(originally published April 2015)
The sticky wicket of Autism. There are some moments I feel particularly lucky for autism. Those moments I watch slip away from my friends who’s babes with bountiful curls framing cherub faces ask for the straightening iron ……who have their gossamer wings clipped to keep their feet firmly planted on the ground….who no longer rub the wonder of dreams deeper into their eyes when they are sleepy. I would imagine it’s the bittersweet joy of having children, watching the transformation from innocent angels to inhabitants of earth. I get to cavort with an angel for longer. I still get to hear a gasp followed by “look mommy…moon!” I still get warm snuggly visits at 3AM. Bubbles are still magical. Raffi is still the only fully grown man who can sing wheels on the bus and get a rousing sing a long at our breakfast table. A2 can still do interpretive dance in the aisle at the synagogue during prayer while onlookers smile and nod as if it is part of the service. But it’s not for much longer. As those other children blossom from midlings to Ivy League applicants, A2 will likely still ask for The Muppets or try to squeeze himself onto a tricycle or squeal “go faster daddy!” as he coasts down a hill on a tandem bike….the promise of youth in the body of an adult where looks from strangers will fade from smiles when asked “what’s your name”. It’s not natural to pray you outlive your child, but we both agree as long as there are songs to be sung, dances to be danced and bubbles to blown we will move with him and try to always see the wonder of his world.
Reblogged this on Running through Water and commented:
I am beginning to find there is an inverse correlation between the age of your child and your hope for their success in this world. No, don’t get me wrong, I have immense hope and belief in my child. But as I stand back and watch and listen as three years have passed since I wrote this piece, I realize the complicated nature of being his mother. The balance of that firm belief and the amount of time, energy and consistency only a mother will do. The balance of dignity, both his and mine in order to help a world see him as I do. And that balance of watching the world place barriers and shame when it doesn’t have to all in the name of ego and it being just a little too much for a mother stand front row witness to over and over and over again. I wish it were different-I am trying and so is he, but for different reasons. Y is for Youth.