14 years brought us here...birthday thoughts

 

Why the site was "dark" for a month...(let me explain)

I haven't written for my blog for some time. Actually an entire month. For me, a muse needs to exist to express my deepest thoughts. My thoughts tuck themselves within me. Then they swirl around, reminding me that I don't want to contain them. My thoughts are my lifeline to my moments, the input of those that truly make a difference.  There is no way to falsify those feelings, lacquered with intense honesty. They beg me to put them into focus. In that moment, my life becomes transparent enough to share with the world. The connection becomes electrified, with nowhere to go except out into the the universe. I hope someone will share my words and  find pieces to take with them. 

A birthday for reflection...

 My little boy...well not so little guy celebrated his 14th year of life. A moment for reflection on where our journey in this special needs world brought us. Certainly he's growing up strong and handsomely.  He's 5'7, and at times he looks down at me with a smile.  He is probably astonished at what he's achieved so quickly. Well, I am 5'2", so his looking downward is expected.  Everything he does amazes me. Not just the way he learns information like a sponge.  He just mesmerizes me with all the great perspectives he offers. And the way he loves with all his heart. He takes every beautiful moment in.  Holds the details of each kind gesture. Every sincere display of humanity's ability to smile for someone you didn't know needed that. 

 In my quirkiness, I always make a huge celebration of birthdays. Even to its  midnight arrival on the clock. The eve of  your birthday may as well be the countdown to your national holiday. At least I would surely vote for that holiday. So as we watched the IPad tick down the minutes to 12:00 am, I thought of the miracle of the time my son has been in my world. That road that was traveled now seemingly a lifetime ago. I will always remember the C Section that almost killed me. That was his vehicle into this life. I had a miracle of seeing another sunrise and holding my baby close. And never wishing to let go of those moments.

Let the words be spoken...

When I was preparing for the countdown to February 21st with my Tyler, my heart filled with thoughts that I wasn't sure I had expressed to him openly,. I believe in giving my children hugs. I constantly hug him to reinforce the connection and bond with him is immeasurable and unbreakable. It seems that with kids with disabilities, we as parents feel like each day we have opened our hearts and poured every ounce of energy into parenting. The physicality of our existence in increased by double. We are often alienated and reduced to lives of being misunderstood by family, strangers, and friends. So sometimes we only hope our children are happy somewhere between the always a moving piece type of world we exist in. 

The unspoken language of special needs parenting is borne of love. Allowing the words to ring that your love inspires is powerful.  My son's birthday was an excellent moment for sharing just what having him in my world does for me. How his needing me allows my heart to stretch in new directions. How his challenges and courage to face these without any fear of the unknown or new continue to make me so proud of him. How life has changed for us through exploring, reading, and observing. More is in reach because of his willingness to find joy where it exists. And how much he loves me is so reassuring. Parents do get confused about how their actions are read. Is it for what you wish it to be or exactly for face value. Sometime the longer you've worked, the less you're appreciated. For those just receiving a new diagnosis, the road to teenager is lengthy. But the child that you give your all to will remember those sleepless nights even when you cannot anymore.

 A Birthday Message to my son...

Happy birthday, Tyler. You are a wonderful son. Your kindness and love shows in how you treat everyone and everything around you. You've made my world better just by being in it. I am so lucky that you are who you are. Autism doesn't change that. It never limits what you are capable of. You are so compassionate, loving, smart, and genuine. I am fortunate to have you here. I will be here for you for as long as I am allowed to stay. I would hope until I am a very old woman... I am so proud of you! Love, Mom. 

After having my heart to heart soul connection conversation with Tyler, his eyes glistened. He isn't the biggest on smiles or toothy grins. However, on his Birthday Eve through the early first minutes of Feb 21st, the most beautiful smile extended from one crinkled corner to the other. He heard something in this message that resonated with his soul. His joy, pride,  and inner contentment glowed.  His response humbled me. Somehow my son always breaks things down to their essential elements. A simple action says everything without need for verbal support. Universal language of smiles. Happiness lives here. 

On his 14th birthday, I had a new lesson to learn through my Autistic son. My son needed me to know that he takes pride in pleasing others. That he is devoted to being a great person. He is fine with the quirks that others possess. He loves making someone proud. Ironically, I would never ever not be proud of how beautifully he has grown into this amazing young gentleman. There would never come a day when his gentle spirit alone wouldn't have lifted my goals for myself. The way he cheerfully and patiently handles each day of life with Autism can bring me to tears. He  doesn't ever complain about how adults (or kids)may unintentionally separate themselves from him. He doesn't look for the shortfall in people, but the best in them. He is a Pisces; compassion is often shown to others rather than given back. On a day like a birthday, all the appreciation just flows back to him. Everything he gives me comes full circle today. 

 I was overjoyed to watch him fully embrace the "birthday boy" title and all its awesome benefits. This year he blew out every candle on his Minions cake all by himself.  And showed me a few good dance moves. This past decade was filled with all the makings of a great biopic. Autism diagnosis at 14 months. And all the truths that come with the honesty of the special needs lifestyle. Balancing the nuances became a learned skill for him, too. We learned each other, just like typical kids and parents do.  Our Autism journey is one where the child is learning as we learn how to best enhance this life. So we learn, they learn. Tyler knows me as well as anyone could. He has a comfort with me that no one else has. And I am blessed beyond compare for all our bumps and bruises in society over this 14 years. It assisted us in finding our own lane to travel through and find our voices on the way. His voice is a 14 year old voice. It sounds deeper than it used to, heavy pitched. But I hear my baby boy's voice in the distance. I sometimes look at him and see a photo of the ultrasound image. The attachment is real.  14 years of adapting to the changing beat of our life's rhythm leaves you breathless. But its the best kind of exhaustion. 

Tyler, thank you for the lessons I had to learn. Today's mom is someone I love being. Whoever I was before you was made whole after you. Your sister and stepfather love you. Your grandparents, including the grandfather you lost adore you. We had a village, son. We were lucky beyond measure...We will move forward through the 14th year knowing that we can live our very best lives and find courage in our unity. Your goals are within reach and we'll learn how together. I'll show you all I can. 

 

Minions Cake Is Whimsical and Too Cute for Words. 

Minions Cake Is Whimsical and Too Cute for Words. 

Live Life in Color

Stephanie-

The Vibrant Hueman