Yesterday got off to a really awful start. Taylor had a very very hard time starting school. He got to the back break room in the office and wouldn’t leave. He wanted things out of the vending machine. When I got there, I saw him circling it like a shark, but the teachers told me that they had already put money in it for him, but he didn’t want what came out…a Butterfinger. Now there is nothing against that candy; I love that candy, but the way Taylor was still fixated on the machine told me that he didn’t get what he wanted…a Reese’s Peanut Butter cup. His all time favorite. I was told that he was the one who chose the Butterfinger, but he has never used a vending machine before, and I suspect he was just pushing buttons. I am going to skim through the most of his morning because it could take two blog posts to cover all that happened. I eventually left the office, and as I was checking my phone in the car parked in the parking lot, all of a sudden my doors open and in jumps Taylor. He had seen my car and darted out of the school. I received a
few one blaming stare s as if I should have known better than to sit a few minutes in my car, parked outside the school. I guess I should have known that he would walk down a hall look out side and check for my car, even though he has never done that before(sarcasm intended).
You know what else I have never seen him do before…?
Let me back up to the middle of this mornings mess…
As I walked into that room to find him stalking the vending machine, like a candy vulture ready to devour some candy that just decided life in the vending machine was too much and decided to end it all, before being told about the Butterfinger debacle, his teacher was beaming and said to me.
“He just said my name; three times! (An aid in the room said she heard it as well.) He said a complete sentence! He said ‘No Mrs. Bese. No school Mrs. Bese’!”
[Blinking in stunned shock]
“He said ‘No Mrs. Bese. No school Mrs. Bese'”
He spoke. He actually spoke! He says some words, and they all are one or two word phrases that communicate a certain want/need. He thinks they are all valid needs, though. 🙂 This was different.
This was HUGE! I was holding back tears and refrained from giving a squeeze hug to the teacher. This was a bit easier to do because we had a situation to try and fix at the moment.
My baby spoke.
I got home and most of the morning was filled with spontaneous schoolgirl squeals.
Unless you have a child with autism, you just can’t understand how good this feels. There is a boy in there. He is aware. There is hope! (This is quite a restating something I already knew, but it’s moments like these, that let you get a glimpse of him.)
No matter what you may think about me, I do not feel like I am strong. I am very weak. I am probably the most unqualified person to take on a task like this. I have brought this up to God many many many times. However, I need to point out that it usually wasn’t brought up out of thankfulness, compliance, or glory giving. It was usually out of a poor “why me” complaining session. I only survive each day because there is one better than I who, no matter how much I don’t deserve it, puts one more breath in my body and keeps moving my one foot in front of the other. I fail so many times. Yet…
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.
2 Corinthians 4:8-10
If anyone had the type of life to be justified in saying this, it was Paul. He really gets it. That’s comforting and so much more believable to someone in my situation. Had some rich scholar said this, I would be laughing right now. But, Paul? He gets it.
You don’t have to believe what I do; I only offer the explanation of the hope, joy, perseverance, and strength I have…It isn’t my own. Really, it’s not. I’m tired. I get disappointed. I lose hope. I become afraid. I try to do it on my own (and fail). I am impatient. I get angry. I become depressed. I lose my temper. I make mistakes. And oh dear lord, please, I mean PLEASE, don’t ask to see the inside of my house 😉 . On my own, I am not strong.
Regardless of what beliefs my readers might have, one thing we have in common is, we can all celebrate that one more child with autism found his voice. Even if it was fleeting, even if it might not happen again (yet we have so much hope that it isn’t the last), we can celebrate this awesome surprise. It feels like a massive lake in the middle of a trek across the Sahara.
And his saying “no school”?
… if there ever was a perfect first sentence for Taylor, that would be it. 😉
As always, positive comments are welcome. Negative hurtful comments will be trashed before I can even finish reading them. I have many readers who are emotionally vulnerable, and I will not post comments that will further harm.
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