Saturday, January 12, 2013

NFL on Autism

I think it's pretty safe to say that it's possible the first Neurotypical thing Cameron did was to pick a favorite team and forever pledge his allegiance to the Baltimore Ravens. Right now he is in the basement watching the playoff game on the "big tv" and I'm left thinking of how the NFL has fit into our family. Good, bad or indifferent, here are our family football stats:

The Baltimore Ravens won the Super Bowl a week after found out I was pregnant with Cameron, we were in Fells Point, Baltimore watching the game with friends. I spent the majority of the game feeling a bit queesy and trying to avoid drinking Diet Coke (even though I reeeeealllly wanted it).

Cameron's favorite team is the Ravens, his second favorite team is the Vikings and no one knows why. And he's not saying.

Adam roots for whatever team is playing against the Ravens just to see Cameron get mad about it. He doesn't care at all about football.

We do "Game Picks" just like Sports Center weekly, Cameron has a book which lists each game of the week and picks happen on Wednesday night or Thursday morning. Cameron's guessing average is excellent.

NFL taught Cameron all about beer and his favorite scripts last year revolved around beer commercials. One of his second favorite scripts is for Viagra, you can imagine how well both go over in school.

The "discount double check" might actually push me right over into insanity this year. The commercials are bad enough, the constant scripting afterwards is even worse.

Cameron has gotten in trouble at school over a football related argument, sometimes with teachers.

When he doesn't know what to talk about in a social situation,he talks football. This actually is a pretty typical point of conversation out in the world so this is pretty good. He still doesn't fully understand the finer points of conversation though so prepare to talk NFL for the duration, even hypothetical games that aren't planned this season.

The NFL gave him acceptance. We have spent time as a family at a local sports themed restaurant, the kind that has huge tv screens everywhere. We went to watch a game and eat out and Cameron's face lit up when we scored a touchdown, he jumped up to yell and so was everyone else! He didn't get in trouble for being loud in a restaurant and even got a couple of high fives from the table next to ours.

Following the Ravens is something he does with Dad, from the start of ESPN game day to the end of the Ravens game is "guy time".

Last years loss in the playoffs left Cameron bereft, he cried for hours and was still upset the next day.

Right now I have 8 game minutes left in this game and it's still too close to call. There's no telling how the day will end in our house.

For me, today, the NFL has allowed me to change my train of thought. After lunch I had my own mommy meltdown complete with heartburn and tears. My brain went to an upcoming meeting, the beginning of the transition meetings for Middle School. The only word that I can put to the feeling is terror, absolute terror and for many many reasons. BUT then the game started, it was "guy time", I made an italian feast in honor of game day and there is still 5 minutes left in the game.

Good, bad or indifferent, I'll take it and be thankful for each and every second.

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