I’m Caro Greenwood. I started Spikey Mama to open up the conversation about neurodiversity. My daughter has a plethora of diagnoses, one of them is ASD (autistic spectrum disorder) she has a foot in the door of PDA (pathological demand avoidance) another form of autism, which makes life one massive ball of anxiety.
The spectrum is so vast, even more so now that the diagnosis of autism has been given to cover countless differences. I would place Matilda at the top end of the spectrum, she is great at a party, she’ll leave when she’s ready, no problems with crowds, noises, but all on her terms. Her social filter is a little off, want to know when you’ve got spinach in your teeth and snot on show? She’s your gal!
She’s hilarious, kind and quite marvellous actually, but sadly crippled with anxiety which manifests itself in many ways.
Only 32% of autistic adults are in paid work in the UK, in a world of acceptance and diversity this is archaic and not ok. Neurodiversity is being overlooked and undervalued and I intend to be a very small cog in the works, to change that.
In my previous life I was a fashion buyer, I worked for one of the largest brands on the high street before moving over to the management side. I call myself a raiser of 3, Mother of 4 for a reason. in 2002 my then my boyfriend and I thought we’d give parenting a shot. Tragedy struck in the form of an incompetent cervix, I gave birth to Freddie Greenwood on the 19th September. I had only made it into 6 months of pregnancy, he was just too tiny to survive.
In his name we have raised and continue to raise funds to research preventing premature labour. We’ve worked with Tommy’s The Baby Charity, Child Bereavement UK and for Borne.org the latter of which I am a proud patron.
Matilda has 2 neurotypical brothers at home, either side of her, they are 15 and 9 and are quite lovely. When you are raising a child with additional needs, it makes teen parenting a doddle, trust me! I would have had more (so greedy) but I went through early menopause at 39, which was no picnic. HRT and wheatgrass are our friends now…
I am now 44 and the boyfriend I mentioned earlier is my husband. We shipped out of London when our youngest was a day old and now live in the green of the greenbelt with our crew, 2 rescue dogs and several tropical fish.
I am highly skilled at accents and harmonising and intensely dislike it when words with a double ss are pronounced sssss and not shhh. It’s tisshhhhue not tissssssue k?
Feel free to say hi - email@example.com