by Franky Love
I wrote this one day about my son, Alec, who is Autistic.
|Once upon a time, life was different.
There was no “Autism.”
There were no tantrums.
There was no speech delay.
There were no questions.
There was no disability.
Once upon a time, I didn’t have Alec.
Now I have a child with Autism.
Now I have a child who throws tantrums.
Now I have a child that doesn’t talk very well.
Now I have a child that doesn’t understand well.
Now I have a million questions.
Now I have a child with a disability.
Now I have laughter.
Now I have love.
Now I have constant smiles.
Now I have unconditional love and trust.
Now I have hugs
Now I have cuddles.
Now I have a child that can figure out how almost anything works by just looking at it.
Now I have “uh- doowa-doowa-doh” instead of Yo, Gabba Gabba or Go, Diego, Go.
Now I have “mama” and “gaga” instead of Mommy and Daddy.
Now I have patience.
Now I understand.
I understand that I have a burden.
I understand that I have baggage.
I understand that I have someone that depends heavily on me.
Now I understand what it means to love.
Autism has touched my life.
Autism affects 1 in 150 kids in the U.S.
Who is the 1 in 150 in your life?
The next time you see that child in the store… you know the one… the one that screams and throws a fit the whole time. Maybe it’s because he wants that toy. Maybe he doesn’t want to be there. You don’t know the reason; you just know its happening. You probably want to why his parents aren’t doing anything to stop it. Why are they letting him scream? Don’t they hear him?
Maybe that kid is Autistic. Autistic kids don’t know how else to express themselves. Imagine not being able to talk… and you can’t write yet, either. All you can do is point and babble. Wouldn’t you get a bit frustrated that no one will listen?
The next time you see that kid at the store, or when you go out to eat… don’t blame the parents. Don’t feel sorry for them. Just understand. Autism doesn’t have a look. You never know who has it, if you don’t know them. Be understanding of that kid. Be patient. He might not know any better.
If I had a dollar for every dirty look someone has given me because of Alec, I’d be a rich woman. If I had a dollar for every person who offered me a tentative smile or look of understanding because of Alec, I wouldn’t be very rich at all.
My son is amazing. If you look past the tantrums, which may be loud, but don’t occur often, you’ll see a generous, loving, hilarious little boy. He might have trouble expressing himself sometimes, but he tries.
And that little boy has the biggest heart I’ve ever seen.