Yesterday, abfh wrote something that captures perfectly how I feel about being a parent – not just of an autistic son, but of both my kids (emphasis is mine):
Children are always different from their parents and from one another in a great many ways, and each child is uncharted territory. No one ever knows how well they can deal with parenting any child. It’s always a matter of gaining experience on the job, observing how the child grows and learns, and loving the child enough to let the natural process of growth take place, unconstrained by the parents’ needs and assumptions.
This has now found a place in my trusty notebook of things I want to have handy. If anyone asks me how I “deal” with parenting an autistic child, I’ll simply show them this.