Saturday, March 5, 2011

My Little Butterfly

"I have to be a butterfly...I have to be a butterfly...I have to be a butterfly"....And thus we began the day once again with Addie the butterfly.  It's the complete monarch butterfly costume...with wings of course.  Wiether it's the grocery store, school, or grandma's house...we've been many places as a "butterfly".  We may get some funny looks...but I think she looks beautiful.  

I'm not sure what it is about butterflys...but Addie absolutely loves them.  She comes alive when she talks about them....sees them...or draws them.  She is 3 years old and knows the complete life cycle of the caterpillar to chrysalis to butterfly.  She knows how long the wings are wet when it comes out of it's cocoon (or chrysalis...as she would correct me)...she knows the difference between a butterfly and a moth.  It's her obsession...but it's my metaphor for our journey.  

Like many Americans...we began 2010 with "healthy" children (so we thought)...great jobs...and a wonderful home.  We ended 2010 with two special needs children...lost jobs...no home...and huge medical debt.  The past two years have been a journey...down into a deep pit and crawling back out again.

I have always known that Addie was different.  At first I was in denial that it was anything other than "being shy"...or just unusually sensitive.  Over the past year we have gone to countless evaluations and therapists.  Over and over we have been given the diagnosis of autism.  At first it was completely heart wrenching to hear those words....that evil "A" word.  I thought...surely this is the greatest fear of every parent.  Then I moved on to self pity...I already have a son with special needs and now this.  Why me Lord? Why me?  Then I became obsessed with finding a "cure".  I thought if she could just "take a pill" and get better...we changed our diets...tryed expensive vitamins.  I began to take my focus off Addie and onto the "diagnosis". I began to feel more like a therapist... than a mommy.  It became an overwhelming and lonely process.  

I realized I had forgotten to enjoy the journey...in fact...at times I truly hated it.  But the Lord has opened my eyes and my heart.  Addie is PERFECT in every way.  She just needs people to believe in her.  She is amazing and perfect just the way God made her.  She IS how she is meant to be.  She sees the world in a completely different way than most people and that's what makes her so special.  

I feel like I wrapped myself up in a cocoon...and now I am learning to stand up and fly.  This is it.  This is my BUTTERFLY JOURNEY.


3 comments:

lovecare said...

Beautiful Journey! We are grateful to be along for the ride. God's gifts are eternal and perfect! Addison and Caleb are both spiritual images and likenesses of God, perfect, whole, free and LOVED.
We love you all!
Grandpa and Grandma P

mother of the spawn said...

I'm in awe of your strength and how far you've come since learning of Addie's diagnosis. Looking forward to the rest of your journey.

kristin said...

Melanie,

I was forwarded a link to your blog by one of the preschool teachers. We moved to Hickory in August and I truly miss all the sweet preschoolers.
Your words here are beautiful and as I am reading this I am in tears - not because I am sad for Addie but because I am soooo glad she has the love and support she needs. God has given her a wonderfully strong family who had the courage to keep looking forward and give her what she needs! Finding out your child is "different" is so hard ( I know I have been there with 2 children with Torette's Syndrome) but we tell our kids all the time that God made everyone unique and special and that means everyone is "different". Addie is lucky to have you and YOU ARE LUCKY TO HAVE ADDIE! Blessings to you all! Kristin Witz
Addie's 2 year old preschool teacher