Monday, April 23, 2012

Fun with the Letter "T"

“Have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it” – Salvador Dali

“Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last, you create what you will” – George Bernard Shaw

It not easy coming up with 26 posts in one month on the topic of Autism that don’t make people want to jump off a bridge or burn me in effigy.   Several weeks ago the letter T seemed so easy.  Autism…Treatment Options.  I figured a little pontification on this treatment vs. that  one  and WHAM! I am off to my sure-to-be-crappy post about the letter “U.”  

But, in reality there is nothing I can say interesting about treatment options which isn’t on Wikipedia or or any reputable medical website.  Many of my posts reference the different things we are doing with the Little Man.  

So, here I was yesterday struggling to come up with a concept for the letter T.   As I am batting ideas in my head last night at Mom-Mom’s house, I notice the Little Man using magnetic letters  to spell words on the fridge.  Right now, he is perseverating on the song “A Whole New World.”  In case you don't know what perseverating is, think obsessive compulsive times 10.  He listened to the song like 100 times this weekend and converted a towel into a magic carpet to act out the video.  The other day he actually wrote all of the lyrics out in crayon.  So, naturally, he is using the magnetic letters to spell out the title to the song.

Problem:  The magnetic letters at Mom Mom’s house have survived many grandchildren so what remains is not a complete set of letters, but a hodge-podge of different sets of letters gathered over the years.  Many letters are missing.  We had the makings of a possible meltdown on our hands.  The Little Man’s drive to get the words on the fridge (He is an Ideopraxist, you know) vs. the fact that many letters were missing. 

Now the interesting part.  The title “A Whole New World” has three W’s.  However, there was only one magnetic W in Mom Mom’s set. 

You often hear that children with Autism are very rigid in their thinking.  They like predictable patterns and they do not like change or the unexpected.  Those things are all generally true.  But, our Little Man is also immensely creative and has unbelievable problem solving abilities  (He is an Ideopraxist, you know).  We watched him as he used a letter “I” as a lower case “L”.  He got to the second “W” and used an upside down “M.”

Okay, now the truly amazing part.  He got to the third “W” with hardly any letters left.  I was thinking maybe a “E” on its back – but there were no E’s left.  Plus, this is a Post about the letter “T” right?  He got two letter “Ts” and made this:

Problem solved.

This kid never ceases to amaze me.


  1. Aha! No wonder you are rockin' this challenge. I see now that you are getting plenty of help! (Two Ts to make a W. That's pretty brilliant.)

  2. necessity is the mother of invention. I'm not sure an adult would think to do that - we would just look at the missing letters and give in. Amazing