Two Sweet Surprises on a Beautiful Night

We do our best to keep Tristan engaged in life.  One activity we enjoy is taking him to “Arts in the Park,” a free weekly outdoor concert.  He loves music.  We love going somewhere.  So it is a win-win family activity.

artsinthepark

I know we kind of stick out when we are in public!  We are Caucasian parents with an Ethiopian child.  A child with a disability.  His mannerisms are like a two-year old in a twelve year old body.  Most of the time it does not bother me.  Most of the time people do not say anything.  Except this night… a sweet lady sitting behind us leaned over to talk to me. She said, “Excuse me.  I just want to talk to you for a minute, before it rains.” I replied, “Sure.” She said, “Does your boy have autism?” I answered, “Yes he does.” She continued, “I thought so because he was holding his ears.  Anyways treat him well, which I can see you are.  You know he is spiritually perfect.” I smiled and said, “Yes he is. Thank you.” I often do not approach other special need families in public.  I am always nervous I will say the wrong thing!  I am grateful that other people have the confidence and tack that do reach out.  No one gets tired of hearing encouragement. As we were enjoying the night, I looked around the audience and saw a young man, Gary, who lived across the street from us about ten years ago.  I have thought about him over the years. Where is he now?  How is he doing?  He was a special needs boy.  I only heard him say the word “Yes.”  He would run across the street and give us hugs!  After we moved away, I ran into his family around town.  His grandmother shared he had autism.  At that time I didn’t know anything about that subject!  I would not have guessed that was Gary’s disability.  Tristan was not part of our life, therefore I didn’t really know what that meant.  Looking back, I wish I could have supported this family. Looking across the audience, I wanted to say “hi” to Gary.  I thought to myself, “What if he doesn’t remember me?”  I also thought, “Tristan gets so excited when he sees people from his past.”  I wasn’t even sure who Gary was sitting with.  I decided to take a chance.  I walked over and spoke a few words.  He replied, “Yes,” to my questions and gave me a hug!  He seemed to remember me.  The conversation was fast.  I was happy to see Gary.

Yes two sweet surprises on a beautiful night!  Enjoy another priceless moment from our home.

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