You Are A Blessing

You Are A Blessing

You know what? You--you, reading these words? You are a blessing. 

You are. Just as you are, you bless people.

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"You are a blessing to your family, your friends, and your teachers. You are going to have a great day!"

This is what I say to Stevie every morning before school.  Sometimes, if his mood is just right, he will finish the blessing for me, and in those times I feel like I have arrived. 

Arrived at having taught him something wonderful.

Because it is true.  

On Saturday I took Stevie to the Windham Hannaford.  He loves the grocery chain, and his latest fun thing to do is to go visit the different local stores.  Over the summer he has frequented the Hannafords in Standish, Gorham, Westbrook, South Portland and now to add to his collection, Windham!

Stevie's excitement was overwhelming him--you know that level of excitement when you tense all up and could just jump through the roof?  He was all the way there.

Because we were at the Windham Hannaford.

He mounts the cart, holding onto the handle and leans back on me as I push him through the isle for the ride of his life.  At least, that is how he experiences it.  

His eyes are wide and grinning along with his big smile.

And everyone smiles back.

He's blessing them with how God made him. He didn't "do" anything to bless people intentionally, it is simply who he is that blesses.  

God, on the other hand, did do it intentionally. 

He carefully crafted Stevie, all of who he is, intentionally. He has a purpose for him, and He designed Stevie with autism included, so that His incredible plan for his life will be fulfilled. 

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When God made you--you, reading these words?

He made you intentionally, too. 

He carefully carved out who you are, and placed all of it--even those parts that maybe you don't like, or that society says are not good enough--He placed it in you.

And made you His work of art. 

His masterpiece.

So that you can fulfill the unfathomable plans God has for you.

Just who you are blesses people!

You don't have to do a thing, because God already has.

 

A Surprising Day

A Surprising Day

 

OPEN HOUSE AT THE MIDDLE SCHOOL

 

This week marks the first day of middle school for my twins, and the first day of 4th grade for my 9 year old (Stevie) who, by the way, wants to go to the Gorham High School instead.

It has been a crazy busy week, getting ready for everything to begin.

The twins had their Open House first (on Tuesday), and we all went.  All, as in the entire family, including Stevie.  He likes going to the Middle School because they have an elevator that he enjoys visiting every chance he gets.

It was a risk to bring him, because this night was destined to be a sensory overload situation for him, considering the hundreds of excited Muppet-like 11 year-olds who would be visiting with their siblings and anxious parents in tow.   

It was a zoo.  And it was fun. We got to see the kids friends and their parents and catch up.  The problems began as we were catching up and Stevie wanted to be catching the next elevator up!  We must have chatted a wee bit too long because as we were getting ready to take that last elevator ride before going to the car to come home, Stevie dropped to the floor.

We all just watch in anticipation of the worst, as he rolled back, feet swinging up over his head. I am relieved to report though, that he did not let loose one of his incredible high-pitched ear shattering screams, and I am relieved to report that he did get up and walk to the car on his own two feet with out further disruption.

But...

When we got to the car, he completely melted.  We only live 10 minutes from the Middle School, but it sure felt like an hour.  Half way home, I had to pull over because Stevie got out of his seatbelt and was standing, leaning over my head, badgering for things that he really didn't want (that yes-no loop that leads to the pit of all pit-dwelling behaviors). And little Joy was sitting beside him!

So Daddy retrieved Joy (against her will), and had her ride safely with him and I put the pedal to the metal hoping no police men were nearby to give me a ticket for that darned headlight that had burned out.

Stevie started his usual routine of writhing on the floor of the car and screaming as if in pain, but this time, it was more like he was striving to reach the "perfect" note for his scream, like he was acting out his previous meltdowns more than truly creating a new heartfelt one. I even heard him correct himself when he didn't get it "just right".

So anyway, we all arrived home safely and Stevie was calm when we got home and life went on as it usually would.

 

OPEN HOUSE FOR STEVIE

 

And then Wednesday happened.  Wednesday was Stevie's Open House where he would get to meet his new teachers.  He is being placed with the teacher Sage had for 4th grade, and she is just a wonderful person. It was in her class, that Sage truly learned to enjoy reading--at least, reading Diary Of A Wimpy Kid, but that is something!  She was wonderful for Sage and her temperament is great for Stevie--if, he will attend the class.

He does not like sitting in a classroom full of kids. It overwhelms him so he usually chooses to stay in his Special Ed classroom.  I do hope that as he gets older, and the other kids in his class get older, that the classrooms will be much calmer and he'll be better able to handle his peers. I'm not sure when his ability and the other kids maturity will intersect and lead to 'all things wonderful' at school, but I do hope it happens soon!

Stevie's Special Ed. Teacher this year, is a newly hired teacher. We are very excited about this but Stevie was expecting to be assigned to Mrs. L, who was the grade 3-5 teacher the last few years.  It turns out that Mrs. L. took on a Kindergarten classroom this year and is not an option for him!  Because of this, we were really hoping Stevie would meet his New Teacher and that he'd "click" with her and be excited for school to start. High hopes, I know...

So we get ready to go to Open House and after Stevie gets dressed for the occasion, he informs us that he would not like to come. And then he ran to his room to disrobe and request the door be shut and locked, thus securing his position in the matter. {sigh}

Daddy and Joy ended up meeting the teachers while Stevie stayed here happily.

 

THE FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL

 

This incident coupled with the Middle School incident did not leave me feeling warm and fuzzy about his first day of school on Thursday.

Not at all.

I was sure it was doomed and he'd be taken kicking & screaming (literally) to the school where he'd end up in seclusion for the majority of the day.

But that didn't happen.

It was quite the surprising day, it turns out.   He woke up saying, "No school" with a giggle (a good sign).  He then got dressed and lumped on the brown chair and waited for the bus.

When the bus arrived, he got up and went to school. Just like that!

So odd!

I was sure that we'd be getting "the call" about the impending seclusion, but it never came. The only call we got was from the nurse who wanted me to talk to Stevie and tell him he needs to take his medicine--which, by the way, was one of the highlights of my day! He has such a wonderful voice on the phone, and his attention to the conversation is much greater than face-to-face!

Stevie arrived home from school happy, but edgy. The edginess left quickly and he had a fantastic rest of the day!

Who knew? It was a Surprising Day indeed.

 

THE WORRY MONSTER

 

Which is why it is so useless to worry.  

99% of the time, what we worry about never happens.

I think I worry unnecessarily a whole lot more than 1% of my day!   I have found though, that at least for me, the secret to stopping the Worry Monster before he stomps all over my day, is Treasure Counting:  Searching for things to be thankful for, and focusing on those things.

Works every time.

Philippians 4:6-7 "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." 

 

A QUESTION FOR YOU

 

What have you found to work to help you stop worrying?