About Me

I am the proud mother of 6 children. 5 of our children have autism. We do not feel our world has ended, but just begun. We do not chelate, intervene biochemically, give shots of any kind, practice ABA, etc. We treat them as we treat any humanbeing. We treat them with kindness and respect and expect the same from them. They are exceptional children.

Friday, March 28, 2008

LESSONS LEARNED....

Today, as I was spending yet another day at the grocery store, spending another large amount of money on groceries, I had an amazing AHA! moment (I should be on OPRAH soon with this one).
An elderly, disabled gentleman was helping me out with my groceries...calling him a "bagboy" would be demeaning..he was so much more.
He told me he recognized me and wanted to know how the kids were...I told him they were doing great and thanks for asking. This gentleman then went on to tell me his life story and how he was institutionalized as a child until he was 18 years old. He then decided to go onto college. He earned a degree in social work in the 1960's. Because of his emotional issues, he has had a hard time holding on to a job. Now, he has been with this grocery store chain for 10 years...his longest job ever.
I went on to tell him about my aspirations and how I got to be where I am today....
I graduated college with a degree in Agriculture Education. I hated my degree and never, ever have used the degree. I then went to work with children and young adults with Autism at a residential treatment center. I loved that job, until I realized the focus was not on the children, but the money they brought in....I became disheartened.
Soon, I found myself in the hotel business...I loved that job also...I became quite good at my job and would still be doing that for my profession if not for giving birth to a beautiful little girl...who happened to need me.
I gave birth to 6 more children, 5 who happen to have Autism.....I never, ever gave a moments thought to why I gave birth to children with Special Needs. I always knew I had a reason to be on this planet...this must be the reason.
I went on to tell this lovely man, at the grocery store, that at that very moment I knew my purpose here on Earth....my purpose for being...my purpose that I have always wondered about.....
God has given me the responsibility that he decided I could handle......the responsibility to be the Mother to 6 of the most amazing children on this planet. The responsibility to make sure they succeed and be the best that they can be in this life. There is nothing more important of a job, on this Earth, that I can think of that I would want to do. I truly do thank God every day for giving me this responsiblity and promise that I will never let my children down.
Next time I see my new friend at the grocery store....I will let him know what our conversation has taught me. I will let him know what a difference he made in my life on this day.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Isn't it funny how things turn out? We think we know what we want or how life is supposed to go and then life happens. I definitely didn't plan to be going back to school in my thirties (I thought I'd know what I wanted to be when I grew up by then!) to be able to work with children who have special needs but the timing is right and I feel like that is what I am supposed to be doing.

I agree that being a mother is the most important job you will ever have. You have been entrusted with children and have a huge responsibility. Keep on doing what you are doing and don't lose your wonderful attitude.

Marie

Joseph said...

Anyone who had been institutionalized from a young age and managed to get out deserves admiration. It's almost unheard of. Institutionalization invariably destroys people, especially autistics. Kanner, for example, stated that a complete lack of institutionalization was essentially a prerequisite for a good outcome.

Club 166 said...

I am always amazed at all the really neat people that are out there, just waiting to be discovered if we slow down enough to listen.

Joe

Mom26children said...

Joe,
Every human has a story...and they are all interesting.
I have a friend ask me why I talk to everyone I meet....I told my friend I like to know alot about people.
From the homeless man on the corner begging for change to the richest woman in Austin....they all have a story to tell.
Problem is, not many people take the time to stop and listen.

Jeanette