Thursday, January 5, 2012

My Dinner With Sam (1.05.2012)

This is my wonderful son, Sam. We had dinner tonight at Burger King. I usually try to veer away from any restaurant with a drive-thru window -- at least during the week -- but he gets such joy out of going to Burger King and seeing how one is pretty much the same as any other. This would not, however, preclude him from wanting me to drive 4 hours away to say...Duluth, if he thought he'd get to see another Burger King that was exactly the same.

Having a son who has autism can be challenging at times, but it is never, ever dull. And it's truly revelatory when you start to see the world the way he does: he is always fascinated by the simplest thing that we take for granted. And for better or worse, I see the world in a different way because of him. Of course, I am convinced that you cannot raise a child who is "different" in this world without having it change you. Not so much any more, but when he was younger I would just become unhinged -- saying and doing things I would never have imagined in a million years -- if anyone tried to mess with him. Teachers, school districts, lawyers, "stupid people" -- you name it. I would eat them all for lunch if they tried to mess with my Sammy. And of course, I didn't do it alone. (Thanks, Dad!)

I was never a big fan of Oprah, but if I had to think about gratitude and the things I am really, truly grateful for, Sam would have to be at the top of the list. I know this is simply a mother's pride, but proud of him I am. And so happy to see this kid enjoying his life [and in this photo, his Burger King Caramel Sundae..] and finally able to do all things that everyone else can do and just "be" in the world.

Way to go, Sam. You da man! :-)

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