Slipping Through My Fingers All The Time

Filed Under (Development, Joy, Single Parenthood) by Estee on 15-11-2009

“Barely awake at the breakfast table, I let precious time go by…”

Hovering over the small stainless frying pan I cook his eggs, sunny side up. He always likes them sunny side up. I think it started when I started making them into “Baby Einstein Eggs,” I would call them where I would place his favorite vegetables and transform two eggs into eyes, then glasses then thinly sliced peppers into cow-licked hair.

“Baby Einstein Eggs,” he said back deliberately, his voice still sweet and squeaky with staccato rhythmn as the words were hard to say. I watched him look at the eggs with such delight, moving his head closer and then back again like the humming bird I always call him, his hands flapping just as fast. I remember now because the eggs have lost their appeal. When did it happen?

He goes to the door now on his own in the morning. He gets his shoes and puts them on before I ask him to. He has even taken to putting on his coat, ready to start his day. Ready to go outside before I am ready. Ready to leave. His assistant arrives to take him to school. He grabs his lunch bag on his own, no need to remind this day. He trots out the door.

“Good-bye, Adam,” I say, hoping the desperation is hidden behind my eyes. “Have a nice day. I love you!” He turns and smiles at me.

“Bye-bye, yes.” The yes is the punctuation mark. It’s the you want me to say good-bye to you so here it is, kind of yes that has become his signature. It’s the way I know he acknowledges that he must say the same thing back, or that he’s heard me. He doesn’t use the yes when it’s a sentence all of his own making. Those sentences are few, but so precious.

When I pick him up or when he arrives home by another, he is so happy to see me and it makes me want to sing. I am relieved to see him. He grabs me and hugs me hard. When he leaves — now to school, to his dad — or later to his life or maybe even his wife, it will be exactly the same.  He grows differently but also like any other. They change, they become independent or maybe even quasi-so, but things do change. Every morning seems the same. I wake. I’m tired. Barely awake every morning, I try to remember never to forget. For the moments, as they should, are slipping through my fingers all the time.


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About Me


I’m a PhD candidate at York University, Critical Disability Studies, with a multi-disciplinary background in the arts as a curator and writer. I am the Founder of The Autism Acceptance Project (, and an enamoured mother of my only son who lives with the autism label. I like to write about our journey, critical issues regarding autism in the area of human rights, law, and social justice, as well as reflexive practices in (auto)ethnographic writing about autism.