With Just 2 Words, My Son With Autism Let Me Know We’d Be OK
I remember my son TJ was still 2.
He’d been diagnosed with autism a few months before this day. He only said “Ba” for ball, “Da” for dog and “Ma” for no.
He was immersed in so many different therapies and programs — most of them taking place in our home.
I remember I was tired.
My son Peter was 1. I remember how I wanted to go for walks, to playgroups, to Mommy and Me classes. But I couldn’t. Our entire day was scheduled around these therapies.
I remember I was playing with Peter in the living room. TJ was upstairs in his room with Diana, our first Discreet Trial teacher. It’s a one-on-one therapy away from distractions where the teachers use a reward system to teach things like emotions, colors, letters — everything. Parents were not to be present during their work. I listened through the baby monitor so I was in touch with what he was working on.
I remember being busy with Peter that day, and I wasn’t being my super stealthy listening self. We were playing and giggling when TJ and Diana came down the stairs.
“Mom, TJ has something to say to you…”
Wha… what? My heart stopped. Something to say?
“Hi, Mom,” TJ said simply, with a smile.
Even today when I remember this moment, I’m overcome. Overcome with pride, with surprise, with joy.
Overcome with hope.
Now my TJ is 15, and Peter is 13. TJ talks all day, every day. We have many more good days than bad, for which I am so thankful.
But every now and then, if I get a case of poor me or if we’re having a tough day, I remember those two little words that gave me so, so much hope:
Happy Mother’s Day to all of you. I hope your day is filled with love, with joy, with surprise.
And with hope.
This post originally appeared on I Don’t Have a Job.