Little Blessings

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BOOM Boom.  Boom-Boom-Boom!

I feel every sound enter their little bodies as they lay against me, like shots from a gun.

I’m sure someone is going to launch.  Sketch (7, autism/anxiety/adhd) and PolkaDot (11months) are going to be inconsolable.  But again, I’m wrong.  The twins (9) stand in the sand watching the fireworks over the beach.  Dash (autism/adhd) has his ears covered and Princess Buttercup is soaking in every explosion and all it’s beauty!

Mr. Incredible holds our nervous PolkaDot for a while and Sketch continues to drape himself over my RA’d legs, fingers firmly pressed into his ears.

Giggles.

I look down at his face and see just smiles and giggles and then a request for “More Boom?”

He LOVED it!  Who’da guessed?

They’ve come soooo far!  I am just beside myself in thankfulness for this day…

The 6th of July.

The 4th was a thunderstorming evening so the fireworks were cancelled (Disappointment #1).

We tried to go on the 5th, but Portland was over-packed with people and cars and there was no parking in the entire town close enough for us to be able to walk to the display site.

(Disappointment sets in a second time)

We drove to Freeport, thinking L.L. Beans would have rescheduled their fireworks for the 5th as well, but that was not the case (# 3)…. So we walked around Beans a while.  By the time we got back to the car, my knees felt like they were ripping from walking to much.

But I was the only one complaining.

Wow.  No tears or fussing about missing the fireworks.  We told the kids that we would try Old Orchard Beach the next day if we missed it today, and they were ok with that!   Miracle of miracles!!!

Any kid would be disappointed after looking forward to the fireworks and twice having to reschedule, but with ASD kids, the upset-ness rises to a whole new level as schedules change without warning.  But they handled it so well, over and over again!

Little Blessings.

They’re actually huge blessings.  The kids have come so far, it is really amazing!

James 1:17a

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights”

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Joy: Recognizing The Gifts Given In Autism

The daily stress of raising children on the autism spectrum with sensory processing problems, communication problems, behavioral issues, etc. leaves us drained.  Being worn out, and having repeated bad experiences…you know, the ones where you have to leave early because of a childs’ inability to cope (read: massive tantrum requiring physical removal of kicking & screaming child) leaves one hesitant to try those things again…and over time, chronic negativity sneaks it’s way in.

Soon eyes fail and the rose-colored glasses that emphasized the beauty in the moment become grayed…smudged, and the gifts are lost.  The moment is lost, leaving the fear of what may happen…the trauma of what did.

I started reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp.  It is a wonderful book with a beautiful challenge:  to see the gifts God has filled the earth with, and to name them, to write them down.

Her challenge is to make a list of 1000 things you are thankful for.  Those things are really gifts from our Creator.

By remaining in the moment, looking for things to be thankful for; as we recognize the gifts, time slows.

Joy increases.

Negativity is hammered out by thanksgiving hammered in, resulting in increasing joy.

I have taken the challenge, and I hope you will too!  I have posted my first 20 gifts that relate directly to my children with autism/adhd.  I hope you are encouraged to find the gifts God has showered on you, and in the middle of it, discover joy.

Ephesians 5:19b-20 says, “Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

My first Twenty:

1. A child melting like chocolate into my arms

2. Uncontrolled giggles from unknown reasons

3. Understanding surpassing anxiety

4. Siblings playing, pretending together

5. Children singing, instruments strumming, praises to God

6. Glimpses into their mysterious mind

7. The sweet smell of freshly shampood hair

8. Smiles peeking under umbrellas

9. Sing-songy voices telling stories unknown

10. Children slipping off to sleep

11. Messy fingers undiscovered through fun

12. Color spreading staining paper, as tiny fingers create

13. Bright shiny  crescent shaped eyes, wet with laughter

14. Moments of fully entering his world, as Jesus entered mine

15. Treasures glowing amidst the spectrummy storms

16. My boy, eyes beaming as he gazes into the eyes of another child

17. A shining face appearing amongst a rainbow of balls

18. Discovering genius amidst silence

19. Hands uncoordinated, striving hard to create shapes with scissors

20. Eyes casting Jesus as struggles are remedied, help received

I would love to hear your thoughts, and the gifts you have discovered!  Please let me know you were here with your comments!

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