“Autism is hard – kicked in the gut hard.” This thought hit me Sunday as I’d been through dozens of sets of clues with our spectrum son in just a few short hours that seemed to stretch into days. Autism is hard.
It’s tears and fears; worry and frustration; heartbreakimg and heart-sinking. And that’s just for me, I can’t even begin to imagine the struggles he faces and works through every single day.
It’s also full of sighs and smiles; love and hugs and kisses and sometimes even snuggles, but never for very long; it’s belly laughter so big you need to catch your breath and dry your eyes; it’s pride in him, and joy bigger than life itself as he smiles and laughs and runs at us with all his might.
A few moments of quiet allowed for reflection and took me back to those many, many clues and all the emotions that came in those hours with our boy. Further reflection took me to his four siblings and I realized that autism isn’t so hard. It’s not our life, it’s only part of our story. Parenting – parenting is hard.
Seasoned parents warn young moms to “Enjoy these moments!” because they will be gone all too soon. “Carpe Diem!” “Seize the Day!” “Don’t wish these moments away!”
Confession time: I LOVE being wife to Chris and mom to Rob, Tom, Jac, Ben & Ali. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE it! There’s no question this is at least part of what God made me to do. I truly love it. But, I do not love every single moment. I do not love the frustration and the heartbreak, the tears and fears, the struggles and the growing pains, but I am thankful in all of them – thankful that I am able to live these days with these people.
Parenting is hard, but I sure wouldn’t trade it.