People talk all of the time about love at first sight. Something about the way a person moves through space, their demeanor, that makes an individual fall in love with them. I’ve always taken that concept a bit further and wondered if it were possible to love someone you’ve never met – and I mean truly, unequivocally love LOVE someone. I’m not talking about loving someone the way a school girl loves a celebrity they will most likely never meet. I’m talking real, real love.
So, is it possible to love someone you’ve never met.. and someone you’re never going to meet – well, at least not in this lifetime. Is it possible to truly love someone who died before you lived?
I’d like to say it is possible…
My Grandfather, Thomas, goofing around in his wife’s nightgown.
Yesterday I checked my email to find a forwarded message from my mother. The text was short and sweet, she wanted me to see a few pictures of my grandfather that I had never before seen. Photos she had never before seen either. The way I felt when I opened them is hard to put to words.
While perusing Facebook recently I “Liked” a few new autism groups. I have already left two of them.
The first one I left over a week ago because there was never anything of value posted. Actually there was never anything about autism posted at all. Oh, yes, the administrator posted pictures of cupcakes and sunny days – but very little about autism. Maybe looking at cupcakes and beautiful landscapes is what some parents need, but not me. That’s just not the kind of stuff I am looking for. You see, I’m on a quest to find as many people who champion the Autistic as I can. I’m searching for people who realize the worth and value these individuals posses. I’m searching for people who realize they hold the key to our understanding of the disorder. I’m searching for a group of people who realize they deserve to dominate the conversation about themselves. I’m searching for Autistics and their allies. I’m searching for a little bit more than rainbows and cupcakes.
The second group I exited today. Continue reading
(Mia Clough. Picture taken by Benjamin Clough 2010)
I was going to start this post by saying “The worst part of being Mia’s mother is…” but I thought better of that statement. There really is no “worst part”. There are hard parts. There are challenging parts. Indeed, there are parts of being her mother that I sometimes wish I didn’t have to go through. Or, rather I wish I didn’t have to watch Mia go through. But then I remembered something and I could no longer write the post I had planned. I remembered something a seventeen year old non-verbal autistic boy told me. He was only able to convey his truth to me through a computer, for he can speak no other way. I remember thinking two thoughts at the same time – the first being how incredibly amazing it was that he had an outlet for his thoughts. And then my thoughts turned bleak. My second thought, I am ashamed to admit, was a deep and painful thought. I thought about how horribly sad I was for this young man who could only communicate through a computer, as if he were in some way less whole because of it. And then I thought about Mia, maybe she wasn’t whole either. But then he told me something that shifted my thinking completely. His words were as simple as they were true. He said,