A Letter to My Son with Autism on Mother’s Day

By Tina Velazquez | May 10, 2019

This blog post originally appeared on Tina Velazquez's blog, Unique Different Cool.

When I became a mom I had such a clear vision of how our life would unfold. I would be your guide and you would learn all of your life skills from me. I would lead by example and teach you to say please and thank you and model good behavior.

But things don’t always go quite like we planned now do they son?

Little did I know that you would be the one teaching me.

Mother's Day

You’ve taught me how to love.

There isn’t anything that I wouldn’t do for you. I would bare every hurt you’ve ever felt and prevent any pain from entering your precious life, if I could.  But I know I can’t. So instead, I’ll be by your side to comfort you and pick you back up when life knocks you down.

You’ve taught me patience.

I used to get very antsy when having to wait for anything. But sudden changes in your schedule, without prior notice, can be very stressful for you.  I’ve learned that I can do simple things like giving you a visual reminder, a five minute warning or setting a timer to help you to be less anxious. I’ve learned how these few extra minutes on my part can help make your day better; and it’s so worth it!

You’ve taught me to listen, really listen.

I’m that person who only hears the lyrics to my favorite song, but you hear every intricate detail of every instrument. You’ve shown me that, in music, its actually better to be different.  The melody doesn’t always have to follow the beat. In fact you always say, and I agree, that they sound so much more beautiful when they slightly contrast each other.

You’ve taught me to think outside the box.

Autism can be challenging at times and sometimes we need a plan to help us through tough moments. You’ve taught me to think ahead and to anticipate stressful situations, and to prepare strategies ahead of time to help us through them.  

You’ve taught me to be brave.

I used to be a people pleaser. I never wanted to upset anyone or hurt their feelings and would always just go with the flow. When you came into my world you needed me to fight for you. I guess it’s an instinct we’re given as mothers, but when someone tries to close a door on our child, wedging our foot inside feels like the only option. I will fight for you until my last breath.

You’ve taught me that it’s not only ok, but that its good to be different.

When you were little I wished so deeply that you could be like the other kids on the playground, because I didn’t want you to ever feel left out. I knew that feeling and how it hurt.

So I tried to teach you how to throw and catch a ball, but you weren’t interested.  I signed you up for soccer, but ended up just chasing you in circles around the track. We went on playdates, and while the other kids played together, you ran from room to room to look at their ceiling fans.

Then one day you started playing the song that your father had played the night before on the piano. We found a teacher and learned that this instrument actually held your interest. Watching you play, I realized that you were never meant to be like anyone else.

I’m sorry that I spent so much time trying to help you fit in. I know now that you were never meant to. You are exactly who you’re supposed to be. You are perfect.

Thank you for making me a better person and being my best teacher. 

Autism Speaks does not provide medical or legal advice or services. Rather, Autism Speaks provides general information about autism as a service to the community. The information provided on our website is not a recommendation, referral or endorsement of any resource, therapeutic method, or service provider and does not replace the advice of medical, legal or educational professionals. Autism Speaks has not validated and is not responsible for any information, events, or services provided by third parties.

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