I'm not knowledgeable about much. In fact, i'd venture to say that i'm not knowledgeable about anything. I know a lot about a lot but there isn't one subject where i'm like, "Man, I could school you on this."
Autism and Special needs is a subject that I knew Literally zero about before Ollie. I had seen one kid with autism (that I knew was autistic) but that was it. I have quickly learned more than I ever wanted to know the past 9 months. Autism wasn't talked about in the circles I was in. Since sharing Ollie's story though I've learned that hundreds and hundreds of you have similar struggles with your kids-The spectrum is so big and so diverse. I've gotten so many encouraging messages and emails and texts that have helped us through this. There have also been the non encouraging messages but I won't talk about those Yahoos.
I know, without a doubt, that every human is made on purpose and for a specific purpose. No child was made on mistake and no child is a surprise to God (Even if He was a surprise to us.) There are no surprises where God is concerned. I've heard some people say crazy things that hurt, even though some of them are trying to be helpful. I've heard and read messages that say things like Like shots cause autism and wifi causes autism and if we feed him a special juice he will speak and that you can believe something out of a kid. Like if we believe in God enough that Ollie will be healed (I've literally heard that.) Here's where that gets crusty... While I 100% believe in Miracles, I also believe that God allows struggles in our lives and that the hardships we endure will also help us to see His Grace.
"There are times that difficulties aren't there to be Solved, But are there as a measure of God's Grace.'' - Matt Chandler
Um, can I get an amen?!
Ollie isn't a case to be solved. He's a human to be loved.
Do I wish that one day he would wake up and talk and eat perfectly? I can say I have been guilty of wishing things like that. But I'm not going to sit around and wait for that to happen and miss the amazing kid sitting right in front of me. My boy is brave. Almost too brave. He's so strong. I like to think he gets that from me. He also doesn't know one stranger. He gets that from his extrovert dad. He is a mixture of all things beautiful and different and he is ours. That is my kid and I take so much pride in him. There has never been another human that has made me cry and smile and break as much as Ollie does. He is Perfectly imperfect. Just like all of us.
God doesn't love the future version of ourselves. He doesn't love future Ollie. He loves us now. I'm not going to be the parent who wishes and prays away the things that God has put inside my son. Is it hard seeing your kid delayed and struggle with everyday things? Absolutely. Will we get past it? Yes. How do I know that? Because I can literally look back into every aspect of my life and see how far he has carried me. It may be hard now but I know it's going to get better. Ollie may always be delayed and He might never eat a full meal... but he might. He may amaze us all and become a Chef one day. We just don't know what the future holds for anyone. But God has a plan and If he doesn't miraculously make Ollie speak and eat, that's ok because we know God is still good. Ollie was stitched together by God. Every inch was made on purpose for a purpose.
"I will praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Your works are wonderful, I know that full well." -Psalm 139
2 things I know are true:
1) God promises to never leave us or forsake us.
2) Parenting is Hard...really hard.
God loves Ollie more than I love Ollie and I've got to think about that a lot of times a day. Whatever challenges we face on this road i know that he is going to be there with me. I would love if you would share this blog with a friend who you thinks needs it. Together, we can accomplish so much.
God, Help us to see the beauty in all the things. Even the hard stuff. -Amen