She had four children in 2 1/2 year. Girl, twin boys, girl. The best way I can describe her is "contagious". I believe that she has the energy of 2 people and is never afraid to tell it like it is. She is authentic. She is the first to admit her faults and is consistently trying to improve who she is. She has vision. She does real estate and she and her husband are launching an innovative business. She and her husband are very different, yet she compliments him by her words and actions. She works hard and plays hard and laughs really hard. She is generous and constantly blessing others in practical ways. She loves the Lord and her faith doesn't waiver when things get hard. She is a loyal friend. We've dieted together (several times), freezer cooked together and spent many an afternoon with our feet in the baby pool just letting everything go in the name of friendship:)
These past five years have not been easy for her. Of course, how could it be with so many little ones in tow? Her mother was diagnosed with lymphoma and went through serious cancer treatments. Jobs have been unstable at times. She has taken people into her home who need a place to stay for a while. They've made a commitment to a new church. All the while, she has been dealing with her two boys who have progressed slowly and unpredictably through the preschool years. This has meant that she has spent much of the last five years at home with them where she can deal one-on-one with behavioral issues and not deal with what the watching public may think or say.
This week, my friend and her husband received the test results that they have been waiting on for some time. Their boys fall within the autistic disorder spectrum. Not necessarily surprising news, but definitely not easy to hear either.
Did she cry? Yes. She loves them.
Did she feel sad.? Sure.
Did she pout? No.
Did she get mad? No.
Did she have a fit? No.
Did she shake her fist at God? No.
Do you know what she said? She said, "I'm glad that I know what I can do to help them now. "
Then she proceeded to do what her new pediatrician will be prescribing next week which is rid her pantry of all wheat, gluten and sugar products. All the while she was researching for recipes and baking a special cake that her boys could enjoy when they got home from school. They even installed a lock on the pantry door to cut down on any sugar raids. In usual fashion, she just stepped into the next phase of normal and is not looking back.
"Autism is what my boys have. It is not who they are," she says.
When others might only see what they "are not". She knows who they are and who God is. Her confidence is contagious.
There is no doubt in my mind that these children will grow to know that they are loved and wonderfully made by God. They will continue to have a childhood of discovering and learning. They will still have boundaries and consequences. They will have the best of every opportunity available. They will be hugged and cuddled and tickled and taught and challenged. They will grow.
People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Mark 10:13-14