I often grieve for Koby's autism. I'm not proud to say that. Maybe I should be a super mom and never get sad about his delayed development, his trouble with socialization, or how difficult Troy and Laura sometimes find it to have a brother like him. I shouldn't get frustrated when his tantrums last
an hour and he has destroyed several books and toys....and often several times a day. But I'm not a super mom.
And I know Koby is lucky. He is not as profoundly autistic as so many others. He does make eye contact, he does hug me, he is trying to talk. So, please know I already know how blessed I am....not only because of the things Koby does and is capable of, but also because Koby is Koby.
He has the most beautiful smile I have ever seen. His laugh is seriously contagious. He finds joy in so many things, no matter how mundane. He has an amazing spirit. But now, I'm going to say something that may surprise you.
Autism can be beautiful.
I've spent the last several hours thinking about the fact that along with all of the sadness I feel about Koby's diagnosis, I also find so many opportunities
to find true beauty and blessings in my life with autism.
I spent today at my mom's house, and we took the kids to a splash park. What I witnessed was truly beautiful.
Koby sees the world in a completely different way than anyone else who was at the park today does. And I can't attribute it to his delayed development because there were younger toddlers there. I studied all the children there, and I can tell you that none, despite their smiles and laughter, had as wonderful and as beautiful experience as Koby.
He was genuinely surprised and excited every single time the water would reappear. He wasn't running and jumping in the water. He didn't try to splash
other children. He didn't do anything the other children did. Yet, he delighted in the entire experience.
I wish I could put into words what I felt watching him. I'm trying and failing miserably.
Koby stood out from every other child there. They were sure of their actions, sure of what was happening, completely aware of the other children
around them...they were having fun.
Koby was engrossed in the water, engrossed in the experience, and his eyes and smile were unlike any of the smiles of the other children. I felt so blessed to be with him, to witness his pure, innocent joy and appreciation of the moment. And I knew that without his autism, that profound connection and joyous interaction with the water would not have been there.
I feel almost blasphemous writing about autism being a blessing. But if you ever have the opportunity to spend time with my son and to witness his innocent passion and joy come out, I swear you will find it to be the most beautiful thing you have ever seen.