Author’s Choice for 2016 Mother of the Year; Kris McNutt Loomis, Champion for Asperger’s in First Person Guest Post

2016 Mother of the Year; Champion for Asperger's First Hand.

The author’s 2016 Mother of the Year; Champion for Asperger’s First Hand Guest Post Kris McNutt Loomis

Guest Post by Kris Elaine McNutt Loomis.

This weekend we will look over a sea of red at NC State as students turn their tassels and become college graduates.

I know as we look over the thousands of uniform caps & gowns, there is a unique story under each one of those caps. Stories of hard work, struggle, challenges, successes and commitment. Some of the stories took longer to get to this place; others followed a seemingly easy path. Yet each story is unique. I will cheer and tear up with the crowd as we celebrate all of them.

And as is the case for all parents in the cheering crowd, one of these graduates and stories will stand out. He is the reason we are there as his biggest fans. His story is special to us because it is his story. And it is our story.

Sam Loomis graduates with Honors in Phsysics and Math

Sam Loomis graduates with top  honors in Physics and Math.

There is a lot I could say about Sam and his journey to this day. But the one story that stands out this weekend is his (our) journey with Asperger’s. It’s a story of many early years where we did not know what was going on with him, and all the while he was not really sure what was going on with everyone around him. We were living this reality before it was a household word and before it was all the rage in TV shows, books and movies. Before “Asperger’s was the new black” as Sam once said.

The week before our wedding, just two young people in love waiting to see what the future would hold.

The week before our wedding, just two young people in love waiting to see what the future would hold.

As we visited expert after expert, and met with teachers more than any parent wants to, we often wondered about Sam’s limits. After all, we were dealing with limits daily. Yet there were moments of no limits in our conversations around the dinner table. After the kids would leave the table, Dave & I would look at each other and we knew – Sam had no limits if we could just help him figure out this challenge.

And so his story became our story. We embraced Asperger’s. I read everything I could get my hands on about Asperger’s. It was spoken about in and around our home without any shame, and often with much humor. With the help of his doctor, Sam worked on self-awareness and began to embrace the label. I became his advocate. This part of the journey was not always fun or easy. But Dave & I continued to play forward the story of Sam’s life in our minds. And even though it was tough at times, we could see this weekend in his future.

And our faith in the future helped us give Sam two siblings. A tighter family unit would be hard to find.

And our faith in the future helped us give Sam two siblings. A tighter family unit would be hard to find.

Along the way Sam’s story has inspired many. Kids with Asperger’s, parents of kids with Asperger’s, and some who are just struggling with their own, different challenges. Sam has a gift of not letting any preconceived notions be a barrier to relating to people (when he feels like relating). He sees a bigger purpose to his life than just pursuing his own interests. And gosh darn it, he’s just a nice guy. But don’t be offended if he doesn’t say hi when you pass by – it’s not personal. wink emoticon

So here we are. Celebrating Sam as a graduate from NC State in Physics & Math, with top honors. We will take lots of photos and post some of them. We will cheer and cry and be proud.

Preparing for the big day.

Preparing for the big day.

IN THE INTEREST OF FULL DISCLOSURE, KRIS IS FAMILY. Seen here as a darling black haired beauty with her mother, Danita McNutt Gross, and sister Karen McNutt Smith.

Danita McNutt Gross, daughter Kris Elaine, and daughter Karen.

Danita Marrs McNutt Gross, is the maternal aunt of the author. Pictured here with her daughters Kris Elaine McNutt, and daughter Karen McNutt.


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About joycegodwingrubbs2

Some call me retired: I am RE-FIRED. I have written 15 books, plus 3 written as a "ghost writer". I no longer offer the novels as printed books, having them only available as Kindle Ebooks since my retirement as a novelist. Twelve books are on Kindle eBooks: collectively they are known as The Greyhound Lady Walking suspense series.They are real cases fictionalized into suspense stories to protect identities..( no victim/survivor names were compromised, and workers and locations were protected.) I also co-authored a non-fiction book: Footsteps Out of Darkness: The Annabelle Kindig Story . It is available on Amazon under the name of Annabelle Kindig. I have traveled, written from the heart, and found an audience that appreciates my "platform". The catalyst to writing the novels was the realization that if I died, I would take all my amazing experiences in these real cases with me; and believe me few have lived 5 lives in one. It would "silence the voices" of the victim/survivors whose triumphs are written into these novels. The suspense series was written in part with the collaboration of police woman and sex crime expert Trula Ann Godwin. In addition to the novels, I have written as a ghost writer for a World War II veteran who fought in the South Pacific aboard the USS Maryland in all the major battles. I have also written a non-fiction book recording oral history stories of my family members beginning with the 1930's to present. There are sixty-six "legacy" stories with pictures. It was recently published as a private printing for family and close associates only. I am a published photo journalist having won the 2009 Editor's Choice Award for internet freelance news articles and pictures of the Cedar Rapid's Iowa flood victim accounts and their personal struggles.. My husband and I are in our 52nd year together (only one blip on the marital radar together), and we have adopted three greyhounds; Dex, Big Buddy and Baby Doll. These were the inspirations in the Greyhound Lady Walking suspense series We have eleven grandchildren, 7 grandsons and 4 granddaughters. My three children live in Iowa, Wisconsin and Ohio.
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