There are many amazing truths I have learned as a parent to the most amazing, extraordinary humans I know…next to my grand daughters who truly are deliciously amazing, extraordinary and exquisite, of course…but if pressed I would say that the most amazing thing is how unique and different they are even from one another.
Deep in the trenches of caring for and feeding them, I was often told how much they all looked like one another…as if I somehow managed to clone them. Yes, even the one whom I share no DNA with. Two of them often were mistaken for twins; which amused, annoyed and definitely irritated them both because come on…blue-green eyes…golden green eyes…strawberry blonde hair, auburn hair…athletic build, gangly elbows and knobby knees…”We are NOT twins!”, they would hiss. Raised under The Big Top in the same chaotic circus life that was our noisy life alone, each and every one of my favorite clowns is their own exclusive self…even if any of them were twins which none are not. Puzzles they are, each and every one of them. My puzzles.
Probably the most important thing I have learned to appreciate as a mother of five amazing, unique humans is all minds are puzzles and that is more than okay because as the mother of a child on the spectrum and children not on the spectrum I have come to discover there is no such thing as a “normal” child. Thank goodness!
Today is World Autism Awareness Day which is much, much more than just being aware that there are 1 in 68 people living on the spectrum; but also a time to focus on acceptance and appreciation in which all people have the opportunity to live a life filled with a sense of identity, purpose, and self-determination.