I Pray for You

cooper 3

My sweet boy,

In the beginning, back when I found out I was pregnant with you, I prayed for you to be healthy.

When you were born, I prayed for you to breathe. To nurse. To sleep.

As you grew from a nugget to a meatball, I prayed for you to roll over, sit up, crawl, and walk.

Then I prayed for you to speak. To play. To see other people. To let me touch you. To embrace the world.

I prayed for you to be like the other kids your age.

I prayed for you to be okay. To be fine. To catch up.

When you were diagnosed with autism, I prayed that I would be strong enough. That I would have the answers and the strength needed to fight for you.

I prayed that you would catch up.

In those confusing years after, I prayed for a lot of things. For you to talk. Sleep. For people to accept you. For you to be able to go to school. For your body to find peace.

You are 11 now. I like to say we’ve both settled into autism. In our own space and time.

You love riding horses. Doughnuts with sprinkles. Going to your grandparent’s house. Leggings. Swimming. School. Riding the bus. When your younger brother is naughty. Holding mom’s hand. When dad wrestles with you. When Sawyer swims with you.

You are the happiest person I know.

I still pray for you son.

Different things now.

I pray for your happiness. For your joy. For the world to see your gifts. For your safety. For kindness and grace.

I pray for your peace. For communication. For things that bring you joy.

That you will get invited to a birthday party. And make a friend.

For your siblings to see your gifts and advocate for you and others.

I pray for your teachers. For their patience and determination.

I pray for the people you encounter in the world.

I pray that as you get bigger, and mom and dad age, that we can keep up with you.

I pray for the answers of what to do about your future. And that those who make decisions, our elected officials, know that you matter.

I pray for strength.

I pray for you. And that you can continue being exactly who you are supposed to be. Never waivering. Never feeling like you need to change or conform.

And always knowing your worth and value.

I pray for you my sweet boy.

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. Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and join our supporter page, Coop’s Troops, for an amazing community full of support and understanding.



Kate Swenson

Kate Swenson lives in Minnesota with her husband Jamie, and four children, Cooper, Sawyer, Harbor and Wynnie. Kate launched Finding Cooper's Voice from her couch while her now 11-year-old son Cooper was being diagnosed with autism. Back then it was a place to write. Today it is a living, thriving community of people who want to not only advocate for autism, but also make the world a better place for individuals with disabilities and their families. Her first book, Forever Boy, will be released, April 5, 2022.

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