Enjoying Today With My Son With Autism Before Tomorrow Comes

Sometimes I get too far ahead. I spend too much time racing to tomorrow that I don’t slow down to appreciate today. I know many of us do it.

I’m not going to lie, I feel like I spend more and more time racing and worrying about my autistic son’s tomorrow that I fail to see the wonder of his today. We are now at the half way mark of his sophomore year of high school and I fear “tomorrow” is gonna run me over. The protective bubble of home and high school is soon going to pop and then what? It’s the “then what” that keeps me up at night.

My friend tells me “don’t get too far ahead” and “just focus on now,” but, she knows me better than that and it’s also easier said than done.

Today though, I tried to heed her advice. I watched from a distance, trying desperately not to think about the what if’s of tomorrow and focus on the now of today.

A snow day meant a trip to the mall. My son didn’t know I was watching him from across the mall’s food court. He didn’t see me smile as I watched him happily place his pizza order and heard him use exquisite manners as he did. He didn’t hear me chuckle as I watched him pay for his order and then meticulously put his money in his wallet just the right way. He didn’t feel my eyes trailing after him as he walked from the pizza joint to a kiosk for a Mountain Dew Voltage (step up your game, pizza joint). He didn’t see my
eyes well up as he went and found a table then texted me to let me know where he was sitting. He didn’t know that as I approached him my smile was filled with more than an “oh, there you are” smile. My handsome, incredible son had no idea I was glowing inside as I watched today unfold knowing he was one step closer to tomorrow.

Yes, today always leads to tomorrow, but, we can at least try and slow down and enjoy today before tomorrow comes.

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Editor’s note: This story has been published with permission from the author’s son.

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