Recently a friend of mine and I were out doing a moms night playing bingo for a couple hours, and as we enjoyed our time out we also talked heart to heart about things we had in coming one of which is a toddler with Autism. As we talked about our child’s great qualities and similar qualities I was quickly reminded of a few thoughts I try to keep buried down deep.
You see when you have a child with Autism the great things are being able to REALLY focus and celebrate every little thing. While friends are celebrating their child’s milestones like potty training, first day at school, first words, and other major things. I am celebrating my son learning to pull me places he needs to get help, pulling up his own pants, putting his own hat on, and even eye contact he makes.
I think right now in our lives the hardest things to think about are will my son ever talk and be able to take care of himself, and will my son ever have a relationship and fall in love. I can’t tell you how hard it is to hear people say things like “man you child is so cute, I bet he is going to be a heartbreaker.” When people say these things I know that they mean well and are only saying my child is handsome (which of course he is) but it’s hard to let myself think about the future. I live everyday trying everything in my will power to only focus on the day at hand. But every once in awhile things like this come up and I look into the future. But where most parents see college, girlfriends, teenage drama, and one day grandkids……
All I ever see when I let myself look is darkness. And I don’t mean like the scary darkness or an evil darkness I mean like a blank darkness where I can’t see one way or another. I don’t know if my son will talk, drive, or have any relationships and that is extremely hard for me so instead I snap the thoughts out of my and focus on the little accomplishments that my son is making now. These little things that my son is doing aren’t little in his world, they are in fact huge accomplishments that have been really hard for him to learn.
So everyday that I have with my son (s) I will do my very best to cherish and celebrate all that they are doing and not let the darkness into my head. I promise to myself and my children that I will always be here for them. I will always love them for everything they are, and help them love themselves. And although I will always have days where I think of the future and all the unknown that it holds for us, I will promise to see some kind of light even if it will just a small glimmer. Because God is leading this life we live and I know that he doesn’t have darkness planned for our futures.