This series of posts on “Ten Things” is based on the article “Ten Things Every Child with Autism Wishes You Knew.”
Point 3: Please remember to distinguish between won’t (I choose not to) and can’t (I am not able to).
This point reminds me of a framed poem we have at our house, with Alyssa’s name underneath in big red letters where she signed it. It reminds me that so many of the things we take for granted are a constant struggle for others. That frustration and anger will never help them ‘get’ what isn’t attainable. And that a little bit of understanding and sympathy can mean the world.
I can’t find the exact words, but the poem is similar to this…
Blessed are those who stop and listen to my chatter. You may not understand me; but I love when people talk to me, for I long for companionship, too.
Blessed are those who take my hand and walk with me when the path is rough, for I easily stumble and grow weary. But thank you, too, for letting me walk alone when the path is smooth, for I must learn independence.
Blessed are those who take the time to tell me about special happenings, for unless you make special effort to inform me, I remain ignorant.
Blessed are those who wait for me. I may be slow, but I appreciate your patience.
Blessed are those who are not ashamed to be seen in public with me, for I did not choose to be born thus. It could have been you as well.
Blessed are those who do not pity me, for I don’t want pity. All I want is understanding and respect for what I have learned as well.
Blessed are those who notice my accomplishments, small as they may seem to you. I must work long and hard to learn many of the things you take for granted.
Blessed are those who include me in their games, even though I may not understand the rules, I still like to be included in your activities.
Blessed are those who think of me as a person who loves, and hurts, and feels joy and pain just like you do, for in that respect I am normal.