My oldest son is an autistic nine-year-old who is primarily non-vocal. He did something not too long ago that tugged on the heartstrings. He is considered highly functioning but still struggles to articulate his wants and needs. While we can get the occasional one-word responses from him, full sentences are far and few.
A few months back, he wrote on his bedroom wall. At first glance, I remember saying, “ah, he wrote on the wall, unbelievable!” I dismissed his behavior initially, thinking it was him scribbling on the wall, making a mess. However, later that night, as I made his bed, I realized that he has never impulsively scribbled on the wall before; why would he do it all of a sudden? What pushed him to do it? I took a step back and kept repeating the same question over and over, “why would he do this?” My mind started dancing, trying to put myself in his shoes and understand his motives, and then I realized what it was that he had drawn.
He drew our family!
Starting on the left: our two dogs (Max and Tyson), our cat (Chunk), me, his little brother, mom, and my son, the artist.
Needless to say, I was washed over with emotion, and tears welled up in my eyes as I called my wife into his room to tell her.
I share this because it now makes me think twice about everything he is doing, knowing that there are a point and purpose for his motives, and his intentions are pure; he loves his family. I told my wife that this is why we do what we do for him. This is why we create a happy home for him and stand by him every step of the way. It is a signal and reminder from him that our tireless efforts do not go unnoticed. I remember, after saying this to my wife, I teared up and finished by saying, “we must be doing something right!”
I am so proud of him, and he always finds a way to melt my heart! I’ll wrap up this blog by sharing something that came to mind that I feel sums up the experience quite well, “the voiceless, trying feverishly to project their love find a way to convey the whispers of the heart.”
Thanks for reading!