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Markers, Mirrors & Motivation

Catching up and sharing from the files of my ramblings. This particular set is from January 25, 2017.

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We have long been fans of motivational quotes, stories, speakers, anything which gets our minds and hearts focused on what we want to accomplish. I think this may have started back in our FFA days, perhaps even earlier for me as I watched my older brother pursue his FFA dreams while I was in elementary and junior high.

Our spectrum son has long been a fan of dry erase markers. I can’t pinpoint the moment we first began letting him use markers, but it has been years. Trust me, YEARS. The number of dry erase markers he has been through in his short life would astound any manufacturer. Investing in Expo would probably be a wise financial move for us given the usage of dry erase markers in our home and beyond as anywhere we go, Ben brings along his markers and marker board.
Along about a year ago, give or take, we began using dry erase markers on our bathroom mirror. I know, I know. My younger self would have had a high-speed come apart at the thought of writing on mirrors, or anything not typically intended for such a purpose, but hear me when I say, I have mellowed.
To be honest, our mirrors haven’t seen much motivation lately and the markers have only been used to record wake up times – yes, it’s come to that with so many people in our home going different directions at different times, sharing rooms and not wanting to wake siblings before they need to be.
Fast forward to last week. Our oldest son had recently returned from Missouri Auction School, which in truth was both the culmination of one dream and a step in pursuing many others. He had an amazing week at the Harvard of Auction Schools, learning from the best in the industry, alongside like-minded individuals also pursuing their dreams. He followed that up with a visit with grandparents, and his first auction as a graduate, which was such a great success that he left with leads for three more benefits within the next year. To say he was fired up may just be the understatement of the year, thusfar.
We woke one morning after his return to see the markers and mirror back in action for motivation. Our youngest wasn’t feeling the best that morning and his handwriting is a little bit of a challenge for her to read, especially from the lower vantage point on the mirror (think reflection from different angles) so she asked me what it said.
“The moment you stop believing in your dreams is the moment they become IMPOSSIBLE.”
To which Ben replied, “You can say that again!”
Amen, Buddy. Amen.
Now, to be honest, I’m not sure if Ben was thinking about the quote or if that was the next line in a script he’d been playing through in his mind, but it was a perfect fit for the situation, and truly that is one of the goals of utilizing scripting for those who struggle with communications: taking a line from a known script and appropriately applying it in any given situation.
We’ve seen Ben successfully implement this tactic before when his younger sister fell one day while they were playing. He ran over and said, “Mousetrap. I wanted to play Mousetrap. You roll your dice. You move your mice. Nobody gets hurt. Ali, are you okay!?”
If you aren’t familiar with the adventures of Bob and Larry in VeggieTales’ production of The Toy that Saved Christmas, you would likely be quite confused by this reference to the game mousetrap. However, if you know the storyline, you know that Larry has asked Bob if he was okay after ending up on his head in a snowbank following a tumble down a hill while sledding. Bob’s response was, “Mousetrap. I wanted to play Mousetrap. You roll your dice. You move your mice. Nobody gets hurt.”
And so it is with our spectrum son that what may seem so completely out of context and confusing, may also be the most appropriate response possible. These are the moments of connection God gives us and I will take them, right along with any confusion they bring, every single time.
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