” child.

I’ll close this with a couple of quotes. “Being Benj’s mother has changed me profoundly, has made me more, rather than less, idealistic; more, rather than less, passionate; more, rather than less, creative…” “In parenting Benj, I have gotten more in touch with a profound kind of romanticism; I have been given access to a transcendant sense of mystery and awe and wonder.”

Yesterday was a pretty good day for me, with few issues to deal with. I wish I could say the same for Christi. Her day was pretty intense, AND she wound up having to work until around 8pm! Ugh. They have a big project rolling out this weekend, so it’s not going to be a nice weekend for her. I hope she doesn’t have to work that late tonight.

The Red Sox dominated Bucky and the Crybabies yesterday afternoon. I’m a bad fan because I didn’t even know they were playing an afternoon game! How did that happen?? It was over before I knew it was going on. But the Sox won 4-0, behind two home run shots by our boy, Jacoby Ellsbury. Unfortunately, the Evil Empire won, too, oddly enough, by the same score. So there is still a game and a half between them. The Rangers finally lost a game last night, to the Halos. Looks like they were ahead 8-3, but gave up 6 runs in the sixth inning. Tommy Hunter got the loss. That’s okay, though. I mean, nobody likes to lose, but the had won 12 games in a row. Nobody can win forever, you know. And they are still in first place. Hopefully, they will come back tonight. I also just read that Hideki Matsui hit his 500th career home run last night. Congratulations to him. That’s quite an achievement. Gonzo went 4-5 yesterday, so I have a 3 game streak now in Beat the Streak. Adrian Beltre is a Pick of the Day, so I will go with him today. Beltre did not hit a home run, however, in yesterday’s game. I’ll try Cruz today. Boston is, apparently, off today.

Today, Stephanie has Champ Camp. She truly loves that. I hope they will let her help next summer, after her senior year is over.

The vinyl record I’m ripping today is the eponymous album by Bash -N- The Code. Produced in 1986, it sounds every bit of it. They were an eighties Christian Pop band.

I guess that’s it for today. For the devotional blog, check out THIS LINK.

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