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Some Progress You Just Can’t Measure

Twin 2 and I had just returned from the store this morning. As I came into the kitchen from the garage, my back popped┬ájust below the shoulder blades, and I couldn’t hold the groceries up for a second. The incident was rather bizarre, as I regularly workout with more weight and with more range of motion than what I was doing then. About 11 hours later, there’s a little bit of pain left which I hope is gone by tomorrow.

When my back popped, I winced, because it was a little bit painful. Twin 2 saw it, and asked, “Are you hurt, Dad?”

I said, “Yes, my back popped.”

She touched my back. “It will be OK, Dad.” That was very cool, and it almost took the pain away. Facial recognition, attributing it to pain, to being hurt, to showing concern whether someone is OK, trying to do something about it…these things are treasured when someone you love has autism.

Later on, we were working on a math worksheet, and she figured out on her own from a word problem that she needed to do “5 x 6″. She didn’t know it was 30 until we drew rows and columns, but she got the hard part done, as far as I was concerned.

A couple of weeks ago, my mother-in-law had a birthday party at a great restaurant that served gluten-free pita bread as an appetizer. My girl said loudly enough for everyone to hear, “I love this unleavened bread.” I’m still curious where she picked that up. We haven’t discussed the Lord’s Supper recently… :)

Recently she has also picked the concept of harmony, and while Dad is still not allowed to sing harmony in church, she can pick out a harmony in a song and sing it on pitch.

In school she isn’t the best test taker and doesn’t do her work as fast as the others. Sometimes we wonder whether she is learning the information and just not getting the information back out, or whether she isn’t learning at all. Behaviors like the above, though, give us an indication that maybe she really is taking in the world around her, and maybe it’s more of a question of her acquiring sufficient focus to get a task done in the expected amount of time.

I don’t have the answers, but some progress indicators can’t be measured in standardized testing. Your continued prayers are appreciated.

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One Comment

  1. Brian Yamabe says:

    The rays of light that poke through like this are an unbelievable joy.