Busy People

Most people I know are busy. I think that if you are busy as a child, you will be a busy adult. My granddaughter, nine years old, is always involved in one project or another. Her mom, was the same way as a child and is a dynamo today. She is continually in motion. Ben Franklin said, “If you want to get something done, ask a busy person.” [1] There is a lot of truth to this.

Parents and siblings

Parents are especially busy. They have to guide their children and deal with their trials and tribulations as well as their own. Parents with children who have special needs are especially busy; I would say, hyper-busy.

As a sibling of an autistic brother, who is also profoundly retarded and nonverbal, I remember spending a lot of time staying out of the way, as a child. I wasn’t responsible for taking care of my brother and I didn’t want to add to the problems of my parents. I also remember spending a lot of time trying to figure out where my brother fit in and how I fit into the scheme of things. I don’t think that I was a busy child.

I wonder how many other siblings of severely handicapped brothers or sisters had the same experience.


It could be that my recollections are tainted by what I am currently feeling. After all, I haven’t been a kid in a very long time. In earlier posts, I have explained why it is important to me to be truthful about things that have happened in my childhood. With the passage of time and the fact that fewer people remain who can confirm or refute the facts, the truth becomes just a little bit fuzzier. Mom says it really doesn’t matter, who is going to know the difference anyway. In the scheme of things, it doesn’t matter. However, what matters to me is a truthful narrative of my life. I don’t really want the passage of time to iron out all the wrinkles. I want to remember what kind of person I was and my transitions throughout the years. I want to know if I have been consistent and if I haven’t been, I want to know the reasons.

Memory validation through adulthood

The truthfulness of my recollections is bolstered by evidence of what kind of adult I am today. I wouldn’t say that I am a busy person by nature.  I am more thoughtful than busy. But when I get excited about a project or a subject about which I wish to learn, I leave no stone unturned to learn all I can.  My original thesis seems to be true, based on observations of others plus my own experience: one’s degree of busy-ness as an adult is related to how busy one was as a child.

2 thoughts on “Busy People

  1. Another interesting sibling perspective for me to mull over. I often read your posts looking for some illumination as to how it might have felt for my daughter growing up alongside my autistic son. Me ‘being busy’ and her staying out of my way so as not to add to my burden chimed a note. Thank you…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: