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The “Full Of Life” blog is a place where we celebrate families affected by autism who are living life to the fullest and offer tips and tools for daily living.  We often invite guest bloggers to join the conversation. Our most recent blog comes from our very own Doug & Laurie Flutie.  It was written and submitted prior to the loss of Doug’s parents, Dick and Joan Flutie.  To honor their memory, we decided to still share this blog that celebrates the recent wedding of their granddaughter Alexa and the accomplishments of their grandson, Dougie.
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This year has been a very special year for the Flutie Family. Our daughter Alexa married her prince charming Ian on July 22 at Disney World in Florida.  It was a true fairy tale that our family will never forget. What made it even more special was that Ian asked Dougie to be one of his Groomsmen.  We were very touched by this gesture. When the wedding week came Dougie was very much a part of every celebration. Honestly we didn’t know if Dougie would be overwhelmed with all the goings on and all the people or not but Alexa and Ian wanted him to be as much a part of their wedding as everyone else. They even said to Doug and me not to worry about how Dougie acts, just let Dougie be Dougie because that’s the way we love him. That statement touched our hearts.


We had a beach party at our house in Florida for the whole wedding party and Dougie met a lot of new friends.  Everyone was wonderful with him and included Dougie in all the beach games by helping him play. He was smiling the whole day.  He had a blast. Alexa and Ian had their rehearsal dinner in EPCOT at the American Pavilion.  We all had to ride coach buses over to the venue and Dougie got right on the bus with everyone else sat right in the seat and smiled the whole time.  He had a wonderful time at the rehearsal dinner dancing up a storm.  Stayed on the dance floor all night and everyone would dance in a circle around him.  The DJ played the song Teach Me How to Dougie and we all copied Dougies dance moves and he thought that was so funny.  It was so special for us to watch Dougie interact with everyone in his own special way and to watch everyone include Dougie as one of the gang. 


On the wedding day not only did we see our daughter looking absolutely beautiful dressed in a wedding gown we also saw our son looking so handsome dressed in his first tux. Seeing both of our children looking so grown up brought tears to our eyes. Two very special moments for both Doug and me. When it was time for the ceremony to begin, again we didn’t know if Dougie would be overwhelmed or not but when it was his turn to walk up the aisle Dougie walked tall and proud escorted by marines on either side of him.  He followed direction perfectly and he was quiet and happy through the whole ceremony.  We have to say we were a little surprised.  I really think he knew this was Alexa and Ian’s special day and he knew he had to act a certain way.  At the end of the ceremony Dougie again walked proudly down the aisle escorted by 2 beautiful bridesmaids on either side of him and he was smiling the whole time.  Dougie was cooperative and happy for all the picture taking as well. And the reception was no different.  When he was introduced into the ballroom Dougie grinned from ear to ear as he walked in escorted by his 2 bridesmaids to music and applause.  He was having the time of his life which made us grin from ear to ear as well!!


We cried many tears of HAPPINESS that day. It was so special for us to see both of our children so happy.  Dougie was wonderful. He was very well behaved, calm, observant took everything in and enjoyed it all.   He even had a little crush on a bridesmaid and shared a special dance with her. Dougie never ceases to amaze us and he always teaches us many life lessons. We are so proud of him and Alexa. And we are so proud to add another son to our family as well. We feel very blessed to have such a beautiful and special family. We wouldn’t change a thing.


With Love and Joy!

Doug, Laurie, Dougie, Alexa and Ian