Don’t be sorry.
When I tell you my son is autistic, please don’t say “I’m sorry.”
“I’m sorry” feels like there’s something wrong with him.
Something that makes him less than.
Something that I too, should be sorry for.
But I’m not.
I’m not sorry he has autism.
I’m not sorry he stims and flaps his hands and makes loud noises.
I’m not sorry he jumps up and down when everyone else in the room is quiet and calm.
I’m not sorry that he prefers to line up toys or play by himself sometimes.
I’m not sorry we have to decline party invites or leave early when he’s overstimulated.
Do I wish things weren’t so hard for him?
No parent likes to see their child struggle.
But what I’ve learned over the years is to and focus on the things he CAN do and everything he has overcome.
We embrace the differences and celebrate all the things that make him unique.
Things that make him happy.
Things that prove his resilience and strength.
Our son is not defined by his diagnosis but it is a very large part of who he is.
His quirky little facial expressions.
His ability to see the beauty in the simplest of things.
His amazing personality and a smile that lights up an entire room.
His way of seeing the world differently and teaching us to enjoy the little things in life.
His way of saying I love you without speaking a single word.
There is so much joy when we stop listening to the expectations of who our children should be or how they should act.
Children of ALL abilities, regardless of a diagnosis, are worthy of our love and acceptance.
They don’t need people to feel sorry for them.
Or for their parents.
And it’s time we start changing that.
But please, don’t be sorry.