what if every day of my life I have to whisper, “Jesus, I trust you”?
last week, my sweet Camp turned 6 years old. on the fourth day of celebrating, it was finally here! HIS big day. after spending the night at a hotel overnight with his grandparents Friday night (a BIG DEAL!), waffle breakfast at our table Sunday morning followed by a family trip to Jumping World, now it was finally the day. Camp got to pick everything for Monday, January 29th- so at 10:30 am, Stephen, Rivers and I showed up at his public elementary school with McDonalds in hand.
We love to go eat lunch with Camp in the drafty cafeteria of his school (the oldest school in our town), and have come to know several of his classmates. While I wouldn’t really say Camp has “friends” yet at his new school, we are inching closer. You can imagine how my heart hurt to hear all the kids calling my boy “crazy”. “camp is crazy”, “camp bites us”, “camp does weird things”…….these words all said in front of Camp……after Stephen sweetly redirected, he finally had had enough. “would you call your mom or sister crazy?” no. “well then let’s not call Camp that, it’s not very nice thing to say”.
because I know so many of you have followed along with our journey all these years, through the adoption of Camp + Asher from Ethiopia in 2012 and our big transitional move to Bryan, I thought I would finally start to share more about our Camp. I’ve shared over the past 2.5 years on instastories some difficulties in our day to day life with Camp in hopes that it would help others in the struggle not feel so alone, as well as raise awareness. many of you have asked more about our Camp and for the past 2.5 years it’s been a very difficult question to answer simply because we did not know. everything really started to change when we moved from Midland to Bryan exactly 3 years ago. He had started acting out at his mothers day out before we moved, and the very first day of “school” in Bryan when I went to pick him up, someone was waiting for me; “are you Camp’s mom?”. It all started from there.
The Lord knew that this is where we were meant to be. Even between Bryan + College Station, BISD is where the majority of the autism support landed. Through numerous new friends from our church (that we moved here to be a part of!) were knowledgeable about this – either from the parent standpoint, or educator. God was so good to put the right people in our path to fight for us, and alongside of us as we navigated testings with Camp. When he was 3, he was given a “non categorical early childhood with suspicion of autism” diagnosis (among a few other things). I still remember those meetings, and that first trip to his new “PPCD” program with kids with autism. I literally started BAWLING in his future classroom, alongside of his soon to be teachers whom I had just met. bawling.
my happy, loving, curious, amazing little boy was all of a sudden in “special education”. how did we get here? he would be riding a special bus, and be in a class room with 5-6 kids, three teachers, and morning ABA therepy before school for autism. there are so many stories from these years that I’ll have to come back and tell. The Lord redeemed all my hurt and sadness, and it ended up being the SWEETEST time that I honestly long to have back. it wasn’t as scary as I had imagined that day crying in the middle of the classroom, it was actually the opposite. the sweetest foundation, incredible teachers, and a team of people we labeled “team camp” helping us every step of the way.
fast forward to now. there is obviously a lot that has happened in the past three years that I won’t go into now, but three weeks ago we got his official autism diagnosis. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the butterflies I had walking into that ARD meeting on January 11, 2018. I am actually shaking a little bit just thinking about it. There were at least 15 people that filled the room that day, all “team Camp”. As the diagnostician went through the results of all the testing, and concluded with “autism”, tears filled my eyes. I was holding my sweet Rivers on my chest, and I’m so thankful for the calm she helped me feel in a moment where I felt so out of control. When the woman asked me if I had any questions, all I could say was “I didn’t really hear a lot of what you said, my head is just spinning”. Thankfully there is a like 50 page report that I read while I got a pedicure (some cheap therapy right there) that afternoon.
honestly, I am still processing. it still feels weird to say it out loud. I guess i’ve felt the past 3 years that I wasn’t really a member of the “autism moms club”, and I couldn’t claim it because I didn’t really know. and now that I’m in club, I’m not sure I want to be here. It feels real now. It feels overwhelming. It feels like there is so much to do, to research, to learn. but just like any “club” I’ve found myself in that no one really wants to be members of (hello, infertility!) , I know that God is working all things for my good and His glory. I know that He has gone before us, and behind us, and will equip us for this path. I know that He handpicked Stephen and I to be Camp’s parents. and I know that I know that I know that NO MATTER WHAT, God will not leave me or forsake me. He is with me. He is for me. He is my strong defender, my hiding place.
so, even if I have to whisper “Jesus I trust you” every minute of every day of my life. It is worth it, becasue He is refining me and drawing me closer to Him in the process. Our character is formed in the struggle. In the heartache, in the difficult, in the moments when we truly realize our NEED for Jesus. this is one of those times. so I guess what I’m trying to say is at the end of the day, I am grateful to be a mom of a son with autism. I was chosen for this.
even if I whisper…..