As March comes to a close, my son will celebrate his birthday and enter the last year of his twenties; marking the end of another decade. It's time to once again take measure of how far he's come, where he is now and look towards the future of the unknown. Autism left him with severe communication challenges. No conversation, no understanding, no communication as we know it.
It's been a long road of fears, tears, trials, and triumphs. Because of my son's severe autism, he has taught me many lessons: of love, joy, acceptance and of infinite patience when I thought I had none. He's helped me develop a magnified state of awareness of the space and people around me through sight and sound. Because of him, I've developed an intuitive inner knowing; the ability to discern the feeling behind a look in the eye of another or the expression on their face.
Dr. Wayne Dyer was right when he said, "Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change." My lessons were taught and learned through a different lens, one that forever changed how I see the world outside me. For someone who is not able to speak, my son has a lot to teach, much to say.
I wish you Happy Birthday, Ian. I hope you know that I am grateful to be your voice, to share the lessons you've taught me with others and most of all, I am grateful to call myself your mom.
No matter how old you are, you will always be my boy.