renee bowen


18 Years on Planet Earth



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Cue the freak out – my baby boy is 18 today.

I don’t write too much about my personal life on my blog (always say I will and just never do) but I felt the need to record this …. somewhere (apparently in cyber space).  It’s a momentous occasion!   I mean, I realize people have birthdays all the time – and to be honest, all birthdays are special in my eyes … I am a big believer in celebrating people on the day of their entry into this chaos we call life.  But 18 … MY kid is 18.

Okay, that is just INSANE.  Because I still feel 25 most of the time.

Everyone who knows me well, knows how important and special this day is for us; they know our history and Reece’s story … the kid has worked SO hard his entire life – in school, in social situations, and now as he looks ahead to what comes after high school.  (oh yeah, you can expect a RIDICULOUS post when he graduates in June 2017)

Autism has a way of making everyday ordinary milestones into MAJOR LIFE CHANGING EVENTS.   All y’all autism parents know what I mean.

Just the other day, we were sitting in with Reece’s “team” at school and discussing this last year – how it’s going, what we can do to make it better, less stressful, etc. (so very grateful for this team and school!) – and he said, “I am just worried I won’t be able to get it all done and I won’t be able to graduate.”   And I said, “Dude, I had the head of neurology tell me when you were 4 years old that you would probably never speak and that school would eventually turn into an institution, because there wasn’t much we could do for you….. and HELLO, you express yourself incredibly well (better than most adults I know), you care DEEPLY about others, you have a driver’s license! and you WILL graduate – on time and with your class”.

Anyone who knows Reece knows that he is incredibly sweet and empathetic.   But a lot of people don’t really know him like his Dad and I do… about the challenges he has faced and those on the rise….about his big dreams and nonstop ingenius ideas and inventions that flow out of him like lava on the daily.   I hope he can share more of that with others someday; but my greatest wish is for him to be happy .. to feel loved always.

On his 1st birthday, we had a HUGE party for him – with all of our friends and lots of family – in our backyard in Hollywood where we lived together as a little family of three before the twins came along…. much simpler times – much QUIETER times 🙂   Andrew’s father had given us an amazing video camera (this was kind of a big deal back then – 1999 – not like today when we can record an entire film on our iPhones!)   So we have alllllll this footage from that day.  I cut a minute or so of it into a little birthday video — from Reece’s FIRST birthday to his 18th – today – to honor HIS birth into this chaotic place!

Time flies SO very fast…..this feels like a lifetime ago!

I guess it really was.

Love you so much, baby boy!

xo, Mom

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