(If I had been thinking I would have taken a picture, but listen to this …)
Nicolas visited the dentist yesterday. As it turns out he has two cavities, even though we encourage good oral hygiene. Nicolas, like most little boys, doesn’t really enjoy the process of being healthy. You remember crying when mom said to you, “Make sure you brush your teeth before you go to bed!” We all were the same, we didn’t want to be bothered either.
With the news of the two cavities, the doctor suggested we do sealants to protect two other teeth. I know that was the best thing to do, but it also meant that he would have to sit still and be quiet and keep his mouth open AND let these people put strange, nasty gel in his mouth. My initial reaction was no way. There is no way MY son is going to let them do that. I mean, ya’ll do remember he is autistic. Certain things trigger a behavioral reaction and I’m sure this will.
However, it was as if something inside me said, “he really needs this, just talk to him.”
I responded, “I don’t even know how to explain this to him. How do I tell him, in a way he understands, that he can’t swallow, or that they are going to put something in his mouth to keep it from closing?”
That something said, “Just talk to him.”
So I did. I talked to him. And wouldn’t you know it?! That kid took both sealants like a champ. And you know what he said when he got up? Absolutely nothing! It was just another thing he had to do.
The lesson learned? Two things actually!
1. People believe that disorders like autism, limit; I’m learning that we limit ourselves. I had made the decision for him, because I thought he couldn’t handle it. I thought, like most people, that the challenge was too great, and I gave up before I started. The strength and courage inside of Nicolas, proved me wrong. There is absolutely no limit to what he can achieve.
2. Our words seem meaningless, and they are as long as we keep them in our minds. I thought that my word weren’t good enough to explain his situation. Little did I know that it was just what he needed to hear. We must learn that our words carry the power to build up and tear down. What does your child hear?
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