When you have a child with special needs, especially when behavior is a part of the picture, things get out of focus. It’s like the difficult aspects of your life dirty the lens, and now your camera only see ugliness. But I’ve taken some beautiful mental pictures because Squeaker’s personality shines through the dust particles. Every day is a challenge, but he is beautiful. Let me walk you through some of the breathtaking moments we’ve had this week.
On March 1, Squeaker and I took a picture together, then used the photo editor on my phone and did some creative editing. He does this frequently on his LeapPad, and was delighted to get to use Mommy’s phone. He got a kick out of the pacifier. I enjoyed the time spent with him on my lap. I revel in the time he allows me in his proximity.
On March 3, he sat on my lap to watch Cars 2 and play Angry Birds with me. Okay…okay…he didn’t actually play the game. He did command that I turn the volume on, though. He loves the sounds the birds make when they fly through the air. I just loved the peacefulness of the moment.
Yesterday, we had a delightful moment after I picked him up from school. It was a windy day, and a burst of air blew leaves across our path. He finds this hilarious. Any time he sees the wind blowing leaves around, he gets a kick out of it. This was no exception. He laughed and yelled at the leaves, “Hey! Stop it! Come back!” and “Stay away from those buses!” Each time the wind picked the leaves up and blew them toward the buses he yelled at them to stop and laughed. He delighted in them crunching under our feet, which led to us walking across the grass on the way to the car and stepping on sticks just to hear them snap. His laughter filled the air. I didn’t want the moment to end because it was beautiful and sweet. And as we approached my car, the wind blew again, and he commanded the leaves to “stay away from Mommy’s car.”
Today, Squeaker was helpful with Big Guy. In the car, his brother was crying because he kept dropping the brush I let him play with. Well, maybe Squeaker took it from him one of those times. But I noticed that when Big Guy dropped the brush, Squeaker moved quickly, reaching for the brush and quickly dropping it in his little brother’s lap. I told him what a good helper he was and what a good big brother, and he was excited that he was “sharing” with him. Later in the evening, when I told him I needed his help, he brought me a pillow and a pacifier (you have to use the words “I need your help” or “Can you help me?” but he’s willing to do it if he’s being a helper). I love how he loves to help and I love seeing how much he loves his brother.
His amusement at the little things that other kids his age no longer pay attention to, his innocense, his pride in making us (and his brother) happy, the way he delights in being a good helper…these are the moments to pull the telephoto lens out for. Zoom in and get a picture of those moments. Let the rest fall away into the background. Embrace the beautiful moments. Bad days happen. Maybe they happen more than we want to them to. But if you allow yourself to see them, so many delightful, wonderful, lovely things happen too. Capture them and hold on tight.
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