Oh so quiet around the house today, our 2nd day of the boys attending Camp Fatima’s Exceptional Camper Week. What a gift – a full week for the boys to attend camp like every other kid, with one-on-one assistance – while Mom and Dad luxuriate in time away. Well, for us, we luxuriate by working like banshees at the crack of dawn, but I must say that not having to wake at 6:45 am to shower and shave two grown men and in W’s case, to make sure he didn’t throw away his underwear, is restorative.
Friends have asked if I’m worrying. Yes, and no. I’m framing a list for a future blog of all the things I miss in caring for my special autistic 18-year olds. I do wake thinking about them, wondering if theyr’e having fun, hoping the loud music at the dining hall isn’t too much for J’s sensitive ears, and hoping W’s “going commando” instincts isn’t wearing on his aide.
I’m also overwhelmed by the two 30-something young men who are our boys aides, and who left their wives and in one case, their young daughter for a full week just so that I and my husband could take a break from the daily rigors of caring for someone with autism. What better demonstration of love and charity toward a stranger, and that stranger’s (even stranger) kids. I hope W and J are giving them a few moments of joy, like they give me. Maybe in time I, too, can find a similar way to give back to the world, as these young men have done for me.