10 Ways Loving a Child with Autism has Made our Family Stronger

Oh my stars! It helped this mama to talk to another God-centered mama about my dearest heart - loving all of my children. Recently, I had the sweet joy of chatting up a storm with the God-Centered Mom podcaster, Heather MacFadyen. She asked so many good and hard questions for her listeners. She is a skilled interviewer. Parenting in general is hard. It sands us down raw and tender, before burnishing us to a shine. Loving a child on the autism spectrum in particular is the grittiest thing I have ever done, and the most soul-shaping. If you have a Continue Reading

C is for Collaborate (what to do with your broken heart?)

"I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world. Mary Oliver When I first met Mike, sparks lit the wide Texas sky. It was on a sunny 40-acre campus dotted with classical fountains, Live Oak trees and June bugs. I felt the arc, body and soul. On the surface, he was adorable with his broad shoulders and brown curls, but underneath was his heart for kids at the Muscular Dystrophy camp where he spent his summers and now his dorm floor, Continue Reading

B is for Bridges (an alphabet of autism and grace)

The healing isn't any more sudden than the breaking was. My spiritual life is like walking across a canyon on a swinging bridge. To turn back is impossible. The bridge disappears. Esther Emery I have always loved a good bridge. Bridges are fascinating feats of engineering and beauty, practical and picturesque, and a vivid picture of what we need while loving a child with autism, or any child for that matter. And the living God. We are always searching for ways to connect our hearts to our children, to each other and to God our Maker. When I was in Continue Reading

A is for Awe (an alphabet of autism and grace)

"There is for us a wonderment about another way in the world." Walter Brueggemann I guess what I wanted was a smooth life. I worked hard to arrange it. It wasn't hard work I hoped to avoid. It was chaos. It was struggle, heartbreaking, can't-fix-it struggle. I can see now that is not how life works, but for a while I labored under the idea that my hard work = the life I always wanted which included a happy, healthy, well-adjusted family. It actually worked for a while, or seemed to anyway. Mike and I were exhausted throughout his Continue Reading

A Rainbow in the Sky (an alphabet of autism and grace)

The more fear we feel about a specific enterprise, the more certain we can be that that enterprise is important to us and to the growth of our soul." Steven Pressfield It has been twenty years since I first heard the word I was afraid of, the one I never wanted to hear. For just as long, I have resisted writing about it. I haven't wanted to return here, to my shipwrecked place. It was here that certainty, strength and underlying self-reliance were broken to bits. I'm afraid if I venture out to that sea again, I will get Continue Reading