Last month, I cried watching the clip of Bella, her dad recording and walking beside her, in the rain, as they crossed the field, alone, at Cal State Humboldt. Michael hummed Pomp and Circumstance. Bella's commencement was about as remote as they come. I felt pride and joy for Bella, and I felt a pang, this time for how bittersweet our celebrations are, when we cannot come together as we have before. Everything is happening swiftly, and we scramble to devise new ways of doing everything, making the best of it, appreciating all the goodness, though we are confronted with real disappointments, losses. I took the time to consider how to celebrate Max's commencement, Alex's birthday, and all of the traditions, and events on the horizon. I was reminded to celebrate, to make something of the occasions before us. Life is not predictable, and opportunities come and go, are earned, and can be taken away... don't waste the chance to enjoy special moments, to make moments special, I remind myself.
Max had been up, the night before to complete a final project, due at 2 am. He turned it in at 1:20 am, then the ceremony began at 8:30 am.
The speeches, the ceremony... they were genuinely good, poignant, timely, thoughtful. I want to watch them over again, see his picture, his name, and be stirred by the power of the messages shared. It will take more tissue, that's for sure.
The last four years have not been easy, nor simple, but they certainly went fast.
"So-called mild autism doesn't mean one experiences autism mildly; it means you experience their autism mildly. You may not know how hard they've had to work to get to the level they are." Adam Walton.