Thursday, June 28, 2012


Its funny how God works sometimes.  You can be running in one direction, the direction you think you are supposed to be going in, and He stops you dead in your tracks...And I mean slams the door, shuts the window and says NO!  Well, thats what happened to me today and I must say it was a miracle.  Today God sent me someone who will forever change my life. 

A dear friend of mine from church set me up on what I called a blind friend date.  It was a woman she is good friends with, who has a 22 year old son with autism.  I didn't know what we'd talk about on our friend date, but I was so excited to hear from someone who had been there and done that and who might have some wisdom to share.  In all honesty, I thought maybe I'd get even more recharged to keep fighting and fighting for Jacob and hoping and praying for him to be "normal".  Well, she began to share her journey and she was explaining how in the beginning she would take her son out in public or to resaurants and always feel like she had to appologize for his behavior or that she needed to explain why he was acting the way he was acting, until she finally realized that she didn't owe anyone an explanation.  God had made him perfect just the way he was.  I then went on to ask her how she balanced hoping that he would become "typical" or "normal" with being at peace with his autism.  That's when she shared something with me that I will never forget.  She said that when her son was in middle school she felt so burdened with the thoughts and prayers for her son to be healed or to become normal.  She felt chains holding her to that anxiety and worry or the hope of him changing.  One night God gave her a vision in a dream.  She said she woke up hysterically crying and crying and immediately wrote down her dream so that she would never forget.  Her dream changed her life and will forever change mine.  Now I didn't write it down as she told me but here is my paraphrase as well as I can remember....She dreamed that her special needs son was a "normal" teenage boy.  She was in the kitchen cooking or cleaning and he walked through the room and said,"Hey Mom" in the typical teenage son kind of way with attitude and just went on with what he was doing and was out the door.  She remembers in her dream thinking that he was so different, their relationship was so different.  It was a nightmare.  She no longer had the son that she knew to be hers.  They didn't have the close relationship she had with him in real life.  She woke up from the nightmare crying because she knew God had just shown her "See this is the son you've been praying for, the "normal" son you've wanted so much.  Do you want him or the son that I have given you?"  She knew in that moment that God had given her the perfect son that she wanted. 

You see, no one can explain the bond you make with a special needs child.  No one can understand that relationship until you have it.  The son she thought she wanted was not the son she wanted at all.  God knew what he was doing.  She immediately felt those chains released.  She immediately felt so thankful for her son and everything that her son was. 

WOW. WOW.  You know, here I have been praying for a "normal" son and worrying about if I am doing enough to make him "normal" and I haven't stopped to thank God for Jacob and who he is now without wishing him to be different.  Its like I have been worrying that if I accept him the way he is and if I let go of the worry of him not healing that maybe then God won't heal him.  That's the amazing thing, though.  My wishing for him to be "normal" won't make him "normal".  Actually, if he stays autistic forever, it'll only bring deep heartache.  Additionally, my feelings don't change what God is ultimately in control of.  My feelings will only change my heart and my relationship with my Savior, Jesus.  I need to be thankful and so happy with Jacob as my autistic son.  Just as my friend said to me, I want to be able to tell God that I don't want Jacob to change.  If God chooses to change him then I can be thankful for what God does, but Jacob is perfect the way God has created him.  What's more is that I have been afraid that accepting this diagnosis means giving up.  That isn't further from the truth.  Accepting his autism means loving him for who he is and working to make him be able to function the best he can.  I can fight for autism coverage.  I can walk in the Autism Walk for research and I can try to do my very best in therapy, but all while being at peace with the way that God has created Jacob. 

This whole thing reminded me of the woman's retreat my church had a while back.  Let me tell you that I was not too excited to go to the retreat because we were moving out of our house THAT weekend.  I was stressed to leave my family and go and in fact I think that made me a little unattentive at the retreat.  But one thing we did there was that we had all picked up some stones.  These stones represented things in our life that we were hanging on to that we weren't giving to God.  At the end of the retreat we were to lay them down as if giving them to God.  I did lay all of my stones down, not as a lie, but I just really wasn't into the whole thing.  I remember my Mom asking me if I really had laid it down and given it to God.  I knew she meant Jacob.  I said yes and she cried a little, but it wasn't a happy cry.  She was sad.  She knew I hadn't laid my stone down, really.  Well to all the women that were there, I have picked up another stone as a symbol of Jacob.  I don't think I am quite ready to lay it down completely.  I want to say that I am and I want to lay the stone down, but this time I am taking this very seriously and I am not going to lie for the sake of sounding good.  I am going to deeply pray and ask God to release me from this and I am going to try my hardest to let go and be thankful for the Jacob that I have, even if it means that this Jacob will always be autistic or even non-verbal.  I will rejoice when he makes steps forward, but I will not be dissappointed or compare him to other children who have overcome autism. 

And as for this lady, she has 2 sons.  One is autistic and one is "typical".  She doesn't want or pray for her normal son to be autistic anymore than praying or desiring her autistic son to be normal.  What a great place to be happy, content, and thankful for the perfect children God blessed her with.  Thats what I desire.  She knows that the close bond that she has with her special needs son wouldn't be there if he weren't special needs.  She is thankful for the children God gave her.  This idea sounds so simple, but let me tell you there is nothing like having a child with special needs.  The unique thing about autism is that some kids totally reverse back to normal and some don't.  Without that true faith in Gods sovereignty it can be harder to handle than I can even describe.  I have been living with constant fear or worry that I am not doing enough for Jacob to pull him out of his autism.  That fear and worry has become my chains around my wrists.  I want so deeply to lose these chains and let trust God with Jacob and just do the best I can for today without worry of the future.  I am so thankful for this new perspective and for God sending me this lovely woman to share her journey with me. 


  1. I started to read the first part of your post and I could not help but think of how I felt when we started to get all of our blood work done. I remember the day we took Logan to Texas Children's to get his blood work done. I was so sure they would find something in his blood work that was causing him to have all his autism symptoms. I kept saying that maybe he was low in this, or need supplements for that, and that there would be a magic answer, or condition that if treated would take his symptoms away.

    Its been a journey... but I wanted to comment on how much your post on your "friend date" has done for me tonight. I really needed an uplifting story, and your post really helped. I was having a "why me day" and when I read about your friends dream I realized just how lucky we are to have him in our family.

    When we got the results back from the doctor I kept saying "what? how can they be normal?" are you sure? there has to be something.

  2. Thank you for sharing that Vivian. The moment she told me her dream I just cried and cried. It was such an eye opener for me so I had to share it. I don't know you or your son but I'd love to pray for your journey through autism. Please feel free to email me anytime. :)