Thursday, 23 March 2017

How my autistic son says he is already like a Power Ranger

Power Rangers Toys

Hot on the heels of the recent Sesame Street's reveal of their first autistic Muppet, is the re-boot of the Power Rangers Movie. And you've guessed it, one of the Power Rangers is autistic.

As a parent of kids with autism, one of whom is a nine year old Power Rangers obsessed boy, I literally squealed with excitement when I heard the news.

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are back!  A group of ordinary school kids find themselves instilled with alien powers that they must master as a team to save the world.  And counted amongst those 'ordinary kids' is one with autism.  And this didn't really strike home until I told Anthony about it.

"Anthony, you know the Power Rangers movie that's coming out soon?"

"Ohhhh yes."

"Well, this is really exciting.... the Blue Ranger has autism, like you.  He will be a bit like you."

"Oh mum, that will just make him even more like me."

How could I be so blind?

And then I listened to my amazing son as he told me ways that he was already like the Power Rangers.

He is brave
Anthony struggles with lots of things and I often think that he has to be 'braver' than other kids his own age.  Yes all kids have things they need to overcome, but Anthony is faced with challenges on a constant basis.  And some things like entering a swimming gala has a whole set of issues other kids just won't get. He is brave to get over his fears and worries and work through each and every single day.

He is strong
He absolutely is! Take a boy with autism and ADHD who literally spends all day jumping about and you get someone fit.  He's no longer losing weight with his medication now, so he is super lean and strong - not unlike the Power Rangers.

He wants to help and protect people
OK, he was beginning to pull at my heart strings now! But it's true.  Anthony tries to protect everyone. He's petrified of his little sister walking out onto the road.  He is desperate to keep everyone safe.  The best way he tries to do this is my helping people follow the rules.  But his general empathy far exceeds what you may think you'd find in a nine year old boy with autism.  He even wanted to protect the kids who bullied him at school so they wouldn't get into trouble.

He moves fast
Anthony loves speed.  Roller coasters, driving on motor ways, he's even into motor sports himself. It's as if he should have been born on a planet with a faster spin.  When he's rushing around the house, he is almost a blur.

He's good at fighting
OK, that sounds a bit of a disaster but it's not really.  Both Anthony and his brother David are on the autistic spectrum and they are both sensory seekers.  It's a bit like having an itch that you need to scratch I guess.  But it's not an itch, it's a need for pressure or loud noises or something else that stimulates their senses.  This means they seek out touch and contact; hugs, rolling and rough and tumble play are in abundance in our house.

And my absolute favourite and I'm paraphrasing for comprehension:

"I'm not the same as everyone else and it can be difficult sometimes, but I'm still best when I'm myself"
Because the Power Rangers are special and they are different from the other kids in school.  This means they have to take on evil aliens and protect the world.  But being who they are makes them stronger in their battles and only leads to victory.  And at the end of the day, even though they are different, they are also just kids who go to school.

Yes Anthony, you are awesome!

Needless to say, my eldest boy is super excited that the Power Rangers Movie has just come out. Well done to all those involved in the making of the movie, for making it even more relatable for our lad. His only suggestion - if he'd chosen a Ranger to be autistic it would be the red one, but only because red is his favourite colour.

You Baby Me Mummy

26 comments:

  1. Aww! This made me smile so much! Your boy really is awesome!
    I hope you get to see the film soon x
    #SSAmazingAchievements

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  2. I love this post - I love how you liken and celebrate Anthony here. Just beautiful. Thanks for linking this up to #coolmumclub hon xoxo

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  3. This is brilliant, he sees it all so clearly and he is absolutely right. My son's so excited about this movie, I'm sure we'll be at the cinema soon! x Thanks for sharing with #WotW

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  4. Anthony certainly is awesome. We first started watching power rangers with my now 18 year old and now my youngest is into them. I've seen them go through a lot of changes and think it's brilliant that the new movie is including autistic and gay rangers. #wotw

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  5. This is such a lovely post celebrating your little boy's individuality! Loved reading it :) #TheListLinky

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  6. That's so fantastic! I didn't know one of the Power Rangers in the new movie is autistic. It's great that your son can now identify even more with him. How cool! My son is Power Rangers mad too, so I can see us visiting the movie soon. I hope you enjoy it. #TheListLinky

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  7. Power Rangers was my first intense interest back when the original series came out.. I was diagnosed only last year at the age of 30.. When they announced that the Blue Ranger is autistic I cried with happiness.. This is why representation is so important: it shows that we are valuable and capable of being heroes. 😊

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    1. It really is. Thanks so much for sharing.

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  8. Love this post. Anthony is definitely awesome - I love your paraphrased quote about him being best when he's himself. It's great though that children's shows are now starting to include characters with autism but I love that Anthony's perspective is that it makes the Blue Power Ranger even more like him rather than just a bit like him. Such a lovely way of looking at it. #WotW

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  9. What an amazing response. And he's so right!! #littleleaps

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  10. A wonderful post and it's lovely to read your son's thoughts and perspective. Hopefully the movie will help with awareness and acceptance. Thanks for linking up with #SSAmazingAchievements

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  11. Oh, that's brilliant! How lovely he realises that he's "still best when he's himself". That really made me smile, bless him :) #LittleLeaps

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  12. Awww bless him. It's great that there's been a change in attitude towards conditions in the films. I do hope that the movie is all that you wish to see and more. #PostsFromTheHeart

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  13. that's brilliant. My kids are only just getting into the Power Rangers, I'll have to see if I can get them a trip to the cinema. My eldest has been a Power Ranger fan for about 18 years and he still watches it now. Last weekend he had a Power Ranger marathon for the weekend. I wonder if he thinks of himself like a Power Ranger too. Anthony certainly is a Super Hero!

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  14. An autistic Power Ranger? Wow! If only Pokemon would follow suit..my little lad would be over the moon! :)

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  15. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this post so much! In fact I'm not sure words can really say just how much I love it. I think the Power Rangers need Anthony as an extra member. He is of course totally right, being yourself is always best, even when it's hard. Thank you so much for linking this up to #PostsFromTheHeart

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  16. What a beautiful post and yes there are a few tears running down my face. What a super boy and i hope you buy him the best seats in the cinema to watch the Power Ranger Movie and he is allowed a very large box of popcorn.#PostsFromTheHeart

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  17. "I'm not the same as everyone else and it can be difficult sometimes, but I'm still best when I'm myself" - how lovely and wondeful to hear your child say these words. Loved this! #spectrumsunday

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  18. Ah this is brilliant! What a fantastic boy you have - I really hope he enjoys the film. Thanks for linking up to #TriumphantTales and please do come back again tomorrow :)

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  19. This is fabulous. He absolutely is a Power Ranger - what a complete star! #postsfromtheheart

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  20. this is just the cutest thing ever. I love how he has associated himself with such a strong character and knows that just because he is different, he doesnt mean he's any less special. What a cutie you have there! Thank you for sharing yet another fab post at #TriumphantTales

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  21. that's lovely to read, that your son thinks the power ranger is like him, rather than your son trying to be someone else

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  22. I love your son, autistic children are absolutely different. May both you and him be happier, healthier, more active and stronger!

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  23. I love this!! Such an inspiring message from him at such a young age bless him! #LittleLeaps

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