I can’t quite fathom just how quickly this year has flown. We are less than two weeks away from the summer holidays. On the other side of summer starts a brand new school year, Year 2 in fact. You really are quite the young man now. Your big brother will be starting Year 4 and possibly the most exciting of all, your baby brother will finally be joining you big boys when he starts in the new Reception class.
I envision it now, your wild eyes gleaming at the sight of your baby brother wearing uniform identical to yours and those happy-clappy waving hands when you see him playing in the Reception garden.
What soothes the butterflies in my stomach most is how less lonely you’ll feel. Two of the people who YOU love and love you and understand you most, will be close by, each and every day that you aren’t with me. I couldn’t be prouder of all three of you. Despite everything that gets thrown at us, we come back closer, stronger and more determined.
Part of me hoped everything would just fall into place once we received your Autism diagnosis. I naively thought life would be simpler; I’d have all the answers and be able to fix anything that went wrong. If anything, it all sort of crumbled around us afterwards. You were reaching crisis point daily at school, and the reasons for your behaviour whilst you were there weren’t fully understood. You were caught up in an endless cycle of frustration, anger and anxiety. I was powerless to break it.
No matter how you acted out, I was there to catch you and all those hurtful words and all the physical blows that followed. It hurts more to see you as low as you have been.
Finally as we have neared the end of this school year, there has been a lull in the chaos that likes to calm seas after storms. I always knew you were capable of being this settled. You were once before. The difference in you these last few weeks has been refreshing. Tensions fade when they’re given a fighting chance to and I’ve felt ease collecting you at the end of the school day. When you are good Sonny you are SO good. Your little heart that bursts and the smile you wear mirrors mine each time you run to me open armed, clutching your well-earned good behaviour certificates.
So good have things been for you these past few weeks, you have been participating in the rehearsals for your end of year, year group assembly. You are set to stand up and say a few words and hold up a piece of your work. Your teacher tells me at every practice you do it with such honour and self worth.
We’ve never fully made it to a school play before and it hasn’t been for the want of trying. With your high level of anxiety, it would have caused more distress trying than it was worth. The last time we attempted a school play was your Reception nativity two years ago. You made a wonderful shepherd and you made an equally wonderful contribution to the nativity, even if it were only minutes before you felt you had to leave the room.
I cried watching your year perform their part in the last Christmas production. The most important person was missing. You. Hearing them sing and dance to the songs you had been singing to me at home, knowing that should be you up there on the stage with your friends, it broke my heart. It just wasn’t the right time for you.
Tomorrow morning, I will be coming to watch your assembly and I honestly cannot wait! You’ll be standing on the left, I must remember you’ll be standing on the left.
I’m not the most noticeable of people. Quite plain and simple, there’s not much about me bold enough to draw eyes. You could loose me in a crowd any day of the week.
Not tomorrow Sonny.
You’ll see me. You can’t not.
Not because I’ll be cheering and whooping the loudest, (even though I may end up doing a little of that) but because I’ll be the one in the crowd with the wateriest of eyes and the fullest of hearts.
Definitely the proudest of them all.
P.S. He did it. I was there. On the left.