Autism and Brotherhood

I will never forget the day I found out I was pregnant with my second child.
It was a surprise as they say. Our first born son Cooper had just turned one and terms like ‘speech delay’ and ‘development delay’ were already being discussed.
When Sawyer was born 9 months later I was scared to say the least.
A diagnosis of autism was being discussed. But it was more than that.
I felt like a failure as a mom to my first born. How would I be able to give him everything he needed and be a mother to a newborn.
The years that followed were a blur as life typically is.
Ups and downs. Highs and lows. Two more babies. Multiple moves and job changes.
Through it all…these two brothers. And my prayers that their relationship would blossom.
It took a long time. I won’t deny that.
For years they were like two ships in passing.
Tonight, Cooper came to his younger brother’s football game. He’s never came before.
But for years we have been practicing all the skills to get here.
Walking, sitting, waiting, watching, engaging, enjoying, tolerating, being.
He stayed for 20 minutes. I know because we had a timer set.
He loved the clapping and high fived me every time the fans cheered.
Sawyer was busy playing obviously. But when the timer went off, and Cooper stood to leave, Sawyer ran over…like I knew he would.
He didn’t have too. Zero obligation.
But he likes to thank his brother when he comes to his games. He’s always done so.
He wrapped him in a huge hug. The two of them almost the same height.
Cooper inspected his blue uniform and peeked his eyes inside Sawyer’s helmet opening. And giggled before hugging him back.
‘Thank you for coming Cooper! Wish you could have seen me score.’
It’s so beautiful to see.
Two brothers. And a loyalty, devotion, respect, and love that I never dreamed possible.
Cooper signed ‘thank you’ to him before he left. And Sawyer hugged him again.
Finding Cooper’s Voice is a safe, humorous, caring and honest place where you can celebrate the unique challenges of parenting a special needs child. Because you’re never alone in the struggles you face. And once you find your people, your allies, your village….all the challenges and struggles will seem just a little bit easier. Welcome to our journey. You can also follow us on Facebook.

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