Would I have written this post three years ago with this being the title? No. However, would I have written a post about the exact opposite, Autism…it’s a bad thing? No, I would not have written that post either.
Truly I have never hated autism. I have never experienced anger or resentment towards autism. I can not explain why these feelings have never surfaced, but they have not.
In the beginning I might have written the post, Autism…it’s confusing. Or I may have written, Autism…the future now seems unclear. That is what I felt back then. I didn’t understand what autism meant and what it would prove for Cali.
But today, I can confidently write, Autism…it’s a good thing!
This past weekend Casey and I took a short weekend trip to Vegas with some dear friends. One of the friends asked me how Cali was doing? How the therapy has worked for her? I couldn’t help but smile and feel so proud of her. Sorry if my words seem redundant and trite. I find myself writing how proud I am of her in many of the posts!
The conversation turned to what a blessing her autism has been to her own life, and to the lives around her. If I could pinpoint one specific blessing autism has brought to our home, it would be a broader and more accepting perspective. Cali has taught me the beauty in loving individuals for their true self. I believe we are each children of a father in Heaven. A loving God who told us long ago that our true self is as a child of God. This earthly life brings physical limitations. It brings mental instability, developmental delays, genetic disorders, and the like. These can and are a reality for a number of individuals, but what also remains a reality in this earth life is our “true” self, our identity as a child of God. A reality for me, for Cali, for Ava, and every other living soul.
When I look at Cali today, what do I see first? Do I see an autistic child? No. I see Cali as a child of God trying live this earthly life to the best of her ability. I look at her and she reminds me that each of us here on this earth has a purpose, has meaning, and has the need to be loved.
If autism has helped me to solidify this tender perspective, I am grateful for autism. I am grateful for Cali!
Autism…it’s a good thing.