Monday, June 25, 2012
This letter is for my beautiful daughter - a girl that continues to surprise me everyday to no end, a warrior sister for her 2 brothers, her smarts as she continues to ask me questions about her brothers having this weird thing called, "Autism" that she obviously would associate Autism meaning eating a blue cupcake, going on a long walk with family wearing the same t-shirts, and dropping her brothers off a the "ABC" (which is actually NPCC) to see Debbie and Sally - that my friends, is Maddie's definition of Autism and this letter unlike the one previous is for her.
I don't know what captivates me most about you, is it that you are a, "mini me" in every sense of the phrase? your brown beautiful curly hair, your smile that lights up a room, your dramatic personality that I can not wait to help you use to it's fullest potential in school, or is it something totally different? Is it actually in fact that love and compassion that a young girl not even 4 can possess?
I never wished this for you, can I be honest? I never wished for you to have this, "place" in our family, to be the only girl, the middle child, and the only, "typical" child in our little family of 5. I never wished you to wander why you are actually the one that is different, I never wished you to take on the responsibility of taking care of your brothers and being their greatest teacher - you will have so much on your plate in years to come, and I do fear in those years your will grow with resentment and I only hope that in that resentment there is also a sense of understanding and why dad and I have done what we have done, all in for the betterment of you and your brothers, and us a family.
I know how it doesn't make sense to you why I wear a lot of shirts that have Owen and Ben's name on them, and you can't understand why yours isn't there as well, and I am guessing my answer to that being, "they have Autism remember?" doesn't really help the fact that Maddie doesn't appear on the shirt, and you are the further est thing from an idiot as you can read what I am wearing. I wonder the same thing all the time, and it bothers me to no end how I want to keep you included so much yet I want you to have your own life, meaning your own activities, your own friends - your own personality without the shadow of Autism always creeping up on you. I tear up thinking about how you said to me, "Maddie want Autism too", and the look in your eye meant it with all your heart, and my heart dropped, because I can't explain it to you yet.
I cannot successfully explain that Autism isn't what someone wishes for to have, instead, people wish to be the people in someone with Autism's life, to be their best friend, to teach them, to love them, and how do I explain to you that Owen and Ben need you? I understand at almost 4 years old, Autism looks pretty sweet ass in our house, they get to always be on the go and attend appointments with really awesome therapists and be with mommy - but in time my love, you will see that all this time, gas, money, everything is hopefully going to help them have the opportunities and abilities that you my love already have. You my love, are wise beyond your years - you have seen mommy have a breakdown day, and you said to me, "mom, you need a hug? come here" and that hug made it all better, I swear it did. You get Owens milk in the morning, you ask him to go to the bathroom, you are the greatest thing our family could have been blessed with, and I know one day you will know that.
Maddie, please don't ever change. Please love so much and so hard. Always be there for your brothers, no matter what - unless they piss you off. Keep smiling, your smile lights every room. Embrace your personality, you remind me of me so much and I LOVED school, be involved in everything, you will not regret it. Keep making me and daddy laugh - your constant weird humour and goofy grin makes my day. Always keep caring - for those you care back and for those who don't.. you are the better for it. Your brothers will always need you - to what extent, I don't know and I can't say - and I don't want to pressure you into the feeling of, "having" to be there, I want you to want to be there.. whether it's for a hug, to be a defender, to be a supporter, to be a friend - love them, as they obviously love you.
Good night my love.