The following was originally published on October 29, 2009.
I wonder ~
Do you know that I sneak into your room to watch you sleep, secretly hoping that you might wake up, even for a second?
When you do wake up and I’m not here, do you wonder where I am?
Do you understand why Mama has to go to work, baby?
Do you know that it kills me to leave?
Do you know that my heart breaks every single time I get into the car and drive away?
Do you know that I think of you every moment of every day?
Do you know how desperately I want to restructure your world – to make it less hostile, less foreign?
Do you know how hard I try to make things easier for you?
Do you know that I would give my right arm to take away your fears?
Do you know that I carry your worries with me? That I flinch when a baby cries even when you’re not in the room? That I wish that somehow that helped?
Do you know that there is nothing, NOTHING that I wouldn’t do to ensure your safety and happiness?
Do you know that it cuts me to the core when you say, Don’t touch me! even as I burst with pride that you finally have the words to say it?
Do you know how grateful I am for those hit-and-run hugs that come at me with all the force of the universe, even if they end just as abruptly as they start?
Do you know that your laughter has the power to heal?
Do you have any idea how much you’ve changed me?
Or how grateful I am to have been changed?
Do you know how many people are rooting for you? How many people cheer your victories and hold you in their hearts when you stumble?
Do you know that you are smart as a whip?
Do you know that you have autism?
Does that strange word that we use mean anything to you?
Does it help to know that there’s a name for the things that you struggle with? That you are not alone in those struggles?
Do you know that as you grow up there will be an army of people out there with similar experiences?
Will you want to find them?
Will you take comfort in their friendship?
Will you find pride in being different or will you choose to try to blend in?
Do you know that as long as you can make that decision for yourself, I will feel as though Daddy and I succeeded?
Do you know that I envy you your complete lack of pretense?
Do you know that you are the most authentic person I’ve ever met?
Do you know that you make the world better, simply by being who you are?
Do you know that you touch hearts and change minds and bring everyone around you to a higher place?
Do you know that I have already learned far more from you than I will ever teach you?
Do you know how proud I am to be your Mama?
I love you, baby – with every fiber of my being.
Don’t worry about the rest of it.
That’s all you need to know.