I pretend I don’t care. My face is poker straight. If Kyle knows I want him to do something, he’s going to do the opposite. I play psychiatrist, kindergarten teacher, and frustrated mom on any given day. Waiting On Autism: A Mother’s Blessing is my account of how God works in the life of two desperate parents.
I was sitting in my driveway in the car, talking to my friend Sue on my cell phone. I looked to my right when something caught my eye, it was Kyle coming out of the house with his aide.
I started talking to myself but also to Sue, giving her a play-by-play of what was happening since I was bouncing with excitement. Kyle had only left the house with his staff twice in the past month. Today was one of those crucial days that we absolutely needed Kyle to leave the house…but we couldn’t tell him that.
Kyle has autism, and a long list of other disorders and one of them is called oppositional defiant disorder-ODD. This causes Kyle to do the opposite of what is asked of him, especially if he feels pressured to make a decision.
Our real estate dealer was going to be showing our home to a couple who were potential buyers. We needed Kyle to go out with his staff, so the house was empty. We also needed to clean his rooms, which he doesn’t like us to do when he is present.
Vance and I had both prayed and asked God to get Kyle out for the day. I had just come back from the grocery store and was parked talking to Sue. I tried to hide behind my cell phone, so Kyle wouldn’t see my face. I have the BIGGEST phone you can buy. Unfortunately, my face is bigger. He saw me. I knew it might throw him off and he would bolt back in the house. But he looked at me and hopped in the van. I’m cheering to myself and Sue of course.
This is one of the blessings of autism-relying on God for every critical moment.
In my book, Beauty from Ashes, I shared the story of how Vance and I had to take Kyle for an ultrasound when he was at his worst, and we thought he was dying. He had so much anxiety that sadly if it had been fifty years before, Kyle would have been thrown in a mental institution and put in a straight jacket.
We prayed ahead of time, and we were filled with enormous anxiety ourselves. Kyle was throwing items in the room and at one point tossed the technician’s computer off the desk- but by some miracle I caught it. She was able to ultrasound Kyle as he stood in the garbage can with about fifty pamphlets in his hand and my husband Vance and I standing on either side of him holding Kyle tightly.
We left the clinic filled with joy and excitement-Mission Impossible had been accomplished! Click: HERE if you’d like to check out my book.
Somewhere along the way in this autism journey, I have learned to be happy with a son who wore clothes, could feed himself, used a toilet, and would give me a hug. The hopes of college, a job, a wife or kids… are long gone.
Now, I am overjoyed when Kyle has a day like he’s having in the video below (when you press play it will turn upright)
Waiting On Autism: A Mother’s blessing (Cindy’s List)
💗 We will never have empty-nest
💗 We get hugs everyday-some over exuberant
💗 We eat healthier due to Kyle’s specialized diet
💗 Kyle makes us laugh almost every day
💗 Vance has become a Swiffer Mop tester (he’s broken every one)
💗 Our fridge has a lock on it, causing eating to become hard work (great diet)
💗 Kyle brings wonderful people into our life (his staff)
💗 We no longer sweat the small stuff ( what’s a little-spilled coffee compared to your laptop flying)
💗 We will live with a young man who loves us dearly, hopefully for many more years
Life has its ups and downs living with autism. But recently I was talking with my husband and my daughter-in-law, Jazmin, over coffee and she asked Vance and I, “If you could go back in time and give up autism, but it meant you wouldn’t have had Kyle, would you do it?” Jazmin agreed she wouldn’t give up cancer since it had brought people like us into her life (sniffle).
Vance and I both said, no, we wouldn’t change what we had gone through or having autism in our life. Without Kyle and autism, we may not have drawn near to God and each other.
Having a son with special needs led us to find joy and a love for a young man- that goes beyond imperfect human love.
Sometimes blessings come in packages that are sorrowful at the moment but later lead to something beautiful- Beauty from Ashes💗