Memories, Theodore

Autism Taught Me To Love

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Dear Theodore,

I know I haven’t written in a long while but I wanted to share something with you. The other night while serving a party the mother informed me that her little boy had autism and that is why he was acting the way he was. I smiled in spite of myself and told her “oh that’s fine! I had a brother with autism.” I didn’t say any more just went on with serving them. Although after that, I payed more attention to how he acted and also how his family and friends treated him.

It led me to think of how it was when you were here. How whenever we would go out dad or Dom would watch over you. How we would inform people of your condition so they would understand. How we refrained from social gatherings since you didn’t like them. And the numerous sacrifices we made for your happiness. Sometimes we would be annoyed or embarrassed with your behavior but mom and dad would remind us how you were “like a child” and couldn’t understand.

We too were unable to fully understand you or why we had to miss so much because of you. But if I pause and think about my life with you there is something very wonderful that you taught not only me, but everyone who knew you. And that was love. You taught me how to love everyone, no matter their condition or state in life.

And as I served my table I couldn’t help but think of the life lessons their little brother was teaching them. Or the graces they were receiving by their little sacrifices they make for his happiness. It pained my heart because I know I will never be given those opportunities again and I wish I had cherished them more. I wish that I could have those moments again. Those moments of learning to love and care for others. They were small and simple sacrifices, but the reward they gave and impact they had, to this day, I remember.

Love,

Genevieve 

P.s. “But the greatest of these is LOVE.” 1 Corinthians 13:13

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