Finding a Place
I frequently use some phrases. Some are more colorful than others. One of the phrases lately comes from a song. The phrase is: my place in this world.
You see having a child with a disability changes your thinking. You understand with certainty that you and this child may not share the same goals. Things parents dream of for their children may not be possible. Sometimes these dreams just aren’t the same and really don’t become the child’s own desires.
Two years ago, some teachers asked me about a short term goal for Tiger. I said that I want to play catch with him. The ugly truth is he wasn’t interested in playing catch.
So now I look at things differently. I try to consider his desires more. What matters to me is helping him find his place in this world. I realize that I don’t control what that place will be. The big challenge is finding the desires of his heart.
If I can only figure out what he truly desires then I can help him achieve his own goals. Thoreau was so right; most men do lead lives of quiet desperation. Those who live deliberately seem to have clearly defined desires. They strive after the longing of their hearts. Those who do not strive for their wants still want. It is all about simplicity.
I want my children to do more than long for their goals. I want them to achieve their goals. This will never happen if I obsess on projecting my own agenda on their lives.
My children are far too independent to be molded. I can’t force them to be what I want them to be. Perhaps I should start leading them instead. Tiger’s autism only accentuates the truth. God makes children. Parents just raise them.
My deepest desire is that all of my children discover what they are chosen to be. They all have a place in this world. Maybe I can help them find their place. Or, maybe they can find it without any help.