I threatened to shatter the screens of both tablets the kids were on. It’s not the first time. It was time to get ready for school and the kid had woken up early (like, before 5:00AM) and came into my room. I told him to go back to bed. He started to yell. I told him to do what he wanted. I knew what he wanted to do.
Hours later, the girl is up, watching Mr. Rogers on her tablet. The kid is still fighting zombies with various vegetation. I need coffee. I need a shower. I need them to GET OFF THOSE THINGS AND DO SOMETHING FOR THEMSELES. But that will cause a ruckus. The girl will do it. The boy doesn’t care what I say. He’s oblivious. Before you judge (just in case you do not know), my boy has Aspergers aka ASD-mild aka high-functioning Autism. He also is ADHD (Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and ODD (Oppositional Defiance Disorder). Lately we are in the trenches of new symptoms like obsessiveness (think Monk) and increased aggression. It’s a wilderness I am clawing through with all I can, sometimes giving up to rest my (mostly mental) injuries, but grabbing my sword and shield to fight another day/hour/minute. So you get it…or maybe not….but it’s rough.
The image in my head of a morning where we wake up, get dressed, sit together for breakfast as I sip my beloved coffee was shattered long ago. Most images in my head about how things are, “supposed to be,” have been broken for awhile. That’s my normal.
This morning I had enough. I told the kid to GET OFF THAT THING and go downstairs and GET HIMSELF a bowl of cereal. He said he would (YAY for small victories!…or so I thought). I hear him pound loudly down the stairs, jumping around, making noise, slamming the cupboard and I hear a loud shatter. I, still in my pajamas, come flying down the stairs to see pieces of glass all over the floor and counter. My kid says, “whoopsies.” WHOOPSIES.
Shattered. That’s how I feel most days.
BUT. But I am grateful that I have my faith. And today, God showed me a blessing that came from Aspergers.
Our dryer recently broke so my husband and I went begrudgingly to Best Buy to spend the money we did not have on a new one. With the financing plan, we decided to replace both the washer and the dryer, buy the cheapest models, do the financing, and hope it was the right move. My husband said he would just have Best Buy haul away both of the old appliances. I asked him to keep the washer. It’s near Christmas and I thought we might be able to get a little for it on the yard sale site. So, last night when I was up late eating my chips (see previous blog post), I listed it. No pics, just info and a $60 price.
This morning a woman commented that she might be interested and wanted more info. I recognized her name. I don’t know her personally, but through the world of social media and an online Autism support group I knew who she was and some of her story. I sent her a private message about who I was and that I knew some of her struggles. I told her the washer was hers and to please not pay me for it. She wrote back that she was in tears. As a single mom with a child very much like mine, she was struggling a lot. She too is shattered most of the time.
As I told this story to my son this morning on the way to school, I explained to him that if it were not for his Aspergers, I would not have known anything about this woman. She would have been a woman on a yard sale page asking about my old washing machine. If she happened to ask me to lower the price, I may have been perterbed. I would not have seen God working, putting some shards back together a bit for today. I told my son that we were able to bless her because of his Aspergers. Does it mean that I am happy he has Aspergers? Uh, NO. Does it mean that I fully believe that God places us in situations to use who we are and how we live to bless those around us? YES.