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He aint heavy, he's my brother: having a brother with autism

   I told you all this post would come over spring break. The reason it's just getting posted now is because Jude was busy playing with Alden! I am so happy to report that these two, who already have an amazing bond and such a sweet special love are growing even closer as Alden is welcoming Jude more and more into his world. With that being said, I have also put off posting because although Jude wrote this post I am typing it up for him, and it's been even more emotional than I was prepared for. Jude is the BEST big brother and is continually amazes me with his strength and grace. However there are struggles with being the sibling of a child with autism and this has been the first time he has really expressed them.  So please enjoy the beautiful, sad and raw honestly of this sweet boy and his experience being the sibling of an autistic child.                                                      pictured above: guest blogger Jude VanEtten getting a smooch from Rapunzel    
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You cant pour from an empty pitcher: Taking care of yourself so you can take care of everyone else

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You're Talking my Love Language

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I didn't grow up being the child that hated the dentist. I was happy to go get my teeth cleaned and pick a prize from the prize box. I dreaded gagging on the horrible fluoride treatments but it wasn't anything I was kicking and screaming about. Fast forward to my teenage years and I had a HORRIBLE experience that left me scarred for life!     I'm now the adult that will avoid the dentist at all cost. If I have to go it takes a lot of medication and then I will still be shaking and crying like a baby. Thankfully I don't see any signs of passing on my phobia to my oldest child. Jude loves going to the dentist. Alden however has anxiety in all 'clinical' settings. The doctors office, dentist, hospital....he gets upset just walking into the building. His regular dentist is incredibly patient with him but at his last visit it was decided, in order to do a more thorough examine, it was probably time to have him put under to get his first set of x-rays.  We would also