He Always Answers Prayers
Tonight, like many nights, my children did not want to go to sleep. At
10:30 pm, they began to cry out for me again. Let me just iterate that
with one 20 month old who doesn’t talk yet, and with one 3 year old
boy with autism, calling out doesn’t sound like what it might sound
like in a neuro-typical household. The words “Mom” or “Dad” don’t
resonate down the hallway, just squeaks and wails. So, I answered the
wails and headed into their room. I pressed play on the cd player for
the 3rd time, beginning the lullaby cd they love . . . again.
While I rocked Charlise in the rocking chair in between their cribs,
Jais reached out for my hand. He layed his face in my hand, and I
rubbed his cheek. He explored my fingers and played with my wedding
ring. Charlise lay peacefully on my chest with her little arm wrapped
around me and her little hand patting my back. Although Charlise
doesn’t talk, she connects with me very well, freely gives kisses,
pats me on the back, signs a few key words, and seems to understand
quite a few things that Jais never seemed to grasp. They don’t think
Charlise is autistic, though she has fallen behind developmentally.
Daily life with two toddlers who can’t express their needs clearly,
can be very daunting, especially with my husband away on his fourth
deployment over the holidays, and birthdays, and our 5 year
anniversary . . .
It was such a peaceful moment with my baby girl resting on my chest,
with Jais holding my hand, and lullabies playing in the dark. I began
to close my eyes sleepily and said a prayer to God,
“God, thank you for these beautiful babies and for all of the growth
we have seen in them. Please contintue to light my path, show me what
is right, show me how to help them. You do such wonderful things and I
just want you to continue to open up our hearts and improve our lives
. . .”
While I prayed this, Jais continued to hold my hand, and very tenderly
explored it. I opened my eyes and looked over to him, I waved and
smiled, “I love you Jais”. I blew him a kiss. I continued to watch
him, to soak up his beautiful smile, and the most beautiful thing
happened, he lifted up his hand to his mouth and he blew me a kiss!
This was a first for him! He continued to blow me kisses, and I
started laughing and crying, “Good Job Jais, blowing kisses, yay
What a beautiful moment, Charlise, who mastered blowing kisses some
time ago, joined in on the love and began to blow kisses to us too.
At this moment I was so thankful for what God has shown me about
autism. After shock, dissapointment had run their course, and when
denial turned into acceptance, there was such a feeling of peace in my
heart. Once I was able to see Jais for who he is, I was able to love
him for who he was. I stopped for a moment to enjoy this wonderful
beautiful boy that he was becoming, I stopped for a moment mourning
over what he
was not. Now, I wish I could say I always felt this way, but I am
human. My biggest struggle is envy. I envy those “normal” bratty
children screaming “MINE” or “I WANT A BIKE” in the store. I envy the
young mom who brags about her one year old’s language skills. I envy
the three year olds who can play games of the imagination. I hate
these feelings of envy, I feel that by envying others I am betraying
my own children.
But on nights like tonight, when I can see clearly, when I can feel
God’s hand on my shoulder, I am so thankful. Who would I be with two
“normal” children. Would I cry at the word “cookie”, would I scream in
joy when my child picks the right color toy? Would I know the true
beauty, truth and love in a kiss blown from a three year old? Would I
feel God’s presence in every small way he shows me that he is there,
he is listening, and he does love me?
How beautiful life can be through the autistic eyes, life can be
enjoyed, every moment can be treasured, every cookie, toy, song, and
bubble is appreciated and enjoyed. I love my children for helping me
to slow down and see the world. For without them I would just be a
normal mom, with normal complaints and normal brags.
But instead I am special too, and I sure do appreciate those kisses.
Thank you God