I like the way my friend describes The Boy: “Quirky.”
Not surprisingly, that’s how my family described me when I was growing up, too.
I discovered another aspect of our common quirkiness last night, when The Boy had his first baseball practice.
The Boy’s on the Challenger team with our local Little League. And once again I’m amazed by the people who are willing to pour their lives into my son and his team mates.
This particular team has a mixture of physical, developmental, and intellectual disabilities. Some kids are good at running, but not talking. Some have laser focus, others are easily distracted. Each one “presents” in his own unique way (last night, it was just boys at practice).
Watching these men and boys practice together, I flashed back to my own childhood experiences with baseball. Straight up, I am a lousy player. No eye-hand coordination. Scared of the ball. Couldn’t throw AT ALL.
Worst, for me, was being at bat. Seeing the outfielders come in close, because they knew I wouldn’t hit the ball far, if at all. And watching pitch after pitch come across the plate, either not swinging (“Good Eye!”) or swinging and missing (“Good Swing!”). I hated failing publicly and hated letting down my team.
At practice last night, most of the team, The Boy included, showed the same behavior I used to. But with one HUGE difference.
They didn’t care how many times they swung at the ball. None of them.
They cared about hitting the ball. And the coaches made whatever accommodations were necessary to let that happen. It was pretty cool.
P.S. Nick is getting to know lots of kids on the autism spectrum. In celebration of his friends, we’re including this awesome video by the Sesame Street and Autism Initiative (http://autism.sesamestreet.org).
Through the Roof
A Blog Supported by the Mosaic ministry of Third Church, ECO
"Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. 4 Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on." (Mark 2:3-4)
About: This is a blog about accessibility, intimacy, and community. About being welcome. It’s also about bringing up The Boy. He's 11 years old and has cerebral palsy. Also popping up are The TeenGirl, who just turned 13, and The Mom, who is awesome. It's written by The Dad. It's my words, my view. Other people will think differently and have different opinions. Good.