July 12, 2009

The Test

I took Luke to the doctor for his 18 month checkup on Friday. Before we saw the doctor, the lady behind the desk handed me official papers to fill out on Luke's development that I would then discuss with the doctor. As I started in on them, I realized by question #2 that they were screening for autism. 

Just simple questions like "does your kid point?" and "is your child interested in other kids?" makes my heart heavy, not necessarily in a burdened way, but just heavy. Heavy because I wish I had had these questions when Will went in for his 18 month checkup. Heavy because I wish I had known, I should have known long before he was 3. Heavy with relief that my other two boys show no signs of autism. Heavy just at the sight of the word "autism" because it is not just a word but something that has affected us and changed us. But most of all heavy with thankfulness and gratitude, almost as if the word "autism" is becoming foreign, as if we have moved on, or its connotation has changed from "disability" to "gift".