A Lasting Impact

I am looking at you, my son, after introducing you to the bomb squad guy at a historic bombsite.

He was our supervisor during our traffic works.

I see you talking with the guy, posing as a tough boy, hands in your pockets, asking things about the history and World War 2.

I dwindle back to years ago, when you were three years old and my Aunt called to tell me you appeared to be deaf unless she yelled “fries”.

I see you looking at fragments of bombs with not a stim in sight, even though they are your expressions of happy.

I stand there wondering if you are holding it all in. Will we get the explosion afterwards?

I remember when you were six years old and your teacher told me you were “unteachable”.

I hear you in a high pitched voice ask, “what is the biggest bomb you ever found and was it from World War 1 or 2?”

I dwell back to when you were four years old and we wondered if you were ever gonna talk.

I spot a tiny flap and I wonder if you are happy now because your face rarely tells us.  We are so used to the stims that indicate what your state of mind is. 

It takes me back to when you were six years old…so silent, so immovable because you mourned the way they kicked you out of school.

I see the smile on the face of the bomb squad guy who loves to tell stories. Your eyes seem to glisten, the same way they light up when you see your bird.

And I remember how that bird changed it all.

I notice you looking up to that guy and I remember the day my dad, your Grandpa came to terms with the first of many diagnoses and your stimming, because he wanted to play chess with you. He let you win and you knew he did.

As we get back in the car, the word flood starts…how he promised to give you diffused bombs and bullets out of the war…and I refuse to burst your bubble like I always did. 

I want you to see the good in people and I want you to believe everything is possible.

He delivered.

You made a lasting impact on the gentleman who knew you were different.

And for the first time ever, your autism wasn’t mentioned. Instead he said…

“That boy of yours Madam, I would wish he was mine. He has a rare gift and the biggest of hearts. I promised him I would bring him these. Here you are. Some of them are from my first bomb site and I kept them as a keepsake, but he deserves ’em more. Please bring him again if you ever have the time.”

You know my little boy, I am the luckiest mom in the world because you took my hand and led me to your world.

You open minds and can steal the hearts of the people you meet.

I love you my sweet child.

To the moon, hell, stars, and back.

Never change.

Written by, Lien Depoorter

Lien Depoorter lives in Belgium with her family; her husband Stéphane, their daughter Jitse, thirteen who was recently with Autism and ADD and their son, Leander , twelve, who was diagnosed with Autism at age six. Lien helps coach a special needs soccer team and advocates for her family and others. Lien is plain, boring and hates compliments. She finds the humor and joy in the strangest places even while working a full time job as project engineer in construction. She is straight forward and lacks a filter and her life changed by promising her son a Bird for cleaning his room even though she already had half a zoo. Since getting the bird, Kiki has become Leander’s service animal and has literally been life altering. Lien started documenting the positive changes and the Facebook page, A Bird named Kiki was born.

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Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook, subscribe for exclusive videos, and subscribe to our newsletter.

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Finding Cooper's Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you're never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village....all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to my page!

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