I found this excerpt from a beautiful book called “Ten Things Every Child With Autism Wishes You Knew.” One of my gut desires right now is to understand sweet Keller James. In a moment I realized he wasn’t grumpy but misunderstood. We don’t understand his world and what comes into his little mind and heart. And so this piece really spoke to me. I want to love Keller. Love him ridiculously and lavishly because the world is hard for him. This gives me a peek into how I can do that. Join me in loving Keller (and ALL those in our lives) NOW.
Love me unconditionally.
Throw away thoughts like, “If you would just—” and “Why can’t you—?” You didn’t fulfill every expectation your parents had for you and you wouldn’t like being constantly reminded of it. I didn’t choose to have autism. Remember that it’s happening to me, not you. Without your support, my chances of growing up to be successful and independent are slim. With your support and guidance, the possibilities are broader than you might think.
Three words we both need to live by: Patience. Patience. Patience.
View my autism as a different ability rather than a disability. Look past what you may see as limitations and see my strengths. I may not be good at eye contact or conversation, but have you noticed that I don’t lie, cheat at games, or pass judgment on other people?
I rely on you. All that I might become won’t happen without you as my foundation. Be my advocate, be my guide, love me for who I am, and we’ll see how far I can go.”
-Ellen Notbohm, “Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew”