Monday, September 27, 2010


One of our first indications that something was amiss came as a result of a decision we made to enroll him in a sport.  It was a short, 6 week, no-pressure class and we were sure that, just as his siblings before him, he would be thrilled to finally be on a team.  On the first day of the class, when it was time for him to hold the floor hockey stick, his reaction was to freeze.  It was alarming as he stood rooted in one spot in the center of the gym while other three-year-olds ran and played around him.  He stood there and stood there.  Immobile. Eyes glued to the floor. Shoulders hunched.  Unable to respond in anyway even when Checkered stood next to him and tried to help him play.  He wasn't being stubborn that day.  He wasn't being just a shy boy.  He absolutely could not function nor could he communicate verbally with us in any way.  That was the last time we tried to engage him in a group sport.

 At school and other social situations, he isolated himself every chance he got physically and emotionally, even going so far as to pull himself into fetal positions in group settings.  In kindergarten, he always maneuvered himself until his back was against a wall. In first grade, he often chose to be in the coat room rather than with the other students. Our precious, beautiful, sweet boy.

During first grade, an exceptionally compassionate teacher repeatedly and gently told us that she was concerned.  Our boy did not want to engage in conversation with other kids, he spent recess walking around the perimeter of the playground - hood always on even in hot weather, hands in pockets - sending his message that isolation was what he wanted.  He was an easy target for bullying that year.   Even though I knew something wasn't right, it took that teacher and Checkered a long time to get me to acknowledge that we needed help.  And so began a long round of exhausting doctoring and treatment. 

Each doctor reached a different diagnosis and recommended different treatment, and still our child flinched if another child touched him, rarely showed emotion, and greatly concerned his parents. 

We repeatedly asked the Lord to send us to the right doctors.  We needed help.  And the Lord heard our prayers :)
After a lot more doctoring and a good year with an intuitive second-grade teacher, our boy is a new boy.
This eight-year-old has friends.  He has had three sleepovers.  He has played tag at recess this year.  He is getting better at communicating what he is feeling and we are better equipped at helping him understand why he feels that way at times. He doesn't prefer group social situations, but he is learning coping skills. This perfect boy. Our gift from God.

Do you want proof that our child is making progress?

This month, he ASKED to join a tackle football team.

We signed him up for a flag football class.

And although it was painfully difficult for him to walk into the gym and join the other boys there, Checkered was able to take his hand and help him.

Our boy ran the drills and did great!

When the class was over, the stress was apparent in his eyes which were filled with unshed tears, and he told us in his own vernacular that it was overwhelming BUT he has agreed to go back next Saturday!!!

Thank-you, Lord, for your continued graciousness toward our boy.


Busy Bee Suz said...

WOW!!! This is just so wonderful. I am so happy to hear/see that he is trying SO hard and doing well!!!!!
What a sweet boy you have, with your love and care, he will only blossom more! (and Kudos to awesome teachers too!!)


Anonymous said...

This really warms a mother's heart! Great news indeed.

Ann in the UP said...

He is a very brave boy to tackle things that make him so uncomfortable at first. And the help he's had from adults in his life must have given him tons of affirmation and encouragement!

Good for you all. Answered prayer indeed!

Ann in the UP

Ann in the UP said...
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Laura ~Peach~ said...

awesomeness hes got great parents... and no matter what issues he is a brave smart guy!

Karen Deborah said...

Life throws us some curve balls sometimes. We never have got a diagnosis for Kayla. That he's coming out and trying is fabulous just encourage him and help him feel safe. Is he autistic? I always told Kayla when she was upset that she was different but not less, and she could do what she wanted to do we would figure out a way. It's a lot of work.

Lawyer Mom said...

That's amazing. Truly amazing. Was it a God thing, or did he get counseling? I ask because a friend of mine is in a similar situation with her child. Hope I'm not being too intrusive.


Grandma Tillie's Bakery said...

He sounds so much like my niece's son and he was diagnosed with Aspergers.

And on your comment about cooking fish? I have learned that the secret is to cook it on low heat and don't turn it. People always want to mess with fish too much and they wreck it. Try the recipe I posted and let me know what you think, O.K. Although, halibut is probably costlier than gold where you are, right?

Betty W said...

I´m so happy for you Lisa! That is so great. I´m sure he will continue to grow and learn to cope with social gatherings.

Mental P Mama said...

...and he is so blessed to have you both as his parents. I have chills.

betty said...

that is awesome! thanking God he is starting to grow into his environment and be comfortable with exploring new things. He may never be a very social person, but adapting and working with the talents given to him by God, I think he will do just fine :)


joanne said...

simply beautiful. Beautiful boy, beautiful parents, beautiful are Blessed indeed!

claudia said...

This is a testament to what love can do!

unmitigated me said...

That's one handsome guy. You are going to be chasing the girls off in a couple years! Individual sports are awesome, too. My kids both loved martial arts, and my 19-year-old son is in the instructor program now! It's the same program that was a a huge help to the neighbor's boy, who was severely ADHD and diagnosed with Asperger's as well.

Big Hair Envy said...

Awesome parents, awesome teachers and an awesome God....that's a powerful trifecta:) I can't imagine the joy you must be feeling!