I have to say the first emotion I felt was Anger, I was angry that this
had happened to me, I had been so careful,
I made an appointment with my doctor, when I was barely a month along,
I took good care of myself, I ate well,
and didn't abuse my body with drugs or alcohol, or smoking.
I felt such rage at first, this was not fair,
some women neglected themselves, and didn't care for the child inside,
and their child was perfect. Why not mine?
Unbelief..... denial...........you name it, I felt it. This was not
happening to me, I would wake up in the night, and it would hit me, my
child has autism, and then I would plug my ears, trying to stop the
voices in my head, I would bury my head in the pillow, refusing to
believe this was happening to us. It took me a long time to let it sink
in, and to this day, I sometimes forget, and then the realization hits
me, and it knocks me to my knees again. It takes all my strength to get
up. But I do, because I have to, I have to be there for my child.
Of course the tears, tears of rage, panic, frustration. Gut wrenching
tears in the middle of the night, somehow it always seems worse in the
night. The house is quiet at last, and there is time to think, to
ponder, to pray. Tears though are such a relief, without their outlet, I
would have gone crazy. But, I have held them back so many times, in a
store when someone makes a cruel remark,
or a child who approaches mine, then backs off with that 'look' on his face.
I refuse to cry then, because I still have my pride, and it although it
is tattered, I cling to it like a security blanket.
Isolation, oh yes, the isolation. Friends seemed to disappear into thin
air, when they found out.
Sometimes I wanted to scream "It's not catching, " but they wouldn't hear
me, they were too busy keeping their child away from mine. The phone
stopped ringing too, and people would turn away at Church, avert their
eyes when my child had a tantrum. The isolation is the hardest
thing.......... being alone hurts. At the time in my life when I needed
friends and family the most, the pain of them looking the other way, was
indescribable. But I have found friends, people who know the path I
take, for it is their journey too. For this blessing I am so grateful.
These are the true friends, the ones who are there for me, when life is
Sadness and Solace, I have felt the sadness of knowing my child will not
be like other children, I have wept many tears for him. I have spent my
waking hours, and sleepless nights worrying about his future, who will
care for him, what kind of adult will he be? Will someone be there for
him, when I am gone? There is such pain in not knowing, there is nothing
so hard for a parent, than realizing that one day, you will not be there
to take care of your child. And knowing that this child will always need
your care. But there is Solace too, and I have felt this peace,
I have learned to accept this Autism, I cannot erase it,
nor will I embrace it. But I have come to a feeling of peace, and I go on.
Mercy and Magic, Have mercy on me, It's so hard to raise a child when
others look on, and instead of holding out a hand to help, they stand in
judgment. Don't judge me, when my child acts out, when he screams
because something has changed in his environment, he doesn't do it
purposefully, he is only reacting to his feelings. I am a good mother, I
love my child like you love yours, I want the best for him, yet I cannot
give in to him. He looks to me and I must teach him,
just as you teach your child. I may do it differently,
because my child is different. He learns in his own way,
and I have to teach him in a way that to others may seem odd, or unusual.
Magic? Oh yes, there is magic. I have seen my child blossom, I have
seen him learn, I have watched his wonder, and rejoiced in his small
steps. His smile is magic, and his heart is gold.
I did not choose this journey, but somehow it is mine, and I must see the
roses, as I walk upon the rocky pathway. I did not ask for this, but it
was given to me, and I must be strong enough to bear it. If I cannot,
then I am lost, if I give up, who will take my place?
There is enough joy, if I look for it....... it will find me. -Unknown