Sam is always asking for us to identify the superpowers he possesses because of his autism, because sadly, mostly he dwells on his challenges and not his strengths.
We’re visiting Grandma while we’re on our east coast tour, and we took a beautiful hike on Sunday. We’re walking along the beautiful stream, on a gorgeous December day with weather in the 70’s. As we walk, Sam and I end up walking alone together for a while. He quietly notices the foamy froth that gathers in different spots where the water runs slower or not at all.
I see the foam is what his eyes are trained on, and say “I hate that frothy stuff.” He replies “you do!?” almost incredulously. “Why?” I say “I think it looks gross, all frothy and dirty”. “I don’t”, he says, “I think it looks really neat”. “You do?” I ask, “why, what do you like about it?” “I like how it moves and swirls around, I think it looks really neat how it moves”. I stand there in awe, once again, that this child helps me find the beauty in something simple that I otherwise might never have noticed or appreciated.
I hug him and tell him “you know, I love the way you see things. Before now I would always think that foamy stuff was gross, but now everytime I see it, I’m going to think of you and how you see the beauty in things, and instead of gross, I’ll see it as beautiful, and think of you and it will make me happy.”