February 28, 2011

Just a Boy

There are moments when nobody would know.

Not many.

But some.

He is climbing the rope structures at the park. He is confident and secure in his ability to make it to the top.

He is just a boy: scaling the ropes; aiming for the highest bar.

He is taking a seat on one monster of a roller coaster. Grin from ear to ear. Anticipation in his eyes.

He is just a boy: ready to hear the clicks of the coaster as it climbs; ready to plunge and race at speeds so fast I can only count the seconds until the fun is over.

He is in a pool: gliding so effortlessly you would never know he has not had a single lesson.

He is just a boy: strong, sturdy and at peace.

He is eating an ice cream cone. He is riding the carousel. He is hugging me.

He is just a boy

These moments are glorious. I treasure them. And I wonder what that says about me. I know that I love these moments -- moments when the autism disappears -- because there is still a part of me wishing it weren't so -- wishing my boy was not saddled with this beast of a burden.

There is more to it, of course. There are still moments, even after all of these years, when I cringe. They are the moments when the autism hits full force -- in public -- and I become the one who retreats inward. Because I know that for every person in the world who understands -- people who know that my child is struggling to do his best -- there are many more who are simply ignorant, or at worst, self-righteous and judgmental and ignorant.

Hey people: You know what?

He is just a boy.

It is not that simple. But, yet, it is.


  1. He IS! And so is Evan! And I relate to each word. Oh, how I relate! Hugs!

  2. I know both of those feelings exactly. And I also love peanut butter cookies... Not sure what that means, but reasonably certain we're not twins.... lol