Friday, March 28, 2014
My One in 68....
I won't lie. The numbers floored me. When Isaac was diagnosed thirteen years ago, the numbers were more like 1 in 500 up from 1 in 1500. Time passed and the numbers rose steadily on....1 in 188...1 in 150....1 in 88...and now....1 in 68...
I heard the latest CDC autism numbers yesterday afternoon. They stopped my day. They paralyzed me. My heart got heavy and so did my legs. I stumbled into my kitchen chair and remembered all the struggles of those first days when we knew something wasn't right but didn't know what, when we first heard the word autism in the same sentence as Isaac's name, when we posted a list on the fridge of all the therapists and case managers and interventionists that had newly come into our lives and into our home, when Isaac became our one in the CDC statistics.
I thought of the little ones newly diagnosed and of their families. I thought of how overwhelmed they must feel and how strong they will become. I grieved for the families I don't know. Please understand me...I don't grieve their precious children. Those little ones are gifts with vast potential. I grieve the lives that are being redefined. Those families thought they were heading down a certain life path...and that path is being altered. It is being reshaped and cut into something different. Mine was too. That cutting and reshaping is hard and it hurts...much more than I can adequately express here. It's ok to grieve that path. It's necessary. It's human...and even mamas are human.
We grieve...We recognize....and We spend the rest of our lives Reminding the world of the significance of our child. We give voice to our one in the statistical count. I give voice to my Isaac.
Isaac is more than just his diagnosis. Isaac is a Goof Nut... I say this with a mother's love. Isaac is silly and joyous. Isaac recognizes beauty and enjoys it. Isaac has an uncanny ability to feel what you feel and call you out on it. "Sad" "Mad" "Happy". Isaac rises to the expectation you set.
Isaac is a hiker. Isaac is an advocate for nature and the parks. Isaac is an explorer. He loves the trails and is in so many ways a trailblazer. Isaac is impossible to ignore. He is a leader. Isaac is a gift. Isaac has ability. Isaac is strong spirited. Isaac is able. Isaac is more than autism. Isaac is my own. Isaac is a teacher. Isaac is an inspiration. I Can....for Isaac.