Sorry If I Disturb You is a book about Jayden, an eight-year-old boy with Autism.
The book covers Jayden’s journey from the week after his first birthday, when on a routine checkup with a Pediatrician, his grandmother was told by the Pediatrician, “I think your grandson has autism”.
From that day onward, those words from the Pediatrician shaped the life Jayden would live. Suddenly, the reason why her baby would not allow her to hug him was clear to his mother. The quirky things Jayden would do, like walking on his tiptoes, spinning around aimlessly and lining up items in rows all made sense now. Now, they were not simply quirkiness, they were signs that Jayden suffered from autism.
The book covers Jayden’s’ struggles, milestone and victories. One big victory was when, at around four years of age, Jayden started to speak clear enough that his words could be understood. Although it took many years to accomplish, at around age six, Jayden became fully potty trained, and now uses the bathroom like any other person would.
One of the most disheartening aspects is how he is viewed and treated in public.
Unlike other disabilities, children with autism usually show no obvious signs of disability, this often works against the child because when they throw tantrums, sing loudly, talk too much in public or are just being disruptive in public, they are viewed as a bad child, with bad parents. The comments that come with these incidents are often times hurtful.
Too often, the child’s actions are misunderstood, but the parent who struggles to keep the child safe is also misunderstood. In this book, you will read of one such incident which happened to Jayden and his mother in Brooklyn, New York, where as she struggled with Jayden on the sidewalk to stop him from running into the street, three NYPD officers approached the scene, and demand she let go of the child. This is just one such incident that is described in this book. The reasons behind these incidents are shared to display how unrecognized autism is among people from all walks of life. This book also reveals Jayden as those around him know him to be. His obsessions, the way he does things, and like so many other autistic children, his downfalls, like having no friends because he is viewed as “strange” by other kids.
Jayden is bright and fun loving, he loves to play and laugh and he is very smart for his age. Jayden can spell nine hundred or more words. His reading level is beyond is age level. His computer skills are also above his age level. He often times repeats back in full a book read to him days or weeks before. He memorizes dialogue from TV shows. He is actively teaching himself graphic art. These are just some of his abilities, yet he still lacks a fundamental understanding of the basic life sense expected of him.
Sorry if I Disturb You is Jayden’s story, but it is also the story of so many other kids with autism. It is the story of what their parents, caregivers and sometime teachers are silently going through.
The book does not cover everything. There is still so much more to tell and so much more to learn.
We hope, getting to know a little about Jayden will allow the reader to take the time to learn more about autism. Then, they may understand what that child and their parent are going through.
Awareness leads to change. Perhaps not change as in stopping autism, but in helping the children and their parents.
Sorry If I Disturbed You, is meant to evoke the readers empathy and understanding towards Autism.