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What I have learned in the last 16 months

[By Mel Lindstrom -father to Matthew Jamshid Lindstrom]

I have learned that what works great for one child may not work at all for another. It may even give that child a bad reaction.

I have learned how to study poop on a daily basis. Is it light, or is it dark? Is the consistency dense or is it fluffy? Does it have undigested food particles, and what are those particles? Did it come out easy or did it take a lot of work? Was it accompanied by gas? How long since the last one? How big was this one? God have I learned how to look at poop!!!

I have learned how precious a smile really is.

I have learned how a smile is even grander when my son is staring right into my eyes.

I have learn that sleeping on a lumpy mattress can feel pretty darn good when you know it got that way because your son finally learned how to jump up and down on the bed.

I know I am too tough to cry when my bones are broken, but the tears started to flow that first time I heard "Hi Daddy".

I have learned how every single kid on the spectrum is completely different.

I have learned the one common denominator with each child that has been healed, is parents who never gave up.

I have learned that when it comes to good health, the old ways are the best.

I have learned how to believe in things I never believed in before.

I know now that God gives us gifts in the most peculiar ways so we can cherish them so much more.

I have learned that a blinkie can become a Ga Ga, a heart can be called an Isha. Thank you sounds more like "Ter go". Come with me becomes "ka muffin" and all of these things still sound just perfect to me.

I have learned about an entire microscopic world of creatures that have a dramatic affect on me, my son and a lot of other children.

I have learned how to hold back my anger when some parents with similar kids tell me how lucky I am.

I have also learned how to not get angry when parents with NT kids complain about the "difficulties" in their very normal life.

I now truly know the importance of prioritizing everything in my life. And what will always be at the top of the list.

I have learned how many people are in the same situation as we are. Way too many.

I have learned what a valuable tool the Internet is.

I have come to virtually know many thoughtful parents who have been so helpful that if I ever met them in person I would give them a big hug. Better yet, I would have my son Matthew give them a big hug since he can do that now.

I have learned that I can not heal my son of autism in a year. So I will give it two.

I now will question and research anything the standard medical community tells me is safe or effective.

I have learned that life is a serious of decisions; about emotions, about reactions, about expectations, and that adversity is just an overwhelming serious of more difficult decisions.

I have learned how to make the right decisions.

[My thanks to Mel Lindstrom for allowing me to use his thoughts on my site.]

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