It’s still amazing to me how goals change when your child has any special needs. As some people are teaching their toddler rote counting we were trying to teach Blu enough words that we couldn’t count them. At an age when most people begin teaching ABCs we were glad to see Blu FINALLY singing a song. Blu is almost 5 now, and he sometimes has a hard time counting to 10, but he can get dizzy now. My friends son, a boy I love like my own, has severe special needs, at 8 some kids are learning multiplication and reading chapter books, we’re glad to see him walking and he’s started to hug people!
Blu is big for his age. No, I mean REALLY big. He can wear size 7 clothes, even some size 8. People see him and expect so much more of him than he is capable of because they think he is older. They see him having a 4 year old tantrum in a public place, and eyeball him, he’s a brat, a bad child, or I’m a bad mother. They don’t realize that him having the words to have a fit is a blessing to me. They don’t realize that he was once so anxious in public he would not laugh if you tickled him, or cry if he hurt himself. Him feeling open enough to throw a fit in public is something I never knew if it would happen or not. I know kids his age, and older, who are non-verbal, and for their parents hearing their child throw a fit would be a blessing.
When you ask my child how old he is, and he answers you at all, even if he says “banana” is a blessing I never knew when to expect. When he steps 10 feet away from me to look at a toy I’m glad he’s confident enough to be that far away, so forgive me when I don’t chase him down.
One day you will ask him how old he is and he will say the right number, AND hold up the right number of fingers. One day he will write his name in the proper order. One day he will do any number of amazing things, that perhaps your child did at a much younger age. On that day I will dance inside, cheering, thinking of how far he has come. Maybe instead of judging, maybe you could cheer too.