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angelica unfiltered – episode 8

April 25, 2012

Charles / Angelica

St. Paul, MN – May 2008

Ang-ism: Once we were sprawled on the couch watching a movie, and Angelica kept playing with my hair and poking my head.  Anyone else and I would have been annoyed, but that was her way of telling me that she enjoyed spending time with me.  I loved it!

As with many who are autistic, Angelica has a sensitivity to physical touch.  She doesn’t like giving hugs or shaking hands, even when she knows the other person, but Angelica is quite affectionate with those whom she loves and with whom she is comfortable.  Even though Ang is verbal, she doesn’t express herself verbally.  She will say “I love you” and mean it, but mostly she expresses herself and her love physically.  Of course, even that needs a bit of interpretation.

Angelica’s most common forms of affection are a few playful pokes or punches in the arm.  Sometimes she pats us on the head (see photo above) or strokes our hair.  Other times, she plays with our clothes.  While some might dismiss this as child’s play, it isn’t.  It is Ang’s love language.  She only shows this side of herself when she is at ease and happy.  Anyone who witnesses Ang’s affection should consider themselves lucky.  It means she doesn’t mind being around you.  Those who are on the receiving end of her loving are the luckiest of all, especially if you are in a public place!  That means Angelica feels safe with you, and she feels loved and respected by you.

I’m sure to some people Angelica’s love language could be annoying or embarrassing, but Rosario and I love it!!! Neither of us care what other people think when they see Angelica nudging us with her shoulder over and over or poking our sides.  Obviously, there are times when Ang’s displays of affection can be distracting to others, especially at Mass and we reminder her to respect that, but we cherish her love and all its expressions.

More from the Angelica Unfiltered Series:

Autism Awareness 2012

Episode 1, Episode 2, Episode 3

Episode 4, Episode 5, Episode 6,

Episode 7

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