Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Happy With What I've Got
As I was looking at one of Griffin's pictures from when he was about 15 months old I stopped to think that I never mourned the loss of my "healthy, non-autistic" child. Then I continued to think "how dare you think such a thing, he is perfectly healthy and so what if he's autistic". I kept going back and forth in my mind and this is what I finally came up with: My beautiful child Griffin is exactly as he is for whatever reason and if I want to shed some tears for the child he once was that's okay BUT maybe just maybe he is doing better now than he would have otherwise. Who am I to say? I mean, he is excelling beyond his Nuero-typical peers in many areas such as his reading, spelling, and counting . He is working at a first grade level and he just turned 4 years old! We are working on other skills it is true, like his social skills and some fine motor etc.. My point is that I have this wonderful child who is 90% of the time the most cheerful little guy you ever did wanna meet, it seems that hardly anything ever gets him down . I love HIM the way that he is and that means with the autism because at the age of 15 months it suddenly became "part of the package" and I have no resentment toward anybody or anything. What kind of purpose would that serve? I used to be angry and hateful toward the pharmaceutical companies for lying and I even once blamed Griffin's pediatrician thinking that he lied to me about the mercury in the vaccines. I am over that now because I live with Griffin just as he lives, in the here and now. I , if I am careful to pay attention, can catch a glimpse of the magic that he experiences by living in the moment. So now I choose to see that little tiny boy as one who wasn't lost at all but one who transformed into my happy "Sonshine" that he is today. Sure we went through some pretty rough stuff in the interim but it was all worth it when I hear him call me "mommy", make excellent eye contact, say "hello' to a complete stranger, share a toy with another child, give me big hugs just like the Teletubbies, and give me kisses when he tells me that he loves me. The lesson that I have learned is that it is so easy to mourn for what is gone and to be bitter and angry but with a bit more effort one can stop those ugly thoughts and cherish the present. Forget about the expectations of the future because that only sets one up for disappointment but I do believe in having hopes for my child and dreams and I realize that there are limitations with everything.
Now I look at that same picture tonight and I can't help but smile because I know that I love him unconditionally just as he loves me and that I am so very grateful for all that he is-- autism and all, Griffin is the best darn kiddo that I ever could have wished for.