One day you'll be reading this as grown men, and I felt I should let you in on the reality of how a day in the life of your mother feels.
Today, in this time of your life, you think I play games and watch T.V. all day. As much as I'd like this to be true, a lady of leisure I'm not.
I just had a very trying few days lately as your mother and felt it might help your future selves and your children to understand me better if I write it all down now.
Jackson, I really worry about your adjusting to high school. You still seem so immature to me, yet your deep voice & leg hair suggest different. I know, you don't want to talk about that.
You tell me you want to live with me forever & won't even contemplate spending the night with someone else, but you talk to me with such rudeness sometimes. I realize no matter how much autism there is in your make up, there is just as much "normal teenager" in there as well.
I worry about kids offering you drugs or making fun of you and you not knowing it. I worry about you not feeling the need for friends, but you tell me that you like doing what you want by yourself. I'm happy you & Noah are talking computer games & starting to want to "hang out". Who knew it'd be 14 years before you wanted a play date? I love how when you hug me or give me a kiss, you have to bend down to do it. My big boy. Your daddy always asks me don't I want you all to become men one day. I always look at him like he's grown three heads--Umm NO I DON'T! Men have their own lives that moms aren't privy to most of the time. Who will help you? Who will see the situation UN-literally & guide you through it? Who else will call me Julie like you do?
It's one thing to leave my own life up to God. To realize my part in His plan and allow my control over my life to be usurped. But I carried YOU in my body. I prayed and talked to you before you ever left my body. You were all I had when Daddy & I started out. Just you and me alone all day waiting for him to come home. I've been there when no one else was. I talked you out of meltdowns, snapped at people who stared too long, and I explained your behavior to others in a way to help them understand you better. I helped set your course in the way I felt God might want it to be. But to have you grow up, means I have to give up steering your course and turn it over to God. That is much, much more difficult for me than giving my own life over to Him. To pray from afar? I have to let you go little by little and it's hard for a mommy. I guess that's better than ripping the band-aid off all at once though.
That band-aid brings me to you Carson. You are my baby that I brought home & I wanted ten more right then. You are so perfect in my eyes. Your laughing spirit makes me so happy your middle name is Isaac. This week I've been working on school things here for when you come home from camp. And it's not been easy son. I'm finding answers I didn't want, nothing is as easy as I hoped it would be if I was organized and I just want to hurry up and have you here. All my chickies in the nest. Daddy is there at camp with you right now. He said you saw him and were all smiles.
I know you realize you're coming home this weekend. I'm not even stressed like usual. I'm just waiting patiently for you to get here. I need you to be where I can keep you from scraping your knees up constantly. I need to be the one who puts medicine on your owies and who knows what your cry means you need. I hope you learned things while you were at camp. I pray when you get back things are better for you & for us as a family.
We love you so much CarCar.
So many things will change here Carson, but I'm ready. I'm ready for God to give me the reigns back. I've learned how to get to the peace that passes understanding. You being gone for a year, you being hurt either by someone else or their stupidity, it was a direct message from God that I have no control over this. He has this. Your mommy is a realist, and she hardly does anything without putting an efficient twist on it. If I had no control, than 99% of the time I knew this was ALL God's plan. That even if you were hurt when I had left you somewhere, God had plans for that event. Godly things would come of it. And I would never, ever in my mommy mind know what that could be, so I left the big stuff up to Him and concentrated on what He asked of me. To love Him with all my heart, mind, soul and spirit.
Carson, people have asked me and my friends all year, "How is Julie this calm?"
I was never happy you were away. But over the years I've learned to be happy wherever I am. It's all relative. On the side of a highway, you find the bad that didn't happen. When your child was hurt, you find relief in that someone found it and reported it.
I don't have all the answers Carson, and you and I will butt heads when you come home, I'm sure of it. There will be hard days, I'm sure. Days we both cry. You, Daddy & I have many, many years together still. But that's my job. God asked me to be in charge of helping you be the best you that you can be. So I want you to know, that I'm on it. I will NOT fail you. And when I can't be there, God has you. I'm so excited that while things won't be much different with you home than before, that God says it's time. So that tells me, there are plans to prosper you my baby.
Grayson Matthew--boy were you a surprise. And you continue to be one. Who knew that God had been holding you back waiting all those years to give you to our family when you were needed the most?
Papa died suddenly the month before you were born. You were such a gift from God. Nana cried a lot when she held you at first. She was so sad that Papa would never know you. But I told her that Papa met you before any of us did. You are such a ball of happy energy that never stops wondering and trying to please us all. Your spirit was sent from God to our family.
You're in your first week of first grade when I'm writing this letter. New school, new teacher and getting ready to share your bedroom with Carson.
You two have always been buddies. Since you were born Carson has stuck pretty close to you. He was always & still is, so very easy with you. Your prayers for him every night to keep him safe are like music to my soul. Your brothers are both lucky to have you. One day they'll need you ,but I know right now they give you a hard time. Just know that they love you and how different you are from them and how you are always so loving with them.
I see all that you will have to know for school and your Daddy & I see how different of a world this will be for us. Right now I worry that you don't know anyone at your new school & at church you only have one or two friends. You love people so much that I hate to see you left out or struggling for friends to include you. I love the little man you are right now. You started out so shy and wouldn't talk and now you're volunteering to lead prayers in your Bible class! You're so smart Gray, and your mind sees things as being so easy. You're eager to learn and we know you'll one day want to play sports. We've never been in that parenting world yet of soccer moms & dads but we know you will open new doors to our family with your smile and personality that people love.
One day I would bet we have a house full of your friends & while I'm feeding them huge amounts of food, you'll be including your brothers in the fun. Your heart is so tender & so big and full of love. You light up the room son, and one day I know all my worries will be for nothing and you'll be king of all the playgrounds! It's hard to imagine that as you start first grade, Jack is starting his freshman year in high school. Or that Jackson will be 18 yrs old in 4 years. That Carson is taller than me and weighs what my drivers license says I do.
The last few days were tough, but the twinkle in your eyes, all of your big, brown, mommy eyes, give me the strength to get back up and do the whole mommy thing again tomorrow. Even when I have a headache, or you're sassy, annoying or loud, I still always want to be your mommy. So remember that forever when you're reading this my three sons.