Sunday, April 11, 2010

A Mom's Love for her Son

It's that time of year, where the rest of the world is challenged to try to understand ours.

April is Autism Awareness Month!!!

I am not looking for sympathy or pity. I do, however, want to advocate for awareness, compassion and action.

Autism is a very real situation for many more families than we, as a society, can really imagine. The numbers are only going up each year. At this point in history, there is no known prevention or cure for autism.

A few facts...
-Every 20 minutes another child is diagnosed with autism.
-1 in 110 children are diagnosed on the autism spectrum.
-1 in 67 boys are diagnosed with autism.
-500,000 (yes 500,000) children with autism will enter into adulthood in the next decade.

No one in their right mind would choose to enter into the "world of autism", but those of us who have arrived at this place have two choices...
1. to allow autism to dictate how we live
2. to dictate to autism how we will live

We have chosen the latter.

A few celebrities, who have arrived at this same place, have used their status as a podium to bring awareness and hope to others. Holly Robinson Peete has a great article that is a must read for those wanting to become more "aware".

Jenny McCarthy

Holly Robinson Peete

Then there is me, with MY guy!

Autism doesn't just happen to an individual. It happens to a family.
Not only do we want what is best for Jack, we want what is best for our family, and other families that face the same challenges that we face. I want to see options, and supports, in place that will help individuals and families in our little area of the world. Options and supports that allow Jack, and others, to get all the help they need in order to be everything they were destined to be!
The past few months have found me doing things that I wish I did not have to do.
I did not want to be sitting in a courtroom fighting for the right for my child to have adequate services provided to him, in order to reach his full potential later in life. I'd rather be scoping out YWAM locations or colleges for him to go to next year.
I did not want to have to file papers that will allow me to be appointed guardian of Jack after his 18th birthday. I'd rather be helping to fill out YWAM DTS or college applications for him.
You know, I cannot even "park" on these issues, before I know it, I would be sliding down a slippery slope into self pity. I was there YEARS ago. I'm not going back.
So, putting on my "big girl pants"...
...we are pointed to the future, moving ahead, unsure of exactly what we might discover.
KNOWING that the Lord is with us the entire time.
KNOWING that He will never leave us of forsake us.
KNOWING that each day is a gift.
KNOWING that He uses all things to make us more like Him.
KNOWING that His love for my son far out weighs the love I have for my son.
KNOWING that His ways are higher than mine.
It is His ways that we have chosen to follow...This Amazing Journey!


Kristina Schnepf said...

and the best part... you have an ARMY of people who love to love Bubby:) I miss my time with him.. and you.

Sharon said...

I admire you guys and fighting for Jack....of course, parents would do nothing less but I am sure you have days.....

Anonymous said...

Dearest Vickey as i was reading about your journey here with Jack, a message I listened to a while ago came to mind. It was about having a near death experience and the effect it has on one's life. This near death experience is not necessarily cancer or any other physical near death experience but it can also be a spiritual/emotional near death experience eg. where you feel you die .. die to many dreams and hopes and expectations etc. The preacher said if you had a near death experience one comes out of it and asks a new set of questions. Your devastating experience with Jack years ago when all changed overnight has surely thrown you into a new place with new battles to fight at every age like you say instead of filling in forms for a YWAM course for him you have to battle to be his guardian after he is 18. You surely ask a new set of questions and you live life bravely. I honor you for that Vickey.

rstrunck said...

Just left your beautiful and ever growing nest. Both Mike and i are thrilled to be part of life's journey while standing beside such a thoughtful, intelligent, and giving family. Fight when you must, celebrate as often as you are able, and know we are part of your journey!
Much Love,