Found myself in a local food court observing a father carefully, patiently, and with great love, feed his disabled teenage daughter. It was a truly beautiful sight. She was strapped into a wheelchair, unable to control her body from the neck down. Her mouth agape and eyes rarely focused on anything. A shell of a human being, right? Wrong. The moment her father gingerly placed a spoonful of food in her mouth, her eyes came alive. That look said, “Thank you – I love you – I’m in here!!” I sat there for the longest time, mesmerized by their beautiful exchange.
This occurred early in our autism journey. It’s impact so strong that it has replayed in my mind many times over the years. A reminder that the deepest connection is not about the chatter. It’s not about the “what I did in school today… who my best friend is this week…” When language is stripped down. Taken away. The only thing left is that soul-to-soul connection. This, the most beautiful connection there is. One that forms naturally over years of listening to silent answers.
I was once told, “You should have another child – you’re missing out on so much.” So are you, my friend… so are you.