Practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty. – Anne Herbert
That best portion of a good man's life; his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love. -William Wordsworth
Can I get squishy today?
No snide comments. No strained attempts at humor. No long winded stories.
Just gratitude for all of the kindness we come across every day.
As you might imagine, I read a lot about Autism: news stories, tweets, blog posts, etc. There are a lot of sources of some very bad news involving Autism.
You can sometimes get caught up reading the headlines and horror stories and lose hope. You hear about a child dis-invited to party because he has Autism. You hear about a child locked in a padded room at school. You hear of a child smacked by an adult aide on a school bus. You hear of a child left on a school bus alone by a careless bus driver. Things can seem pretty daunting.
Those problems are all very real and I admire and support the brave parents and advocates who bring those stories to the forefront. My family has greatly benefitted from the tireless effort of many who have gone before us and many who stand beside us.
But, if I were to pick one word to describe the number one thing I have experienced from people on this Autism journey, its kindness. From my family, from friends, from neighbors, from teachers, from aides, from medical professionals, from private service providers, and now, most recently, from random people around the world who have stopped by blog as a result of this A to Z challenge, I have experienced so much kindness.
Sure there is an occasional knucklehead with “cant-keep-my-eyes-to-myself-itis” staring strangely when our Autism train is derailed. But for every one numbskull there are countless numbers of people who are genuinely kind.
This is all not to mention, the kindness our Little Man experiences from his brothers, cousins, neighbors, and class mates. I posted one short story before about a beautiful experience our Little Man has had with one kind little boy in his “typical” first grade class. (Small Acts/Big Impacts). But, that was not an isolated act of kindness. My wife and I are constantly touched by stories of kind young children in his class going out of their way to play with him, to teach him, to help and to befriend him. In fact, just yesterday, a mom reported to us that her daughter insisted that our Little Man be at her birthday party – since she enjoys reading together with him in class so much. She even asked to talk to him on the phone to invite him personally. Heartwarming.
Newspapers filled with stories of kindness would not sell. But, kindness is all around us.
Kindness: Recognize it; be grateful for it; and pay it forward.