Today you are 13 years old and we are so proud of you

The moment you were born you where pushed from doctor to specialist – you where “casted” for a clubfoot when you where a mere 5 hours old.  Nothing you experienced in your first years was “normal childhood” – for the first two year of your life you did not experience a bath or playing in a sandpit – you could not experience the world as a normal toddler would. Yet you never stopped smiling and giggling!

You went into theatre more times than we care to remember and at 3 and a half you where diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.  Today, almost 10 years after your diagnosis, you remain non-verbal and you face so many challenges daily and yet you never stopped smiling and giggling!

For 13 years you have needed help with dressing, bathing and eating and you struggle with noise, change, sensory input and people in your personal space – and yet you never stopped smiling and giggling!

For 13 years you have seen people stare at you, point at you and you have heard so many people ask:  “what is wrong with you”… and still you never stopped smiling and giggling!

For 13 years you have not been able to tell us when you are in pain, when you are sad, hungry, angry or that you love me… and still you never stopped smiling and giggling – but you’ve found ways to “talk” to those that have been willing to listen to your silent gestures.

You make us so proud our angel child – and for so many reasons!

You make us proud because you have an incredible ability to always be happy even when life has not been easy for you;

  • You make us proud because you have adapted so well to a world that does not always understand you;
  • You make us proud because not a single days goes by where you do not work harder than anybody else to overcome obstacles;
  • You make us proud because you are you!

You never complain about it being too hot or too cold, about being tired or about not feeling well.  You have never done ill-harm to anybody, you have never hurt another person physically or emotionally, you have never told a lie and you have only LOVED us. You have been patient with people (and with us) and for that we are so grateful.

We have learnt from you and we will continue to learn from you!

  • You have taught us that loving someone does not mean you have to say “I love you” or hear “I love you too”
  • You have taught us that there is more to life than shopping, movies, socializing and earthly possessions
  • You have taught us to be more tolerant
  • You have taught us to put others’ needs before our own
  • You have taught us to “learn” from others and to accept life for what it is
  • You have taught us to think twice before we complain – just for the sake of complaining

Madison you are mommy and daddy’s hero!  You are the most precious, gifted, intelligent, resilient little person we know and we are so proud to be your parents.  Today you are a “teenager” and we can’t wait for the next phase in your (and our) incredible journey!

Ilse Kilian-Ross
ilse@amazingk.co.za

Ilse Kilian-Ross is the owner of Amazing K, a registered ECD and Partial Care Facility in Johannesburg. Amazing K is a private adhd school, autism school and therapy centre for children from age 2 years where learners receive the best of both the schooling and therapy world. The autism school offers Individualized Education Programs, ABA, Speech- and Augmentive Alternative Communication (AAC) therapy as well as a full and adapted Academic Curriculum.