No Crutches - Little Mercy

Here’s the crux of the “problem”. My son looks perfectly “normal”. In fact, he looks better than “normal”. He’s gorgeous. He’s Grandma-bait. Women swarm him. There’s absolutely no external clue that he is Autistic with a heavy dose of Sensory Integration Dysfunction (SID).

There’s no wheel-chair, no feeding tube, no crutches, no facial or body abnormalities. My neighbor, a physician, comparing his Down-Syndrome son to my Autistic son said, “I wouldn’t trade you places for all the tea in China. When these guys act out in public, people are going to be a lot more tolerant with mine because they can see a reason for his behavior. They’re not going to give you the benefit of a doubt”. Truer words have never been spoken.

On the other hand, I’m not concerned with those times my son has public temper tantrums. Not that long ago, the appropriate and socially acceptible response to one’s out-of-control child would have been a sense of shame and humilation.

Now? It gives my son the apperance of “normal” – he’s behaving like his peers. As sad a commentary as that is on our society and culture, it does offer me a sense of relief that we won’t uniquely draw attention to ourselves. More times than not, people offer sympathetic and knowing nods which I interpret as, “I’ve been there….kids are tough…hang in there”.

Those little acts of mercy (I’m especially fond of “mercy”, when a verb – an active act!) are most welcome.

Luke 6:36 – Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.


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