Got your attention didn’t I? I had a conversation with someone at church recently that reminded me of the early autism years. She was telling me that she knew someone that has a child with autism and she spoke of me to her. She told me that she had hoped to encourage her to come to church with the story of how well our church has embraced Logan (they have done a phenomenal job but that is another post). She remarked though that Logan was so mildly affected that maybe that made the difference. I disagreed.
We did not go to church regularly until about 2 years ago. We had already lived through the torment of the early years and survived. I went to church in the beginning to simply get a break. I needed to breathe and relax. When I found a church that didn’t come and get me for every little thing, I was there whenever I could. Sort of free respite. Logan was beginning to emerge from the fog of autism. We had just become the supervisory family for a consultant in training for RDI. Although I was exhausted, I was seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. For the first time in years, I was becoming hopeful about Logan’s future. That God blessed me with a phenomenal church at that point is truly miraculous. God used that church to heal me and to help Logan.
I told her what I tell all new moms that I talk to who have young autistic children. It’s A LOT of work now but you will reap the rewards of that work later. The church did not get to see the nonverbal 5 yr old Logan. The child who would throw tantrums at the drop of a hat for what seemed like no reason. The child who could not stand the sunlight to shine on him in the car (my personal favorite btw). The child who didn’t understand that his newborn sister was fragile so he climbed in her crib to play with her ( so off to our room she went so that we could keep her safe while we slept). The child who had no sense of danger. None and he liked to run in parking lots like it was a game of dodge the cars. Those years were hell on earth for Michael and I. We suffered emotionally and physically during that time. Our marriage suffered. Although we were committed to staying together, it was no walk in the park. We second guessed some decisions and took flak from people for others. It was without a doubt the worst time of my life.
Would I trade it? I’m not so sure that I would. I would have missed seeing a miracle right before my eyes. God used those experiences to draw me to Him. I came to appreciate the little things in life like riding a bicycle or eating with a fork. I am now given the opportunity to help others who are walking that path. I know how it feels to be stuck in hell with no end in sight. I can help and encourage them in ways that their friends and family can’t since they don’t what it’s like. I would not make Logan any different than himself, quirks and all.
I would like a brief moment with no talking in it though. Be careful what you pray for! Sometimes, God answers it abundantly. lol